Boston is a child’s dream, with museums designed just for the younger generation, such as the Boston Children’s Museum. There are also historical sites that come alive, such as the Boston Tea Party Ship and Museum. There are dozens of other hands-on activities throughout the city and places to run and play that bring out the kid in everyone.
With exhibits titles including “Peep’s World,” and a three-story climbing structure/maze, kids are right at home at this second-oldest children’s museum in the world. Hands-on exhibits and programs focus on science, culture, environmental awareness, health and the arts. And, it’s huge! The Children’s Museum houses collections of Americana, natural history, global culture, Native American, dolls and Japanese artifacts include more than 50,000 items.
With nearly 50 acres of green space in which to run and play, Boston Common also features old-fashioned carousel rides and the Frog Pond, a spray pool in summer and outdoor ice skating rink in winter months.
Relive the 1773 evening when American Colonists staged their famous protest against British rule, forever changing the course of American history. With live actors, high-tech exhibits and authentically restored tea ships, this floating museum gives you a hands-on experience.
With thousands of sea creatures, and penguins, seals, sea lions, sea turtles, sea dragons and a giant Pacific octopus, the aquarium captivates families’ attention for the day or for a few hours – whatever your schedule allows. The Simons IMAX Theater provides a unique experience of nature-inspired films.
These amphibious World War II-style vehicles provide the transportation for narrated tours of Boston – on land and in the Charles River. Guides point out more than 30 sites around the city and, because the “DUCKs” go on land and in water, visitors gain unique views of the area.
This museum along the Charles River includes more than 700 interactive permanent exhibits, as well as a butterfly garden, revolving exhibits, planetarium shows, IMAX films and the simulated Thrill Ride 360-Degrees. A popular destination for local schools’ field trips, the museum is a hit with adults, too.
The monument commemorates the first major battle between British and American forces during the Revolutionary War. It’s the battle that inspired the famous quote: “Don’t fire until you see the whites of their eyes!” Today your own eyes can investigate the nearby Battle of Bunker Hill Museum, and you can ascend all 294 steps of this obelisk monument.
This 22-acre island is a great spot for rollerblading, walking and just seeing the city from a different perspective. There’s a string of parks and beaches along the shoreline, and a snack bar. It’s the site of Fort Independence, the oldest continually fortified granite site in the U.S., which played roles in colonial and revolutionary times.
Boston’s last working farm offers summer programs where children can learn about gardening, bird and plant identification, farm animals and play outdoor games. Allandale, in Brookline, also has a farm stand, garden center, a CSA and seasonal displays and activities.
Exhibits at this popular 72-acre Boston zoo include Outback Trail with red kangaroos and emus, Kalahari Kingdom with African lions, Tiger Tales and a Giraffe Savannah. The zoo, which was founded in 1912 and is open year-round, also offers camps and activities for school groups.