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“A must see from our children!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine

Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine
142 Free Street, Portland, ME 04101 (Formerly Children's Museum of Maine)
207-828-1234
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Ranked #13 of 52 Attractions in Portland
Type: Children's Museums, Museums
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Attraction details
Owner description: Whether climbing a mountain, entering a bear's den, role-playing crewmembers on a 40-foot schooner or manning a space shuttle, children will have a blast at this highly interactive museum. Most of the museum is geared to children aged one to 11, but young teens will like the computer lab and the camera exhibits. There's also a play area just for toddlers.
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“A must see from our children!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2012

This place was really well done! Although it's recommended for 6mo to 10 yr olds, we decided to check it out with our 10 and 12 yr old daughters. They had so much fun playing, exploring, and learning they didn't want to leave. They have a camera obscura (only 3 in entire country) which alone was worth the visit.

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98 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Oceanside, New York
Top Contributor
84 reviews 84 reviews
37 attraction reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
“So fun you could spend the whole day here!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2012

A well-thought out children's museum with enough activities to spend the whole day here with young children. Had to tear our toddler away from the fire truck complete with firefighters' coats & hats, sirens, and a pole in back. The grocery store was also well laid out with lots of options for play, including an ATM and cash register. Other neat exhibits were the discovery woods with a waterfall and tent camping area and ranger station. Didn't have time to explore the ball area, which looked great, or the outdoor pirate ship. Great place for a rainy day or if your child needs to blow off steam.

Visited September 2012
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Lincoln, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“GREAT for preschoolers”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2012

My 6 year old was poorly so can't comment on her but my 9 year old was slightly bored. Ideal to get out of the sun/heat or to entertain smaller children. $9 (I think). not much in way of food/cafe.

Visited August 2012
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Silver Spring, Maryland
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
11 attraction reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Trip with Friends”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 7, 2012

Went with my friends and god-kids to the children's museum, and tho I am not a big fan of "kiddie" stuff, it was fun! Glad to see all the kids enjoying it, having fun, and not "plugged" into a gadget!!

A ton of cool hands-on activities, and little workshops for the kids throughout the day.

Visited July 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Great rainy day activity..just wish everyone else didn't have same idea!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2012 via mobile

I am originally from Maine, and now when I come back to visit family I am enjoying experiencing all the different experiences that Maine has to offer families.
When a scheduled day trip to Popham Beach to visit with an old friend & let the kids run around was ruined by rain, we opted for the Museum. We chose this because we are members of the PleaseTouch Museum in Philadelphia, and through the ACM reciprocal program, we were able to visit with free member admission.
The kids, mine is 2.5, my friends are 3 & 6.5 were all thrilled to be there. I was a little disappointed it didn't open until Noon on a Sunday in the summertime, and it was pouring so we had to wait in the rain to go in. The area where the store & front desk are is extremely small and it was a bit chaotic trying to get in & admitted.
We had brought lunch with us, and headed right down to the cafe to eat. The kitchen play area exhibit was right by the tables which created a HUGE distraction when trying to get two excited toddlers to eat their lunch..would have been much better for the area to be just tables.

We went to the first level and as soon as we got up there, it was extremely crowded and my 2 year old was getting very overwhelmed right off the bat. After getting pushed around by a couple older kids and maneuvering the many adults, he started melting down. We took the younger kids into the toddler area to play to try & give them some space to roam around. The toddler area is great and set up very well..but the location of it (in center of room) was a bit of sensory overload with the crowd & noises from all the other nearby exhibits. If this had been in a more secluded area, it would be perfect!! Because of the crowd, we got to see the farm, market, lobster boat & firetruck exhibit...but unfortunately our little ones didn't get to really experience it because there were so many people.

The second floor was our favorite! The water area, campsite, wooden trucks, treehouse were huge hits! The kids loved seeing the fish & turtle tanks as well as the bees. The treehouse was where we spent the most time, and they all took turns with the different jobs to do.

Overall- really love the learning components, encouragement for imaginative play, cleanliness and quality of this museum. I plan to visit again in the fall when we return for another visit & my husband is with us.

All in all, our experience was a good one..but I would have likely been very disappointed if I had paid for admission vs membership because there were WAY to many people there to get to really enjoy the museum & take our time in each section. I still gave a 5 for rating though, because potential for a really incredible time in a less crowded environment is huge.

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