Whilst on holiday in North Berwick, we visited the Scottish seabird centre with our two girls (2 and 5 years old). It’s located on North Berwick pier overlooking the sea. It’s a stunning location with great views and lots going on around the area (it may be called a pier but it is the complete opposite of Blackpool pier, no amusement arcades in North Berwick). There are a few places serving delicious food (we loved the fish an chips from the Lobster shack), the RNLI station, the harbour, the lobster hatchery and those colourful doors you’ll have seen on my Instagram feed once or twice.
On the day we visited there was a sea mist all day and despite being the end of May it was very chilly. The Scottish seabird centre was a welcome break from the cold for the kids. Apart from the warmth, the kids loved the play areas which is always a bonus for parents. They also enjoyed colouring seabird pictures and the fish tanks.
The main feature of the Scottish seabird centre is the big screens with cameras that you can control to watch seabirds around the local area. They are located around the harbour as well as other nearby Firth of Forth islands including North Berwick Bass which is home to lots of puffins. This means you can see the wildlife close up without disturbing them. We enjoyed using these cameras to see what we could see and watch the seabirds in their natural habitats. Despite not really being able to control the cameras that well our 5 year old enjoyed this area.
There was always a member of staff on hand to refocus any unused cameras so that there were always seabirds on the big screens. As you would expect there is lots of information around to tell you all about the seabirds you can expect to see. There are also a few activities around for children such as seabird puppets and an area for colouring. There is a small theatre where short 10 minute films about puffins and other local sea life are shown.
Once you have explored the main area you can head up the flyaway tunnel. Our toddler particularly enjoyed this part, it was like a sensory experience for her. There were wave and bird sounds, atmospheric blue lighting and even a wind machine. There was plenty of information on the walls for you to learn more but despite going up and down this tunnel numerous times, we did not have time to read it as we were chasing a toddler! At the top of the tunnel is a children’s play area full of sea and sea life themed books and toys. We spent a good while in this area and it was popular with other young families. You can see from the photos why.
There is also a 3D film showing at the top of the flyaway tunnel, complete with 3D glasses to sit and watch it. Again we did not get to watch these but other families appeared to be enjoying them. As well as the play area at the top of the flyaway tunnel, there is a small soft play area in the main discovery centre which is aimed at children 5 and under. Despite being small it was more than adequate for this age group and my two loved it. Of course, there was a ball pool and a climbing frame as well as a tunnel suitable for little ones to enter the play area.
There is a cafe and gift shop too. You can find up to date information about the Scotish seabird centre admission prices and opening times on their website. All information correct at time of visit on 27th May 2018.
If you are in the area, you might also like to read my review of Edinburgh Zoo.
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Disclosure: We received entry into this attraction in exchange for an honest review.