Zoo - flamingo

Whether you live in the Bay Area, plan to move here, or are just passing through for a family vacation, you’ll find plenty of options for kid friendly events and activities. If you’re looking more for activities the whole family can enjoy together, you’ll find plenty of that too, as you’ll see from the listings below. For tips about where to search for other activities in your area, see the resources section at the bottom of the page.

San Francisco Zoo – Zoos are always on the list of fun family friendly activities and the Bay Area is home to two of the best. The San Francisco Zoo sprawls over 100 acres and is home to more than 1,000 animals.

Oakland Zoo – The Oakland Zoo, while not as large as its San Francisco counterpart, offers a unique experience for the entire family. It is home to over 700 animals and includes the California Trail, a wildlife exhibit that provides visitors a close look at native wildlife.

Children’s Fairyland Park – Another great destination for kids and families in Oakland, Children’s Fairyland is theme park based around children’s stories. It includes themed rides, sets themed around popular stories and entertainment, all with a dash of education.

Children’s Discovery Museum – The Children’s Discovery Museum in downtown San Jose has numerous interactive exhibits that aim to both thrill and educate children. It routinely receives high marks as one of the best children’s museums in the United States.

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Pump It Up – Pump It Up is a play space and indoor bounce house for kids that has regular events and can also be rented out for private parties. They have locations throughout the Bay Area, including Union City and San Jose.

Dave & Buster’s – If you’re looking for a place to have fun with the whole family including the adults, Dave and Busters may be your best bet. Located in Milpitas, it has video games, pool, bowling, a restaurant, and a sports bar. Among the video games are several virtual reality options that kids will love.

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk – The Boardwalk is one of the Bay Area’s best attractions for families. It’s a permanent “carnival” right on the beach that has roller coasters, rides, games, as well as a free concert series during the summer. Admission is always free and there’s an endless amount of fun and food to enjoy.

Monterey Bay Aquarium – You won’t find a better place to explore marine life than the Monterey Bay Aquarium. They have several daily programs that educate guests and it’s one of the Bay Area destinations that is most visited by children and adults alike.

Resources For Finding Kid Friendly Activities

Bay Area Parent – Bay Area Parent is a website that covers family activities, classes and children’s events from all over the region. You’ll also find articles about parenting, education, and some of the best kid friendly things to do in the area.

Bay Area Kid Fun – A thorough listing of activities for kids from around the San Francisco Bay region, including museums, events, amusement parks and much more.

East Bay Activities – If you’re looking for family fun in the East Bay, you’ll find plenty to do here! You can easily navigate by events, guides, city, age, or type of activity.