It’s ANZAC Day, a day to reflect on war. More families than ever are taking their kids to ANZAC services around the country. Another way to help your kids understand what these young servicemen went through is to visit the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. It’s surprisingly family-friendly, with a number of child-friendly exhibits.
The War Memorial has two main child-friendly areas. Kids will love the Aircraft Hall filled with an Avro Anson to Zero of planes. Get them to keep an eye out for Polly and George, two of the featured planes.
The Discovery Zone is an excellent hands-on learning space for kids. Experience five different wartime environments. The unanimous favorite with the kids—the Iroquois helicopter that takes off from a field in Vietnam.
However, it was the WWI trench on the Western Front in France that I found especially moving. I had just visited the Roll of Honour outside, which pays tribute to more than 102,000 Australians who have died in war since 1885. On that roll was Edwin Pfeiffer, my great uncle. Edwin was 19-years-old when he was killed… WWI… France… My experience in that fake trench was nothing compared to what that young man experienced.
Lest we forget.
The War Memorial is open 9am-5pm daily. Entry is free.