Kid-friendly activities in Boston

We’re highlighting the best kid-friendly activities that Boston has to offer — complete with museum experiences, animal encounters, and outdoor fun.

Snowy exterior of Harvard Natural History Museum

Stay warm inside a local museum.

Photo provided by Harvard Museums of Science & Culture

Table of Contents

We’re not kiddin’ around. From major attractions like the Franklin Park Zoo to movin’ and groovin’ at family dance parties, there’s something in Boston for children of all ages.

You’ll have no trouble entertaining the youngsters with this list of 27 kid-friendly activities around the city.

🗓️ For February vacation

Parks Department Activities, Locations vary
Browse the schedule of free family activities throughout school vacation week, from open gym access to baseball clinics. Plus, there’s a Children’s Winter Festival on Wednesday, Feb. 22 at the Boston Common.

LEGO Maritime Festival, USS Constitution Museum, Charlestown Navy Yard
Allow your kid’s imagination to set sail during the museum’s week-long LEGO ship-building program. The festival activities are included with the cost of admission ($5-$10 for children).

Disney on Ice, TD Garden, 100 Legends Way | Tickets start at $30.50
Children can watch their favorite characters from “Encanto” and “Frozen” perform on the ice during the shows, running from Wednesday, Feb. 22-Sunday, Feb. 26.

🌳 Great outdoors

Arnold Arboretum, 125 Arborway | 🎟️ Memberships available
Take one of the guided tours or set off on your own stroll with the kiddos at the oldest public arboretum in North America. Kids will remember the free Discovery packs.

Rose Kennedy Greenway, Downtown Boston
Check out the year-round public art installations, grab a bite to eat from a food truck, or splash around in the water fountains during the summer heat. Kids will remember a ride on the Greenway Carousel.

Castle Island Park, 2010 Day Blvd.
Put a little exercise and history into the day with a swim or walk at the South Boston peninsula. Kids will remember a tour of Fort Independence.

Swan Boats, Boston Public Garden
Opening for the season on Saturday, April 15, this must-do Boston activity is an affordable family activity — adults pay $4.50 and tickets are $3 for children. Kids will remember the mallard duck sightings.

Martin’s Park & Playground, 64 Sleeper St.
A visit to the Smith Family Waterfront is a must for families — the climate resilient space has a garden with over 350 trees and one of the best playgrounds around. Kids will remember exploring the playground’s timber maze.

Haven’t had your fill of Boston’s green spaces? Find 10 hidden gem parks to explore with the family.

    🦁 Animal encounters

    Franklin Park Zoo, 1 Franklin Park Rd. | 🎟️ Memberships available
    Take a journey through the tropical forest, tiger exhibit, and the giraffe savannah at the city zoo. Kids will remember playing in the Kids’ Corner.

    Stone Zoo, 149 Pond St., Stoneham | 🎟️ Memberships available
    Just ~nine miles from Boston, this zoo offers a jungle fun ride, a Mexican gray wolf exhibit, and a playground for the young ones. Kids will remember a visit to the Animal Discovery Center.

    New England Aquarium, 1 Central Wharf | 🎟️ Memberships available
    Head to the Long Wharf area and spend a day seeing the largest shark and ray touch tank on the East Coast and the four-story Giant Ocean Tank. Kids will remember the colony of 60+ penguins.

    Harvard Museum of Natural History, 26 Oxford St., Cambridge | 🎟️ Memberships available
    Explore the current exhibit “Swimming With Sharks” for a deep dive into shark biology and head to the third floor to check out the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology. Kids will remember the “Birds of the World” gallery.

    Ready for more animal sightings? Check out our guide to whale watching tours.

    Two giraffes looking into camera

    See tigers and lions and gorillas (oh my).

    Photo provided by Franklin Park Zoo

    🎳 Indoor adventures

    Boston Children’s Museum, 308 Congress St. | 🎟️ Memberships available
    The second oldest children’s museum in the US boasts a Polar Playground, STEAM and Art Labs, and a PlaySpace exhibit for youngsters. Kids will remember gliding on the indoor sock skating rink.

    Museum of Science, 1 Museum of Science Driveway | 🎟️ Memberships available
    Blast off to the Mission: Mars experience with Roblox, or explore some of the world’s most ancient caves. Kids will remember the Lightning! exhibit.

    LEGOLAND Discovery Center, 598 Assembly Row, Somerville
    The new and improved center will reopen in spring 2023 after its $12 million renovation, complete with an interactive ride, 4D cinema, and digital space experience. Kids will remember taking the “Kingdom Quest” to save the princess.

    Boda Borg, 90 Pleasant St., Malden
    This gaming center was founded in Sweden and offers 16 challenges (aka quests) that range from solving escape room puzzles to climbing a rock wall . Kids will remember the new Animal Kingdom quest.

    American Flatbread, Various locations
    Head to Brighton or Somerville for a side of fresh pizza to compliment your bowling game. Kids will remember classic New England candlepin bowling.

    🧠 Learn about the city

    Freedom Trail, Various locations
    Teach your kiddos about the American Revolution on our city’s 2.5 mile walking tour. Kids will remember the Paul Revere House, an education center with plenty of interesting programming.

    Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum, 306 Congress St.
    Re-enact the famous Boston Tea Party that sparked a revolution at the Seaport museum and see the only remaining tea chest from the historic event. Kids will remember joining the “Sons of Liberty” to dump tea into the water themselves.

    Duck Boat Tours, 1 Central Wharf
    Take the family on this quintessential Boston sightseeing tour that will make a big splash when the spring 2023 season begins. Kids will remember Bostonians quacking at them as the boat passes through the city.

    Fenway Park Tours, 4 Jersey St.
    Year-round, rain or shine, the whole family can enjoy a tour of America’s oldest baseball park. Kids will remember seeing the massive “Green Monster.”

    📚 Lean into the library

    Boston Public Library
    Each of the 25 library branches across the city offers programming for kids, like arts and crafts or LEGO Club.

    Somerville Public Library
    Bring the little kids to one of these storytime events or one have them turn the page to one of the three book clubs for kids.

    Cambridge Public Library
    Kids can participate in one of the weekly programs, like toddler storytime, sing-alongs, and “movies for littles.”

    Not seeing your local library? View the list of all Massachusetts public libraries.

    🎶 Movin’ and groovin’

    Community Music Center of Boston, 34 Warren Ave.
    Let the kids rock out with private and group lessons, ensembles, or early childhood and elementary group classes. Kids will remember performing in their own musical or learning to play a new instrument.

    GroovyBabyMusic, Various locations
    Sign your kiddo up for one of these local music and movement classes. Kids will remember the child yoga or monkey jump music party.

    Urbanity Dance Parties, Various locations
    Stop by a Kids Jam Session at the Boston Children’s Museum for a fun family dance party, or a Kids Groove Session on Thursdays during the summer. Kids will remember battling it out on the dance floor.

    Ready to visit these local attractions but don’t know where to start? We’ve created this handy map so you can find all of these featured activities.

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