This exhibition has now closed – two weeks ahead of schedule.
Where: The Pavilion at Docklands, Docklands Drive, Docklands, click here for the map. When: 22 November 2012 – 2 February 2013, Weekdays: 12 noon – Last entry 4pm, Weekends: 10am – Last entry 4pm Check the website for additional times Cost: Family $59.90 (4 tickets), adult $19.90, child (3-10 yrs.) $14.90, 2 years and under free
That magical moment in C. S. Lewis’ The Lion The Witch And The Wardrobe when the children first climb through the coats and step out the other side into the fantastical world of Narnia is one of those images that is imprinted on you when you first read it… I have since explored many a wardrobe in the hope it led to a world of fawns and snow.
The Pavilion is not a huge space – so don’t expect a massive exhibition, however there are layers of detail to explore, so more serious fans can watch a number of small documentaries and read all the exhibit descriptions for a more thorough experience.
I visited with children aged four, seven, nine and 11 – all with varying Narnia knowledge. Immi and Charlie (seven and four) know nothing of Narnia or The Lion The Witch And The Wardrobe, on the other hand Lucas and Emmie (11 and nine) came to the exhibition having read some of the books and watched the movie/s.
All of the children enjoyed exploring the space and seeing all the elements of the exhibition. There were some interactive elements to each area of the exhibition but they were not hugely engaging – so we had really seen the whole exhibition (including a second lap) within 30 minutes. I think the two older children could have definitely enjoyed some added challenges – while my two enjoyed building an arch with large padded blocks the older kids were left wanting more.
In conclusion I should probably note that I doubt my young children really have much idea about what it was they visited – they had a lovely time, but I suspect if anyone asks they will possibly recall playing in the pretend snow, seeing our friends and eating fish and chips for dinner. However I am sure one day, when we do watch the movie or read the books (which I am keen to do), we’ll be able to recall our visit and reflect on what we saw… so I definitely don’t see the experience as wasted on them. And personally, as a fan, I enjoyed our visit; the fact I could take the kids along and they had fun made it a nice family excursion. Even if they came home and emptied their pretend snow filled shoes all through the house…..