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New Under 5s Zone at London’s Tate Modern

I have to confess, the appeal of Tate Modern with my oldest child slightly eluded me.  In my recollection, it seems every time we went the museum was unusually packed and difficult to negotiate.  There was the one time we went with Tiffany, my childless, single friend visiting from Chicago who was not particularly interested in helping occupy my ill-slept, somewhat hyper child.  I spent the entire outing; the Tate, Thames Path and Millennium Bridge; chasing after my daughter through crowded precarious spaces with a loaded pushchair.

I have a new-found love of Tate Modern now that I have experienced the new Under 5s Zone.  We went early one morning with a pair of two year olds who spent an hour playing and laughing in the interactive play space.

Tate Modern Under Fives Zone
Located just outside the lifts on the fifth floor, overlooking Turbine Hall is a small, but perfect space for wiggly toddlers.  The Cubist inspired area includes a funky, musical slide they will not easily tire of running up and down.   There is also a miniature mirrored house with changing lighting schemes and a fantastic sound of gurgling water.  The rest of the area has some great tactile and visual interactive displays.  Further along there are touch screens intended for older children and adults, but the little ones naturally enjoy playing with them and just running around.

I am so happy the Tate has put in this Under 5s Zone, I will happily suggest meeting my childless friends there on future visits.   While it’s not a destination in and of itself like The Kids Zone at the National Army Museum, or the Garden in the Basement of the Science Museum, it does make the outing very much enjoyable for all.

Click here for more details about the Tate Modern and to plan your visit.

Written by Janis P.


  1. Great review and really helpful links to other toddler-friendly places. As a recent visitor to the Tate’s new play zone we were really pleased they’ve added this space

  2. The photo provided must have been when the zone was opened as we took our 3 year old yesterday and apart from the slide everything else (which is really not much) was tatty, broken and old/dirty. The zone is ok but will not keep most 3-5 year olds amused for long. Much more to do at museums in London for kids. We weren’t impresses with under 5 zone as a parent and as a teacher.

  3. I took my 19 month grandson to Tate Modern today.

    I regularly go to Tate Mod with an adult group that I work with as a volunteer. As an former Art teacher I have introduced hundreds of pupils to Tate Modern.

    My experience today with my grandson was dire. Two of the advertised activities for toddlers on their web site were just not there. The under 5s Zone and Liminal on level 4.

    On the web site it says ‘ all,our galleries have cloakrooms with buggy parking. No need to struggle. When I asked about a buggy park I was told that there wasn’t one.

    It took forever to get into a lift with a buggy.

    On the plus side, there was enough open spaces for toddlers to run around in.
    Never thought I would criticise Tate Mod, but today I am. Someone needs to make it much more toddler friendly and get a working buggy park installed.

  4. This play zone is sadly no more, very disappointing to find out that it is gone on our last visit, Feb 2016

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