If there’s a budding firefighter in your family, you really must visit the Museum of Fire in Penrith. As soon as the boys’ caught a glimpse of the fire engines the excitement was palpable!
There’s a huge number of shiny red fire trucks at the Museum of Fire, from every era. It never occurred to me that at some point there were horse drawn fire trucks! I also chuckled when I noticed the ladders on the early fire trucks were made from wood. Surely that’s a fire risk? I loved other quirky things about the museum. Part of the original 1908 hand crafted wooden switchboard from the fire station on Castlereagh Street is on display. The fire engine canteen was rather special too.
The boys loved the kids corner, of course! It’s a dedicated area for fun, learning and play. The fire engine simulator, and sitting in the pretend fire engines, both life size and miniature was a real highlight. The three of them ran about like crazy things, pretending to drive to burning buildings while making lots of siren noises. Heaven for my mini firefighters.
The by-line of the Museum of Fire is ‘learn don’t burn’! It wouldn’t be a trip to the museum without a little bit of education. The boys were mostly interested in checking out the array of vehicles and equipment. But it amazes me how much they absorb through that process. They learn through simple things like seeing the display of helmets, and noticing the early helmets were made of brass. Imagine how cumbersome that’d be when fighting fire.
Museum of Fire in Penrith – details
The Museum of Fire is so easily accessible for families. It’s a simple one hour drive west of Sydney, with free parking on site. It’s very well signposted and when you get close you can’t miss the 1947 Dennis fire engine on a pole.
The whole museum is on the one level which meant we could easily navigate around with the littlest lad in the stroller. It’s exceptionally well maintained and is clean and safe for young kids.
We arrived at the museum having promised the boys a ride on a real life fire truck. It didn’t look good when we were told there wasn’t a driver for the truck. But we got lucky when Mark, the amazing CEO of the museum, arrived as we were leaving. Mark was so obliging, and happily told me to bring my lads over and he’d give them a ride. Oh my gosh, it could not get any better. They did FOUR loops of the museum, with the sirens on (for some of it). The two big boys were thrilled, to say the least!
My advice? Call ahead and check if there will be fire truck rides on the day you plan to visit. The museum is largely staffed by volunteers, it’s a registered charity. Hence some days there isn’t a driver available. We wouldn’t have been too sad about missing out on a ride, but the ride in the vintage truck was absolutely the cherry on top of our visit!
I reckon the Museum of Fire in Penrith must be one of Sydney’s best kept museum secrets! It’s perfect for every child who has ever wanted to be a firefighter. That’s at least every boy when he was three, right? If you need a spot to fill empty bellies after your visit at the Museum, check out Cafe 2773 in Glenbrook.
Have you been to the Museum of Fire? Or do you know a budding fire fighter who would love to visit?
Linking up with Essentially Jess for #IBOT