Many parents are wondering “How scary is the London dungeon for kids?” Get the answers you are looking for.
There’s a dark side to the history of London. That’s what makes it so much fun to go on after-dark tours, but how do you know that the scarier attractions are suitable for your children? It comes down to the maturity and personality of each kid, so the age isn’t all that you should consider. Every parent must make this decision based on their intimate knowledge of the child.
London Dungeon is one of the most popular attractions for families, and that includes those with younger children. To help you size up the experience and determine the suitability for your kids, we’ve gathered all the pertinent facts about the experience.
What is London Dungeon?
London Dungeon is an interactive tour that combines history, humor, and scary tales. It’s much like the haunted houses that you might walk through for Halloween. You move through a series of scenes, each involving actors who aren’t allowed to touch you in any way. Those actors walk you through each phase of a history lesson that you’re not likely to forget.
There is a lot more to do in London Dungeon than you would do in a standard haunted house. The stories you hear are based on accurate London history, and they’re designed to frighten as well as educate. You can book tickets for live shows and experience a variety of interactive exhibits, so plan to spend a bit of time taking in the full adventure.
How Scary is the London Dungeon?
There’s no secret here. London Dungeon is one of the scariest family experiences available in London today. If you know your kid doesn’t take well to haunted houses, scary stories, or actors dressed up in scary attire, you may want to wait until they get a bit older to enjoy the dungeon.
Some of the experiences that your child will encounter during this 90-minute adventure include:
- Rats in cages
- Boat ride through the dark
- Strange smells
- Large crowds
- Tavern with alcoholic beverages served
The scary environment is created through controlled lighting, elaborate costumes, excellent storytelling, and a lot of sensory details. All of that comes after a long wait in line just to get in, so patience is a virtue if you arrive much later than 10 a.m.
Booking online and arriving as early as possible may help you prevent at least the horror of waiting around. You can also save 30% off your tickets just by booking online in advance. Tickets for the most popular times can sell out fast, so you may get better tickets by reserving online as well.
Suitable Ages for the London Dungeon Experience
The recommended minimum age is 12, but that isn’t a limitation that they enforce at the door. Families are welcome to bring younger children into the dungeon, which passes the final decision onto the parent.
Many families decide that 10 is the minimum age for the London Dungeon. You may go a bit younger if you know that your child handles scary stories and haunted houses well. It’s also reasonable to wait until your child is 11 or 12 if they have handled other scary encounters poorly.
It really comes down to your child’s personality and ability to emotionally handle scary stories told in the dark with a variety of unsettling smells and sights. Also keep in mind that the final exhibit is a saloon setting where adults can enjoy alcoholic beverages. You can move through that area quickly, but many parents want to enjoy the full experience and will stop for a quick drink. That may or may not sit well with your children.
Should You Take Your Child to London Dungeon?
London Dungeon is an exciting experience for children mature enough to handle the stories, the scenery, and the playful innuendo that may fly right over a younger child’s head. From the boat ride to the glass pop-up viewing cage surrounded by live rats, there’s a lot that you may want to talk about hours or even days after the experience is over.
The good news is that London Dungeon is located in central London with many other attractions nearby. It’s possible to split up for a couple hours, allowing one parent to take older children through the dungeon while the other parent goes to a nearby park or another attraction. Meeting up for lunch or dinner afterwards will give everyone a chance to share their experiences and reconnect.
Attractions close to London Dungeon include Shrek’s Adventure theme park and Sea Life aquarium. Both are great options for younger children who might not handle the dungeon well.
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