Your first steps off the ferry aren’t very far from Children’s Beach. This well-known destination, created especially for the island’s youngest visitors, awaits at the end of Harbor View Way.
Children’s Beach is— you guessed it— a great place to bring the kids and have fun as a family. Get to know this sandy escape.
What this local beach lacks in size, it makes up for in personality, with a slew of kid-centric activities and amenities.
First, parents can relax knowing this harborside beach is one of the island’s safest, with active lifeguards and no waves. Like any beach, kids can build sandcastles, toss a beach ball or splash around. But more than what just any beach offers, Children’s Beach includes a playground for kids and toddlers, an outdoor theater, shaded benches, picnic areas, shallow water for wading and outdoor toys (seasonally).
With slides, monkey-bars, climbing features and swings for both big kids and toddlers, the adjacent beach playground is a welcome escape for families and travel-weary kids looking to run around and unwind.
A bathhouse equipped with showers means the family can rinse off and change before a dinner reservation without rushing back to their lodging.
Right behind the playground is The Hungry Minnow, formerly called The Children’s Cafe. The classic snackbar offers light grilled and fried fare with healthy and allergy-friendly options, as well as regional favorites like corn fritters and cheesy disco fries. Enjoy your treats in their outdoor seating area, the “sandbox,” a nearby picnic table or back on the beach.
Early summer, from June 18–August 19, the Town of Nantucket’s Culture & Tourism department sponsors games, activities and movie nights on Children’s Beach. Even more events are featured through mid-September.
In season, Children’s Beach offers almost nonstop family fun including the homegrown puppet comedy of NanPuppets, yoga on the bandstand, musical chairs, kite making, crafts, hula hooping, volleyball, kickball and more. Check the town’s website for the seasonal Children’s Beach activity schedule featuring music, movies, yoga and karaoke.
Only six minutes away from the port, Children’s Beach could be your first stop after arriving on the island. It’s just 10 minutes from downtown making it a quick bike ride or walk from the city. With bike racks dotted across the Children’s Beach park, there’s room for the whole family to store their wheels.
A limited number of parking spots are located on far side of the beach and are the best option for accessing the beach by wheelchair. Ramps make the restrooms, playground and cafe easily accessible by wheelchair or stroller.
Children’s Beach is close to a number of family-friendly activities on Nantucket.
Lola 41 is right behind the beach and serves sushi starters that could satisfy your hunger before heading to a more child-centric restaurant for dinner. Or, get the perfect homemade scoop at The Juice Bar, the favorite ice cream spot of locals and the home of more than 50 flavors. Download our complete Restaurant Guide here for more places to eat nearby.
Just a five minute walk away, you can tour the island’s iconic Whaling Museum to learn more about our town’s origins in the whaling industry. After exploring the museum, fans of Herman Melville’s classic novel, Moby-Dick, can stop by Captain George Pollard’s house at 46 Centre Street to see where the book’s famous captain lived (read this article for a brief history lesson beforehand).
Children’s Beach is a wonderful spot to bring the whole family, but it’s only one of Nantucket’s many famous beaches. Get to know them all!
Searching more children-friendly attractions on the island? Check out our favorite family activities.