museum · paid places

The Science Center in Hartford

Even though it is in Hartford, it is only a 25 minutes drive from New Haven. It is a great museum, for both big and small kids.

As soon as you get in, there is a large water room that you can get wet. Kids love this room. Nearby there is a 4-D theater. Going upstairs, there are all sorts of things for you to play and learn. On the third floor it has a whole Space and Universe room. You can experience being an astronaut, and see all the things that you’d find in the outer space. On the fourth floor sometimes there are special exhibits. You can find more details from their website.


museum · paid places

Kids City in Middletown

It is a museum, with EVERYTHING hands on. It is a playground, with so much fun. We first knew about this place when my oldest was 1. We have been going to it every half a year or so. In 2016 or so, they finished building the castle. Then the admission was raised to $9 per person (from $8). And it is completely worth it!

The museum has maybe 10 rooms. And each one has a specific theme. There are some big ones, such as the gigantic castle, the fish room, the underground ocean place, the grocery store, the general room that has a bit of everything. Some are smaller, such as the farm, the block room, the rain-forest room, and the puppet show room. Everyone was very well decorated and designed so that you can touch, pickup and play with the things there. You can do some crossbow in the castle, or use the various conveyor belt in the fish room, or push the ball in the air-flowing pipe and watch it travels in the general room.

It’s half an hour drive from new haven. It has metered parking outside of the museum. The museum also has a nice cafeteria place for you to eat, but it does not sell food. It also does birthday parties, but only for up to 8 kids. Some times the place can be really busy, but kids still have plenty of fun.



hiking · museum · paid places · park · playground

Stamford Museum and Nature Center

Stamford Museum and Nature Center locates in Stamford, so it is a big of a drive, like 45 minutes from new haven without traffic. But it is such a fun place to spend a day with the kids. The admission is very affordable (adult $10, 4-17 yrs $5 as for 2017) and it is totally worth the price for a whole day of fun.

When you get in, you will first be amazed by what a giant park it is. You’ll first see the beautiful lake on the left side with ducks, geese and swans. On the right side, up the stairs, there is a giant castle, that used to belong to someone rich and now is a museum and kids can do crafting in it.


Keep walking down in the park, you will see some friendly otters, who really enjoys their meal time. Make a left turn, you might see turkey/chicken/unknown animal running around, away from the chasing kids. There are all softs of farm animals, pigs, goats, cows. Up on the hill, there are also horses!


In addition to the farm animals, there is also a vegetable garden and an indoor museum for snakes, frogs and turtles. The people who work there are super friendly. My 5 yrs asked so many questions and got so much fun!


And there is more. If you walked straight after the lake, you will arrive at the one of the kind playground. It is mostly made of wood, and in the original wooden color. It takes advantage of being built on a hill and arranges in four levels! The top level has a big ‘bird nest’ for adventurous kids to go in and use it as a watch tower. The second level connects to a tower that goes up to the first level, and some slides to naturally go down to the third level, which is the ground level. Then below the ground level, hidden behind, there is a giant pirate ship! The playground is such a unique design and also so much fun.



There is also a hiking trial around the area of the convenient store and playground. You can enjoy the quiet time listening to the little brook throughout the woods.

The center is like a combination of zoo, park and awesome playground. A great place to spend a day!

museum · paid places

The Connecticut Children’s Museum in New Haven

The Connecticut Children’s Museum in New Haven is not an ordinary museum. First of all, it is called Children’s Museum, but it is not a member of the Children’s Museum Association. Secondly, it only opens Friday afternoon and the weekends. The admission is $7 in cash per person. It is located right in downtown New Haven, on Wall street crossing Orange street. Usually there is plenty of meter parking around the museum during the time it is open.

The museum is composed of two-floors, with 3-5 rooms on each floor. On the first floor, the first room is music related with different instruments. You can also make a wind-chime using the provided materials. The next room has some gears, pathway building, puzzles. The next room has a post offices and books. The room cross the hallway is a giant construction site, where kids can put on customs and use different tools.

On the second floor, the largest room is for the Saturday Puppet show. During other times, you can do some crafts, try out some big boots, and look into funny mirrors. Next to the room is the “Goodbye moon”. It decorated exactly like the room in the famous bed-time story book, with green paints, red carpets, a little bed, and a bunny. On the bookshelf in the room, it has the translated version of the story book in many different languages. Very impressive! Across the hallway from the room, there is a animal room, with magnifying classes to look at bugs and shells. It also has a real bee hive!

Between the top and bottom floor, there is also a intercom that can communicate between the green room and one other room. It is such a surprise to hear the telephone ring and to hear a friendly voice from a different room.

The museum is a nice little place in the center of the town. Saturday because of the puppet show it is usually more crowded. Other times you

free activities · hiking · museum · park · playground

The Ansonia Nature Center

I want to give my very first blog to the Ansonia Nature Center. We got to know this place in 2016 and we felt in love with it. Even though it’s not in the city of new haven, the drive to ansonia probably takes less than 20 minutes for most areas in new haven.

It has an awesome playground. It was built in 2016, and renovated in 2017 (in which they removed the cool hill slide). The playground is mostly made of wood, like a rise-up platform with wooden bridges connecting little chambers. It has a median sized tunnel slide, a cool spinning plate that can hold 5-6 kids, a sandbox, a tire swing. Kids from toddler to maybe 8 would have great fun here. It has several picnic tables and rows of benches to sit on. The only downside of the playground might be that the sandbox is the only place that is in the shade.


Although not being in the shade is not a problem for the center, because it has a whole building for playing inside! The nature center itself as a full bathroom, which is such a plus for some pregnant moms who are not fans of porta potties. The center has several resident animals, a very cool-looking owl, a bunny, a genie pig, a bird, several snakes, turtles, fish, bees (in a safe hive) etc. Kids can just walk in (during the center hours) and admire the animals. The center also has a play room with stuffed animals, a puppet show frame, and X-ray pictures, an activity room with books and crafts. All the stuff, unless they are reserved for some events, you can just walk in and play!


Let’s go back to the outside again. There is a little pond near the building, and once we saw many lazy turtles bathing under the sun. There is also a soccer field right next to the playground, which brought great entertainment for my kids’ birthday party in the pavilion right next to the field. (I was first disappointed that we couldn’t use the field, then I found out that the little kids rather watching the big kids play soccer).


And all the fun is free! (except the birthday parties). What’s more, the center does a lot of kids activities throughout the year. It even has a summer camp. You should really check out the website, which is constantly updated with new activities. And the website itself is very respectable in the modern tech world.

I just realized I never really took good pictures of the playground itself. So I’ll come back with some pictures.