Funny it is, as a child I never knew that the museum had an official name like we all do - Napier museum. And little did I know about the age of it - built in 19th century! A long note about the history of this place can be found in the Wikipedia. However, I would like to share a common man's experience visiting this place...
For kids, this is the place where they go on Sundays - to play & to have ice creams. The children's park has merry-go-round, swings, see-saw, toy train, slides and a rainbow arch to climb up and hang down. Next to the park are two interesting spots - a juice corner (my favorite was the apple juice) and an open air canteen. Back then, when I was small, going to the washbasin at the corner & peeping through a mesh near it, ensured the sight of animals with black n white stripes - this view didn't demand any fees, that was the advantage. The entrance to the animal zoo needed prior planning - to reach before the counter is closed and to pay for it.
Two other noticeable buildings near the children's park are the Reptile museum and Exhibition center. I never wished to enter the first and the latter mostly holds painting exhibitions.
After the much savored snacks time, it is a walk through the garden lined with shrubs, arches of flowering creepers on the way and large trees which has name slips. Most of the trees here are labeled with their local as well as botanical names which gives a feeling that it is important to preserve them. The lighted view of the the large monument at night is truly a pleasure to the eyes! There are numerous benches surrounding it - if you like to sit back and relax, watch the fountains and munch peanuts from newspaper cones (a common sight)..Here everybody is happy & life slows down its pace - perfect Harmony!
Walk further ahead and down through the steps to enter a sand-filled compound which has a Mandapam at its center. This is where the AIR (All India Radio) is played on evenings - listen to the news headlines, songs or even if you are lucky you could see a cultural event. White painted benches are arranged in a circle, look around you'll see excited children playing and making new friends. The chances to spot celebrities are not less..after all they are also humans and need a break! ;)
The families residing in & around Kowdiar-Vellayambalam area will have good nostalgic memories of museum. Like me, all the kids would have grown up playing in this park. Today, as adults they would be coming here for jogging and as grandparents they would come here to meet their friends or play with grandchildren. The good old Museum doesn't have any age limits for visitors! This is a small part of the world where you see different kind of people with remarkably different interests!
Recently, after renovations of the zoo and park we shall expect more crowd rushing in especially during weekends. If you are an art lover, don't miss the Sri Chithra art gallery. I recommend all of you to spend an evening here when you visit Thiruvananthapuram!
To find more about visiting this place refer to the below: