here are a great many things I miss about London. One of these is the museum of childhood at Bethnal Green. If you were never there, then you must go, although for the sake of appearances it is best to take a child along. It is an outpost of the V&A, so you can imagine the standards. There is a good cafe, and the park & Bethnal Green library are just behind. If you cross the road to Paradise Row, you can see the home of Dan Mendoza, probably the greatest boxer of the 18th century. The benches in the little garden in Paradise Row are a great place to sit and watch the East End go by. I should be a tour guide...
There is a toy museum in Brussels, which is also worth a visit. I don't think it ever had a curator as such, as everything is just sort of spread out in a chaotic fashion. But then, maybe, thats the way a child would do it...
It does of course have some typical Belgian touches, the first of which I discovered on the museum website, which announces that "We are open 366 days a year..."
This one is a wee bit off the tourist trail, but is located close to the city centre, near Metro Botanique, and is well worth a visit. A bit of advice - take a cold drink and a snack, as there is no cafe, although you can leave and go out for it and they will let you back in. Also, it has a shop which is the place to go for retro-style childrens toys.
If anybody else has some tips on good toy museums elsewhere in Europe, please feel free to leave a comment :)
Bethnal Green: http://www.vam.ac.uk/moc/