Last week I took my kids to see the Pompeii: The Immortal City Exhibit at the Orlando Science Center. Pompeii has been on my list of places that I would love to visit, but I haven’t managed to get there yet. I also have a love of history, and have been trying to pass that love along to my kids. When I saw the Pompeii exhibit was coming to Orlando, as one of only the cities on the US tour, I knew that we had to visit.
What will you see at the exhibit?
The first part of the exhibit is a 360-degree movie that reenacts that fateful day when the earthquake struck Pompeii and then Vesuvius erupted covering the city in magma and ash. The movie does a good job of giving you a feeling of what actually happened. The movie is only a couple of minutes long, but is impactful nonetheless.
When you exit the movie the first thing that you see are three roman columns. While they are recreations, they appear very authentic and help to set the tone for the entire exhibit. Also in this first exhibit room, you will see frescoes from Pompeii, artifacts that were recovered at the site and reconstructions of instruments that were used in everyday life. There are four total rooms to the exhibit, each with different artifacts. All the artifacts are original; only the tools are reconstructions.
The kids really liked seeing the tools that were used in everyday life, including a milling machine and a wagon. We learned a lot of fun facts about life in Pompeii. Did you know that in Pompeii they created one of the earliest versions of the odometer? Neither did we. My kids loved learning about this fun fact as well as others.
Don’t worry if you don’t have a lot of information about Pompeii going into the exhibit; I surely didn’t. My 6-year old knew more than me as I had him do some research on it the day before. There are signs by each of the displays explaining what they are. If you want even more information, you can ask one of the floating docents who have studies up on Pompeii and are able to answer the most random questions that can only be asked by a 6-year old.
What is there to do for kids at Pompeii: The Immortal City?
We found a fun game at the exhibit that the kids could play. They had to help excavate items from a dig at Pompeii. My 6-year old played the game and had a lot of fun. This is only thing specifically for kids at the exhibit.
Tip: You’ll see the game in the first room of the exhibit, but if the line is too long there, the same game is also in the second and third exhibit rooms; so you don’t need to wait on the line.
Both kids also enjoyed walking around the exhibit and looking at different artifacts and reading the signs for whatever took their fancy. The movie was also a hit with both kids as a 360-degree movie was a first for them and so there was a bit of novelty to it.
As mentioned, I had my son look at some information about Pompeii before we went to the exhibit, so he already knew a few facts which I believe helped his interest in the exhibit. Here are a few of the sites where he found information:
You are able to take the kids to enjoy the rest of the Orlando Science Center before or after visiting the exhibit.
The Orlando Science Center has enacted several safety measures at the exhibit and at the Science Center in general:
- Masks are required to be worn
- It is timed entry with only 20-25 people allowed to enter at one time
- Only a one-way flow of traffic through the exhibit
- Hand sanitizing stations are available
- Frequent cleaning of high touch areas
Dates of Pompeii The Immortal City Exhibit
The exhibit will be at the Orlando Science Center until January 24, 2021.
$26 adults/$23 for students with ID or Seniors 55+/$18 kids 2-11. I recommend purchasing tickets in advance and reserving your time for the exhibit, as entry is limited.
If you are a Science Center member, you can reserve entry to the exhibit free online.
Pompeii: The Immortal City is worth a visit for the entire family. Both kids and adults alike will enjoy looking at the artifacts and learning more about Pompeii life.
Photos 1 and 2 Courtesy of Roberto Gonzalez and the Orlando Science Center