Boston/Maine road trip with kids?

Fran27

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#1
I'm starting to think about planning our trip for July... Does anyone have any recommendation? I'm totally clueless about what could be fun for kids up there.
 

milos_mommy

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#2
Boston - check out the maparium, it's only open certain times/days though, but one of the coolest things I've ever seen. As a kid I enjoyed Quincy market. The Plantation outside Boston was also extremely cool and kid friendly and I'd highly recommend that.
 

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#3
-Boston Museum of Science is the best place ever. It's amazing - and great for kids too. We used to do field trips there all the time during elementary school. I loved it.

-Childrens Museum in Boston, also amazing.

-Whale watching in cape cod

-The beaches are beautiful.

-I'm not sure how far south you'll be, but if you're starting out in/near Rhode Island, Block Island is beautiful - and great for kids too. Try the salt water taffy.

-Or Martha's Vineyard - The ferry leaves from Nantucket and takes about an hour. Go on the Flying Horses Carousel in Oak Bluffs. It's one of the oldest carousels and it's huge.

-Newport, RI

-Plimoth Plantations - definatly have to go there, it's a huge outdoor museum in mass.

- New England Aquarium, Central Warf Boston

-Walk the Freedom Trail in Boston. I enjoyed it as a kid. :)

-Arcadia National Park in Maine

Can you tell I grew up in New England? :p We have a book called "Where should take the Kids? - The Northeast" from Fodor's which is great... and theres loads of ideas :)
 

milos_mommy

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#4
I really enjoyed The Freedom Trail as a kid - but I don't think I'd recommend Newport for kids under middle school age. Definitely doable and I'm sure I'd have enjoyed it when I was younger but it's definitely not geared towards kids and not much related to the history they learn in school in elementary, as opposed to Boston's historical sites.
 

Fran27

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#5
Awesome. I think we want to spend 3 days in Boston, one day in Cape Cod (definitely want to do the whale thing, do we have to book ahead of time?), then probably 3 days up the coast but not sure where yet.
 

GipsyQueen

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#6
I really enjoyed The Freedom Trail as a kid - but I don't think I'd recommend Newport for kids under middle school age. Definitely doable and I'm sure I'd have enjoyed it when I was younger but it's definitely not geared towards kids and not much related to the history they learn in school in elementary, as opposed to Boston's historical sites.
Huh, really? I used to go to Newport all the time as a kid - no matter the age, I always enjoyed it. We went to alot of the surrounding beaches as well. :)
 

Oko

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#7
I highly recommend the children's musuem and the musuem of science. The second being really fun for adults as well as kids. There are tons of cool playgrounds spread out over various parks, and many lovely paths to walk too.

I don't know how old your kids are, but most kids find taking the subway exciting, haha.

The aquarium is kind of meh at this point, for the price of admission I'm not sure it's worth it.
 

Fran27

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#8
They're 7!

I'm trying to figure out how many days to stay in Boston... Any idea how many days it would take to see the two museums and the aquarium, and to do the Freedom trail?

Right now I'm thinking to drive to Newport the first day (arrive around 2pm probably) and spend the night there... Then go to Plimoths Plantation on day 2... Then Boston and spend the night there... then 3 days there (if you think it's enough?). Then drive up to Cape Cod and spend the day there... maybe drive up the coast a bit and find a hotel up North for the night... Then drive to Portland... then I'm just not sure for Maine... I heard good things about Boothbay so I guess we could go there then to Acadia... so that would be 2/3 more days... then drive back another way (any idea?).

We can take 10 days total probably.
 

milos_mommy

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#9
I think 3 days in Boston is good enough to see all the major stuff/what you really want to see, but you could definitely spend more time and not feel it's wasted. Less than 3 days will be too packed/you'll miss out.

I only went to Newport once at age 13. I think it's something a kid could definitely enjoy, but I personally think New England has a lot of other activities that would trump Newport in the child-friendly department. I'd say go there if you're interested in that type of history or your kids are at an age where they're learning about vanderbuilt and Carnegie in school, but don't make a special trip there for little ones.

I think your itinerary hotel-travel-wise sounds pretty ideal
 

Fran27

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#11
Newport is on the way anyway and it would be after a 5 hours drive... and my husband wants to see the mansions and stuff... and that way we have the whole day for Plymouth plantations.

I just need to figure out what to do in Maine, lol. I'm kinda clueless about what's to see there. Any town recommendation?
 

Fran27

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Ok we spent 2 hours figuring it out... it's all booked. 11 days total. We decided to go to Cape Cod on the way down instead and spend two nights there, so we don't have to drive 12 hours in one day, lol.

Any suggestions of what to do there? We'll stay in Farmouth and are probably going to spend a day in Martha's Vineyard (what is there to do there? Guessing we can't do that much without a car), but we have an afternoon and possibly a morning to check out Cape Cod. We'll do the whale watching up in Maine on the way to Acadia instead.

And Acadia, we'll have 1.5 day there... What is the best thing to see there?

I hope we're not going to miss too much... Had to think a lot to avoid long drives and try to optimize our stays so we don't end up staying too long in places where there might not be as much to do... we'll see. Most of the hotels have a pool at least.

Next I'll have to look up places to eat... and hope I don't gain 10 pounds. I'm so excited though, I've always wanted to see those places!
 

milos_mommy

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#13
I ate a place in Cape Cod called the Dog Bone Grille or something like that...I forget the name but it was a bar and grille with a dog name/sign.

It really sucked, I definitely wouldn't go back. Food was honestly nauseatingly greasy/fried, service sucked. I'm pretty sure our silverware or something was dirty and had to be sent back.

Unfortunately I went off season so a lot of stuff was closed. We went to a place called Hot Chocolate Sparrow which was packed but really good even in the off season and walked around the town area of Orleans - lots of toy shops, cute little stores, candy shops, etc.
 

GipsyQueen

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#14
Ok we spent 2 hours figuring it out... it's all booked. 11 days total. We decided to go to Cape Cod on the way down instead and spend two nights there, so we don't have to drive 12 hours in one day, lol.

Any suggestions of what to do there? We'll stay in Farmouth and are probably going to spend a day in Martha's Vineyard (what is there to do there? Guessing we can't do that much without a car), but we have an afternoon and possibly a morning to check out Cape Cod. We'll do the whale watching up in Maine on the way to Acadia instead.

And Acadia, we'll have 1.5 day there... What is the best thing to see there?

I hope we're not going to miss too much... Had to think a lot to avoid long drives and try to optimize our stays so we don't end up staying too long in places where there might not be as much to do... we'll see. Most of the hotels have a pool at least.

Next I'll have to look up places to eat... and hope I don't gain 10 pounds. I'm so excited though, I've always wanted to see those places!
If I remember correctly the Martha's Vineyard ferry arrives in Oak Bluffs (It's been 10 years since we were there the last time, so I'm a bit rusty on the MV front) BUT the carousel is right near the docks.
Are the kids good on bikes? Theres tons of not too expensive bike rentals on the island. We spent a week there and only rode around on our bikes (school trip in 8th grade) If not, theres also buses that go all over the island that aren't too expensive.
Other than that, oak bluffs is a cute little town with some nice shops if the kids are up for that...
 

DenoLo

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#16
If you're in Falmouth, the knob in Woods Hole is a really cool/very short little hike with an amazing view at the end. It's got a couple of nice little beaches that are pretty fun for kids because there are a ton of tiny crabs and oysters and stuff scurrying around. If you've got bikes, the Shining Sea Bikeway.

Hyannis isn't very far from Falmouth and hands-down has the best center of town to walk through. JKF library is there which is interesting (especially if you visit the Boston one too). Caoe Cod potato chip factory is here, duck boats are here (and in Boston).


For Martha's Vineyard, you can get anywhere you want to go by bus. Try and get off at Oak Bluffs if you can (oftentimes when it's windy, they won't stop there). Otherwise you get off at Vineyard Haven. The lighthouses and beaches are stunning, especially the one at Gay Head.

If you want to go for breakfast, Crabapples. If you want the best lobster bisque/chowder in the world, Lindsey's. I do know tons of places to eat near Falmouth so let me know if you want any other recomendations!
 
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Fran27

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If you're in Falmouth, the knob in Woods Hole is a really cool/very short little hike with an amazing view at the end. It's got a couple of nice little beaches that are pretty fun for kids because there are a ton of tiny crabs and oysters and stuff scurrying around. If you've got bikes, the Shining Sea Bikeway.

Hyannis isn't very far from Falmouth and hands-down has the best center of town to walk through. JKF library is there which is interesting (especially if you visit the Boston one too). Caoe Cod potato chip factory is here, duck boats are here (and in Boston).


For Martha's Vineyard, you can get anywhere you want to go by bus. Try and get off at Oak Bluffs if you can (oftentimes when it's windy, they won't stop there). Otherwise you get off at Vineyard Haven. The lighthouses and beaches are stunning, especially the one at Gay Head.

If you want to go for breakfast, Crabapples. If you want the best lobster bisque/chowder in the world, Lindsey's. I do know tons of places to eat near Falmouth so let me know if you want any other recomendations!
Awesome! Thanks so much! Exactly what I was looking for!
 

Fran27

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#19
Figured I'd post an update, we came back on Friday and absolutely loved all of it! Thanks for all the suggestions!
 

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