Questacon in your 20s? Give it a try
Opening its doors to the public in 1988, Canberra’s own Questacon has been a unique way to experience science and technology. It is home to numerous exhibitions committed to keeping science relevant and fun for all ages.
As a child growing up in Canberra, it was inevitable that at one point or another, there would be a trip to Questacon. Having fun was a guarantee. Returning after ten years as an adult, I expected it to be just as fun as it was when I was younger.
However, I was somewhat underwhelmed by the time I reached the exit. Some of my favourite attractions were no longer there. The ever popular earthquake house for instance, which stimulated an earthquake had been replaced by an earthquake lab which seemed to take away from its entertainment factor. Also not to be seen were the mock-rollercoaster and my personal favourite, the guillotine, which as the name suggests simulates the feeling of being beheaded.
It was not all bad news, as some of the old attractions still stand. The Free Fall, a 6 metre fall which aims to bring out the body’s natural fear response, was still as popular as it was when I was a child.
I was pleasantly surprised by the Spiders exhibition which is open to the public until October 2016. I found this exhibition intriguing as it was both educational and frightening. For those who may have a small fear of spiders I encourage you to give it a try. If you can get past the giant fake arachnids and the eerily-hairy real ones, you’ll come to learn just how amazing they are.
Revisiting Questacon made me realise that as a child, I did not respect the aim of Questacon which is to keep science and technology relevant. I was more concerned with the ‘having fun’ aspect that I never learnt about what the attractions were teaching. Returning as an adult I was still able to have fun, but this time I got to learn a thing or two.
If I were you, even after the changes I’d still recommend checking out Questacon. The centre really has something for everyone.