Pensacola Children’s Museum
There’s no doubt that when we gather in Pensacola, the main event is the beach. Also, eating, boating, and definitely coffee. But as we’ve added more and more kiddoes to our families, it’s occasionally nice to take a day off from all the sand and sunscreen and let the little ones enjoy an indoor activity. Enter – the Pensacola Children’s Museum. We discovered this downtown delight earlier this summer, and our kids are already anticipating their next trip.
The first floor is styled as a settlement from Pensacola’s Spanish colonial times. A trading post gives the kids a chance to practice their bartering skills or play grocer with the produce and meats. The older cousins loved the fort and cottage areas. It wasn’t long before they donned dress-up clothes (Coats! Muskets! Long dresses!) and were defending the fort the against the younger kids. (Wait until we teach them about the Alamo in American history! ;-)) The kids can also play pirates on The Galveston, a ship in the center of the exhibit. For the toddlers, there’s a cute farm area with age-appropriate toys.
The upstairs is segmented into small separate rooms with themes like military history, local Native American history, a book nook, and more! This does make it harder to keep a visual on small children. Especially when they scatter to the four winds, all wanting to play in different rooms! But the only way down is an elevator, so they can’t go too far. There’s plenty to entertain even the smallest visitors on the second floor, from a train table and building blocks to Duplos and an aircraft carrier activity table (pictured below).
Older kids and adults will enjoy exploring about local history through the displays in each room. I learned why the NAS Pensacola lighthouse has its stark black and white color scheme. You can also try your hand at tying nautical knots or learn the parts of a sailing ship through a informative wall mural. Of course, I’m assuming you can convince your kids to leave the Lego Brick Builder room! Whether a rainy day escape on a beach vacation or a break from the sun and sand, your kids are sure to love the Pensacola Children’s Museum!
Address: 115 E Zaragoza St, Pensacola, FL 32502
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 10-4, Sunday 12-4, Closed Mondays. Of note – the first floor of the Children’s Museum is occasionally closed for birthday parties or school groups. In this case, the second floor is still open, but you may want to check the events calendar before you go.
Admission is quite reasonable at $8/adult and $4/child (ages 3-14) with $1 discount for seniors, military, and a few others (full ticketing info here). But then, your ticket is good for seven days, and grants you admission to eleven properties in Historic Pensacola, so it’s truly a bargain! If you’re local, Historic Pensacola memberships are $50 for individuals and $75 for families.