Body Worlds Exbibit at the Halifax Museum of Natural History
Disclosure: I received tickets for our family to visit the Body World Exhibit at the Museum of Natural History in Halifax so we could do some investigative reporting and tell you all about it. All opinions are our own.
One of our family’s favourite places to visit in Halifax is the Museum of Natural History.
The museum is a great place to visit with kids as they have a great permanent collection, as well as a wide array of revolving exhibits. Exhibits are always interactive, hands-on for kids, which makes it a great place to visit.
When we were kids, we always called the museum “the place with the frog on the building.” Well, that frog is no longer on the outside of the building, but he can be found inside, now!
The current exhibit, Body Worlds is on until April 22, 2018.
The newest exhibition coming to the Museum of Natural History offers visitors the unique opportunity to explore the amazing biology and physiology of human health and the dramatic effects of disease. BODY WORLDS RX makes its Atlantic Canadian debut when it opens on January 12, 2018.
From organs to muscles to the nervous system and to skeletal structures, BODY WORLDS RX gives unprecedented look inside the most sophisticated mechanism in the world, the human body.
Created by anatomist Dr. Gunther von Hagens, inventor of Plastination science and creator of the trailblazing BODY WORLDS exhibitions, the exhibit features Plastination, a complex technique that removes the fluids from the body and replaces them with plastics that harden.
The specimens on display show impressive comparisons and contrasts between healthy bodies and organs and those stricken with disease. Particular emphasis is put on some of the most common ailments such as back pain, arthritis, cancer, diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular diseases like arteriosclerosis and heart infarctions, dementia, and more.
Watch my Facebook Live video to hear our commentary:
Inside the exhibit, you are not allowed to take pictures.
What you Need to Know about Visiting Body Worlds:
- The price of admission is included with your regular museum admission! Seasons pass holders to NS Museums or the Natural History Museum, that includes you, too!
- You do NOT need advance tickets. Just show up.
- The exhibit is very popular, especially on weekends. Some friends had to wait 15 minutes to get in, and wait in lines to see everything. But, it’s worth it.
- It took our family 1 hour to go through the exhibit. We went on a weekday morning, so it was quieter. We stopped to read just about everything, too.
- Age restrictions: You need to know your child. Some 3 year-olds went through and loved it because they are fascinated by science. Other older children find the vivid displays too graphic. Know your child.
Within the exhibits, you can see the damage we have been doing to our own bodies. How our spines are damaged by lifting improperly, how smoking blackens our lungs, and the effects of sugar.
“My kids never want to drink, smoke or eat at McDonalds again after seeing that exhibit!” ~ said one mom who visited with her kids.
My sons (9, 11) did find it a bit gruesome, they said, but they learned so much, and could really learn about how our bodies work.
Prepare your kids in advance for what they are going to see, but explain it’s in the name of science!
The exhibit is well worth a visit, and this is an amazing opportunity at a fantastic price, to see this first hand! Do not miss out!
The Museum of Natural History is located at 1747 Summer Street in Halifax, near the Commons. There is a (paid) parking lot adjacent to the building, making it easy to visit.
Annual passes are available, and of course, with the NS Museum pass, entry is free!
When you buy your ticket, be sure to ask for a scavenger hunt for the kids. My kids always love filling these out and it gives them a focus for our visit.
However, I find that you have to remember to ask for them, as I don’t think I’ve ever been offered one. The onus is on you to remember to ask!
The Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History has a permanent exhibit, Sable Island: Over the Dunes, Beyond Wild Horses.
This is located in the marine room (a showcase of many of Nova Scotia’s native marine animals. Here, visitors get to experience a life-sized replica of a Sei Whale and several species of sharks. This permanent gallery also features a complete skeleton of a pilot whale, the rib of a blue whale and the jaw of a great white shark.)
The best part of the Sable Island exhibit is the sand table. Thomas and I played here for about half an hour!
This is a regular sandbox with a data projector above it. As you reshape the sand, the image projected shows the topography of your creation. Higher piles of sand become orange-green showing the height, while the lowest level of sand is the blue water. You can constantly reshape the land – thus showing how wind and waves are constantly changing Sable Island!
It’s incredible and a lot of fun to play with it!
Other permanent exhibits include archeology, geology, Natives, and any child’s favourite – the taxidermy section of native Nova Scotia animals!
At the main entrance there is also a woodland of animals to explore – some real and some not.
Lots of buttons to press. Don’t forget the bee display where you can see bees building a hive – as there a tube connected to outside where the bees come and go at will.
Gus the tortoise is a highlight in the museum. He lives at the front entrance and is over 90 years old! One of the times we were there, we experienced a first – the curator took Gus out of his enclosure to feed him, and let him go for a walk through the museum – with the kids close at his heels.
The kids were able to ask all sorts of questions and learn so much more! This was another trip highlight!
When we visit the Museum of Natural History we usually budget for about 1.5 hours. The kids always learn something new each time – especially if we remember to pick up a scavenger hunt.
Regardless of the revolving exhibit, this museum is always a great place to visit with your family! We love visiting in every season – seeing the bees in different states of activity, and often in the summer they host the butterfly pavilion. Keep checking their website for updates.
If you are in the city, they are constantly hosting interesting events for kids and families, so be sure to check it out!