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8 Reasons Why You Should Take a Family Vacation in Boston

October 23, 2023 By CityPASS

Are you planning a family vacation in Boston, Massachusetts? The city is filled with history and culture, making it a great city to explore with your family. There are many fun things to do in Boston with kids, which makes it a great family vacation destination. The city is easily walkable and has zoos, aquariums, museums, and other family attractions. We've compiled a list of the top 8 places to add to your family vacation in Boston.

1. Learn About American History at The Massachusetts Historical Society

First on our list of family-friendly things to do in Boston is the Massachusetts Historical Society. Your family can learn about American history at the oldest historical archives in the United States. Boston was a key area in the founding of the country, and you can learn all about it in this extensive library of artifacts and documents.

Founded in 1791, the Massachusetts Historical Society is home to the Adams Family Papers, a detailed collection of essential documents relating to former President John Adams and his family. The collection also has swords, drums, and other artifacts from famous battles during the Revolutionary War. The Massachusetts Historical Society is an educational site to add to the fun places in Boston to go with your family.

2. Experience Science Like Never Before at Boston's Museum of Science

The Museum of Science in South Boston is one of the biggest science centers in the United States. It's easily one of the best things to do in Boston for kids of all ages. The museum has three sections: Blue, Red, and Green Wings.

Science in the Park is a permanent exhibit featuring a hands-on indoor playground in the Blue Wing. The Green Wing has a New England Habitat where kids can learn all about the wildlife in the area. Over in the Red Wing, you'll find the Charles Hayden Planetarium, where you can explore the stars and planets. Seeing the Boston Museum of Science is one of the top Boston kid's activities to check out.

3. Enjoy the Animal World at Franklin Park Zoo

Another kid-friendly thing to do is to visit the Franklin Park Zoo. You'll want to stop at the Children's Zoo near the main entrance if you have younger kids. There's a climbing playground there where the kids can climb and swing on bamboo.

Then, you can explore farm animals in the Franklin Farm, the mighty lions in the Kalahari Kingdom exhibit, tall giraffes in the Giraffe Savannah, and the gigantic gorillas of the Tropical Rainforest. You can grab something to munch on at the Giddy-Up Grill, or there is plenty of outdoor seating to pack a picnic lunch. The Franklin Park Zoo makes a great addition to any Boston family vacation.

4. Ride Swan Boats in Boston Common

If your family visits in the summer months or late Spring, you can ride the swan boats at Boston Common. This public park is Boston's oldest green space. The Swan Boats are one of the exciting family activities Boston has to offer.

You and your family can ride an iconic paddlewheel Swan Boat around the pond and experience the magic of the first Boston public garden. The Swan Boats have been a family-owned part of the history of Boston since 1877. They are one of the family-friendly attractions you can enjoy together.

5. Visit Harvard University's Museum of Natural History

Another place to add to your list of fun things to do in Boston for families is Harvard University's Museum of Natural History. Young and older kids will enjoy the Earth & Planetary Sciences gallery. Kids can even touch rocks and minerals that date back to the very beginning of the solar system and browse through many shiny gemstones. Kids will enjoy looking at the various fossils of dinosaurs, including one of the first Triceratops skulls found. Don't forget to check out the iconic glass flowers.

Another fun activity you can add that's near Harvard Square is the Harvard Art Museums. Here, you can browse famous paintings and artifacts from ancient times.

6. Take the Best Family Photos at Beacon Hill

All family vacations in Boston should include photos at the historic Beacon Hill. Here, you'll also find some popular landmarks and historic sites.

The whole neighborhood is a National Historic Landmark since it was one of the first places in America during the Revolutionary period. So, if you're a history buff, you'll want to visit the oldest building in the neighborhood, the Massachusetts State House.

If you want to go on the Freedom Trail, Boston Common is the first stop. The historic walking trail is a 2.5-mile educational experience covering 16 historical sites and monuments that help you learn about the Revolution.

7. Dive Under the Sea at the New England Aquarium

Another top attraction for families is the New England Aquarium. The New England Aquarium opened its doors in 1969 and is home to thousands of sea creatures. Kids will enjoy the huge ocean tank at the Coral Reef Center. Kids will see Finding Nemo favorites like the clownfish and Myrtle, the green sea turtle that weighs over 500 pounds.

Next, you can see the Sharks exhibit, which has interactive displays and is home to the Epaulette shark. For more fun hands-on activities, kids can touch a shark or a ray in the Shark and Ray Touch Tank.

8. Discover the Map Room at the Boston Public Library

Located on the first floor of the Boston Public Library is the Norman B. Leventhal Map & Education Center. It holds an exhibition gallery and a learning center focusing on geography with various maps. Visiting this public library section is one of the family activities Boston offers that are free and fun for all ages. After you check out the awesome maps, the Boston Public Library has a Children's Library full of activities for kids. There's an entire wall of sensory and manipulative toys for kids to interact with.

Plan Your Next Family Vacation in Boston With CityPASS® Tickets

Your family's fun Boston vacation can be even better when you purchase Boston CityPASS® tickets. Take your kids to see four of the top things to do in Boston at a fraction of the retail price. Make memories you will cherish forever on your next family vacation to Boston.

Boston Lodging

To get the most out of your stay in Boston, we recommend finding lodging near Boston's top attractions. Use this map to find the right lodging for you:

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