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Experience Gifts For Kids in Maryland

If you’re like me, your house is bursting at the seams with toys and every holiday season you wonder how you’re going to fit anything new in the house. My twins have an early January birthday so we have a huge rush of new toys in December and January. I’ve recently become a huge fan of “experience” gifts – gifts that involve an activity or a trip for my kids where we can have fun and make memories.

I’ve compiled a list of great experience gift ideas in Maryland. To make this list (and to help narrow it down!) I’ve looked for the following criteria:

  • Gift must be able to be purchased online or over the phone. Often my family members are purchasing gifts from further away and I didn’t want them having to drive to pick up tickets or a gift card in person. (I’ll include more options at the bottom of the list that don’t offer online purchases)
  • I’ve noted what type of purchases they offer – memberships, tickets/passes, or gift cards. I personally love when places offer gift cards because I’m often not comfortable asking someone to purchase a membership somewhere for $100+. Gift cards are a great option because you can use them towards the ticket or membership purchase while allowing the gift giver to decide the amount they are comfortable spending.
  • Keep in mind my kiddos are all under 4, so everything on this list is appropriate for their ages, while many will work for older kids too.
  • You’ll notice a lot of these places are located in Anne Arundel/PG counties – this is closest to where we live so they are places I know about/have been recommended!
  • Due to COVID, I tried to include both indoor and outdoor locations so you can choose what you’re most comfortable with.
  • To keep things simple, everything on this list is located in Maryland. I’ll add a few other out-of-state ideas at the end. πŸ™‚
  • Just a tip – many people want kids to have something to physically open, and with experience gifts you still can! Pair a zoo membership with a stuffy animal or book about the zoo, dance lessons with ballet shoes, etc.

  1. Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center
    πŸ“13470 Dowell Rd, Solomons, MD 20688
    🎟 Offers: Memberships
    ⭐️ Details: Family memberships starting at $85 – this includes daily free admission to the gardens, fairy lolly play area, indoor art lab, and all seasonal events (including Halloween and Christmas!) This is one of our favorite places in Maryland and if you live close enough to take advantage, a membership is an excellent value.
  2. Artsy Partsy
    πŸ“8055 Ritchie Hwy Suite 302 Patriot Plaza 3rd Floor, Pasadena, MD
    🎟 Offers: Gift Cards, Classes (online or in person), Art Kits
    ⭐️ Details: Artsy partsy offers events like paint nights and drop in art classes ($15), weekly classes (starting at $60 for 6 weeks – classes available for ages 3-adult!), gift cards, take home art kits, and more!
  3. B&O Railroad Museum: tickets, memberships
    πŸ“901 W Pratt St, Baltimore, MD 21223
    🎟 Offers: Tickets, Memberships
    ⭐️ Details: Day tickets starting at $12/kid, $20/adult. Family Memberships starting at $150, which includes admission for the year, free train ride each visit, and more!
  4. Baltimore Aquarium
    πŸ“501 E Pratt St, Baltimore, MD 21202
    🎟 Offers: Tickets, Memberships, “Behind the Scenes” tours
    ⭐️ Details: Family Memberships starting at $195. There is also an option to purchase individual “gift tickets” that you can use at a time of your choice.
  5. Baltimore Zoo
    πŸ“1 Safari Pl, Baltimore, MD 21217
    🎟 Offers: Tickets, Memberships, Special “Animal Excounters”
    ⭐️ Details: Family Memberships starting at $150, or individual tickets can be purchased. IMO the zoo membership is one of the best values available (especially the Family+ membership – $165 for 7 people.) Parking is free here so there is no added cost to visit each time after purchasing a membership.
  6. Clark’s Elioak Farm
    πŸ“10500 Clarksville Pike, Ellicott City, MD 21042
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: Outdoor
    🎟 Offers: Season passes, gift cards, individual tickets
    ⭐️ Details: A petting farm and playground! This farm includes tons of animals (goats, donkeys, emu, ponies, chickens, bunnies, etc.). Throughout the farm are elements of the old Enchanted Forest amusement park, including slides and playhouses. There is a cow train and traditional train ride for an addition (reasonable!) fee as well as pony rides. Clark’s Elioak is every day except Mondays from April through November. Individual tickets are $8/person, Season passes start at $75, or you can purchase gift certificates for an amount of your choosing.
  7. Green Meadows Petting Farm
    πŸ“10102 Fingerboard Rd, Ijamsville, MD 21754
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: Outdoor
    🎟 Offers: Gift Certificates, Annual Passes, Tickets
    ⭐️ Details: A HUGE petting farm near Frederick, MD. Includes a great playground, hay rides, games like ducky races, corn bin, sand pit, animal feed, and more. Annual passes start at $50 and include free admission daily as well as free admission to all season events (Christmas, Halloween, Easter, etc). You can also purchase “gift tickets” that can be used any day of your choice.
  8. Hyper Kids:
    πŸ“9309 Snowden River Pkwy, Columbia, MD 21046 (other locations available!)
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: Indoor
    🎟 Offers: monthly pass, season pass, tickets, gift cards
    ⭐️ Details: From their website: As parents ourselves, we believe that there is a need for play facilities that offer a wide range of play options for children other than inflatables and trampolines. Our goal was to create a play space in which children of different age groups can have fun together under 1 roof! There are few facilities that can meet the play needs of both a 2 year old and a 10 year old. Introducing… Hyper Kidz! Our facility features soft foam play equipment with slow moving parts, a unique dress, and a fun theme. Hyper Kidz also has multiple party rooms to host children’s birthdays as well as special events or celebrations for groups, camps, sports teams, field trips, and organizations.We strongly believe in the power of play and its ability to develop and enhance children’s social skills, critical and analytical thinking, problem-solving abilities, fine and gross motor skills, and social etiquette. Hyper Kidz is the perfect option to reduce screen time and encourage active and physical play. Our bright, soft, and visually open play area ensures children’s safety, while challenging them to climb, run, think, interact, explore, chase their imaginations, and have fun. Hyper Kidz offers year-round, climate-controlled fun for children ages 0-13.
  9. Kidz City
    πŸ“8288 Telegraph Rd suite A, Odenton, MD 21113
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: Indoor
    🎟 Offers: monthly passes (starting at $45/month, play packs (starting at $60/5 visits), gift cards
    ⭐️ Details: Unique indoor play area featuring a town with buildings for imaginative play – diner, post office, boutique, fire house, etc. There is also an indoor street hockey ring and a designated area for ages 0-2.
  10. Maryland Science Center
    πŸ“601 Light St, Baltimore, MD 21230
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: Indoor
    🎟 Offers: Single use tickets are $20 for kids and $25 for adults. Memberships start at $150 but keep an eye on their Groupon for 50% off this membership – an amazing deal!
    ⭐️ Details: One of our absolute favorite palces to bring our toddlers – and SO much for older kids and adults to enjoy as well! Click here and here to read about why we love and highly recommend the science center! Please note you do have to pay to park at a garage near the science center, so plan to still pay about $12 per visit to park.
  11. Naptown Sings and Plays
    πŸ“141 Gibralter Ave, Annapolis, MD 21401
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: Indoor (with virtual option)
    🎟 Offers: classes (drop in or semester-style), gift cards
    ⭐️ Details: Naptown Sings and plays offers music classes for ages 0-18. From their website: “We have one main goal: to make music fun and inspiring for people of all ages, abilities and financial situations. Music lessons often get a bad rap for being boring, stuffy, and sometimes uninspiring. At Naptown Sings…and Plays! our teachers are upbeat, keep it fun, and cater to the interests of the students, all while ensuring a high-quality music education for all. Located in the heart of Annapolis we strive to be a staple in the community where anyone can go to be musically enriched”
  12. National Zoo
    πŸ“3001 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: outdoor with a few indoor exhibits
    🎟 Offers: memberships
    ⭐️ Details: The national zoo is always free to enter, but you do have to pay for parking ($20-30/vehical). A standard membership starts at $65 and included 15% discount on concessions and 8 free carousel and train rides. For $84 you get the above + free parking. For all membership levels please click here.
  13. Pirates on the Chesapeake:
    πŸ“311 Third Street, Annapolis, MD
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: outdoor
    🎟 Offers: gift certificates, tickets (though 2022 tickets cannot yet be booked so a gift certificate would be your best best here!
    ⭐️ Details: From their website: “Join us on our family friendly pirate cruise in Annapolis, MD. Come aboard our pirate ship and get caught up in this real life adventure. Be amazed as our crew taps into the wonder of a child’s imagination. Watch your children live life as a pirate as we search for sunken treasure and fire the water cannons.  Pirate Adventures on the Chesapeake is a can’t miss kid’s attraction that is perfect for family fun.”
  14. Port Discovery:
    πŸ“35 Market Pl, Baltimore, MD 21202
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: indoor
    🎟 Offers: gift certificates, memberships (starting at $140), tickets ($20 for ages 1+)
    ⭐️ Details: An amazing interactive children’s museum in Baltimore City. You can read about our trip to Port Discovery here and here. Port discovery is great for kids of all ages – babies to pre-teens! Please note you do have to pay to park at a garage near the science center, so plan to still pay about $12-15 per visit to park.
  15. Rolly Pollies
    πŸ“476 Ritchie Hwy D, Severna Park, MD 21146
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: indoor
    🎟 Offers: gift certificates, classes, camps, birthday parties
    ⭐️ Details:An indoor play gym for ages 6 months to 8 years. They offer open gym play time as well as structured classes broken down by age/ability. To read more about their offerings, click here.
  16. Six Flags America
    πŸ“13710 Central Ave, Bowie, MD 20721
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: outdoor
    🎟 Offers: single tickets starting at $35, season passes starting at $50/person
    ⭐️ Details: Theme park with rollercoasters, water park (Hurricane Harbor), little kids area and more. Season passes also include access to seasonal events like Halloween and Christmas. Some membership levels include parking passes.
  17. Sky Zone:
    πŸ“1300 Crain Hwy, Bowie, MD 20716
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: indoor
    🎟 Offers: annual passes (current black friday deal – $150 for annual jump pass, normally $225/year), gift cards (current gift card deal: $10 bonus with a $40 gift card), day passes, monthly memberships
    ⭐️ Details: Indoor trampoline park for all ages (jump areas are separated by ages for safety. Special events like toddler time, glow jump, parents night out, etc.
  18. Thrive Gym – classes or open gyms
    πŸ“1244 Ritchie Hwy, Arnold, MD 21012 or 451 Defense Highway Annapolis, MD
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: indoor
    πŸ‘©β€πŸ‘§β€πŸ‘§Age Range: 0-18
    🎟 Offers: classes for ages 0-18, tickets for open gym play
    ⭐️ Details: Thrive has been offering gymanstics, tumbling, ninja, art and music classes for over 11 years. They also have open play hours for kids to run around and get their wiggles out!
  19. Totsville Indoor Playground: gift cards, playbacks
    πŸ“1244 Ritchie Hwy, Arnold, MD 21012 or 451 Defense Highway Annapolis, MD
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: indoor
    πŸ‘©β€πŸ‘§β€πŸ‘§Age Range: 8 & under
    🎟 Offers: gift cards, play packs, or purchase a groupon for a single admission here.
    ⭐️ Details: Daily admission is $12.50 for one child, $11 per sibling, Under 11 months – $7. From their website: “TotsVille is a charming play experience for little ones for any weather. Open 7 days a week and offering Open Play every day (times vary, please check our Facebook page or call us), we got your little energy ball covered in any weather! The playground is best suited for kids 8-years old and under and offers a variety of play resources to tap in to active or creative play. Our staff is always available for any questions or queries you may have, and we love seeing you enjoy your time with your babies. We commit to providing a clean, safe, comfortable space for play. Your each and every experience matters to every member of our Team and we look forward to seeing your little ones every time!
  20. Wiggle Room:
    πŸ“1244 Ritchie Hwy, Arnold, MD 21012 or 451 Defense Highway Annapolis, MD
    πŸ«β˜€οΈ Indoor/Outdoor?: indoor
    πŸ‘©β€πŸ‘§β€πŸ‘§Age Range: 0-8
    🎟 Offers: gift cards, play packs, monthly memberships
    ⭐️ Details: Pay one price and play all day (come and go as you please!) Admission cost is $13 for the first child, $7 for each additional sibling (non-crawling babies are free!). There are two sides – wiggle room (ideal from ages 1-5) and the ninja royale room (ages 4-9 – we haven’t played here yet since my girls are still on the younger side!) What I love about the wiggle room is that there are comfy chairs for parents and it is one, big open space so I can actually sit and see my kids from pretty much all angles. There is nothing really too big for them to get hurt on so it is truly a space where I can relax while they have fun. There is a small eating room and a community fridge where you can store a lunch box. They also have free coffee and tea for parents! We love packing a lunch and making the most of our time at the wiggle room. We arrive at opening time (9 am), play til about noon, eat lunch there and then head home for naps. If the time works out, we head back after nap and play for another hour or so until they close (5pm). On certain days they even offer music and art classes (included in your admission price!) We are huge fans of the wiggle room!

A few other ideas!

The following experience gift ideas weren’t included above because they either didn’t meet the criteria (like, can’t be purchased online or over the phone) or are not located in Maryland. These would still make great gifts!

  • Diggerland tickets
  • Dutch Wonderland tickets
  • Sesame Place tickets
  • Anne Arundel County Parks Passes ($30 resident/$40 non-resident for unlimited entrance for 1 year)
  • Paint your own pottery
  • Any kind of classes – dance, art, etc.

1 thought on “Experience Gifts For Kids in Maryland”

  1. Shameless Plug! Imagination Stage has flex packs and subscriptions that make great gifts. πŸ™Œ

    On Fri, Nov 5, 2021, 12:22 PM Maryland Kid Adventures wrote:

    > MD Kid Adventures posted: ” If you’re like me, your house is bursting at > the seams with toys and every holiday season you wonder how you’re going to > fit anything new in the house. My twins have an early January birthday so > we have a huge rush of new toys in December and January. I'” >

    Like

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