Good to Know
Best Times to Visit
Habitot is rarely crowded when the weather is nice outside. Those days are great ones for introducing a child to Habitot for the first time. 9:30 am – 10:30 am, just after opening, is usually the least crowded time of the day. Afternoon hours—12:30 pm – 4:30 pm on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are often calm as well—unless it’s a rainy day or a Free Admission Day.
Just so you know, preschool group field trips are never scheduled on Tuesdays or Thursdays, making those days better choices for a shy child or one who doesn’t like a lot of stimulation. To hear an up-to-the-moment crowding report, call 510-647-1111 ×35.
Habitot is fully accessible, with both a wheelchair/stroller lift at the Kittredge Street entrance, and an elevator entrance at the end of an alley on Allston Way (take the elevator to the lower level and follow the signs). An ADA accessible restroom is available in the Museum, as well as in the corridor outside the Museum.
Habitot is a small museum so we ask that strollers remain in the corridor outside of our main entrance doors. We do permit sleeping infants to be brought into the museum in strollers, however. As a reminder, please do not leave valuables in your stroller left in the corridor.
Restrooms & Water Fountains
The restroom in the Museum and the men’s and women’s restrooms in the corridor outside of Habitot all have changing tables. All are ADA accessible. To use the corridor restrooms, please ask for the key at the Front Desk. The water fountain is located in the back right hand corner of the Museum’s Art Studio.
What to Bring
Habitot encourages kids to be kids, which means they might get wet or messy, so we recommend wearing play clothes to Habitot and bringing a change of clothing just in case.
Snacks and Eating in the Museum
Habitot does not have an café or food service, however there are many nearby family-friendly restaurants. Juices, water, crackers, fruit snacks, granola bars, etc. are on sale at Habitot’s Front Desk. Delivered pizza is sold by the slice on Fridays between 11:30 am and 12:30 pm.
Visitors are welcome to bring snacks/meals from home and use our snack room whenever it is not reserved for a birthday party. Please note that Habitot is a NUT-FREE ZONE due to the life-threatening aspect of this childhood allergy. We request that visitors do not bring foods containing peanut or nut butters, whole nuts of any kind, or any products containing, or produced in facilities that handle, nuts.
The Role of Adults
We encourage parents, grandparents and caregivers to actively engage with children while at Habitot. This enriches children’s learning and helps you get to know your child better. The best way to experience Habitot is to let your child take the lead. It's OK if your child wants to spend all his or her time at the Train Tables or in the Waterworks water play area. For learning and growth, that’s exactly what he or she needs to do in the moment.
Talking about things you can do in each exhibit, showing your child how things work—or best of all, being a character in your child's drama, all help children learn important literacy, math, science and social skills. Being actively engaged also creates wonderful memories for both of you, gives you lots of things to talk about later and reinforces the closeness you and your child have. Adults’ role in child’s play.
Throughout the museum, you'll find signs, exhibit activity cards and lots of helpful parenting hand-outs that make it easy to play with your child. Please ask us if you have questions about child development or behavior—we'll try to help.
Please don’t visit when you or your child are sick. If your child is too sick to go to preschool, he or she is too sick to come to Habitot. We ask that if a child has had a fever, or has been vomiting, you wait 24 hours AFTER the fever returns to normal or the vomiting stops. Children with head lice must have been fully treated before visiting.
For your comfort, “Sanitation Stations”—alcohol gel dispensers—are available throughout the Museum. Other things you should know about visiting Habitot during Flu Season.
Learn more about the CDC's tracking of current flu activity.
Habitot is a non-smoking facility, and smokers may not ‘light up’ within 20 feet of any of our entrances. Alcohol, drugs and profanity are not permitted at Habitot.
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