New England Must See Sites with Kids

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by belle22, Mar 26, 2013.

  1. belle22

    belle22 Mouseketeer

    Jan 26, 2007
    Thinking about heading East this summer with DD10 and DD7. What are some must see sites (that are cheap) to see in MA, NY, CT, NH..ect.

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  3. DebMcDonald

    DebMcDonald DIS Veteran

    Aug 26, 2004
    I don't know that any of these fall for on the cheap, but they are definitely things to do:

    CT - Mystic Aquarium (better than Boston's)

    MA - Sturbridge Village
    Cape Cod, ProvinceTown, Ferries to Nantucket or Martha's Vineyard
    Boston - Lots of museums, Children's science, art. Eating in the North End, Fanuiel Hall, Fenway Park. Whale sighting (there are always groupons for these)
    There is also a museum at Patroits place and shopping at the Patriots Stadium.

    If I think of anything else I'll repost.
  4. pookybean

    pookybean Mouseketeer

    Feb 7, 2002
    In Boston, the frog pond and playground in the commons is free. the gardens has the swan boats...a 15 minute ride around the pond for $3 adults, $1.50 for kids.

    not sure how old your kids are, but we always spend a few hours around this area after shopping at faneuil hall and downtown crossing.

    Beaches all along the Cape, take the ferry to Martha's Vineyard or drive out to p-town.

    Clarks trading post in NH and everything thats around there.

    Rodger Williams Park Zoo in RI, or Newport RI.

    Not sure about prices for everything but when i go to visit family in boston we do some of these things every few years (well downtown boston we do every year) and i never end up spending a ton.

    have a great time! i miss the ne area so much!
  5. crjack

    crjack DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2005
    Friday nights offer some great inexpensive options in downtown Boston - The Children's Museum is a $1 on Fridays from 5:00 - 9 pm and it's a great museum to visit.

    Also, during the summer there are free movies shown outdoors on the Hatch Shell (same place as 4th of July Boston Pops concert) as part of the Friday Night Flicks series.

    Both are in a good location to tie in other sights or just explore the city. There are so many historical sites to see and they don't require a car.

    Enjoy your visit!
  6. amcnj

    amcnj DIS Veteran

    Sep 10, 1999
    In Boston you can walk along the Freedom Trail and see many sites. You can also kind of drive along that Lexington Concord route. I guess it depends on how into American History they are.

    By NY is that NYC? There is a lot to see in the city, but of course few are cheap. The Staten Island Ferry is a neat ride and the price is right!
  7. nhmommy

    nhmommy Mouseketeer

    Aug 23, 2011
    In NH Portsmouth has Strawberry Banks and Prescott park arts festival both inexpensive. Also in NH are Canterbury Shaker Village is cool. and
    Mount Washington Observatory Weather Discovery Center,
    Flume Gorge,Lost River Gorge and Boulder Caves
    Ruggles Mine,Weirs Drive-In Theater one of the few drive in's left.

    then there is

    Story Land,Water Country,The NH children's museums
    McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center but IMO these kind of things can be found anywhere in the country.

    Check out VISITNH website.
  8. mickeyboat

    mickeyboat <font color=660099>Nothing like the cream and choc

    Oct 14, 2003
    Vermont! :thumbsup2

    Do you have a travel plan?
  9. ktrask

    ktrask Mouseketeer

    Nov 20, 2007
    You can tour the state house in MA at no cost.
  10. wallawallakids

    wallawallakids DIS Veteran

    Feb 22, 2012
    I live in Maine and I just wanted to say that if you can, check your library for a book called Fun things to do with Children New England. It is on Amazon too but your library might be able to get it for you for free. I actually own it because I got it in our library once and loved the ideas in it. There is over 100 suggestions and you can easily see what is free and what interests you. It has some great suggestions and often I will pick it off the shelf and look though to find a fun day trip at the last minute on a weekend. There is so much to do in New England.

    Also, if you have a Children's or Science museum membership where you live check and see if you bought reciprocal membership. Most places offer it. We have a membership at the Portland Children's museum and Boston Science museum. With those purchases we have been able to go to the children's museums in Boston, Augusta, and Portland OR. Plus we have been to multiple Science museums on trips for free because of the reciprocal membership. It might be something to look into if you do have one and want to let the kids run around for a couple of hours one day. The Boston Science museum is really cool if you do have one. You can easily spend several hours there.

    Strawberry Banke in Portsmouth is also really neat. My kids love it more then Sturbridge because it is smaller and less crowded. It is also really affordable. You can walk around Portsmouth for free and it is a super cute, fun town. Both places are amazing though. And if you make it up further North there is tons to do in Conway NH, and Portland ME. For example, you can catch a ferry ride to the islands and spend the day riding bikes and hiking or spend time walking in the Old Port and going to the museums. Lots of light houses offer tours too. Depending on the season, Conway has skiing, hiking, water parks, and mini golf. Not sure if that would interest your kids but my kids love stuff like that.

    I agree with others on the historic can't miss stuff. Such as Plymouth Plantation, and the Mayflower (both not cheap though!). Freedom trail, and Fanuiel Hall. There is a free Firefighter museum in Boston too. But it isn't always open. Swan boats are fun too! Have a great trip!
  11. msmama

    msmama DIS Veteran

    Jan 21, 2009
    Somebody mentioned the Mystic Aquarium - just down the road is Mystic Seaport (last summer there was a pass that got you 2 days at both places). Also Mystic Pizza.

    Don't know where you're coming from, but you could drive out on Long Island and take one of 2 ferries to New England (one to CT, one to RI).

    What kind of stuff are you looking for? Active outdoorsy type of stuff? Museums? Camping? If you narrow it down a bit maybe we could help more.
  12. buzz2400

    buzz2400 <font color=teal>The TF waves to buzz2400's DS

    Feb 14, 2001
    In ct, there is gillette castle, essex train and riverboat. Also lake compounce, as previous pp stated mystic aquarium, seaport and village (with shops). in norwalk, there is another aquarium call maritime. All of these do cost money (some a little too pricey). There is an indian museum called mashantucket museum.

    In MA, sturbridge village, six flags new england. At the cape you can see where the pilgrims landed at pilgrim rock and the ship is there as well.

    I would just google the things to do in "the state" and you will get the official vistior site. ct's is

    One thing to remember in boston is that parking costs a fortune. Love to visit there (aquarium, the market) but parking does take a chunk out of your wallet.
  13. PrincesCJM

    PrincesCJM DIS Veteran

    Dec 26, 2006
    Not to be too technical but NY is not apart of New England. We can be a little sensitive to that.

    Maine is a beautiful state. Yes, I'm a little biased since I live here but it really is. Depending upon how far you want to travel in New England, Acadia National Park is beautiful!
  14. Good Morning Dewdrop

    Good Morning Dewdrop Have Courage & Be Kind

    Sep 17, 2009
    We lived in CT for years - I remember we went to a Sunflower farm once - hundreds of sunflowers a very cool sight.

    Also a Bison farm we rode in a open truck and got to feed them - again lots of fun.

    I don't remember where either place was but I think in NW CT. I need to figure it out since I think they'll be fun to visit again

    Mystic Aquarium as I recall is pretty $$. Roger Williams Zoo was something we loved going to as was the Children's Museum in Boston.
  15. Nevergrow'nup

    Nevergrow'nup <font color=darkorange>Now I am decorated (a littl

    Sep 26, 2005
    The sunflower farm is called buttonwoods. Really good ice cream too!! They are adding different activities there as well haven't stopped in a few years but will drive by to see the sunflowers!!
  16. D L and K's Mom

    D L and K's Mom <font color=blue>D, L and now baby Kennedy's mom!<

    Mar 17, 2001
    Great Ideas!!!
  17. shoney

    shoney DIS Veteran

    Apr 4, 2005
    For older kids...

    Salem, Mass...for the witch trials

    Newport RI for the mansions

    jiminy peaks for adventure
  18. belle22

    belle22 Mouseketeer

    Jan 26, 2007
    Thanks for all your ideas!

    I know we will do the Freedom Trail, Swan Boat rides iand sealions in Boston. Maybe Ben and Jerry's tour in VT. Visit the Pez Visitor Center in CT.
    Maybe Acadia National Park and Mount Washington.

    Any other ideas? Any World's Largest items to nearby to see?
  19. mom2t

    mom2t DIS Veteran

    Oct 2, 2007
    Definitely highlight of my tour of New England Mt. Washington and we went covered bridge hunting in VT. Loved Kennebuckport also and Cape Cod and our visit to Martha's Vineyard.
  20. SAT887

    SAT887 DIS Veteran

    Dec 7, 2010
    Look into the ASTC program. We are members of a science aquarium in Burlington VT and the program allows free entry to many science museums 90 miles from your home... Which for us is things like the Museum of Science and Children's museum in Boston.

    However, Mt Washington is a must! We live on the NH/VT border and go there often. Drive 112 between Woodstock and North Conway (it's called the Kancamagus highway) We love the White Mountains and they have many fun hiking trails, and things like the Flume that are low cost..... VT is a beautiful state, filled with hiking again... However we do enjoy going to Burlington VT- it's a cute artsy college town right on Lake Champlain (and if you are up that way go to the Ben & Jerry's factory in Stowe!)
  21. leebee

    leebee DIS Veteran

    Sep 14, 1999
    Cheap is hard to come by! We took a great vacation to NH one summer, when DD was almost 10. We went to Canobie Lake Park in Salem, NH, then rented a cottage in Bartlett, which is just north of North Conway, and kept us out of the congestion of the outlet malls. We went to Santa's Village and StoryLand, went up Mt. Washington, Wildcat, and Loon Mountains, and hiked the Flume. It was a great week!

    Just remember, even though New England is small, it takes time to drive around everywhere, and plan accordingly.

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