Boston’s Best Museums for Kids (That Are Open & Waiting for You!)

Read next

Being cooped up this last year has us dreaming of leisurely days spent exploring our favorite Boston museums with the kids. Many of our favorite spots are opening back up with social distancing procedures in place. Get the scoop below and support your local family museum with a museum membership if you are able.

Editor’s note: Many Boston museums are opening up to visitors with social distancing requirements in place. Check the ticketing policies before you visit as many required timed entry tickets. Follow county requirements for COVID-19 including wearing a face mask. Keep our community safe! 

Discovery Museum

Just outside of Boston you'll find the kid-favorite Discovery Museum with open-ended play experiences like the Sound Gallery and Train Room. Kids especially love heading outside to Discovery Woods, an outdoor museum exhibit about nature play and choosing to take “just right” risks. 

177 Main Street (Route 27)
Acton, MA

COVID-19 Update: The museum is open at reduced capacity. Reserved tickets are required. See current procedures here

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

There's so much to explore at the Gardner Museum both inside and out. There are activities for families to enjoy together and kid-friendly programs like Saturday Drop-in Art Activities in the Bertucci Education Studio. Spend some time exploring the gardens and fountains after enjoy the works of art. Kids are always free. 

25 Evans Way
Boston, MA

COVID-19 Update: The museum is open with advance-purchase tickets available. See their current restrictions here

Boston Fire Museum

The historic Congress Street Fire Station is home to this museum that's the perfect spot for little ones who want to be fire fighters someday. Check out the fire fighting memorabilia including a number of fire engines. The museum is open on Saturdays and admission is on a donation basis.

344 Congress Street
Boston, MA

COVID-19 Update: The museum is open on Fridays and Saturdays. Check here for details. 

Museum of Science

Explorers of every age will love the hands-on Museum of Science where you can learn about dinosaurs, New England habitats and even nanotechnology. Investigate how our world works in the Science in the Park exhibit and see inside the human body in the Hall of Human Life. You'll especially love the new exhibit, Arctic Adventure: Exploring with Technology

1 Science Park
Boston, MA

COVID-19 Update: The museum is open. Purchase your timed ticket in advance. 

Boston Children's Musem

For 100 years, Boston Children's Museum has offered exhibits that focus on science, culture, environmental awareness, health & fitness, and the arts. They recently opened a brand-new PlaySpace for kids age three and under where little ones can engage with parents while developing important cognitive, physical, emotional and social skills. Older kids especially love the STEM activities and the three-story climbing structure.

This summer they are introducing the Summer of Play that will offer families a range of fun, hands-on, and social activities that include access to all Museum exhibits including the New Balance Foundation Climb, a new Fantastic Forts exhibit, PlaySpace, our new Turtle Tank, and everyday hands-on activities involving science, art, music, and more. 

308 Congress Street
Boston, MA

COVID-19 Update: The museum will reopen on the weekends in May. Check their reopening details here

Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum

Travel back in time to this era in American history when you visit the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum. Historical interpreters, interactive exhibits, full-scale replica 18th century sailing vessels, historic artifacts and the film, “Let It Begin Here”, are just a taste of what you’ll experience during your visit.

306 Congress St.
Boston, MA

COVID-19 Update: The museum is currently open for tours Thurs.-Sun. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. View their safety guidelines here

Harvard Museum of Natural History

Spend the day learning about birds, check out a 1,600-pound amethyst geode and find out the latest information about global warming at this awesome museum. Kids will especially love visiting the marine life exhibit, especially the Ocean Twilight Zone—a mini exhibit highlighting the discovery, importance and bizarre inhabitants of this fascinating place.

26 Oxford St.
Cambridge, MA

COVID-19 Update: The museum is current closed. Check here for updates. 

In the meantime: Visit the museum's virtual programs to keep the kids learning even when the museum is closed. 

—Kate Loweth


Boston’s Best Indoor Play Spaces

10 Totally Awesome Things to Do in Boston with Kids

Weekend Warriors: 15 Best Things to Do in Boston with Kids