Kidtastico | Best Family Fun Children Activities in Santa Cruz, San Jose, and Monterey

My Museum – Monterey County Youth Museum, Hands-On Children’s Science Activities

Located in downtown Monterey, My Museum is a trippy little place full of hands on activities for the little ones. Somewhat like a miniature Discovery Museum, there’s a wide variety of themed play areas and each one incorporates a scientific principle (though some more convincing than others). Is the mini golf course science? Well sort of, if you include the subterranean tunnel that exposes layers of sediment or the idea that being able to hit a decent put involves physics as well as geometry. But that’s not a criticism. The modern children’s museum is first and foremost about play as...
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Pacific Coast Air Museum – See Military Planes Up Close in Santa Rosa

A fun, little, funky aviation museum tucked away off highway 101 near the Sonoma Airport, Pacific Coat Air Museum is a great hands on up-close experience. Out back is a grassy field filled with military planes. It’s a good selection so both kids and their military aircraft enthusiast parents will be satisfied. Inside is a small exhibit of press clippings, memorabilia,  and factoids, but the real action is outside. I wish I had better photos but my daughter was in her “I’m bringing brown baby” phase and extremely active so I basically just followed her around the whole time so...
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Hiller Aviation Museum – Antique Planes, Flight Simulators, Plane Watching, and 747 and Concord Exhibits

Located at the San Carlos Airport near Redwood City you can find the most charming Hiller Aviation Museum. Since Hiller is also located at a real airport, it’s also a good place for plane watching and they provide a great viewing area out back along the runway. Not just a forgotten place to hold old planes, Hiller is a modern, family friendly place with loads of regular events and classes so be sure to sign up for their email newsletter if you’d like to be in the loop for future events. Some of the highlights include the flight simulator, the front end of the Boeing 747 they have out back,...
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Watsonville Airport – Watch Planes, Get a Snack, Free Airplane Rides

When my daughter was about one and half she started noticing planes in the sky. Not just noticing them, but pointing and yelling “pain, pain” every time she got a glimpse of one. I knew we had an airport in Watsonville, so I figured why not go see them up close. Back before they put up the gates you used to be able just walk right out to the planes. We would walk out to the runway and sit down in the grass and watch them take off and land. We would even take her bike and ride around. It was pretty sweet. One day a helicopter landed and we walked out to check it out. It was there to pick up...
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