South Suburbs

Free Admission for Kids at Boston Museums and Attractions

It’s been said that the best things in life are free, but when it comes to visiting museums and other attractions with kids, it’s not always clear when they are free. Mommy Poppins has set out to uncover these freebies so Boston families can enjoy the best of the city without breaking the bank. Here, we've ID'd the museums that let young children—and in some cases, all kids—in at no charge.

If you're working your way through our Boston Kids' 100 Things to Do bucket list, you may want to coordinate with the cut-off ages below; some of the museums you can catch on their free admission days, but several other attractions below really drive home the bittersweet point that you're only young once.

Note that the cut-off ages below imply that when a child reaches the age listed, he or she no longer qualifies for free admission.

7 Drop-In Indoor Playgrounds Where Kids Can Get Their Energy Out

As the temperatures really start to take a nosedive, 'tis the season for finding winter activities that keep kids busy indoors. Just in time for December vacation, we’ve rounded up seven indoor play spaces where you can take your little ones and your school-age kids, too. Most are a drive outside city limits, but all have lots of space and plenty of options for high-energy fun. 

50 Fun Things To Do This Winter With Boston Kids

Winters in Boston can sometimes feel dark and dreary, but there are so many fun things to look forward to in the wintertime. Here’s a list of our favorite things to do in and near the city with kids during the coldest months of the year—activities to brighten even the grayest of days. Most are free or are inexpensive, because we know how empty wallets can feel after the holidays. 

16 Bilingual and Language Immersion Preschools In or Near Boston

Picking the right preschool for your child can be difficult. There are so many options to choose from that narrowing down the criteria can really help with the selection process. Preschools that that focus on language, whether through immersion or bilingual instruction, have flourished in the Boston area. To help make your choice a little easier, we’ve rounded up 16 of these preschools in or near Boston where your child can learn French, Spanish, German, Mandarin, or Arabic—or even become trilingual.

8 Outdoor Ice Skating Rinks for Kids and Families in and Around Boston

Whether your family is hitting the rink for the very first time or your kids have already taken several ice skating lessons, gliding on one of the outdoor ice skating rinks around Boston can be a fun, affordable way for families to get outside and stay active in the wintertime. Read on for some of our favorite rinks in the Boston area, with offerings like gorgeous city views and snack bars where you can warm up with a cup of hot cocoa.

Where To See Holiday Lights In and Around Boston

Sure, not everyone goes in for all the traditions and tchotchkes that are associated with the holiday season. But we don't know anyone—young or old—who isn't delighted by winter wonderlands filled with lighted displays, twinkling trees, and sparkling scenes. We've rounded up some of the best light displays in or around Boston, from newer sensations like Blink!, downtown, to the storied La Salette Shrine, south of the city. Set aside an evening, bring a thermos of cocoa, and experience some magic as a family.

10 Reasons to Go to Plimoth Plantation over Thanksgiving and Christmastime

All elementary schoolers learn about the first Thanksgiving and early Native American and colonial life. But did you know that Boston kids are less than an hour away from a living museum where this era is reenacted almost everyday? Plimoth Plantation, located 2.5 miles north of modern-day Plymouth, is a wonderful place to visit anytime, but is particularly special during November and December when seasonal presentations and historic feasts bring the first holidays to life. Bundle up and make plans for a cozy, fascinating day on this bustling property; whether they share a meal with a "pilgrim" or play a traditional game with a member of the Wampanoag Nation, your kids will definitely leave Plimoth with a taste of how their New England forebears lived.

All Aboard The Polar Express: Christmas Train Rides Near Boston

What is it about trains and Christmas? The two have become inextricably linked—especially since The Polar Express, Chris Van Allsburg's picture book about believing in the magic of Christmas, captured the hearts and imaginations of kids and adults alike. During the holiday season train rides complete with hot chocolate and visits from Santa bring Christmas stories like The Polar Express to life for all who believe.

Although we could make the trek to New Hampshire's White Mountains for a magical Christmas train experience, we have plenty of delightful options much closer to Boston. The seats fill up very quickly, though, so we recommend getting your golden tickets now.

Just-Spooky-Enough Haunted Houses and Halloween Attractions for Boston Kids

Halloween is a holiday that everyone from toddlers to grandparents can enjoy, but the fear factor can be a little intense for some kids. While there are many gory and gruesome options for 'tweens and teens, it can be hard to find Halloween activities that can feel suitably exciting (but not terrifying) for the elementary-school set. Here are six local activities with varying levels of scariness that will entertain kids ages 6 to 12 without scaring the pants off of them. And for even littler folk, check out our Halloween picks for toddlers and preschoolers.

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20 Free (or Almost Free) Halloween Activities for Families in and Around Boston

The days finally have a real fall crispness to them, the leaves are turning, and front steps are flickering with the glow of carved pumpkins at night. There’s lots of spooky fun and not-so-spooky fun to be had, from costume parades to pumpkin festivals, and there's plenty to do for free. Take the kids to a few of these free Halloween activities for families—and save your money for goodies to give to trick-or-treaters.

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