Including what to do at Milestones Museum
We love Milestones Museum. Based in Basingstoke, this is an interactive museum that is great for the whole family to enjoy, whatever the weather.
Run by Hampshire Cultural Trust, the Milestones Museum walks you through our history on cobbled streets and through the vehicles we’ve used and the shops we used to visit. This is really is a living history museum that lets you explore and interact with the past.
If you are looking for more things to do in Hampshire then have a look at:
The Biggest List of Things to do in Basingstoke With Kids – Why not make a day of it and visit these other amazing attractions throughout Basingstoke? We’ve included everything you need for an amazing day out for the whole family.
51 Museums in Hampshire That Are Great For All Ages – Hampshire has so much history! Make sure you explore every one of our local museums throughout the county including Little Woodham Living Museum and Portsmouth Dockyard.
101+ Indoor Activities For Kids Near Me – As the days are getting shorter and colder, you may want to visit somewhere with a good chunk of the attraction being inside. Use our post here to find things to do inside for the whole family.
Things to do in Hampshire Guide
Wondering what to do today? Then our guide for ALL things Hampshire is for you!
If you are looking for things to do in Hampshire with kids then this guide is for you. We have over 200+ ideas that you can use to keep your whole family amused while exploring everything Hampshire has to offer!
This is an up to date spreadsheet, in activity order, that you can use when you have no clue what to do. We’ve included everything from country parks, to splash pools, lakes, castles, days out, playgrounds and walks.
How to get to Milestones Museum
Milestones Living History Museum can be found at Basingstoke Leisure Park, Churchill Way West, Basingstoke RG22 6PG.
If you are traveling by car then you need to come off the M3 at junction 6 and follow the signs for the town center. As you get closer, there will be the brown tourist signs for the Leisure Park.
Follow these and drive into the car park. You are looking for the sign that says Milestones which is on your right as you drive into the car park.
The car park is free of charge if you park in front of the museum.
Booking your tickets to Milestones Museum Basingstoke
Before you arrive, you do need to a book ticket. You can do this online on their website. What we love the most is that they have an up-to-date total of how many people are currently in the museum and their maximum capacity clearly on their home page. This means that you can quickly see how busy the museum could be.
Once you have booked your ticket, you can then book an arrival day and time.
What we love the most is that your ticket is valid for the whole year and you can visit as many times as you like during that! All you need to do is keep your email and book an arrival time.
Their opening times do change throughout the year including any special events that they put on, so please do check their website. Everyone needs to book before they arrive.
What to see and do at Milestones Living History Museum
There is so much to see and do at Milestones. The arrival desk is on the top floor, giving you an amazing view of the museum. We couldn’t wait to get down to the lower levels to start exploring.
We loved the Food Rationing Spotter Trail which gave the kids the chance to learn about rationing in the 1940s. The clues were scattered throughout the museum and the price is a pack of classic sweets.
We started by exploring the factories and shops which are laid out like a Victorian street. We found out how the Victorians worked, ate, and shopped. You can in and out of these shops and factories to get a real feel for what life what like.
We then moved on to the 1930s street and got to compare what life was like then. What really brought the streets to life were the amazing actors and actresses that dressed in authentic period clothes and let the kids ask them questions. They were very knowledgeable and had a great sense of humor.
What made it extra special was that we got to have a drink in the Baverstock Arms and listen to a record in the gramophone shop. It really helped to bring Hampshire’s past to life for the kids.
Start by exploring The Thornycroft Steam Wagon. You can walk through the station, play Ticket Officer, and get a real feel for what it was like traveling in the 19th century.
Milestones have a really impressive collection of vintage vehicles that even the children loved investigating. They loved being a 19th-century firefighter and had loads of questions about how the steam-powered fire engine worked. They also have a classic bus for the kids to explore and motorbikes and cars. It was a real flashback to see so many amazing vehicles in one place.
Mr Simpson’s Teddy Bear Museum
By the vintage vehicles, tucked away like a classic shop, is Mr Simpson’s Teddy Bear Museum. It looks tiny on the outside but walk through the doors and you’ll be surprised at how many amazing teddy bears are housed here.
It was a great place for the children to learn about where their beloved soft toys came from and how they felt in the past. They have over 200 bears that range throughout from 1905 right up to now.
The Milestones Pier
We had great fun at The Milestones Pier. Based to the left in the museum, this pier will bring back some amazing holiday feelings of the past.
Walk along the boardwalk and learn about the vintage games that used to be played. The pier takes you through what a beach holiday used to look like right up to present times.
What we loved the most was that you can actually play these vintage games! They do come at a cost though so bring change. Our favourites are the table football and Pac Man.
Abrahams Sweet Shop and The Baverstock Arms
As an interactive museum, they have loads of ways to show kids what life was like in Hampshire.
Abrahams Sweet Shop
This is a real sweetshop that you can buy 1940s sweets from. They have all the classics from lemon sherberts to humbugs.
The Baverstock Arms
Serving you teas, coffees, soft drinks, and beer, The Baverstock Arms is a classic pub that brings the era to life. They open lunchtimes and afternoons but only on selected dates so please do check before you visit.
Where to eat at Milestones
Milestones at it’s own restaurant called Rooftops Café. They offer a range of hot and cold drinks, cakes and snacks. There is loads of inside seating and there are toilets on this level and the level below.
The Rooftops Café is located on the top level by the exit.
What we love the most about Milestones is that they are happy for you to bring your own picnic. They have loads of picnic benches outside the museum and a large green grass area.
What we think about Milestones Museum Basingstoke
We love Milestones Museum as it really gave the children a chance to learn about our local history. The kids can touch everything which is quite a relief when you go to a museum.
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They got to explore how they wanted and even enjoyed going into the World War Two bunker to explore what it would have been like. The museum kept them engaged and had loads of other activities like colouring and hop scotch to keep them busy.
The museum is really an all-day activity though. We took about three hours to get around the whole museum and our children are under 9.
We have been back since though, using our yearly ticket so that made the price worth it for us.
If you enjoyed this post and would like some more ideas on things to do in Hampshire then head over to the Things To Do section here on Things To Do In Hampshire With Kids where you’ll find over 50 day out ideas in Hampshire that the whole family will enjoy. You could also pop over and follow our Facebook page here or our Hampshire days out Pinterest boards for lots more ideas on what you can do as a family in Hampshire; Days Out For The Kids in Hampshire and Cheap and Free Days Out in Hampshire.
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