Kidoinfo’s Bucket List, filled with things to do with your children before they grow up!
Welcome to our 150+ Things To Do With Kids in Rhode Island! (Plus Massachusetts, and Connecticut!) Fun, food, culture, and history – all unique to our area: these are things we believe every young Rhode Islander should see and do. Plus bonus ideas in nearby Massachusetts and Connecticut! Many free or discount passes are available at the library (please note this link is to an older article so it may not be fully up-to-date.) And coming soon – we will be offering money-saving coupons to the fun events and places listed below!
If you have or run a favorite activity that is missing from our list, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org. Become a Kidoinfo Sponsor – it’s affordable and effective! Email email@example.com or call 401-337-9240.
Get wild at Roger Williams Park Zoo
Located on 40 acres of woodlands, the Zoo offers animals from all over the globe – more than 160 species with a focus on environmental conservation. Music concerts, holiday events, Faces of the Rainforest exhibit, and animal feedings. Zip line in the Explore and Soar area and train excursions. Offers birthday parties and vacation and summer camps. Close by is Carousel Village, with a classic carousel and and Food Truck Fridays April-September.
Get creative with the Artist’s Exchange
Explore the arts through classes, summer and vacation camps, school programs, birthday parties, and events in art, theater, music, and ceramics. Multiple art studios, a gallery, art boutique, and secondary performance venue, Theatre 82, and Character’s Café. Fall Out of Summer Arts Festival and Gingerbread House Decorating Contest. During the school year, free Craft Bash art activities on the last Saturday of each month.
Play and learn at Kidoinfo Play in the Park and Kidoinfo Storytime + Art in the Park (Free)
July & August, Burnside Park, Providence. Sponsored by Kidoinfo! On Tuesday afternoons, Kidoinfo Play in the Park offers art and music activities along with giant blocks and games. On Thursday mornings, Kidoinfo Storytime + Art in the Park, offers a professional storyteller and an art activity.
Discover at the Providence Children’s Museum
For children ages 1 to 11 and their adult caregivers. They offer birthday parties, summer camps, group visits and field trips. See events here. Offers many exhibits such as: Water Ways; Play Power (Air tubes and magnetic mazes); The Climber (A two-story-high climbing maze); Coming to Rhode Island (An interactive adventure to meet people who immigrated to RI); Littlewoods (For infants to age 4); and Discovery Studio (Weekly science and nature exploration projects).
Have a party or see a show with Mad Science
Mad Science of Southern MA and RI offers free performances around Rhode Island and Massachusetts. They also offer birthday parties, after school programs and assemblies, vacation and summer programs, workshops, and pre-school programs.
Skate away at the Alex & Ani City Center Rink
Have birthday parties and play bubble soccer, foot darts, and human bowling depending on the time of year. Downtown Providence. Go ice skating, learn-to-skate, and ride bumper cars outdoors in winter.
Go ice skating indoors at the Cranston Veterans Memorial Ice Rink
Public skating times change regularly at this Cranston rink so check the website for details.
Take the Underdog Tour (Free)
Visit all the Providence locations used in the film. Self-guided and free.
Find adventure at Adventureland
Mini-golf, bumper boats, go-karts, batting cages, Bankshot™ Basketball, extreme air jumper, birthday parties, Carousel Pavilion with Burdick’s ice cream, and a carousel. Open June-October in Narragansett.
Make a big splash at Water Wizz of Westerly
Thirty-five-foot high Giant Waterslides and 50-foot-high Super Speed Slides. There is over 1,000 feet of thrills and spills, tunnels and dips that twist and turn into two treated pools. Located right near to Misquamicut State Beach.
Go shopping and eating at the Fantastic Umbrella Factory (Free admission)
Visit shops and feed the animals at this Charlestown 19th Century international bazaar and farmyard. Free admission. Check the website for what’s open during different times a year.
Knock down pins using our Duckpin Bowling KidoGuide.
No actual ducks involved! Our list offers duckpin bowling alleys located in Rhode Island.
Roll to the tunes at United Skates of America
Roller skating, learn-to-skate, laser tag, rock climbing, game room, birthday parties, group events, summer and winter camps. 75 New Road, Rumford.
Visit every carousel in Rhode Island
Crescent Park Looff Carousel (East Providence) (temporarily closed); Flying Horse Carousel (Watch Hill); Slater Memorial Park Carousel (Pawtucket); Carousel Village, Roger Williams Park (Providence); and Easton’s Beach Carousel (Newport).
Book a group tour of the Johnston Landfill (Free)
90-minute Full Facility Tour – bring your own bus or register to take one at the site. 45-minute Materials Recycling Facility Tour. Spanish tour available upon request.
Watch the drawbridge raise and lower for boats in downtown Mystic, CT. (Free)
Bonus: a toy store, ice cream, and playground are all nearby.
Scramble across glacial rock formations at Purgatory Chasm (Free)
Purgatory Chasm in Sutton, MA, is a unique natural landmark offering exciting adventure. Follow trails to rock formations such as The Corn Crib, The Coffin, and Lovers’ Leap.
Zoom at the Seekonk Grand Prix
Go-kart racing for all ages, game room, ropes course, mini-golf, bumper boats and cars, character nights, and birthday parties in Seekonk, MA.
Get loud and fast at the Seekonk Speedway
Noisy, fast fun with a race or demolition derby in Seekonk, MA. You might get dirty.
See actual dinosaur tracks at Nash Dinosaur Track Site and Rock Shop
Walk where the dinosaurs walked. Touted as the “the best place in the world to find dinosaur footprints.” Purchase dino tracks in South Hadley, MA. Seasonal.
Go for a ride on a Rhode Island bike path (Free)
On the East Bay bike path from Providence to Bristol, make ice cream stops in Riverside, Warren, and Bristol.
Find hikes with Rhode Island Families in Nature (Free)
Choose from almost four dozen trails throughout Rhode Island.
Stroll the Newort Cliff Walk (Free)
While you walk this 3.5-mile rocky trail in Newport, imagine living in the opulent mansions. Memorial Boulevard and Eustis Avenue.
Take a hike up the old ski lift at Diamond Hill Park (Free)
Once a former ski slope in Cumberland, Diamond Hill offers spectacular views and a fairly gradual climb. It’s also a great place to picnic and little ones will love checking out the small pond near the old band shell.
Go bouldering in Lincoln Woods (Free)
Enjoy swimming at the fresh water beach, trout fishing, playing ball, hiking, jogging, horseback riding, or just relaxing under a shade tree. Permits required for fields and picnic areas.
Walk along spectacular ocean views at Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge
Stop at the visitor center first. Walking the nearly 3 miles of trails, experience several habitats where animals and plants can be observed and photographed. The refuge is home to the second largest wintering population of harlequin ducks on the Atlantic coast (Nov-March).
Swim at Middletown’s Beaches
Sachuest Beach, locally known as Second Beach, is a South facing, mile long, family friendly beach with good surf and great sand. Third Beach is a family friendly East facing beach. Third Beach has fewer waves and overlooks Third Beach Harbor located near the mouth of the Sakonnet River.
Tour downcity Providence from a new perspective with Providence River Boat Company
Daytime, sunset, and Waterfire cruises available.
Experience the mystery of Waterfire
In downtown Providence, get there just before sunset to see the iconic bonfires as they are being lit.
Take a gondola ride
In downtown Providence, for couples, families, weddings, group outings. March to November.
Play at Roger Williams Park
This Providence park’s 435 acres feature over 100 acres of ponds that weave their way through the rolling landscape. Here are things to see in the park. Rent a swan paddle boat, canoe, kayak. Visit the Botanical Center, Museum of Natural History and Planetarium, Roger Williams Park Zoo, and Village Carousel.
Spend the day or night at the Rose Island Lighthouse
This Newport lighthouse is scheduled to reopen in April 2019 after repairs and renovations. Day visits and overnight stays available. Guides provide historical information. Tour the lighthouse museum where each room is fully restored just as if keepers of old still lived there. Not recommended for children under age 5.
Cruise the boardwalk at Easton’s Beach in Newport
Enjoy the carousel, water slide, skateboard park, and playground. Located on Memorial Boulevard at the start of the Cliff Walk, a ¾-mile-long surf beach that also offers musical shows and Beach Idol.
Take a seminar or historic walking tour with URI Marine Scientists
Learn about various marine subjects in seminars offered by the Graduate School of Oceanography. Take a 90-minute free, public Historic South Ferry Walking Tour, which includes a presentation of historical facts, pictures, and tour which includes sites of the old ferry landing, WWI bunkers, and the URI Bay Campus.
Camp and hike at Fort Getty Park and Campground
Located in Jamestown, Fort Getty Park is a town-owned facility that is 41 acres in size. It is primarily a recreational-vehicle campground that also contains a tent camping area. The Park has old fortifications, a rocky beach, a public boat ramp, walking trails, a wildlife observation platform, views of the Jamestown Bridge, and a dock.
Have a picnic and swim at Roger W. Wheeler State Beach in Narragansett
This beach includes a pavilion and concession building, 63 picnic tables, coin-operated hot showers, a paved parking lot, children’s playground, a life-guard tower, and an environmental educational area. Life guards on duty 9 am to 6 pm (seasonally, weather permitting).
Swim, fish, play, or go boating at Ninigret Park in Charlestown
Established in 1970, Ninigret National Wildlife Refuge consists of 858 acres of diverse upland and wetland habitats including grasslands, shrub lands, wooded swamps, and freshwater ponds. Here is a list of visitor activities and list of year-round events. Also offers Wildlife Wednesdays Lecture Series.
Swim at the Burrillville Spring Lake Beach Facility and play in the arcade
The beach penny arcade is home to some of the oldest arcade games in the country. Includes a swim dock, food concessions, restrooms with outdoor showers, picnic tables, recreational activities, and children’s slides at the water’s edge. Full time lifeguard staff during hours of operation. Champlin Recreation Hall is available for rent during the season.
Go fishing, search for sea glass, and play on the playground at Sabin Point Park
This 4.0-acre park in East Providence juts out into Narraganset Bay. It includes a playground, basketball courts, pavilion, fishing pier, picnic tables and concrete walking paths. Open year-round – sunrise to sunset.
Take the ferry round trip to Block Island for the day
Located 12 miles from coastal Rhode Island, Block Island offers a variety of festivals, farmers markets, restaurants, environmental programs, free public beaches, dramatic bluffs, preserved open spaces, and fun-filled activities for visitors of all ages. While on the Island, search for one of 550 Glass Floats – glass orbs about the size of an orange which are dated, numbered and stamped with the shape of Block Island.
Ride the Prudence Island Ferry round trip from Bristol for a daytrip or overnight stay
Prudence Island is the third-largest island in Narragansett Bay and part of the town of Portsmouth. It is located near the center of the bay. The Prudence Island School offers summer camps and the Island offers the Narragansett Bay Research Reserve and Farnham Farm. Here is the Prudence Island Wikipedia page for more details.
Journey with Blackstone River Cruises
Learn about the river’s Industrial Revolution past and recovery to vibrant ecosystem. Stay overnight on a canal boat.
Cool off at the Waterpark at Yawgoo Valley in Exeter
Open daily, 10 am-5 pm, June 22 – Labor Day. Includes 2 slides, a swimming pool, and a kiddie pool. Slides are a combined length of over 750 feet. Swimming pool ranges from 4-6 feet deep, while the kiddie pool is one-foot deep. Offers summer camps, birthday parties, and catered gatherings.
Ski and snow tube at Yawgoo Ski Area & Snow Tubing Park
The Ski Area is operational early December through late March and the Snow Tubing Park opens later into December through March. They offer snow sport lessons,
Climb and play at Brandon’s Beach at Burnside Park, a nautical-themed playground
The playground is appropriate for toddlers and young children of all abilities, and offers a wide variety of sensory-rich equipment, including pagoda bells, drums, and music pipes. It also features classic swings, slides and spinners. This playground was built in memory of Brandon Goldner and made possible by the generosity of his family and friends.
Attend a PawSox youth clinic
Takes place before the Red Sox minor league baseball team’s game in Pawtucket. The clinic is free. Tickets required for game.
Cheer on the P-Bruins at a hockey game in Providence
This is the farm team for the Boston Bruins so you never know what future stars you might see.
Visit the window displays of Big Nazo Lab (Free)
Located in downtown Providence at the corner of Eddy and Fulton Streets. If you’re lucky, you may get a sneak peak inside.
Visit the original Shepard Fairey mural (Free)
Commissioned by AS220 in 2010 and painted on the side of the Pell Chafee Theatre on Aborn Street.
Make art and enjoy live music at AS220’s annual FooFest
In August on Empire Street in downtown Providence. Music, food, all-ages activities. An annual summer block party fundraiser for AS220.
Listen to Concerts Under the Elm
Pack a picnic supper and dine on the lawn of the John Brown House in Providence while listening to concerts Thursday evenings in the summer. Late June-August.
Experience the Newport Folk Festival
Worldwide known festival at Fort Adams State Park in Newport in July.
See Shakespeare in the Park (Free)
Colonial Theater of Rhode Island brings Shakespeare to Wilcox Park in Westerly during the summer.
See a Broadway musical at Providence Performing Arts Center (PPAC)
In Providence, PPAC presents a full roster of touring Broadway theatricals and contemporary engagements. With 3100 seats, it is the second largest theatre of its kind in the country and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Enjoy fairy tales with the Kaleidoscope Children’s Summer Theater
A professional touring theatre company based in Cranston, which offers educational performances in schools and fairy tale musicals in theaters throughout southern New England. On Tuesdays in July and August at the Scottish Rite Auditorium in Cranston. Also shows at Theatre by the Sea in Wakefield.
See a music or theater show at Stadium Theater Performing Arts Centers
Built in Woonsocket in 1926, the Stadium Theater and is one of the few remaining examples of the majestic Vaudeville Theatre era in operation today. Since being restored in 2001, it has developed into a community center where touring theater and music shows share the stage with community theatre, dance, and local music.
Catch the mystery at WaterFire (Free)
Food, music, eclectic shows, and fire on the water as up to 80 braziers are filled with wood and lit up. Donations accepted.
Explore Narragansett Bay at the Save the Bay Exploration Center & Aquarium
An interactive marine science center in Newport that is home to more than 40 species from Narragansett Bay, as well as three touch tanks and dozens of exhibits to get up close and personal with dogfish sharks, seahorses, turtles, and more. A new theme each month, with scavenger hunts, story hour, crafts, and science experiments that introduce something new or unexpected about the Bay. With an ocean-facing beach just outside, continue the beachcombing experience after your visit.
Tailgate at the Newport International Polo Series
Pack a picnic and head to Glen Farms in Portsmouth. During time-outs, kids run on to the field to stomp down divots. Saturday evenings in summer.
Go birding at the Norman Bird Sanctuary
A wildlife sanctuary and environmental education center with more than 325 acres of diverse habitats and seven miles of hiking trails in Middletown. Offers educational programs, including multiple types of bird walks from Owls to Woodcocks, story times, fireside trivia nights, summer camps, and an 8th century Paradise Farmhouse where you can stay.
Visit a blue lobster at the Audubon Environmental Education Center
Located in Bristol, offers a nature center and aquarium with a variety of educational programming, conservation activities, birthday parties, and summer camps. Walk the trails through meadows and marshes to Narragansett Bay and say hello to Finn and Atlanta, the resident Red-tailed Hawks.
Learn at the Kettle Pond Visitor Center
In Charlestown, learn about wildlife refuges in RI and the animals that inhabit them. Offers exhibits, a large classroom, migratory bird map, and more.
Encounter aquatic animals at Mystic Aquarium
In Mystic, CT, see and learn about water inhabitants from beluga whales to sea lions and see movies in a 4-D theater. Offers shows, animal feedings, penguin colony, birthdays, and weddings. Family memberships available.
Visit Drumlin Farm Wildlife Sanctuary
Experience life on a working farm in Lincoln, MA, and explore a wildlife sanctuary at the same time. Watch the pigs, sheep, goats, chickens, and cows in the farmyard; see how crops are sustainably grown; walk the trails explore field, forest, and wetland habitat; and observe resident owls, hawks, a fisher, and a fox in the native wildlife exhibit.
Attend story time at Books on the Square
Story times are 10:30 am Mondays for babies and 11 am Saturdays for all kids. Suitable for 6 months-6 years. Also offers book launches, book clubs, and author events. See events here.
Visit Barrington Books in Cranston (Garden City) and Barrington.
Sells books, gifts, and toys. Offers story times on Monday, Thursday, and Friday. Story hour is for children 2-5 years of age but all ages are welcome. It is hosted by one of the store’s storytellers. Books are specially picked for each story time with a thematically related craft to follow.
Go to an event at a Barnes & Noble bookstore: Smithfield, Warwick, or Middletown.
Sells books, magazine, toys. Offers story times, author readings/signings, young adult book clubs, visits by characters, interactive gaming events, and book release events.
Read the Kids Reading Across RI book
Kids Reading Across Rhode Island is Rhode Island’s One Book, One State community read program for kids. The kick-off is held in May each year. This program, offered by the Rhode Island Office of Library and Information Services in partnership with the Rhode Island Center for the Book, encourages students across the state in grades 4 through 6 to read the same book, and engage in community discussions and programs. The 2019 selection is Sanity & Tallulah by Molly Brooks. Many events are offered at local libraries.
Visit the Washington County Fair in Richmond during one long weekend in mid-August
The Fair is Rhode Island’s largest agricultural event. One of the biggest draws to the Fair is today’s Country Music stars! The Fair runs for five days (Wednesday – Sunday), taking place August 14 – 18, 2019. Admission includes access to all daily concerts, special acts and events, the giant midway and kiddy land area (all ride tickets and games separate), all agricultural events and shows, exhibits and displays, tractor and horse pulls, the farm museum, and more.
Fly high at the annual Newport Kite Festival in mid-July (Free)
Happens for two days each July at Brenton Point State Park in Newport. Kites of all sizes and shapes. Leashed dogs are welcome.
Shop from a local farmer at an outdoor market
Many outdoor farmer markets open May through November with a handful open indoors the remainder of the year. (Visit www.FarmFreshri.org for a complete list of markets.)
Pick your own berries, and make your own jam
Find out when each type of berry is usually available and some local picking places.
Take a cooking class or birthday party with Made by Me Cooking School
Offers multiple types of classes and different foods for birthday parties.
Visit Venda in DePasquale Plaza in Providence
In summer, eat near the fountain.
Have vegan ice cream at Like No Udder in Providence
Vegan means it uses no dairy or other animal products. Visit their store in Providence or food truck at multiple locations throughout the state.
Buy a house-made hotdog from The Wurst Window at Chez Pascal
Take your hotdogs to enjoy by the fountain in Lippitt Park in Providence.
Eat crepes or cupcakes at the Duck & Bunny
Eat out in the back garden, weather permitting.
Have supper at Champlins
Champlin’s, founded 69 years ago, specializes in fresh lobster and shellfish from the Atlantic Ocean and Narragansett Bay. Retail and eating on the deck. Usually opens in April.
Enjoy live music and a fun meal at Buster Krab’s Burger Shack and Beach Bar in Narragansett
Located in the heart of Galilee, Buster Krab’s is a beach bar and grill which offers outdoor seating.
Order a coffee cabinet at Delekta Pharmacy in Warren
It’s no longer a pharmacy but still offers its “delektable” coffee cabinets and other ice cream and candy related items.
Have a Del’s lemonade. Find the Del’s nearest you with the tool on this page
If you are from out of town, you must try this unique New England treat. And if you live here, well, you know it’s summer when Del’s opens! Del’s also offers lemonade carts at many festivals and events.
Have breakfast, lunch, or dinner at Crazy Burger Café and Juice Bar in Narragansett
It’s name says it all. Offers several vegan burgers. Offers juices, smoothies, milk shakes (vegan too), and a variety of other types of drinks. BYOB with a corkage fee.
Buy lobster off the boat in Point Judith in Narragansett
Point Judith is the location for the year-round ferry service to Block Island, an historic lighthouse, and contains the fishing hamlet of Galilee.
Have clam cakes at Aunt Carrie’s in Point Judith in Narragansett
Family-owned and operated, now in its fourth generation, Aunt Carrie’s serves traditional seafood and homemade cooking with cool ocean breezes and views.
Have a lobster roll at Blount Clam Shack on the waterfront in Warren
Open 7 days from Memorial Day to Labor Day. (Call during inclement weather). Also open for fewer days per week at Crescent Park by the carousel in Riverside. Includes a soup shop in Fall River, MA.
Devour homemade ice cream and visit the cows at the original Gray’s in Tiverton
Open since 1923 with so many ice cream, yogurt, and sherbet (seasonal) flavors, there’s something for everyone.
Have lunch at Stanley’s in Central Falls, open since 1932
Comfort food at its finest with burgers, sandwiches, and clubs as well as milk shakes and floats. Offers veggie burgers and kids meals.
Have a doughboy and walk the beach at Iggy’s Doughboys & Chowder House in Warwick (open year round) or in Narragansett (seasonal)
Enjoy this crazy local treat – fried dough and powered sugar. Also offers the Boardwalk Restaurant.
Have breakfast at the classic Modern Diner in Pawtucket
The first diner in the nation to be accepted on the National Register for Historic Places. Customized and factory-built, it is a Sterling Streamliner, a line of “modernistic” diners manufactured in the late 1930’s and early 1940’s.
Sample RI’s favorite donuts at Allie’s Donuts
Famous hand-made donuts. Check out their donut “cakes” – perfect for parties.
Pick-your-own seasonal flowers, berries, pumpkins, and more at Four Town Farm in Seekonk, MA.
Pick-your-own, seasonal farm stand, Christmas trees, and educational farm tours during the month of October.
Learn how ice cream is made at Bliss Dairy in Attleboro, MA
Many flavors and types, including some with no sugar added. Offers a function room with make your own sundae parties. Also serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Play the Rhode Island Farm Scavenger Hunt
Take a road trip and explore 28 of RI’s 1,200 working farms. Download the map and clues or pick up a pamphlet at a participating farm.
Visit a real working dairy farm: Wrights Dairy Farm and Bakery in North Smithfield
They pasteurize and bottle their milk on the farm (since 1914) as well as bake their specialty cakes, pies, and pastries. See cows milked daily from 3 to 4:30 pm.
Visit Casey Farm in Saunderstown
Free for Historic New England members and Saunderstown residents.
Visit a working family farm: Watson Farm in Jamestown
Free for Historic New England members and Jamestown residents.
Visit a working farm: Dame Farm and Orchards in Johnston
They usually offer a corn maze and wagon rides in the fall. Apple and pumpkin picking, a farm stand, and sunflowers.
Visit Kenyon’s Grist Mill in Usquepaug
Free with a food or clothing donation for the Jonny Cake Center.
Head to Sweet Berry Farm in Middletown
Wander the grounds and pick various berries and apples. The beautiful market includes a café of prepared foods and baked goods.
Travel back in time by visiting a 1790s New England farm: Coggeshall Farm Museum in Bristol
Experience first-hand how families lived on a tenant farm just after the American Revolution and before the sweeping changes brought in by the Industrial Revolution. Use their tools. Sit in their furniture. Taste their food. See life through their eyes! Offers seasonal workshops and birthday parties.
Visit Touro Synagogue, America’s oldest synagogue, in Newport
Learn the history of Jewish residents of Newport and take a tour. The Synagogue is the home of Congregation Jeshuat Israel, which holds religious services and conducts lifecycle events, while also sponsoring educational, social, and cultural programs.
Visit the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport
The International Tennis Hall of Fame preserves and promotes the history of tennis and celebrates its champions. See it’s museum and watch tennis being played during tournaments.
Visit a former military fort with a history dating back over two centuries at Fort Wetherill State Park in Jamestown. (Free)
Fort Wetherill State Park, situated upon 100-foot-high granite cliffs across the water from Fort Adams State Park, is a former coastal defense battery and training camp. Known for its spectacular view of Newport Harbor and the East Passage of Narragansett Bay, Fort Wetherill has been a popular sight for viewing the numerous Tall Ship Events and America’s Cup Races.
Welcome spring by attending Daffodil Days at Blithewold Mansion in Bristol
Bring your camera! Blithewold is a 33-acre summer estate with grand views of Narragansett Bay and is nationally significant in American history as one of the most fully developed and authentic examples of the Country Place Era.
Step back into history and explore Smith’s Castle in Wickford
Smith’s Castle is an award-winning historic site where four centuries of Rhode Island history are preserved and interpreted through tours, historic reenactments, and educational programs for both adults and children.
Visit the Jamestown Fire Department Memorial Museum in Jamestown
Jamestown Fire and EMS is an all volunteer organization serving Jamestown and the Island of Conanicut. The Jamestown Fire Museum is located next door to the main Station at 50 Narragansett Ave., Jamestown.
Visit the Biomes Marine Biology Center in North Kingstown
The Biomes Center teaches children and adults through interactive biology programs about the marine animals of Narragansett Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. They also offer field trips, classes, and birthday parties.
Visit the Frosty Drew Observatory on Friday evenings to get closer to the night sky
Frosty Drew Observatory opens every Friday night year round to the public free of charge, though donations are accepted. If the sky is clear and wind is manageable, you will be looking to the sky through one or more of their telescopes. During cloudy, rain, or snow conditions, there are presentations in the Sky Theatre with astronomers to answer questions and give tours of the observatory and astronomical equipment. They also offer special programs on other days of the week.
Visit RISD Museum of Art and think like an explorer
Find the mummy or hunt for food motifs. Free on Sundays and third Thursday of the month. They offer a variety of events and classes.
Visit the Edna Lawrence Nature Lab (Free)
Located just around the corner from the RISD museum. See an amazing variety of specimens on display, including birds, bears and bones.
Visit the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology in Providence
The Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology is Brown University’s teaching and research museum. The museum offers exhibits, public lectures, performances, symposia, festivals, and a broad range of programs and events for all ages.
Visit the Museum of Natural History and Planetarium in Providence
Rhode Island’s only natural history museum and home to the state’s only public planetarium. Offers many kid’s classes, events, and exhibits and is a low-cost adventure.
Visit the children’s room in one of America’s oldest libraries: Providence Athenaeum on Benefit Street in Providence (Free)
During its nearly 200 years of existence, the library has welcomed illustrious writers, spirited thinkers, and energetic community members through its doors to engage in reading, conversation, and debate.Tucked away in a quiet corner, the Children’s Library is a technology-free sanctuary designed to help children do what comes naturally: play, be silly, create, discover, and learn. Read a Kidoinfo article here.
Learn why we honor Gilbert Stuart by visiting the Gilbert Stuart Birthplace & Museum in Saunderstown
With its authentically restored and furnished 1750 home, working gristmill, gardens, woodland trails, art exhibitions of period works, and more, the Gilbert Stuart Museum was home to one of America’s best-known portraitists, Gilbert Stuart.
Visit the Museum of Work and Culture in Woonsocket
The Museum of Work & Culture shares the stories of the men, women, and children who came to find a better life in Rhode Island’s mill towns in the late 19th and 20th centuries. The Museum features: Nine immersive exhibits; audio & film presentations; hands-on activities & games; changing exhibits & special events; and rental space
Visit Slater Historic Mill, the birthplace of the industrial revolution in Pawtucket
Children provide the power and operate miniature machinery in the Apprentice Alcove. The Old Slater Mill National Historic Landmark is recognized internationally as the birthplace of the American Industrial Revolution. Samuel Slater’s 1793 Old Slater Mill, Oziel and David Wilkinson’s 1810 Wilkinson Mill, and Sylvanus Brown’s 1758 early Pawtucket cottage, are located on the banks of the lower Blackstone River.
Visit the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center in Mashantucket, CT
The Mashantucket Pequot Museum & Research Center, part of the government of the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, is a non-profit educational institution that seeks to further knowledge and understanding of the richness and diversity of the indigenous cultures and societies of the United States and Canada.
Discover a sailor’s life at Battleship Cove in Fall River,
A maritime museum where you can explore the largest collection of historic Naval ships in the world. Also attend programs on maritime and war-related history, and even stay overnight in a ship with their Nautical Nights Program.
Have a whale of a time at the New Bedford Whaling Museum in New Bedford, MA
Explore the region’s centuries-old relationship with the sea and the many people who contributed to its dynamic past and diverse present.
Touch history at Old Sturbridge Village in Sturbridge, MA
New England’s largest outdoor living history museum. Put your hands on history and be inspired by costumed historians at work on the farm, in trade shops, and in homes.
Go back in time at Plimouth Plantation in Plymoth, MA
See a 17th-Century English Village; Wampanoag Homesite, Mayflower II, Plimoth Grist Mill, Rare Breeds Animals, and Craft Center.
Get into STEAM at the Discovery Museums in Acton, MA
Focuses on hands-on science, nature, and play. STEAM exhibits and a 550-square foot, fully-accessible treehouse and surrounding nature playscape. Free on Summer Friday nights between 4:30-8:30 pm.
Look at pictures at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, MA
Seeks to inspire a love of art and reading through picture books. Carle wrote “The Very Hungry Caterpillar.” Houses more than 11,000 objects, including 7,300 permanent collection illustrations, three art galleries, an art studio, a theater, picture book and scholarly libraries, and educational programs for families, scholars, educators, and schoolchildren.
Visit the Ecotarium: Museum of Science and Nature in Worcester, MA
An indoor-outdoor experience: Explore three floors of indoor interactive exhibits, live animal habitats, digital planetarium shows, daily Science Discovery programs, hikes through forest and meadow nature trails, outdoor imaginative play, and a train ride around the 45+ acre campus (seasonal).
Visit deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum in Lincoln, MA
DeCordova’s mission is to inspire, educate, and delight with contemporary art from New England and beyond through sculptures in the landscape and museum exhibitions.
Explore the Adventure Park and Hidden Hollow at Heritage Museums and Gardens in Sandwich, MA
Hidden Hollow, a family-friendly outdoor discovery area, is a place for exploration of the outdoors and our place in it. The Hundred Acre School is open to children ages 4 to 8 (preschool to entering grade 2) for fun that helps combat summer learning loss with a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) focused program.
Visit the Museum of Science in Boston, MA
Free with your Roger Williams Park Zoo membership. One of the world’s largest science centers and New England’s most highly attended cultural institution, the Museum promotes engineering education awareness, bringing science, technology, and mathematics alive through its exhibits, programs, and more.
Visit the Boston Children’s Museum in Boston, MA
The second oldest and one of the most influential children’s museums in the world. It’s exhibits and programs emphasize hands-on engagement and learning through experience, employing play as a tool to spark the creativity, curiosity, and imagination of children. Free with Providence Children’s Museum Family PLUS membership.
Visit PaperHouse, a house made ONLY of paper, in Rockport, MA
The Paper House is an actual house made from newspaper. It was built by Elis F. Stenman, a mechanical engineer who designed the machines that make paper clips. He began building his Rockport summer home out of paper as a hobby in 1922. Eventually, not only was the house made of paper, but furniture as well, including some intricate and beautiful pieces.
Visit Mystic Seaport in Mystic, CT
Climb aboard the last wooden whale ship in the world. Meet blacksmiths, coopers, printers, and shipwrights in an authentic setting. View world-class exhibitions in five galleries. See the stars in a planetarium and take a waterfront cruise.
Visit the Navy Submarine Force Museum in Groton, CT (Free)
Visit the website here. The Museum, located on the Thames River in Groton, CT, maintains the world’s finest collection of submarine artifacts. It is the only submarine museum operated by the United States Navy, and is the primary repository for artifacts, documents, and photographs relating to U.S. Submarine Force history.
Watch Movies on the Block outside on Thursday evenings (Free)
From June-September in downtown Providence.
Watch a film at the Rustic Tri-View Drive-In in North Smithfield
Open May through September.
Watch an IMAX movie at Providence Place Mall
Be wowed by the giant screen and possibly see a 3D movie!
Watch children’s films at Cinemaworld in Lincoln every morning, all summer long
Free films, seven days a week, all summer long! Every day at 10am, Cinemaworld features a family-friendly G or PG rated film, with new movies premiering on Fridays. Children are free. Adults are just $2 or free with the donation of a non-perishable food item to benefit the local food pantries.
Visit Roger Williams National Memorial in Providence (Free)
Learn why the founder of Rhode Island was also a champion of the ideal of religious freedom. Bonus: Lovely spot for an outdoor picnic in Providence.
Stroll through Swan Point Cemetery in Providence (Free)
Find the resting place of famous souls like horror, fantasy, science-fiction writer H. P. Lovecraft.
Jump aboard the sunken ship The Hannah in Burnside Park
Open all year long in downtown Providence. Bonus: Attend Kidoinfo Storytime and Art in the Park during July and August.
Watch the sunset over downtown Providence from Prospect Terrace.
Park or hike to the top of Neutaconkanut Hill for another great view of the city. (Free)
Run in the breeze at India Point Park in Providence (Free)
Find the pirate ship in the 49-foot ceramic mural located near the playground.
Play at Dexter Park located next to the Cranston Armory in Providence. (Free)
Fly a kite at Breton State Park along Ocean Drive in Newport.
Check out the tide pools at Beavertail State park in Jamestown. (Free)
Explore Green Animals Topiary Garden in Portsmouth
This is the oldest and most northern topiary garden in the United States.
Visit the Chapel-By-The-Sea in Colt State Park in Bristol. (Free)
Go camping in Hope Valley’s Arcadia Management Area.
Have a picnic at Goddard State Park in Warwick. (Free)
Visit the imPossible Dream Playground in Warwick. (Free)
Enjoy a garden oasis all year long at the Botanical Center in Roger Williams Park in Providence.