Head to the O.C. Boardwalk for family fun rides like the Ferris Wheel.
The Ocean City Ferris Wheel
20

Top Family Friendly Things to Do

Spend the day lounging on the beach or screaming your heads off on a roller coaster. Get back to nature on a drive-through safari or gaze at distant worlds through the Hubble Space Telescope. In Maryland, the opportunities for family fun are limitless.

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The National Aquarium in Baltimore

1 Dive into fun at The National Aquarium in Baltimore

The beautiful National Aquarium in Baltimore has changed its mission to become one of the premiere ocean conservation organizations in the country, but it remains a must see for all families. From the beautiful Australia: Wild Extremes pavilion to the thrilling Blacktip Reef exhibit, the National Aquarium is fun you can sink your teeth into.  

Thrashers Fries on the Boardwalk in Ocean City

2 Walk the boards in Ocean City

Head to Ocean City's boardwalk and set yourself up for people watching with some Thrasher’s famous fries, a big bucket of Fischer’s Popcorn and an ice cream cone from Dumser’s Dairlyland. Or get in on the action and ride the classic rides at Trimper’s Rides and Amusements including the 1912 Herschel-Spillman carousel and Pirate’s Cove and the Haunted House, two of the few remaining Bill Tracy haunted houses.

National Harbor's Capital Wheel at sunset

3 Take to the skies and ride National Harbor’s Capital Wheel

Rise 180 feet into the air and take in the sights from one of the Capital Wheel’s climate-controlled gondolas.  The fantastic view features the Potomac River and skyline of National Harbor out over to the Washington Monument in the Nation’s Capital. The Capital Wheel is a one-of-a-kind ride!

ASCI's man-made rapids offer thrilling rafting adventures.

4 Ride the rapids at Adventure Sports Center International (ASCI) in McHenry

Home to the 2014 Canoe Slalom World Championships, ASCI offers world-class instructors and a range of challenges from beginner to Olympian in their man-made white-water facility.  


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Type:
Outdoor Recreation


Location:
250 Adventure Sports Way
Deep Creek Lake, MD 21541
301-387-3250


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Jolly Roger Amusement Park's Splash Mountain in Ocean City

5 Plunge into fun at Jolly Rogers Splash Mountain Waterpark in Ocean City

Splash in the Lost Lagoon Family Activity Pool, drift away on the 1000-foot-long Lazy River, blast down the 45-foot tall drop on Stealth or thrill up and down the exhilarating Master Blaster water roller coaster. 


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Type:
General Attractions


Location:
30th St and Coastal Hwy
Ocean City, MD 21842
410-289-3477


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Penguins at The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore

6 See the penguins at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore

The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore may be one of the oldest zoos in the nation, but it combines that long tradition with exciting, cutting edge exhibits like Penguin Coast, where the best dressed animals at the zoo dive, swim and cavort in their naturalistic habitat complete with currents, waves and underwater view ports. 


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Type:
General Attractions


Location:
Druid Hill Park
Baltimore, MD 21217
410-396-7102


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Wild Cat at Adventure Park USA

7 Ride the Wild Cat wooden rollercoaster at Adventure Park USA in New Market

This old school cool wooden coaster is a must for any family of thrill seekers, but Adventure Park USA also has lots more waiting with bumper boats, putt-putt, a ropes course and more, plus it's conveniently located just down the road from Baltimore and D.C. in New Market.


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Type:
General Attractions


Location:
11113 West Baldwin Road
New Market, MD 21774
301-865-6800


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Dig in for some spectacular sandcastle-building on Maryland's beaches like Ocean City's.

8 Build a sandcastle at Maryland's beaches

Nothing brings a family together quite like building a sandcastle, and Maryland has lots of great spots to soak in the sun, play in the sand, and make a memory. Ocean City, Assateague and Sandy Point are just a few spots waiting for you to grab your shovel and dig in.

Port Discovery Children's Museum in Baltimore

9 Reinvent the art of play at Port Discovery Children’s Museum in Baltimore

Named one of the Top Five Children’s Museums in the country by Child Magazine, Port Discovery is where fun lives. From live puppet shows to the interactive water tables and the astounding five-story central play structure—the mother of all playgrounds—Port Discovery is a must for families with young kids.


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Type:
Museums


Location:
35 Market Place
Baltimore, MD 21202
410-727-8120


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Zoo safari at the Catoctin Wildlife Preserve and Zoo in Thurmont

10 Ride a rolling safari at the Catoctin Wildlife Preserve and Zoo in Thurmont

Located deep in the mountains of Maryland, this lush zoo takes families on a genuine safari. Catoctin Wildlife Preserve’s fleet of surplus army trucks will take your family through the park where you can feed the animals from the bed of the big rig. 


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Type:
General Attractions


Location:
13019 Catoctin Furnace Rd
Thurmont, MD 21788
301-271-3180


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Launch your driving tour along the Star-Spangled Banner trail from Solomons, home to this popular museum.

11 Be amazed at the sight of the Calvert Marine Museum’s giant Megaladon shark skeleton in Solomons

With exhibits on Maryland’s water culture, historic ships and more, there’s plenty to see at the Calvert Marine Museum, but one toothy exhibit steals the show. The 37-foot long recreated Megaladon shark skeleton takes a bite out of boredom and makes for a fin-tastic time! 


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Type:
Lighthouses


Location:
14200 Solomons Island Rd
Solomons, MD 20688
410-326-2042


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Urban Pirates

12 Plunder the high seas with the scurvy dogs of a genuine pirate ship

Yar, maties, set sail for swashbucklin’ shenanigans on one of Maryland’s family-friendly pirate ships! Join the crews of Ocean City’s Duckaneer, Baltimore’s Urban Pirates, or Pirate Adventures in Annapolis for a rollicking good time. Just leave the landlubbers on shore. 

NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center - Visitors Center

13 Have a blast at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt

Wonder at the discoveries of the Hubble Space Telescope, get up close to real rockets and space capsules, gaze at the secrets of the universe in the super cool Geodome, and let the kids try on a kid- sized space suit and helmet. Goddard Space Flight Center is out of this world!


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Type:
General Attractions


Location:
8800 Greenbelt Rd
Greenbelt, MD 20771
301-286-8981


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Wild Ponies on Assateague Island National Seashore

14 See the horses at Assateague, Assateague Island

The wild horses of Assateague National Seashore and State Park are one of the few truly unique sites in the world. The majestic horses have been the island’s signature species for centuries, and seeing them frolicking in the dunes for the first time is one of those iconic family memories you’ll never forget.


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Type:
Scenic Points & Landmarks


Location:
7206 National Seashore Ln
Berlin, MD 21811
410-641-1441


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Clark’s Elioak Petting Farm in Ellicott City

15 Pick pumpkins and pet farm animals in the fairy tale Clark’s Elioak Farm in Ellicott City

Ride the ponies or the cow train, pet and feed the farm animals, and take a walk down memory lane with the preserved fairy tale creatures and castles from the old Enchanted Forest amusement park at this Howard County institution.   

Maryland Science Center in Baltimore

16 Touch dinosaurs and gaze into space at the Maryland Science Center in Baltimore

With live science demonstrations, hands-on paleontological digs with real dinosaur bones, a first rate children’s room, a massive six-story Imax theater, and a mind-expanding look at the universe through the eye of the Hubble Space Telescope, the Maryland Science Center is home to worlds of fun.


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Type:
General Attractions


Location:
601 Light Street
Baltimore, MD 21230
410-685-5225


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Mind Eraser at Six Flags America in Upper Marlboro

17 Thrill the day away at Six Flags America in Upper Marlboro

Apocalypse, the Batwing Coaster, the Bonzai Pipeline and the all-new Bourbon Street Fireball are just a few of the amazing thrill rides that will keep the teens grinning ear-to-ear, while the Capital Railways, Crocodile Cal’s Caribbean Beach House and the French Quarter Flyers provide fun for children of all ages. 


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Type:
General Attractions


Location:
13710 Central Ave
Upper Marlboro, MD 20774
301-249-1500


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Ripley's Believe It Or Not

18 Blow your mind at Ripley’s Believe It or Not

With two locations, one in Baltimore Harbor and one on the Boardwalk in Ocean City, it's double the fun at Ripley’s Believe It or Not, which has been mystifying families since 1918 and Maryland’s two locations are keeping up the tradition. Ocean City's location features a giant robotic shark poking through the building while Baltimore’s museum is home to Chessie the Sea Monster.


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Type:
General Attractions


Location:
Light Street Pavilion
Baltimore, MD 21202
443-615-7878


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Mountain Coaster at Wisp Resort

19 Ride the legendary Mountain Coaster at Wisp in McHenry

With 1,500 feet of upward track and a mind-boggling 3500 feet back down, the Mountain Coaster, open year round, is too cool to miss. 


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Type:
Tours


Location:
296 Marsh Hill Rd
McHenry, MD 21541
855-238-0192


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Plumpton Park Zoo

20 Feed Jimmie the Giraffe at the Plumpton Park Zoo in Rising Sun

There is nothing like the expression of joy on the face of a person feeding Jimmie the Giraffe for the first time. Just make sure to give your kids a turn, too.


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Type:
General Attractions


Location:
1416 Telegraph Rd.
Rising Sun, MD 21911
410-658-6850


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Family Fun Photos & Videos

Climbing Ropes at Terrapin Adventures
It's ok for the kids to swing from the trees here at Terrapin!
Glen Echo Park Carousel
Glen Echo Park Carousel in Glen Echo, Maryland
Surrey Ride on Ocean City Boardwalk
Ride down the Ocean City Boardwalk in style on a pedal surrey.
Ride the Train at the C&O Canal
There's plenty of family fun to be had along the C&O Canal in Western Maryland, including rides for kids.
Milburn Orchards Pumpkin Patch
Go pumpkin picking at this orchard and farm just north of Chesapeake City.
Historic St. Mary's City Woodland Indian Discovery Day
Colorful living history and amazing archaeology reveal the past at Maryland's first capital.
Maryland's Best Ice Cream Trail

Family Fun

Trip Ideas

Port Discovery Children's Museum in Baltimore
Family-Friendly and Children's Museums

Whatever your kids’ interests—bugs, art, airplanes or fire trucks—Maryland’s got a museum for them.

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College Park Aviation Museum
Fun Family-Friendly Activities

Beat the boredom with these family-friendly activities guaranteed to please kids of all ages. ...

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It's ok for the kids to swing from the trees here at Terrapin!
Family Activities for Every Season

Finding ways to entertain the kids is easy all year round in Maryland.

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Head to the O.C. Boardwalk for family fun rides like the Ferris Wheel.
Top Family Friendly Things to Do

Spend the day lounging on the beach or screaming your heads off on a roller coaster. Get back to nature on a drive-through safari or gaze at distant worlds through the Hubble...

More

Elephant at The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore
Zoos and Discovery Centers

Animal- and nature-lovers won’t want to miss these hands-on adventures for the whole family. 

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