Baltimore’s Best Family-Friendly Activities

With ample science, art, and outdoor activities geared toward kids, Baltimore is an excellent destination for a family vacation, and makes it easy to take everyone out and about if you’re already a Charm City resident.
Urban Pirates Family Adventure Cruise

via Flickr user Larry Lamsa

via Flickr user Larry Lamsa

If you’ve got children between the ages of 3 and 10 and want to win their affections for your entire Baltimore vacation, then you should definitely treat them to the Urban Pirates Family Adventure Cruise. This fun little boat ride takes you and your tikes on a cruise around the Inner Harbor…while everyone on board is dressing, talking, and acting like pirates. If it sounds over the top, that’s because it is—but it’s also a ton of fun. Everyone receives their own pirate costume to wear while singing, dancing, and playing on the high seas.

Cost: Riders ages 3 and up, $22.00; Riders under 3, $12.00
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National Aquarium

via Flickr user Corey'sWorld

via Flickr user Corey’sWorld

Home to more than 17,000 organisms, the National Aquarium in Baltimore is one of the largest aquariums in the United States, and an excellent place for kids to learn about marine life and conservation. With different exhibits like the Amazon River Forest, Atlantic Coral Reef, and Tropical Rain Forest, there are more than enough creatures to keep the clan occupied. But the aquarium offers plenty of extras as well—like the 4-D Immersion Films, which will transport you deep into the ocean, into the shallows of a coral reef, and wherever else the film goes.

Cost: Adults, $34.95; Seniors, $29.95; Kids under 12, $21.95; Kids under 3, free
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American Visionary Art Museum

via Leslie Johnston

via Flickr user Leslie Johnston

It’s impossible not to stay entertained at this bizarre, eclectic museum, which features art created by amateur and self-taught artists. If you think all art museums are stuffy; think again. Exhibits like the shiny Bling Universe and the World’s First Family of Robots will have you giggling, staring, and scratching your head the whole time. There’s even a Fart Machine in the basement. The museum also features a range of outdoor exhibitions, like the Giant Whirligig, Tall Sculpture Barn, and Wildflower Garden.

Cost: Adults, $15.95; Seniors $13.95; Students and kids, $9.95; Members and kids under 6, free