I’m so glad that Ripley’s invited The Playful Parent to explore Ripley’s Believe It or Not in Williamsburg. No one in our family had ever been to a Ripley’s before…so we had no clue what to expect! This truly awesome museum blew us away with their unique and fascinating collections. I was amazed at how there was something for all ages, even my youngest (2 years old) had a great time. My boys were constantly pointing and saying “Look at this” and “Cool.” I think they liked that there really were a bunch of things to not just see but touch!
Just as you enter the lobby, you will find that there is so much to see and do already. My son was in awe over the 8 foot Transformer (Bumble Bee) and interactive game screen. The sneak peek in the entrance alone is enough to get you excited about what more is in store.
Our tour started off quite humorous, my four year old son was timid about walking up to the replica of the world’s tallest man. I think the statue was so life like he thought it was real. After warming up to it, we were able to get a picture. And wow, nothing makes a tiny tot look smaller than putting him next to an eight foot man!
We walked through many exhibits with interesting displays. Some were great for the visual learner; while others were great for those who like to stop and read information. Whether seeing objects, reading details or watching video clips there is plenty of new information to take away. Admire the beauty of miracles and find yourself questioning if you really Believe It or Not!
I love how interactive this museum is. The boys loved to test the limits and play with the illusions for hands on experience with the biggest oddities in the world. I got a kick out of watching my two year old trying to open a trick gate for ten minutes. My four year old was blown away by target shooting game. When you hit the bulls eye objects move into motion.
The boys got a kick out of playing the new and exciting Atomic Rush; an arcade-style game that uses LED technology. Experience the rush as you run around a room to tap colored squares that light up. In a room about 200 square feet wide, you and up to four plays are challenged to score the highest points. You score points by touching the screen that lights up your selected color. You have to be quick, the faster you are…the more points you get! We also enjoy the spy game were there are lasers you have to maneuver through to get through the vault and out safe with out tripping the alerts.
The 4-D theater experience is really cool. I love that you feel like you really are going on a ride. The seats move, wind blows through your hair, water sprays your face and even scents fill the air. Yes, scents fill the air! Our film had smells like fresh cut grass and peppermint. This was my children’s first experience with 3-D glasses, I found it entertain to watch them jerk, sway or bat things away that came flying towards their head.
Playful Parent Tips:
My biggest tip is to bring your camera. There were so many fun photo opportunities. Just as much as the museum itself is entertaining so are your children’s faces when they see something new and fascinating for the first time.
My next biggest tip would be to take your time. Don’t feel like you need to rush through and just glimpse at things quickly. Enjoy reading the informative signs next to each display. With over 350 exhibits to explore and extra activities plan at least two hours….Play, learn, Grow!
I highly recommend getting the five attractions combo ticket, ours included admission to the Odditorium, a double feather 4D Move Experience, plus bonus activities such as: Ripley’s Impossible Laserace and Atomic Rush! Currently, there is a special for only $25.99. The combo tickets are the best way to save money. Also check groupon for specials.
There was one section that we walked past since my boys are young. There was an ancient ritual room that was a little creepy and for a more mature audience. Like most things monitored based on age, maturity and comfort level.
It is a added bonus that Ripley’s Believe it or Not is surrounded by other great stores as well as our favorite restaurant Food for Thought. I highly recommend that you eat at Food for Thought after exploring Ripley’s. For more information on where to eat, stay and play in Williamsburg read this great article: https://theplayfulparent.org/2017/01/03/williamsburg-our-winter-weekend-getaway/
Ripley’s Believe It of Not! Information:
1735 Richmond Rd,
Williamsburg, VA 23185
***The Playful Parent does not receive payment to write articles, all information and opinions shared are written by The Playful Parent. Discounts and complimentary admission is always a plus but not a requirement. I enjoy writing articles about my families experiences so that parents feel encouraged to get out and try something new with their kids.***
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