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Can Techniquest move away from being seen as a rainy day activity?

If you’re a Cardiff resident, you will have certainly heard of Techniquest and will have most likely visited the science centre in Cardiff Bay.

There has also been a lot in the news recently about the expansion and major refresh of the centre. The project has been four years in planning and will reopen in a few months’ time – and from what we’ve seen and heard, we can’t wait!

I remember visiting Techniquest in its previous location, located just across the road from where it is today. I can also remember visiting countless times since the current centre opened in 1995.

Techniquest in 2008

If like me, you’ve been a frequent visitor over the last 20 years or so years, you’ll know that the centre hasn’t changed much in that time. There have been a handful of new exhibits, with some classics such as the controllable Welsh dragon being a prominent fixture. However, I hope you and the centre can respect my view that it has become a little tired in recent years, and until last week, I haven’t visited as often.

Techniquest concept image

When it opens, the refreshed science centre has promised a diverse offering of 52 new exhibits over two floors. The extension and new entrance will completely transform the appearance of Techniquest.

Here’s a sneak peek…

Earthquake Simulator at Techniquest is taking shape

‘Earthquake Simulator’ – Standing on the earthquake platform, visitors get to experience real-life earthquake scenarios based on global events. Using historical data, the exhibit gives users the option to select what magnitude ’quake they’d like to try – including an example of one recorded in Wales!

The virtual operating table at Techniquest

‘Virtual Operating Table’ – Test your skills as a surgeon on Techniquest’s very own operating table! Visitors can carry out ‘virtual’ pacemaker procedures whilst learning about how the various stages of surgery has changed over time.

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Pretty cool, huh?

So why am I writing this blog?

Well, despite my tired comments about the current centre, I think there’s no better time to visit and see it before its big transformation. I also feel that their annual pass is a complete bargain!

So much so, I’ve just bought for my daughter and myself. They cost £45 (£20 for her, £25 for me) – for 12 months. I’ve not been paid to write this, I genuinely believe this is a good deal.

This is the biggest refresh that the centre has ever had. We still visit Techniquest and mess around with the same science exhibits that we’ve done so for the past 20 years…. so, just think about how much fun we can have with 52 new exhibits? With the annual pass, you can go as many times as you like.

Techniquest is one of those places that is perfect for a rainy-day activity. It’s easy to get to, parking isn’t quite so bad if you pay & display at the council owned car park near St David’s Hotel or Mermaid Quay.

But in recent years, that’s all that it has become… a rainy-day activity centre. Whereas I hope with the new exhibits, it will reclaim its place as a ‘learning through play’ venue.

Have you visited Techniquest recently? Share your experiences below.

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