20 Museums for Kids in Phoenix. There are some great museums in the Phoenix area for all ages, toddlers to teens! In fact, it may be argued that Phoenix offers some unique museum experiences not found anywhere else in the southwest! Have you been to the museum with hundreds of musical instruments? What about the museum with strange and wacky and true facts? Even the Phoenix Art Museum can be a good place to visit.
What makes a museum kid-friendly? For us, it’s some type of hands-on aspect whether it’s a play area, scavenger hunt, or interactive activities. This helps engage the mind and enhance learning! Make sure to check at the front desk for any specific kid-friendly activities or classes at museums.
Some of our favorite museums in Phoenix with kids are the Rosson House, Pueblo Grande Museum, Tempe History Museum, and Arizona Railway Museum. See below for the full list, and let us know if you have a favorite!
Places we love (in no particular order):
“One of the top three children’s museums in the nation, the Children’s Museum of Phoenix is a wondrous place of imagination, inspiration, creativity and just plain fun! Designed for children ages birth to 10, this is not your typical Museum…here we want you to touch EVERYTHING! And with over 48,000 square feet of space, there’s plenty to touch.”
“Arizona Science Center’s mission is to inspire, educate and engage curious minds through science.”
“Discover the strange, shocking, and beautiful at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! in Grand Prairie. Enjoy eye-popping exhibits where you can pose with the Vampire Lady, lose yourself in our spinning vortex tunnel, and even see a shrunken head!”
“This is a historical museum dedicated to the development of firefighting technologies from early the 1700s to modern-day. We provide fire safety programs for children, as well as information on emergency planning and preparation for adults. We offer opportunities to remember those heroes who gave their lives in service to others in the National Firefighters Hall of Heroes gallery.”
“Explore the world’s music and cultures at the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM). MIM takes you on a journey around the world, deep into the heart of human creativity. Rated Phoenix’s #1 attraction by TripAdvisor, MIM displays more than 6,800 musical instruments and objects from every corner of the globe.”
“The Arizona Railway Museum is an all-volunteer, non-profit (501c3) organization. Our mission statement: To acquire, preserve, restore and display railroad artifacts and equipment with primary focus on Arizona and the Southwest.”
Pueblo Grande Museum is located on a 1,500 year old archaeological site once inhabited by the Ancestral Sonoran Desert People located just minutes from downtown Phoenix next to Sky Harbor International Airport. This National Historic Landmark and Phoenix Point of Pride is the largest preserved archaeological site within Phoenix. Accessible by the Sky Train and the Light Rail, the museum is open 7 days a week October through April, and closed Sundays and Mondays, May through September.
“We are open 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. on Sunday. You have the option to purchase tickets in advance online, or purchase them at the door on the day. Tickets are no longer timed from Aug. 2, 2021. Admission is: Adult: $13 Child 3-12 years: $7 Child 0-2 years. Free Senior: $10 Student with ID: $8 ETB card holders with ID: $2 per person for up to 6 family members. Museum members are free.”
“The i.d.e.a. Museum is a museum designed for exhibiting, teaching, and interacting with the fine arts. It changed its name on February 6, 2014, to i.d.e.a., which stands for “imagination, design, experience, art. This fine arts museum encourages self-expression for youngsters through hands-on activities.”
“Over 140 years of Phoenix law enforcement history from 1881 until today.”
“Pioneer is a collection of historic buildings from 19th century Territorial Arizona. The Community Church and large, outdoor Livery area are available for weddings and events. Pioneer also has birthday party packages that can include bounce houses and cowboy shows.”
“Tucked against the beautiful Papago Park preserve, the Arizona Heritage Center is an oasis in the desert. Here you will discover how the sprawling Phoenix metropolis began, springing to life in the fertile river valley. Learn how the 5-Cs – copper, cotton, citrus, cattle, and climate – drove the economy and post-WWII growth.”
“Martin Auto Museum is dedicated to the preservation of collectible automobiles. We have many rare and one-of-a-kind cars for you to enjoy, with over 140 vehicles in rotation for viewing. We have been voted by Trip Advisor as one of the best museums in Phoenix, Arizona. Our museum also has event spaces of varying sizes, perfect for any occasion! We will host your wedding, birthday party, or your business conference! Call us today to book your next event or to inquire about our collection!”
“McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park is a 30-acre railroad park located in Scottsdale, Arizona It features a 15 in gauge railroad, a Magma Arizona Railroad locomotive, a railroad museum, three model railroad clubs and a 7+1⁄2 in gauge live steam railroad.”
“The Arizona State Capitol in Phoenix, Arizona, United States, was the last home for Arizona’s Territorial government until Arizona became a state in 1912. Initially, all three branches of the new state government occupied the four floors of the statehouse.”
“Pangaea Land of the Dinosaurs is an indoor interactive exhibit and educational center located within the Arizona Boardwalk complex.”
“Phoenix Art Museum has provided access to visual arts and educational programs in Arizona for more than 60 years and is the largest art museum in the Southwestern United States. In addition to an annual calendar of special exhibitions, Phoenix Art Museum’s permanent-collection galleries are drawn from more than 20,000 objects of modern and contemporary art, fashion design, and photography, as well as American, Asian, Latin American, and European art. Each month, the Museum hosts a wide variety of public programs, including lectures, performances, tours, workshops, and film screenings designed for audiences of all ages to enjoy.”
“The Museum is a fully-restored 1895 Queen Anne Victorian house museum in the heart of downtown Phoenix. The Rosson House is only accessible through guided tours lasting approximately 60 minutes. Tours of the house include all living areas and offer visitors a glimpse into the lifestyles of early Phoenix families.”
“Immerse yourself in 100 years of military aviation history among some of the most iconic aircraft of two world wars and other smaller conflicts. Step back in time to events that changed the world. Exhibits feature original artifacts and personal stories. Museum is the home of six operating WWII aircraft and offer living history flights on a seasonal schedule.”
“The Museum preserves and presents the history, legends, and lore of the region. Outdoor exhibits on our 14 acre property include the Apacheland Movie Ranch where John Wayne and all the famous western actors filmed scores of western movies and TV episodes, an extensive 1800’s educational mining history walking tour, and a huge G-scale railroad layout depicting the history of the region along 1500 feet of track running through Native American villages, ranches, mines, orchards, and towns. A ride through time. Our main building includes our traditional museum gallery and a wonderful gift shop packed with regional books, gifts, amethyst and turquoise jewelry, and snacks. No sales tax! And we’re a great venue for weddings and photo shoots.”
“The Tempe History Museum is a center where the community comes together to explore Tempe’s past, share its present and imagine its future. Admission is free.”
“This museum hosts the history of Scottsdale in the Little Red School house that was built in 1910. It run by volunteers. We hope to reopen the spring of 2021”
20 Museums for Kids in Phoenix