If you are traveling near the greater Washington DC area and you have kids, you will definitely want to plan a stop in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. The Inner Harbor is a super fun and family friendly tourist destination that could easily keep your family happy for a long weekend. Also, if you are planning a trip to DC, Philadelphia, or the Eastern Shore beaches, and want to add another nearby destination, a side trip to the Inner Harbor would be a perfect way to round out your vacation!
6 Great Inner Harbor Attractions for Kids of All Ages
The Maryland Science Center
The Maryland Science Center anchors one end of the Inner Harbor. There are tons of activities for kids of all ages here. Younger kids will love being an amateur paleontologist going on a dinosaur dig. Also, there is a kid zone specifically designed for younger kids to explore water, engineering, submarines, animals, and other fun activities. Older kids will totally dig the IMAX theatre and the Science Shed.
Port Discovery is one of the top rated science centers in the country. It is geared more for kids under the age of 10. However, if you have kids in this age range, this is the perfect place to take them for the afternoon. It is located just one block from the Inner Harbor. Highlights include the three-story climbing structure smack dab in the middle of the museum. Kids can serve up a burger and fries in Tiny’s Diner, squeegee windows and make giant bubbles in Water Works, and create make and take art projects in the Art Lab.
The other anchor of the Inner Harbor is the National Aquarium. The aquarium is a bit pricey, but there are tons of treasures to see. You can pet a manta ray and jelly fish in the touch pools. The jelly fish exhibit is ethereal. The biggest draw though is Blacktip Reef– a ginormous tank which houses thousands of fish, a 400-lb. tortoise, and tons of sharks.. up close and personal.
For something a little off-the-wall and whacky, take your kids to this Odditorium. In addition to shrunken heads, you can also see a 12-ft. tall Transformers structure, and the Hogwart’s Castle made of matchsticks.
Between the Aquarium and the Science Center, you could spend the better part of a day visiting the historic ships moored in the Inner Harbor. The USS Constellation is from the mid-1800’s, there is a submarine, a Coast Guard cutter, and a lighthouse. If you are going to be hanging out in the Inner Harbor, take a spin on the dragon paddle boats or ride the water taxi too!
This free (yes, you read that right.. free) park is located just next to the Coast Guard cutter. It features a unique slide shaped like a horn, a willow branch tunnel, and a musical fence. Perfect for a mid-day pit-stop with the kids!
If you are traveling with kids, you can see why a stop in Baltimore should be on your ‘Must-See’ bucket list. Come check out Charm City and find out why families are flocking to this gem of a destination.
Thanks for reading!
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Author Bio: Sara is a mom who loves her family and friends, and loves to have fun! She is seeking the ever elusive work-life balance and having a blast keeping up with a beautifully spirited little girl! You can find her blog at Sunshine Whispers and on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.