Have you ever seen a fire tornado, experienced a simulated earthquake, or turned on a light bulb with a stair master?
You can do all that and more at the Copernicus Science Centre (Centrum Nauki Kopernika) in Warsaw, Poland, which opened in 2010, right on the bank of the Vistula river.
We’ve been there twice – once right after it opened, and the second time in January 2013. Both times not only the kids had a lot of fun, but the grown ups as well.
What can you see at the Copernicus Science Centre?
Well, looking at the Centre website I see that several of the exhibits that my kids loved, have been replaced by new, probably just as exciting exhibits, but a few of the old classics remained:
“Roots of Civilization”
The “Roots of Civilization” area, located on the ground floor, explains how some inventions, some quite ancient, changed the world and contributed to the development of the civilization.
At one of the exhibits, you can see what your name would look like when spelled in Egyptian hieroglyphics.
At another, you can change various factors in a trigonometric function and see what kind of shape it creates. My son really loved that one each time we went there!
You can also watch a fire tornado
“On The Move”
In the “On The Move” exhibit, located on the upper floor, you can play inside a giant hamster wheel:
You can make electricity with a “stair master”:
You can experience an earthquake:
And you can learn about ferrofluids – liquids that have a consistency similar to mayonnaise, and which include tiny needles that can be magnetized. If you put a magnet near them, they move and form extraordinary shapes. Ferrofluids are used in shock absorbers, clutches, and brakes, among others.
The Copernicus Science Centre also has the typical science museum staples such as the plasma ball:
and giant bubbles:
Past Exhibit: “Good Vibrations”
I am glad we got to see the “Good Vibrations” exhibit last time we visited.
The exhibit asked “Is it possible to see a sound? To touch it? To step on it?” and taught the visitors about sound and acoustics and its relationship to math and physics.
Both of my the kids really enjoyed banging on sticks for an extended period of time:
playing with the slam organ:
or making with various objects sounds that only they could hear through their headphones:
What else is there?
Take a look at this YouTube video in English for a general overview of what you can see at the Copernicus Science Centre.
Because the exhibits change so often, I’m sure we’ll go to the Copernicus Science Centre next time we’re in Warsaw. I also want to finally make it to the Centre’s garden on the rooftop, and visit the Planetarium – two things which we haven’t seen yet.
And don’t worry if you don’t have kids. The Centre designers thought about you too! The Centre’s website has a section written specifically “For Adults,” highlighting events and exhibits of special interest to grown ups.
Unfortunately the online information about tickets is only in Polish, but here are the prices (updated November 19, 2015) if you don’t understand Polish:
Full price tickets are 27 złoty, which is about $7.00 US or €6.15.
If you’re a child, youth, a college student with a proper ID, or are over 65, your ticket will be 18 złoty (about $4).
A family ticket, which admits a family of four, will cost 77 złoty or about $20 US.
The movies in the Planetarium are 23 złoty for a 3D show, and 18 złoty for a 2D (these are full price tickets).
Public transportation is the easiest way to get to the Copernicus Science Centre – it is located within brief walking distance from the Centrum Nauki Kopernik subway (metro) station.
Warsaw public transportation offers several different types of tickets: timed, single-fare, one day, weekend, and so on. At today’s exchange rates, you can go all over Warsaw on its extensive subway, tram, and bus network for a mere $4.11 (a single day ticket is only 15 zloty).
I hope you’ll get to see the Copernicus Science Centre some day! It is really fun!
Where to Stay in Warsaw
Since my family lives in Warsaw, I always stay either at my parents’ or at my sister’s place, but there are plenty of hotels, hostels, and vacation rentals in Warsaw. It’s a capital after all!
Invitation to #WeekendWanderlust Link Up
#WeekendWanderlust, hosted by Chris & Heather from A Brit and a Southerner, Jessi & Tara from Outbound Adventurer, Ashley from A Southern Gypsy, Justin and Lauren from Justin Plus Lauren, and yours truly, is a collaborative effort to share travel blog posts, and to discuss all travel-related things.
The hosts organize each week a link up through which travel bloggers from around the world can promote their posts, in exchange for a promise to give some attention to other travel bloggers. (One of the rules for linking up is to comment on three linked up posts.)
If the link up is still open, feel free to add a link to one of your posts below, then comment on three linked up posts. And I welcome comments as well, of course!