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Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art

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Hours:Hours Vary see below
Ages:Toddlers, Kids, Teens, Adults
Cost:$ see below
Other Ideas: Charles Hayden Planetarium - Now Open!; Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum; Old Sturbridge Village; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA); Old State House Museum

eric carle museum of picture book art photoFounded in part by Eric Carle, the renowned author/illustrator of over 70 books including the 1969 classic The Very Hungry Caterpillar, The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art is the first full-scale museum in this country devoted to picture book art, celebrating the art that we are first exposed to as children.

The Museum features rotating exhibits of over 1200 pictures by the beloved children's book author and artist, and other authors like Maurice Sendak (Where the Wild Things Are.) Drawings are hung at children's eye level.

There is a large art studio where children and adults can make art themselves and an extensive picture-book library designed to look like a comfortable living room. Frequent scheduled workshops and events make this a worthwhile destination.'> Check the event calendar for The Eric Carle Museum.

Looking for more fun daytrips near Boston? Check out our handy guide for some great ideas of places to go within an hour or two of Boston.

HOURS↑ top

Tuesday Friday 10 am 4pm
Saturday 10 am - 5pm
Sunday 12 pm 5pm

Closed on Mondays * and Independence Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas, and New Year's Day.

* Open Mondays during MA school vacation weeks (February and April) and during July and August.

COST↑ top

Adult admission $9
Youth (under 18), Student, Teacher and Senior Admission $6
Family Admission (2 adults and 2 youth) $22.50



125 West Bay Road, Amherst, MA, 01002 map
Phone: (413) 586-8934

From Boston and points East
From Boston, it takes approximately 2 hours to the Museum. Follow Massachusetts Turnpike West to Exit 4 (West Springfield/Route 91). Route 91 North to Exit 19 (Northampton/Amherst, Route 9). Right onto Route 9 East. Pass over the Calvin Coolidge Bridge. Right at first traffic light on to Bay Road. After 1.8 miles follow Bay Road to the left. Avoid going straight, as that will put you on
Laurence Plain Rd - Rt. 47) Continue another 2.5 miles to the Museum (on your left).

TIPS↑ top

  • If you're making a day trip, go when there's a special event to stretch the experience.

  • Allow time to explore pretty downtown Amherst, the Amherst College Museum of Natural History, and local cafes and fun shops.

1-starso much potential
I took my kids here last week, the oldest being 7, the youngest being 18months and I was so disappointed with this museum. Eric Carle is a famous author of books for young children, this museum doesn't fit into this category. There were a bunch of illustrations hanging on the walls, yup, but for young kiddos, it took about 5 mins to walk through- there was coloring set up...but something my kids do at home anyway- I just thought that the stories of Eric Carle lend themselves to so much more hands on activity and exploration and this museum doesn't capture any of that. The gift shop was the best part, we spent 10 minutes in the museum and 30 mins exploring the gift shop! such a bummer :(
5-starPlan your visit
This is a beautiful museum, but better to go when there's a scheduled event. My daughter liked seeing original art from beloved books (not a huge exhibit) and creating in the art studio. We also spent time int the library, which has toys as well as books, and the fun gift shop. The cafe (closed early that day --we couldn't get in) is big and light and very kid friendly. Our experience would have been a bit more exciting if we'd timed it with a story hour or author visit.


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