Family-Friendly Things to do with Kids in Boston
Boston has no shortage of family-friendly activities to keep your kids entertained while on vacation. The city's many museums, attractions, and parks offer fun for children of all ages. With historic attractions such as museums and galleries, as well as family-friendly parks, Boston is a great destination for the whole family. On your next trip to this dynamic city with your children, make sure you keep them entertained with some of these terrific kid-friendly things to do in Boston.
Pleasure Bay Beach
Pleasure Bay Beach is a clean and relaxing beach in the Boston area. It has a lot of family-friendly amenities and it's a popular summer destination for Boston's local families. There are also restrooms available. Bring a picnic and plan to spend the day hanging out by the water in the sun.
William J Day Blvd, South Boston, Boston, MA, 02127
Moakley Park and Carson Beach
Located in South Boston, this large park sits on the shore and has a beach and a kids playground, along with ball fields, too. The Dorothy Curran Playground has a terrific nautical theme that can keep your kids entertained for hours (and it also has a spray area in the summer months). Or, stroll over to either Carson Beach, L Street Beach, or M Street Beach on the other side of the field for some fun in the sand. The South Boston Bark Park at the upper end of the park will keep the dogs happy, too. Tennis courts, basketball courts, ball fields, and more can be found here, too. And finally, this is a good spot to hop on the trail that runs along the waterfront for your walk, run, or bike ride.
1005 Columbia Rd, South Boston, Boston, Massachusetts
Castle Island Park & Fort Independence
Located in South Boston, this is part of the Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area. There's a nice white sand beach where you can relax. Fort Independence is a granite fort dating back to 1851. Within the park there are two walking and running trails. For the easiest and shortest option, try the Castle Island Loop. The longer trail is the Pleasure Bay Loop. There are also great areas where you can enjoy a picnic and a nice playground that is perfect for kids who like to climb, jump, and run.
2010 William J Day Blvd, South Boston, Boston, MA, 02127
Boston African-American National Historic Site
The Boston African American National Historic Site offers information on 15 pre-Civil War structures that are significant within the African American community, including the oldest standing black church in the United States.
76 Mount Vernon Street, Downtown Crossing, Boston, Massachusetts, 02108
Rose Kennedy Greenway
This stretch of interconnected parks running through Downtown Boston is a great spot for a walk, run, or even a bike ride - or for just exploring the city. Starting at the north in North End near the Haymarket T station, the connected parks and trails run south through the Waterfront and Downtown areas until they reach Chinatown Park. Along the way, visitors will find smaller parks, interactive fountains, a carousel, gardens, public restrooms, restaurants and cafes, and more. If you're wandering along the path, it's quite easy to make short detours to explore the various attractions and historical spots of Boston.
John F. Fitzgerald Expressway, Waterfront, Boston, Massachusetts, 02110
Boston Common is a famous central park in downtown Boston. It's also the oldest city park in the country, dating back to 1634. The park spans 50 acres and has a botanical garden and a pond where you can enjoy the iconic experience of taking a Swan paddleboat. Visitors can also find a playground and other fun activities for kids. During the winter months, an ice skating rink is set up, and a huge Christmas tree and other decorations adorn the park.
167 Tremont Street, Beacon Hill, Boston, Massachusetts, 02108
Harvard Museum of Natural History
This museum offers a glimpse into the botanical, geological, and zoology research being done at Harvard. Some of the museum's collections date back to the 1780s with popular exhibits including the dinosaur hall, the gem gallery, the glass flowers, and the great mammal hall. With your admission fee you also give you access to the Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology next door.
26 Oxford St, Cambridge, MA, 02138
This living history museum is located in Plymouth, Massachusetts. It recreates the first Pilgrim settlement in North America, which dates back to 1620. The small village has an authentic atmosphere with farm animals, basic cabins, simple furnishings that stay true to the time period. There are actors who are dressed the part and have real life roles in the town. They're available to answer any questions you may have.
137 Warren Ave, Plymouth, MA, 02360
New England Aquarium
Rated one of the best aquariums in the world, the memories of the immersive aquatic experience that you will have here will last a lifetime. Visitors will find huge tanks filled with various marine species and ecosystems such as coral reefs, sharks, the north Atlantic, the northern Pacific, and more. Penguins, harbor seals, a touch tank, sea lions, and other exhibitions are also housed here, providing a day-long adventure through the seas. It's terrific for all ages, especially kids and kids-at-heart, or anyone who wants to learn more about the oceans and seas.
1 Central Wharf, Waterfront, Boston, Massachusetts, 02110
Zoo New England - Franklin Park Zoo
This award-winning zoo is a terrific destination for the whole family. Featuring a variety of animal exhibits that focus on education, awareness, and rehabilitation, visitors can see lions, emus, turtles, a variety of bird species, kangaroos, hippos, tigers, lemurs, and more. You'll also find a fun playground that promotes physical fitness, a section of the zoo aimed at younger children, and a variety of community events.
1 Franklin Park Rd, South Boston, Boston, Massachusetts, 02121
Museum of Science
The Museum of Science runs between East Cambridge and Boston's West End along the Charles River. This is one of the largest science museums in the world and, with more than 700 exhibits, this museum makes a good tribute to a city known for it's contributions to the field of science.
1 Museum Of Science Driveway, Science Park, West End, Boston, MA, 02114
This interactive museum is perfect for the tech lovers among us. There are exhibits on robotics, oceanographic research, photography, and innovative engineering. The exhibits and programming changes frequently so there's also something new and exciting to check out. Both kids and adults of all ages can have fun exploring and playing at this hands-on museum.
265 Massachusetts Ave Building N51, Cambridge, MA, 02139
The Esplanade is a riverside park in the Back Bay neighborhood. It has a number of charming footbridges including Arthur Fiedler Footbridge. Within the park you'll also find the Hatch Shell
bandstand, which is where the Boston Pops Orchestra holds its annual Fourth of July celebration. There are also a number of movies and concerts in the park during the warmer months. The park is a nice place to explore with a number of nice running trails, or you could enjoy a walk beside the river. Also here is the Esplanade Playground
for kids which is quite large.
Back Bay, Boston, MA
This historic baseball stadium is home to the Boston Red Sox. Catch a game in the summer, or come check out the Fenway Park Living Museum. The stadium is famous for the "Green Monster", the huge wall of greenery in the outfield. First opened in 1912, this is the oldest Major League ballpark in the country, and is on the National Register of Historic Places.
4 Jersey Street, Fenway-Kenmore, Boston, Massachusetts
Boston Fire Museum
This small museum has exhibits on the historical aspects of firefighting. There are hand-operated pumpers from 1793 and a steam pumper from 1882. There's also a ladder truck from 1860. This is a fun museum for kids who like fire trucks and all things related to firefighting.
344 Congress St, Seaport District, South Boston, Boston, MA, 02210
Paul S. Russell, MD Museum of Medical History and Innovation
Located at Massachusetts General Hospital, this museum highlights the accomplishments of more than 200 years of research in the medical field. There are exhibits on various medical breakthroughs, as well up frequently updated features on the latest in medical technology. On the third floor there's a roof top garden that offers beautiful views of the Beacon Hill skyline. The Ether Dome is an amphitheater where anesthesia was first successfully used in 1846.
2 N Grove St, West End, Boston, MA, 02114
Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum
You'll feel like you stepped back in time as this museum brings history to life. There are real life actors who portray this notable time in history through reenactments of a series of iconic events that led to the Revolutionary War. Beginning with the Sons of Liberty Meeting that was led by Samuel Adams, following through to the Boston Tea Party and finally Paul Revere's ride, you will experience it all at this historical museum. Kids and adults alike will enjoy this interactive experience.
306 Congress St, Seaport District, South Boston, Boston, MA, 02210
Boston Children's Museum
This three story museum offers hands-on learning for anyone who loves to play and explore. It's one of the largest children's museums in the world and has a range of exhibits that display historical items, toys, and natural specimens. There are many opportunities for hands-on learning including a bubble room, a dinosaur room, and a playspace for the youngest kids.
308 Congress St, Seaport District, South Boston, Boston, MA, 02210
Part of Zoo New England and affiliated with the Franklin Park Zoo, this location is in the northern suburbs of Boston. Visitors here can view a variety of animal exhibits including monkeys, cougars, otters, porcupines, snakes, jaguars, and more. This is a great spot for kids if you're looking for something different outside of town.
149 Pond Street, Stoneham, Massachusetts, 02180
Where to Stay in Boston