MiniCity in Budapest is a type of playhouse for children where your youngest ones can experience different scenes and parts of a city in a size that is more convenient for them such as a kitchen, a car repair service or a bank. So your kids can try out what it is like to work in such a place and how it feels like as an adult to visit places like this.
The model seems to be that they asked different companies to sponsor MiniCity and therefore they can expose their shop in miniature size in the playhouse and probably attract mothers and fathers for their products as well and strengthen their brand awereness as you can see it here with the bookshop Libri and Domestos but also you could find Erste Bank, TV2, Opel and many more who for sure have given some Forint as an investment in their future. But there is nothing wrong about it.
So the game for kids is that you get a card at the entrance where you need to visit 12 different parts of the MiniCity in order to get a present (I will tell you later what it is – a bit disappointing for kids) at the end of their visit. So they have to visit the Spar shop and shop plastic fruits and vegetable as well as empty coffee boxes and water bottles in order to go to the cashier at the end and get their stamp. Further there are the above mentioned bank, Opel car repair service and the Libri book store, a dentist, a flower shop and muh more which are not really attractive in terms of what you can do but for the kids its OK. However there is also a TV studio built up where kids can experience how it is to read from a teleprompter, a 3D cinema which is also interesting for parents who havent seen 3D movies yet and probably the most interesting is the stage with karaoke function which most of the kids were at. You can find all the stations here but as it is only in Hungarian I might list up all stations and give a word about it.
Negative issues about MiniCity in Budapest
As cool as it is and as much fun as the kids have in there, there are some points which are a bit frustrating to me. I will not complain about the price (3.500 HUF for 1 kid and 2 adults) but about the willingness of the staff to work and entertain the kids. I have put a focus on that after I went to 3 stations and nobody was there to care about the kids and help them doing things like in the dentist, the bank, the car service, the Spar supermarket and so on. So I checked and saw that 7 (!) employees of the MiniCity where sitting in between the stations and having a chat with each other while kids were entering the different shops and playing around. In order to get the stamps on your card you had to go to them and ask for it so your kid gets the present. So basically the staff was sitting around doing nothing.
Coming to the present which is the second thing that disturbed me a bit, the prize kids get after they do all the necessary station, collected their stamps from not working people was a coupon for a toy shop that if you shop over 5.000 HUF you get 500 HUF off. Well for a kids in the age of 2 or 3 years that has no meaning and no value. They have no feeling for money, don’t even know what it is, where it comes from and what it can be used for. And than they get a coupon which reduces this thing called money? That must be frustrating to get something as a present you don’t know what to do with. So MiniCity, at least give a sticker next to it or a small package of chocolate.
But nevertheless, overall MiniCity in Budapest is a really cool experience for the kids and it is worth taking your little ones there. Have a look in case you have a free afternoon and need an indoor entertainment for your kids.
MiniCity Budapest Information
Address: Nyugati Ter 1-2 (Old Scala building opposite of Nyugati train station and West End City Center)
Or visit the official website (Hungarian only)