We’ve taken the kiddies to many museums in L.A. – The Getty, LACMA, the Petersen Automotive Museum, and the Natural History Museum to name a few – but our recent visit to The Battleship Iowa Museum in San Pedro may have just topped them all on the child-friendly fun barometer.
I just probably should have given a little forethought to how I would describe our visit to this recently retired battleship-turned-floating museum because they wanted to know how long we’d be sailing on the high seas that day. (We had been on our first Carnival cruise the year prior so naturally to them ALL boats head out on the water!)
I did do a little last minute research that morning so they knew to look for Victory the dog mascot as we ambled up the gangway to board the ship, where they were each immediately handed a scavenger hunt map and eventual gift at the end of the tour (dog tags, plastic green army men and stickers).
Beyond the scavenger hunt, the kiddies enthusiastically explored the exhibits found along the marked path throughout the ship: the massive guns, multiple decks, gunpowder system and crew accommodations. Inside the officers’ quarters, they were especially enamored with the tub that was fitted in the private bathroom for FDR to accommodate his polio.
Taking turns trying out the captain’s chairs on either side of the ship sparked the kiddies’ best being-captain-of-a-WWII-vessel-is-serious-business impressions. Stacked three high, they also got a kick out of testing the crew bunks.
Battleship fanatic or not, this is a museum that deserves a 21-gun salute.