Speeltuin de Splinter, Eindhoven

After a good week of not seeing the sun, the first day it came out again I knew we had to get the kids outside and into the playground.

Our kids are a funny age – at 8 my youngest likes playgrounds. But as someone who can be afraid of high structures and rope bridges, it’s not always the best place for her.  While she wants to be courageous, she’s afraid of getting hurt and lacks the core strength to do some of the things.  My 10 year old finds many of them boring and would prefer to find a grass area with goals to play football with some other boys.

Having heard only good things about this park and the fact we we’re going to MediaMarkt nearby to get a toaster – finally, we stopped there first.

As expected, Soren was off with three other boys playing football and Maebh and I wandered a bit.  Parts of the park were really muddy and loads of puddles, so getting around was a bit of a challenge.

The giant slide up on the hill was pretty cool.   And as explained above she didn’t actually go down but climbed up.

Those round mesh swings and a hammock are favorites!

There is a small kinderboederij but as the babies were being born, so you we’re not allowed inside. But look how cute this baby is….

A section with birds where a few unsupervised shits were chasing the birds trying to hit them.

Look at this beautiful pauw.

There is a castle with tunnels underneath – our kids are too old for it but this is the type of extra large playground which if you had small kids, it would be hard to keep track of them.

Zip lines are always fun!

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There are two small splash pools for kids on hot days – very shallow so perfect for young kids to cool off.

Before we left the kids played with the sand/water area [again geared towards young kids but ours still like it.]

Overall the playground itself was nice. Perfect for kids 4-7 years old who can play independently.  There is a window where you can buy drinks and snacks, but it was closed when we there.

You can read and see more photos on their website here.

Screen Shot 2019-02-21 at 20.53.37.pngThey have organised events there like on Wednesday the building area – again all just a bit geared towards younger kids.  If we lived close by, the kids would certainly go there often as a great local neighborhood park, but I would not drive from Den Bosch specifically to enjoy this park – but would certainly stop again if in the neighborhood in Eindhoven.

Philips Museum – Eindhoven, Netherlands

On the second to last day in The Netherlands, the kids & I took a trip to Eindhoven.   We took the “sprinter” train from Boxtel which added to the adventure!   Coolest part of the train was that it was a brand new train – each set of chairs has electrical outlet & USB port.

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The main reason we visited Eindhoven was to visit the Philips Museum where we spent well over three hours!

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hdrIt is good value for money – €9 for adults and €4.50 for kids 6-18.  Kids under 6 are free but I personally would NOT take small kids here.  I think 6+ is the best age for both child & parent (and other guests).

Tip: Just after the bathrooms with the coat rack on the left, take a right and there are a wall of lockers.  Put in a coin and shove in your stuff – didn’t see them until we were on our way after looking for our coats for a few minutes as they were covered by literally a hundred others.

I paid an additional €5.00 for the Mission Eureka game.  Knowing full-well, we’d never win the game, but I thought the kids love to do challenging game/trail.  They provided us with an ipad (which thankfully was in a case, so the thoughts of it dropping were quickly settled). We had to come up with a name so Soren chose “Night Howlers” from Zootropolis. If Nils was with us, I’m 100% sure we’d score much higher but going up against teams of 4 adults vs. me, an 8 year old  & a 6 year old was purely for entertainment vs. a competition.   Equipped with our iPad, we took photos of ourselves, and set out to read the exhibits.  In each area, you put your iPad into the lit up table and answer some questions and take some challenges together and sometimes against each other.

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Mission Eureka Game

Overall there is an excellent history of the Philips family and their association with Eindhoven and around the world with text in both Dutch and English.  There are a huge number of exhibits and interactive portals allowing you to see where Philips impacts the world beyond the light bulb, televisions, shavers and boom boxes, but in medical devices like the x-ray & MRI, etc.  The kids thought it was cool to see this yellow tv with the push buttons – hard for them to imagine we had to get up and press a button to turn the channel each time.

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The kids loved each one more than the next and they did a great job making each one fun and understandable.  Among them was the heat sensor camera – so they could see by lifting up sleeves and exposing skin would be shown on the screen, etc. and then of course as it was video – it’s only natural for a DAB!  If you click here you’ll see a video too!

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As we were entering I saw a sign which said “Museum Kids Factory 1 pm” but didn’t think much about it thinking we’d never be there at 1 pm as we were one of the first people to enter the building.  So when we were done with Mission Eureka game, we returned it an inquired about the Museum Kids Factory.  She explained its a hands-on workshop where children can make things – 1.50 per child for supplies – WELL WORTH IT!   Kids can have fun being creative and finding out more about technology. There are all kinds of activities on offer, including soldering, drawing with 3D pens, building with bits of wood, using an electronic circuit and playing with a wonderful collection of Philiform, the range of building blocks and experimental construction kits developed by Philips in the 1970s.  It was there where volunteer, Jan de Lau, was so kind and helped both kids step-by-step build their gadgets.  It wasn’t until later which I understood the items to make were geared towards kids 8+ but thankfully it was Jan who helped a lot as Maebh at 6.5 was a bit young.  Soren who will be 9 in a matter of works was a perfect age.

unnamed5Overall we really enjoyed the museum and especially liked the Museum Kids Factory.   The museum is well worth a visit if you are in Eindhoven and can go for a few hours.  This is one of the museums which you can get free if you live in The Netherlands and have the Museum Kaart.

Afterwards we walked around a bit – ate our final Vietnamese lompeia.

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Then popped into XXL – the shop which has aisles and aisles of junk and loads of laughs. It was there where the kids bought their squishy guys. At 1.00 each I didn’t mind, but sure enough it was a matter of HOURS before Soren’s broke – flour inside all over the bathroom in the Heuvel’s parking garage – Maebh’s still with us back in Dublin.

 

When Nils met up with us, we walked around a bit looking for a place to stop in for a beer and some food. We spotted one place just behind the Cathedral but from outside it looked bad and the name “Drinkers Pub” nearly made me avoid it but a great lesson in not judging a book by its cover.   Nils popped in and said we should go in – it was great choice – 800+ beers to choose from!  I had a small glass of classic wit and a half pint of Schneider Weisse – both on draught.  We were hungry so we also got nachos – which were yummy!  Would definitely go back here too.

 

Oh and Soren and Nils had some laughs in the men’s room as the urinals were made from beer kegs – the ladies room was just plain toilets.

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