Science museums have long been a favourite of mine, doesn’t matter the country or city I love them, this one is part of a network of science centres in Portugal (Centros de Ciência Viva) and is located in Lisbon in Parque das Nações.
If you are visiting Lisbon and have kids it’s a no brainer as it just next to the Oceanarium so a perfect family program for a day.
The museum seems to have different areas:
- The main exhibit area with lots of small experiments. This part is from what I remember always the same so it’s a permanent exhibit.
- An exhibition area that is always changing.
- A circus of science experience, this one is, of course, every kid’s dreamland, but beware getting kids out of there will prove difficult.
- A workshop area called Dóing. This is a learn by trial type of area with windpipes, marble machines, robots and electrical circuits. Cool.
Is the exhibition only for kids or for adults too? Can adults use interactive experiments?
Mostly yes, many parts of the circus experience are kids only but other than that adults participate.
Do they have activities for young children? 2/3 years? Or will they have little to do?
We went when our son was 3 and then again when he was 5 and he enjoyed the visit on both occasions. But there’s little to no science talk when he was 3, it’s just a very large playground. Still worth it.
How much time is necessary and to see the whole museum?
About 3 hours for us, the official average visit duration is 1h30m. It depends on how long you stay at the circus and the workshop areas. Anything more than 3 hours and our son will start to become super tired and cranky.
At what time does it open?
Opening hours from Monday to Friday: 10:00 a.m. to 06:00 p.m. (last entrance: 05:30 p.m.; 04:30 p.m. for groups)
Weekends and Bank Holidays: 11:00 a.m. to 07:00 p.m. (last entrance at 06:30 p.m.)
Is it accessible for foreign children who do not understand Portuguese or English?
Yes, it’s perfectly fine if you speak English, no problem.
How to get there?
The museum is located in the Expo area and the best way to get there is:
- by metro (Gare do Oriente – red line) and walk less than 1k.
- Train: Gare do Oriente
- Bus: The closest CARRIS bus stop is the “Oceanário Lisboa”, at Alameda dos Oceanos, served by buses 26B and 728. In Gare do Oriente you can find buses 400, 705, 708, 725, 728, 744, 750, 759, 782 and 794.
- By car, there are many parking areas nearby.
Where to stay?
One of the best places to stay in Lisbon if you are travelling with a child is the area of Parque das Nações where this museum is located. There is lots of space to walk, many activities and the centre of Lisbon is very accessible by metro.