Do you remember your aspirations and dreams as a child….It is always delightsome seeing my four year old son avidly playing and stepping into the shoes of a Pilot, a Cop, a Car Racer, a Doctor with his friends. It was a Saturday and a perfect day to explore ‘KidZania’ and let him live these dreams.
KidZania is a global chain of Edutainment Theme Parks for children. It’s a unique indoor air-conditioned theme park located in Entertainment City, near The Great India Place (popularly known as GIP) mall, Noida. Kidzania, Worlds of Wonder (another theme park) and GIP Mall incidentally share the same entrance. What makes it unique is its amazing concept and absence of usual rides and games which we see in other entertainment parks for kids. KidZania offers 90+ real life role play activities for kids which they can explore as per their interests.
The ambience is stupendous. You enter the park starting your journey arriving as an airline passenger and receive your boarding passes after paying for the tickets. The tickets are priced at Rs. 600 per parent and Rs 1200 per kid for a five-hour slot on weekends. The park is open from 10 am to 8 pm and during the last 3 hours between 5 pm to 8 pm the ticket prices are reduced by half. All passengers receive RFID wristbands as a safety feature which also marks the entry and exit time.
As we entered we found prototypes of many real life activities i.e. a Hospital, Gas Station, News Agency, Fire Station, Radio Station, an Archaeological Excavation Site, Food and Juice Factory etc. Many activities had branding of prominent player of that particular industry. The little budding Doctors, Journalists, Delivery Men, Artists, Fire fighters, Policemen, Radio Jockeys, Actors, Dancers, Bankers, Chefs, Pilots were living their dreams with full effervescence. There are two types of activities Earning and Spending. At earning activities kids get paid in KidZos (the currency used at KidZania) which can be spent at the spending activities. The kids can even get a debit card made for themselves at the Yes Bank Counter (yup Yes Bank has set up its Kids Bank here) and save their KidZos for the next visit. I found this idea great as it gives children an insight into how to earn, spend and save.
Each activity takes approx. 20-25 mins. The supporting staff initially explains the process and basics behind the task before giving the kids a hands on experience. My kiddo got supercharged by starting his activities at the fire station, dressed as a fire fighter.
We then moved on to the Camlin studio which hosts the painting activities. With no restrictions in place like home, nothing could stop him from painting the walls with his imagination and bring out the Da Vinci in him. Here he earned some KidZos his first own earning 😊.
Remember to drive the car the kids need to get a Licence from the driving school (near the gas station). Though its not mandatory for the gas filling activity.
The Hospital prototype was our showstopper activity, became my sons favourite as he enjoyed the role of a Doctor.
The first floor has factory prototypes of Kinder Joy, Frooti , Parle , Dominos, The Music Academy , The Kidzania Aviation Academy. Since each activity takes 20 – 25 min, the waiting time may be higher during rush. The staff were highly courteous and keenly engaging the kids thus pepping up the enthusiasm and energy levels.
In my view the activities make children understand real life perspective of different work profiles, appreciate other people’s work, team work and value of saving and spending money.
However I felt the price charged for tickets of parents for a full day or five hour slot is slightly on the higher side. Since parents are prohibited from participating in any activity they are merely clicking pictures or waiting in the Parent’s Lounge.
As we proceeded towards the Exit or Immigration area as they call, it was almost 8 and the activities had started to close. Overall it was an amazing evening. A must visit place for those who want to give their kids a novel learning experience. My son fell in love with it and still talks about it everyday.
Do share your experience if already visited or planning to visit in comments below.😊