5 Fun Kid-Friendly Places To Visit in Bakersfield, CA

Located in the San Joaquin Valley of California, Bakersfield is known as an agricultural center as well as a hub of energy production, rich in oil and natural gas. 

One of the fastest-growing mid-sized cities in the country, Bakersfield has a bustling art district, a vibrant food scene, and exciting outdoor adventure opportunities, thanks to the Sierra Mountains and the Kern River.

As such, Bakersfield does see a large number of visitors coming through to visit– whether it’s for the live music and entertainment, sporting events, trade shows, and various festivals for food, art, and film.

Even if you do have the kids with you, Bakersfield has lots to offer in terms of wholesome family-friendly fun. Here are our top picks on where you can take the kids out for a lovely time in Bakersfield.

1. Buena Vista Museum of Natural History

There are three impressive levels of prehistoric and archeological collections at the Buena Vista Museum of Natural History, including dinosaurs at the top floor, animal exhibits, mineral specimens. Lots of great restaurants well within walking distance to visit before or after your museum visit.

Ask about their fossil digs as well, where you can join the Paleontology team on digs at the Quarries near Sharktooth hill.

Museum hours are 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM from Thursdays to Saturdays, and 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM on Sundays.

Buena Vista Museum of Natural History

2018 Chester Ave. Bakersfield, CA 93301 

661-324-6350 

Official Buena Vista Museum of Natural History website

2. The California Area Living Museum

The California Area Living Museum (or CALM) is not quite a zoo, but more like a small wildlife preserve where donors help maintain the exhibits and collections. Families can come have a look at native California animals and plants, as well as historical artifacts and fossils out on display while taking pictures or having a leisurely family picnic.

CALM is an outstanding place to visit any time of the year, but guests particularly love the annual Holiday Lights at CALM, where they have lovely Christmas decor and designs for all to enjoy. 

The California Area Living Museum is open daily from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM except on Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.

The California Area Living Museum

10500 Alfred Harrell Hwy (between Lake Ming and Hart Park), Bakersfield, CA 93306 661-872-2256

Official California Area Living Museum website

3. Kern County Museum

Learn more about local history at the Kern County Museum. Visitors particularly enjoy the Pioneer Village for its historic structures and history lessons, the oil exhibition, and the Lori Brock Children’s Discovery Center where kids can use their imagination and learn through creative play.

Kern County Museum is open on Tuesdays to Sundays, from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM. 

Kern County Museum

3801 Chester Ave, Bakersfield, California 93301

661-437-3330

Official Kern Country Museum website

4. Murray Family Farms, The Big Red Barn

There are lots to do at Murray Family Farms with the kids. They can have fun with barnyard animals at Auntie Annabell’s Animal Garden, go fruit-picking with while riding tractors all around the farm, visit the Aviary for hundreds of tropical birds, and check out other kid-friendly activities like the Mount Murray Slide N Ride, The Bounce Pillow, and the Barnyard Ball Toss, among others.

Murray Family Farms is open all week from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.  

Murray Family Farms, The Big Red Barn

6700 General Beale Rd, Bakersfield, CA 93307, United States

(855) 868-7729

Official Murray Family Farms website

5. River’s End Rafting

Guests love River’s End Rafting not just for the river trips, hardshell kayaking, and rafting expeditions, but also for their clean facilities and friendly, knowledgeable river guides.

River’s End Rafting is great family fun for (just about) all ages (you need to be at least 6 years old to go rafting); whether you’ve been rafting a thousand times before or if it’s just your first time.

River’s End Rafting is open 6 days a week, Monday through Saturday, all summer long, as well as on Sundays on Holiday Weekends. For availability and inquiries, please give the reservations office a call.

River’s End Rafting

15701 CA-178, Bakersfield, CA 93306, United States

+1 661-326-7003

Official River’s End Rafting website

Bonus: 6. California Fruit Depot

10850 Redbank Rd, Bakersfield, CA 93307, United States

+1 661-366-6303

A great place to take the kids to learn more about California oranges and how they are manufactured and shipped out.

The California Fruit Depot’s store is particularly enjoyable with all types of fruits (both fresh and dried), as well as dates, nuts, candy, and juice. You can sample just about everything before choosing what to take home with you, or ship out to family and friends. Service, according to guests (and regulars) is truly exceptional. 

California Fruit Depot

10850 Redbank Rd, Bakersfield, CA 93307, United States

+1 661-366-6303

Official California Fruit Depot website

A Final Word on These Kid-Friendly Spots

There are a lot more kid-friendly places to visit in and around Bakersfield; so go right ahead and ask the locals for some of their own favorite weekend spots or recommended attractions for the entire family to enjoy.

But before you do head out and take the kids with you, we suggest you plan ahead by giving these places a call and ask about what sorts of activities, events, or promos they might have for the season.

Some may have certain activities only available for the weekend, or fun little promotions that might let you in for free, or perhaps there’s a big event happening that brings in even more activities and fun things to do.