Planning a family day trip during winter is a bit more challenging. Beaches, gardens and parks may be closed or difficult to access and many seasonal activities, like water parks, amusement parks, etc., are closed. Here's a list of ideas for day trips within 1-2 hours from the Merrimack Valley that will be fun and interesting for families with kids of all ages.
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Providence Children’s Museum, Providence RI
Play, create and learn at the Providence Children's Museum.
Boston Children's Museum, Boston MA
Explore science, art and fun at this enormous Children's Museum.
Wenham Museum, Wenham MA
Discover the treasures of childhood, including trains, toys and dolls from the 17th century to today.
Children’s Museum of NH, Dover NH
Learn and create at all kinds of exhibits focused on music, flight, dinosaurs, animals, patterns and so much more.
Discovery Museum, Acton MA
Explore science exhibits and enjoy hands-on activities.
For Elementary Aged Kids
Battleship Cove, Fall River MA
Visit this maritime museum in Fall River to explore the USS Massachusetts battleship as well as other marine vessels. Learn what it was like for the soldiers stationed on these ships, both daily life and during battle.
McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center, Concord NH
Learn about astronomy, aviation, Earth and space sciences at the Discovery Center and see a planetarium show.
SEE Science Center, Manchester NH
The Science Center has hands-on activities for visitors of all ages, including exhibits on light, electricity, momentum, biology, biotechnology and more.
Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory & Gardens, Deerfield MA
Enjoy indoor gardens (bliss on cold winter days!) and see beautiful butterflies as well as reptiles, birds, fish and insects.
Roger Williams Park Zoo, Providence RI
Lots to see at the zoo, even in winter, and admission rates are discounted.
New England Aquarium, Boston MA
Enjoy the giant sealife tank, the penguin exhibit, and many other aquatic animal displays.
Museum of Science, Boston
So many fascinating exhibits to explore, from a full-size Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton to a two-story Rube Goldberg machine.
Lowell National Historical Park, Lowell MA
Learn how the Industrial Revolution impacted Lowell, explore the Boott Cotton Mills Museum, and try out a full-size loom.
Old Sturbridge Village, Sturbridge MA
The Village is generally opened Fridays to Sundays only during the winter, Explore this living history museum to learn about life in the 1800s.
Water Park of New England, Danvers MA
Spend the day at an indoor water park enjoying the lazy river, hot tubs, slides and the giant water structure.
For Tweens and Teens
Salem Witch Museum, Salem MA
Learn about and see the drama of the Salem witch trials of 1692.
Peabody Essex Museum, Salem MA
The PEM has fascinating exhibits on local maritime history as well as Asian and American art.
Larz Anderson Auto Museum, Brookline MA
The automotive exhibits at the museum explore the history of the automobile and changes automobiles brought to society as well as showcasing a large variety of unique vehicles.
New England Air Museum, Windsor Locks CT
Learn about aviation history and aviation technology and see a wide variety of aircraft.
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