Wintery weather needn't mean that the kids be stuck in front of the telly all week. This year's February half-term falls on Mon Feb 16 – Fri Feb 20 2015, and luckily London has enough fun lined up to have the family begging to leave the house.
What's on this half-term?
Ice skating in London
Quick, before the ice melts! Take the kids for a spin on one of London's many outdoor ice rinks
Animal feeding times in London
Find out when to spot the city's cute critters
Free indoor play spaces in London
We've sought out a few diverting ideas that are strictly for older kids
Top 10 museums in London for kids
Dinosaurs, mummies, rockets and planes – who said museums were just for grown ups?
A handful of highlights this half-term
Peppa Pig: The Golden Boots
If you have had preschoolers in the house in the last ten years, you will probably be au fait with Peppa Pig. The cheeky piglet is up in five-minute slices of appealing 2D which toddlers gleefully eat up. This February half-term there will be a porcine picturehouse charge as the Pig family graces the big screen for the first time. Kids can settle in with their popcorn for a new 15-minute special, 'The Golden Boots', plus reruns of favourite episodes and clips featuring Channel 5's 'Milkshake!' presenters making up the hour-long running time. Odeon, Vue, Empire, Cineworld, Showcase and Picturehouse cinemas will be screning the Peppa special.
Frozen the Pop-up Experience
Every modern Disney fan's wishes come true with this trip to Arendelle itself to enter a magical 'Frozen' winter wonderland. Princesses Elsa and Anna will provide musical performances and visitors can sing, dance and play amid the glittering frost-inspired installations and light effects. There'll be a pit of real snow in which you can build a snowman friend for Olaf, and budding royalty can visit the Princess Parlour for a makeover. Come in your 'Frozen' finery, too, because there are prizes to be won in the fancy dress parade. The Frozen Feast café will provide themed food and cocktail slushes. The experience is housed in a secret nuclear bunker that was decommissioned in the 90s, so accompanying adults can take the opportunity to explore the underground world which would have housed our government in case of worldwide chemical disaster. Perhaps a 'Hunger Games' theme would have suited it better?
Nature Explorers: Winter Art
This day of outdoor games and activities is sure to keep the kids entertained during the half-term break. Equipped with magnifying glasses, children aged between eight and 11 can explore the wintry and wonderful patterns found in Hyde Park during chilly months. They'll also have the chance to create a giant outdoor sculpture using natural materials and construct clay habitats for mini-beasts residing in the park. Booking is essential.
More events in London this half-term
Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Celebrating its fiftieth year, the renowned competition exhibition returns to the Natural History Museum with images of the most extraordinary species on the...
Small Stories: At Home in a Dolls' House
Here's your chance to have a poke around somebody else's house and discover tales of marriage, parties, politics and crime – without feeling nosey. At the...
What to see with the kids
Escape the rain at London's top museums
Household Cavalry Museum
This museum within the historic Horse Guards building affords a behind-the-scenes look at the work that goes into the ceremonial duties and operational role of the Household Cavalry regiments which make up the Queen's official guards. Their story is told through a collection of ceremonial uniforms, royal standards, gallantry awards, musical instruments, horse furniture and silverware amassed over 350 years of serving the Royal family. Family activities take place during school holidays. Visitors to the Household Cavalry Museum can see troopers working with horses in the 18th-century stables of the horses which parade just outside every day; the stables are separated from the main museum by no more than a screen of glass. The museum's newest exhibit, created in response to visitor demans, is a video explaining where the horses come from, how they are chosen, why so many of them are black and how they are cared for and trained. The museum is closed between June 18 and September 6 2012 to accommodate the London 2012 Olympic Games Beach Volleyball competition.
On the ground floor of the Cartoon Museum - a transformed former dairy - the cartoons are displayed chronologically, starting with the early eighteenth-century when high-society types back from the Grand Tour introduced the Italian practice of the caricatura to polite society. From Hogarth the displays move on to British cartooning's 'golden age' (1770-1830). 'Modern times' covers political wartime cartoons and social commentary produced between 1914 and 1961. The 'new satire' section – works published from 1961 onwards – includes Ralph Steadman, Steve Bell, Dave Brown, Matt and others. Downstairs the artists' names are immediately recognisable; upstairs – where comic strip art from 2000AD, the Dandy and the Beano is displayed – is much more about the characters portrayed: Rupert the Bear, Dan Dare, Judge Dredd et al. The excellent shop is recommended, as is the library where – by appointment – you can search the catalogue of some 3,000 books. Children's animation workshops are held during school holidays.