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“Great place for kids AND adults”

Portland Children's Museum
Ranked #30 of 442 things to do in Portland
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Specialties A museum's name tells you a lot about what it treasures. You hear the name--art museum, history museum, automobile museum--and you immediately know what you'll find there: objects, rare and wonderful; encounters with the unusual; beauty for beauty's sake. The specifics differ, but in each case, the collection takes center stage. Our name shows what we treasure, too, and it tells you how we're different. We're a museum that doesn't act like a museum because our audience--children and the adults who care for them--is more important to us than anything we collect. Indeed, our audience is the essential component that gives our exhibits meaning. Instead of investing in precious objects, we use familiar materials to craft priceless opportunities for children to learn through play. Our approach is inspired by the early childhood schools of Reggio Emilia, Italy; built on inquiry-based learning strategies; and influenced by a strong image of children as intelligent, creative, and resourceful. History Established in 1946. In 1946 visionary Portlander, Dorothea Lensch, founded the "Junior Museum and Adventure House," as part of Portland Parks and Recreation. Lensch, who served as Portland's recreation director from 1937 to 1972, was particularly dedicated to meeting the needs of Portland's underserved communities. She developed innovative programs for children with special needs and for economically disadvantaged families, a legacy that lives on in our mission and core values. We moved to our current location in Washington Park in 2001, thanks to the incredible efforts of our partners including the Rotary Club of Portland and Portland Parks and Recreation. Our new building, the former home of the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI), is five times larger than the one we left behind, allowing us to expand our programs and add a school. In 2014 we completed Outdoor Adventure, opening new kinds of exploration and discovery to our community. We now host over 313,000 visitors every year.
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
35 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Great place for kids AND adults”
Reviewed April 15, 2014

interactive activities were enjoyed by the whole family; educational fun without homework!! family is still talking about the various exhibits and can recall random facts that surprised us. exhibits change so need to plan for regular visits

Visited February 2014
Thank minimemom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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296 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
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English first
Spokane, Washington
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Good toddlers- thats it”
Reviewed April 11, 2014 via mobile

My two kids are 9 and 5. This place wasnt for them but we didnt know until we paid the admission fees and went in. I should have looked into it further before going but I went off all the good reviews. Its a good place but not for kids older than pre-school age.

1 Thank Mary A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
91 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Great Place for Toddlers”
Reviewed April 9, 2014

We have taken our granddaughter here a few times (3 yrs old) and she loves it, especially the water, the grocery and the vet.

Visited March 2014
Thank jmcneur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
192 reviews
54 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“A wonderful place for Children”
Reviewed March 28, 2014

In fact we are going there today -- my grandchildren 4 and just turned 7 and myself. There is a new exhibit (and new exhibits are frequent and keep you coming back) plus loads of fun things to do for children of all ages. You must bring a camera. And, it is one of the few places in Washington park where you can buy lunch outside of the zoo.

Visited March 2014
Thank margaretcov
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barnsley, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
261 reviews
163 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 127 helpful votes
“Worth a short visit”
Reviewed January 19, 2014

We went into the Childrens Museum after we had been to Oregon Zoo, and it was worth going in. When we first went in, we were worried that our son was a little old (he's 8) for some of the attractions, but I'd say that, whilst it is probably better for slightly younger, there was enough to keep him occupied for a couple of hours.

I wouldn't recommend a special journey, but if you're going to the zoo with young children then it's worth a visit.

Visited July 2013
1 Thank KeithJenner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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