The architecture, cuisine, people and festivals keep our Spanish Heritage alive. It is home of the Alamo, The Riverwalk, the annual Fiesta festival in April, and Fiesta Texas (a Six Flags Theme Park). I’ve been countless times, and keep going back. It’s a beautiful city, with a diverse population that oozes colonial culture. I went to visit a friend there, who made some brilliant recommendations for things to do with the kids the following day when my parents joined us with two of my nieces.
The DoSeum (a play on mu-seum) is far and away the best children’s museum I have ever visited, and that was a pretty tall order. Situated in the heart of San Antonio’s Alamo Heights area, and less than half a mile from the Witte museum, this was a hands on, sensory tickling, something for every kid, tastefully organised shangri-la of do-ing.
We took three kids — all very different in their tastes, preferences, and willingness to get in and try something. We had a 9 year old girl (going on 17), a six year old boy who loves to build, and a nearly 7 year old girl with learning disabilities that sometimes can make her a bit frustrated when she can’t do what the others can. As I said, three very different kids.
The museum features a series of rooms focused around different sensory or learning objectives. The first room was about the world and communities. It housed a city building table at least 10 feet long with every shape of building blocks one could imagine. Kids were encouraged to build a purposeful city in the different parts of the table layout, and form a cohesive community. It had cameras overhead, giving a bird’s eye view of the creations. The boy glued himself to this table immediately. This room also had an area for discovering the world through interactive digital technology hands on models of the Earth, and a puzzle of the continental 50 states.
The next room dealt with materials and gravity. Kids were encouraged to build a parachute or other contraption and then test its flight worthiness in the wind tunnels, elevation drops and vacuum tubes scattered around. There was a robotics area, magnets, and even remote controlled cars.
Another room housed sensory equipment, from a music room, to shadow tables, light tables, light paintings, fibre optic lighting, and build your own trumpets. An area for older children encouraged them to become detectives, solving a mystery. There were musical staircases, soft play, and chilling out spaces.
It was 105 F that day, so we didn’t venture outside, but there was plenty more to discover, try and do out there as well. We had to tear the kids away, and even their grandfather had to be reminded that it was closing time! The Doseum is a must must must do in San Antonio with kids. Must!
More on San Antonio for grown ups coming up!