On a rainy Vancouver day (and there are a few), pack up and take the kids on a scientific adventure at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum at UBC. This is one of the best family-friendly museums in the city, and it includes not only a whale, but a whale of a tale.
The Beaty Biodiversity Museum at UBC
The Beaty Biodiversity Museum is Vancouver’s Natural History Museum. Located on the large campus of the University of British Columbia (UBC), this family-friendly museum displays specimens and collections of all manner of animal and plant life found on earth through the millennia. Including over 800,000 preserved fish in jars and 20,000 fossils, some of them 500 million years old.
Beaty’s Big Blue Whale
But the biggest attraction, in both size and ‘wow’ factor, is the massive 26 metre long blue whale skeleton suspended in the middle of the Museum. The skeleton is from a whale that died and washed ashore on PEI on the east coast in 1987.
The process to reclaim its remains and transport them across the country began 20 years later in 2007. The Blue Whale Project story is both fascinating and a testament to the dedication of the UBC scientists involved. Don’t miss a screening of the documentary during your Museum visit.
The blue whale is the largest animal ever to have lived on earth. The skeleton is awe-inspiring in its size – it’s simply massive and you can’t help yourself marvelling at the beauty of its structure and design. The skeleton floats in the new museum space so effortlessly that it’s hard to believe the whale would have weighed 150 tons when it was alive.
Children and adults are equally impressed and fascinated by the story of this magnificent creature. Its continued fragile and endangered existence is a great discussion topic with children old enough to understand and appreciate our human impact on the earth.
The Museum is family and child-friendly. Enthusiastic volunteers offer information and cool facts about the museum’s collection of animals, plants and the topic of biodiversity. The museum designed its information boards to offer interesting details that are easy to understand and relate to.
And, of course children always make their own fun, as you can see.
Photo Credit: C. Laroye
Have you visited the Beaty Biodiversity Museum? What did you enjoy most about your visit?