fun things to do with kids waterfront boston massachusetts   Travel for Kids
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Boston - Waterfront


New England Aquarium – The New England Aquarium is a “must do” with kids, and is a wonderful way to experience marine life. Once you step inside, you’ll be wowed by the four story Giant Ocean Tank with green sea turtles and tropical fish. There's penguins diving and swimming, captivating fur seals and sea lions, mesmerizing jellies, and be sure to see the exhibits with local marine life of New England. In the Sharks and Rays touch tank, kids can feel rays and sharks gliding through mangrove roots.

    Watch divers feed the creatures in the Giant Ocean Tank, don't miss the penguin feedings, and check out the splashy IMAX 3D presentations.
      Whale watching – April to October, there are whale watching tours (3 hours) from the New England Aquarium. You’re sure to spot whales, for example, you might see humpback whales and minke whales, plus lots of sea birds.
    Boats, boats, boats – Boston is one of the great seafaring cities, and you’ll want to get out on the water, feel the wind in your face, and set your sights to the east.
      Inner Harbor Ferry – The cheapest way to see Boston Harbor is to take the Inner Harbor Ferry from Long Wharf over to Charlestown Navy Yard (and the USS Constitution on the Freedom Trail).
    Tall ships – June to September, take a two hour cruise around the harbor in a sailing ship. Kids can be any age, but 2 hours may be a bit long for little kids. Here's the Liberty tall ships schedule
    Ferry to the Harbor Islands – Visiting the Harbor Islands is one of our favorite things to do, and part of the fun is the boat ride around the islands. If you don’t have time to get off and explore the islands, just ride the ferry around the loop. Pick up tickets at the booth across from Christopher Columbus Park.
      Salem Ferry – If you’re planning on visiting Salem, a fun way to get to Salem is to take the high speed catamaran, a 45 min. ride up the coast, and you’ll disembark at the Salem wharf. We took the ferry on a gloriously sunny day – it was a super trip up the coastline.
    Harborwalk – Walk along the waterfront, extending from Charlestown and the North End, through downtown wharfs to the Seaport district. We walked from Christopher Columbus Park, to Long Wharf, Rowe Wharf, over to Fan Pier in the Seaport area. It's fun for kids to watch boats in the harbor – huge container ships pushed by tug boats, sailing ships, water taxis, sailboats, and ferries coming and going.
    Christopher Columbus Park – A charming park with grass, benches, and water play area in warm weather. Pick up a picnic at Quincy Market, sit out and watch the boats coming and going.

Boston Children’s Museum – This stellar museum is always a big hit with younger kids. Infants and toddlers can explore and crawl in PlaySpace, for bigger kids there’s hands-on art activities, build your own city in the Construction Zone, step into a real Japanese house (don’t forget to take off your shoes, try the futon), play with bubbles, move an animatronic dinosaur, and three-story climbing structure. An innovative museum for more than 100 years!

  Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum (Congress Street Bridge) – In the museum, step into December 16, 1773 – live actors re-create events, walk through a replica ship, the Eleanor, watch videos that make the American Revolution come alive, kids can hoist up tea chests (there're heavy) and toss boxes overboard. At the end of the tour is a tea room, with tea, lemonade, cider, cookies and muffins.

Tip: On our blog, read more: "Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum"

    Faneuil Hall Marketplace -
      Faneuil Hall – Faneuil Hall was built in 1742, with a market on a first floor and meeting hall on the second floor – here the Sons of Liberty held town meetings during the American Revolution.
    Quincy Market – Here’s where you’ll find tons of places to eat, from casual eateries with clam chowder, hamburgers, sandwiches, ethnic foods, ice cream and desserts, to sit down restaurants, such as the busy Durgin Park, a Boston tradition, with Yankee pot roast and Indian pudding. In nice weather, there are always street performers, jugglers and musicians.
      Rose Kennedy Greenway parks – When the Big Dig was completed, the freeway goes underground, and now a 15 acre park extends from Haymarket around the waterfront to Chinatown, with green grass, fountains, and water play areas. This is a great place for kids to just run around. When we visited, kids were cooling off in jets of water spouting like geysers in the Wharf District Park (Milk Street), across from the Aquarium.
      Post Office Square – This is one of the prettiest parks in downtown Boston, a fountain to wiggle your toes in warm weather, grass and benches, plus an outdoor café.
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