A great tip to simplify family activities is to have a go-to list of places to visit when the urge to go on an adventure strikes. While there are a ton of places to explore outdoors, there are some days it’s more fun to explore indoors. Like when it’s too hot or raining. Today I have a list of kid friendly Northern California museums that will be fun for the entire family.
The Best Family Friendly Museums in Northern California
If you are traveling to or through Northern California with your family there are dozens of sights to see. Whether you are looking to learn more about history, nature or just have fun there are fantastic kid friendly Northern California museums that your family with love.
Tips for Visiting Museums with Kids
- Get them excited – tell them where you are going and what you might expect to see. It’s a good idea to go online and show them what the building and some of the exhibits look like.
- Go over the ground rules – let them know ahead of time what sort of behavior is allowed where you are going. Let them know if they might need to wait in line or what the policies will be regarding touching different items on display.
- Let them document – check ahead of time to make sure that photography is allowed. If so, give your child a camera to take pictures of things they find interesting along the way. A quick and easy way to create a meaningful memory book.
- Create a scavenger hunt – go online ahead of time to find a few items, exhibits or activities in the museum that you know your child will like. Create a list and allow them to check off each one as you find it on your visit.
Northern California Science Museums
Science is the gateway to exploring our world and developing a love of discovery. Children are naturals when it comes to curiosity, questioning and trying new things. These family friendly science museums are sure to please your young scientists.
Powerhouse Science Center in Sacramento
Gateway Science Museum in Chico
Chico State Vertebrate Museum in Chico (by appointment only)
Chico Creek Nature Center in Chico
Bohart Museum of Entomology (Insects) at UC Davis
Haagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven at UC Davis
Museum of Wildlife and Fish Biology at UC Davis
UC Davis Botanical Conservatory at UC Davis
Explorit Science Center in Davis
Gaumer’s Mineral Museum in Red Bluff
Northern California Historical Museums
Theodore Roosevelt once said, “The more you know about the past, the better prepared you are for the future.” What a wonderful lesson to learn as a family as you learn about the history of Northern California. Each of these museums keep stories, artifacts and lessons from the past that we can all learn from.
Patrick Ranch Museum in Durham
Fort Crook Museum in Fall River Mills
Lake Oroville Visitors Center in Oroville
Mt Shasta Sisson Museum in Mt Shasta
Berhens Eaton House in Redding
Bidwell Mansion in Chico
Valene Smith Museum of Anthropology in Chico
California History Museum in Sacramento
Northern California Transportation Museums
If your children are obsessed with planes, trains or automobiles then this is the perfect list for you. Here are three transportation focused museums located in Northern California that will inspire your wanna be pilot, conductor or race car driver.
California Auto Museum in Sacramento
California State Railroad Museum in Sacramento
Chico Air Museum in Chico
Northern California Children’s Museums
If you are looking to have a fun afternoon of hands-on discovery then one of these Children’s Museums should be on your to-do list.
Chico Children’s Museum (Opened 2019) in Chico
Sacramento Children’s Museum in Sacramento
Children’s Museum of Sonoma County in Santa Rosa
Turtle Bay Exploration Park in Redding
The Playzeum in Yuba City
There you have it mama! Tons of super fun and Kid Friendly Northern California Museums
We would love to hear from you! Do you know of a kid friendly museum in Northern California that isn’t on this list? Please post it in the comments and I will be sure to add it.