Maryland Science Center
Maryland Science Center
South Baltimoreview website
601 Light Street
Baltimore, MD 21230
Science & Nature Museum
Maryland Science Center Description
The sometimes-long ticket line at this museum may make out-of-town visitors wonder if it's worth the wait; unquestionably, it is. Hands-on exhibits entice around every turn: separate fossils from rocks with an air scribe in Dinosaur Mysteries; extract DNA from wheat germ in the BodyLink WetLab; test Pascal's Principle by lying on a bed of nails (one teen quipped, "It's about as comfortable as the bed in the RV!"); disrupt a tornado's course of direction with a poke of your finger. Computer stations throughout engage kids with quizzes and games. Be sure to check out our other Baltimore vacation ideas.
Toddlers & Pre-K: The Kids Room opens later and closes earlier than the exhibit halls. Check the Web site for hours.
School-Age Kids: The WetLab experiments (nearly all done on your own after some basic instruction) are designed for kids 8 and older; those younger than 8 can examine slides under a microscope.
Pre-Teens & Teens: The exhibits are simple enough for young children to grasp and detailed enough to challenge older kids. The WetLab in particular will excite this age group.
- Babies to 8. Young kids will enjoy aspects of the exhibits throughout the museum (one docent says, "Everything here is for all ages"), but they'll especially love the Kids Room (designed for kids 8 and younger), with its water table, pneumatic table, stethoscopes, dress-up area, and Deep Sea Cove (a play area with nooks and crannies for resting and hiding). Parents will also appreciate that the area is enclosed and the single door is closely monitored by a staff member.
- Avoid the ticket line. Buy tickets online or over the phone at least one day in advance at (410) 685-2370, then pick up tickets at Will Call.
- Everyone loves Newton's Alley. It's the first exhibit visitors hit when they go up the stairs or ramp to the left (Dinosaur Mysteries is to the right), and it's so engaging that kids want to linger. Encourage them to go to the upper floors, which have phenomenal exhibits and many fewer visitors.
- IMAX is extra. If kids are interested in seeing an IMAX film, buy the ticket that includes one show for an extra $4. IMAX-only screenings are offered weekdays after 4 p.m. for $8 per person.
Just the Facts
Hours: Summer: Sun.-Wed. 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Thu.-Sat. 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Check the Web site for hours during other seasons.
Recommended Time: 2 - 4 hours