Your guide to Tampa’s Glazer’s Children’s Museum
Ready to go explore the Glazer’s Children’s Museum in Tampa, Florida? Check out our guide to this awesome museum for kids in our area.
We are two local moms who bring you the best family-fun in our area. We love the Glazer Children’s Museum as a great interactive and indoor activity for kids (key in that Florida heat!).
There is so much for kids to explore that you could easily play for hours. We’ve personally visited the museum with kids ranging from toddler to upper elementary school so it’s great for a wide range of ages.
Plus, the Glazer Children’s Museum is part of the Pinellas County Libraries free museum pass program. Local families can check out this awesome children’s museum for free is they are able to snag a pass (more on that below).
Let’s explore the Glazer Museum!
Disclaimer: opening hours and costs can change at any time, always check before going.
Below is an overview of the play areas at the museum
On the first floor of the museum you’ll find:
- Huge water table play area
- Weather exhibits
- Tot play area for the youngest guests
The water play area is really the highlight of the first floor. The water table is huge and there are many interesting ways to play at different points around the table.
In one section you can send balls down a bridge, one part has random rain storms, one part has a water pump, there’s an end where you can navigate a ship and there are floating toys all throughout it.
TIP: There are vests kids can put on to keep their clothes from getting all wet but they are a little tucked away. They’re having on the backside of a wall at the beginning of the water table.
The second floor is really the heart of the museum with soooo much to explore. On the second floor, you’ll find:
- Climbing structures
- Fort building area
- Art area
- Theater area
- Building block area
- Gears and building area
- Sand play
- Farm-themed play
- City imaginative play area with a grocery store, food places, fire station, vet clinic and more
- Interactive tactical art area, like scarves in a wind tunnel
It’s impossible to list out all there is to do on the second floor. You could probably spend all day there.
Some highlights for my kids included racing tractors down different terrains to see how it changed speed, an ice cream shop where you can serve ice cream, a brick building area and the farm animals that you can climb on.
Our two year old was also obsessed with the Art Smart area where she’d probably still be putting scarves in a wind tunnel if we had left her there.
The third floor is a smaller area but still has some fun stuff. It is all dinosaur themed with the main attraction being the skeleton of Big John, a triceratops.
There was also play features like big dinosaur eggs you can climb in, dinosaur toys, and a dinosaur skeleton puzzle where all the pieces fall off (this one had a big crowd of kids around it all counting down to when the bones would fall off again).
This floor was quieter than the second floor and would be a good spot if you get overwhelmed by chaos on the other levels.
Tips for visiting the Glazer’s Children Museum
Parking isn’t free at the museum. The William F. Poe parking garage is located right next door is it is convenient.
Note that if there are any events going on in the area, the parking rate is a flat $15 in that garage. This happened to us during our visit so it was much more expensive than the standard $2-3/hour rate listed on the parking garage website.
Timing your visit
We visited the Glazer Children’s Museum at possibly the worst time: a weekend afternoon that was cold and a little rainy. The place was a total zoo.
If we were to go again, we’d try to go at less peak times such as during school hours and when the weather outside is really nice.
While it’s always nice to have an indoor option when the weather isn’t great, remember so many other families are going to be thinking the same thing.
Our kids are little and the chaos of the crowd definitely impacted their play and ability to enjoy all the museum had to offer. The bigger kids running around were clearly a little overwhelming to them.
This is a museum where we’d recommend skipping bringing a stroller if possible. The museum requests that strollers are kept on the first floor when possible. We did see some strollers upstairs but not many and a lot of them had small newborn babies in them.
There is a stroller parking area but it is right by the door and was basically empty when we were there (surprising given how busy the place was).
The museum was set up to accommodate families with small babies. There was an infant feeding room located on the second floor.
We were a formula family so I appreciated that the room was labeled “infant feeding” instead of strictly for breastfeeding. The museum may be so chaotic that bottle feeding babies may need a quiet space to focus on eating too.
There is also a vending machine with baby supplies like diapers, wipes, toys and onesies which is a very nice touch.
Food & Drink
One of the biggest questions I have when I go anywhere is about snacks. So, can you bring food into the Glazer Children’s Museum? Generally, yes. There is no stated rules that outside food is not permitted and when we visited there was no checks on bags upon entering.
The museum also has a quick service cafe for purchasing food on site.
The Glazer Children’s Museum offers special sensory-inclusive Sunday mornings monthly for children who may need a lower sensory experience. They also have available boxes with sensory items like weighted blankets and fidget toys.
The museum has hand sanitizing stations all over and I really appreciated that during our visit. Since the museum is so high-touch, it was nice to have easy access to hand sanitizer on each floor.
Ways to save money on tickets
The Glazer Children’s Museum has an annual family membership. The membership also offers reciprocal discounts for other local family-friendly spots, like aquariums and other kid-friendly museums.
The membership reciprocation also includes special deals during certain months where you can visit a specific location for free during that month. This is a great feature of the membership.
That said, I wish the membership included free parking.
Discounts & Museum for All
There are a number of discounts available for visiting the museum. The Glazer Children’s Museum offers a small discount to “community helpers,” which includes seniors, military, first responders and educators.
They also participate in Museums for All, which makes museums affordable to families using food assistance. At Glazer, they offer reduced admission of $3 per person to qualifying families.
Free library museum pass
The Pinellas County, Hillsborough County and Pasco County library systems all offer museum pass programs that include the Glazer’s Children Museum. Families can check out a pass at the library and can visit the museum for free during their check-out period.
We used the Pinellas County to visit the museum and we were able to get our whole family in for free.
My experience with the Pinellas pass is that the Glazer Children’s pass is popular and hard to get because it gets checked out so quickly. There are a handful of passes that are shared with all the Pinellas library branches, and the St. Pete locations have their own passes too.
To have the best chance of getting a library pass, try:
- Going to a library branch with the earliest opening time: since passes are checked out on a first come first serve passes, they may be gone before your library even opens. You’ll be more likely to get one at a library that opens at 8am than a library that opens at 9:30am.
- Go to a St. Pete branch: St. Pete library branches now their own passes to the Glazer’s Children Museum. These can only be checked out at that specific location giving you more chances to get a pass.
Looking for more children’s museums? Check out our guide to Great Explorations Children’s Museum. It is smaller than Glazer but has a similar city play area set-up.