Are you looking for indoor activities and inside play ideas in around Jacksonville, Florida? Then you have come to the right place!
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The temperature’s starting to climb here in Northeast Florida and, as a mom of three living in Jacksonville, I am prepping for summer break by scoping out the best indoor activities in and around my city to beat the heat once the humidity gets so thick we can swim down the street.
It is no secret that Florida is HOT. Temps run fairly high pretty much all year round but the summer months of June, July and especially August will melt your flip flops directly to the pavement if you stand in one place for too long.
Seriously, we are talking legit burns on your thigh from your seat belt buckle that’s been cooking in the Publix parking lot for the past 30 minutes.
No doubt we will be at the beach and swimming in our backyard pool a ton but there does come a time when even the kids grow weary of their waterlogged skin and when this mama just cannot stomach one more arduous sunscreen application.
When that’s the case, I know it’s time to plan an indoor event to cool off and have some fun.
And now… the list!
30+ awesome indoor activities to explore this summer if you are in or around the Jacksonville, FL area.
Indoor Trampoline Parks
Surge is fairly new to Jacksonville. It is located in the Arlington area, is reasonably priced and promises to entertain your kids with tons of jumping and obstacle coursing fun!
Check out the Surge at Jacksonville website for hours, pricing, to book tickets and to sign their waiver.
Located in Jacksonville Beach, Jumpstreet is one of my favorite trampoline play parks. It offers a smaller, calmer area for younger kids, an obstacles course, mechanical bull, dodge ball and basketball courts as well as an area dedicated solely to trampolining.
Bonus: After you jump, take a short walk down the shopping center to the Mini Bar, a fantastic and adorable sweet treat boutique for those who love donuts.
Check out Jumpstreet’s website for hours, pricing and to sign their waiver.
Flight Fit N Fun
Flight Fit N Fun (formerly known as Velocity Air Sports) is located in the Southside and Baymeadows area of town. It offers a huge trampoline arena, a Ninja Warrior style obstacle course, a trapeze, a slack line challenge, dodge ball and basketball courts as well as several foam pits kids can launch themselves into.
Check out the Flight Fit N Fun website for hours, pricing, tickets and waivers.
Bravoz (formerly Rebounderz) offers a wide variety of attractions including a jump arena, Ninja Warrior Course, laser tag, rock climbing walls, snookball, a laser maze, an arcade and mini bowling.
Visit the Bravoz website for hours, pricing, attractions, tickets and waivers.
Pump it Up
While not exactly a trampoline park, Pump It Up offers tons of jumping, climbing and sliding inflatable fun for kids (and adults… parents play for free). I have been known to tackle a few bouncy houses with my kids at this place.
Check out the Pump It Up’s website for pricing, hours, open play times, event calendar and featured inflatables. There are several open jump times available throughout the week and the price is very reasonable at $10 per kid.
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Movies and Shows
Cinemark Tinseltown & XD
What better way to relax and beat the heat then with a summer movie day?
The Cinemark Tinseltown & XD Cinema is located near the Jacksonville Town Center and, for 10 weeks in the summer, they offer dollar movie options 3 days per week in the mornings. You can pay $1 per person per movie OR you can buy a $5 pass (per person) at the boxoffice and see all 10 movie! That’s $0.50 per movie! Check out this year’s summer schedule by clicking here.
Rather not fight the crowds on dollar movie day or don’t see anything your interested in? Then see a new release on Tuesdays and enjoy Cinemark Tinseltown $5 Tuesday special.
If we want to see one of the summer blockbusters, you better believe we are there on a Tuesday taking advantage of the deal!
Regal Cinemas is another theater in town with 3 different locations. One at the Avenues off of Southside Boulevard, one closer to the beaches off of Beach Boulevard and one on the North side of town in the River City Marketplace.
The Alhambra Dinner Theater
The Alhambra Dinner theater has been around forever! I have been going there since I was a little girl. It is definitely a one-of-a-kind Jacksonville landmark.
At the Alhambra, you can enjoy a yummy meal, a lovely atmosphere and a great show that is sure to entertain all for a reasonable price.
We recently took the kids to see Elf the Musical at Christmastime and it was a blast!
Check out the Alhambra’s website for show times and pricing. This summer (2019) the are putting on Disney’s The Little Mermaid and Mama Mia! Book now because tickets sell out quick!
The Edge Rock Gym
We really enjoy the Edge Rock Gym where kids as young as three can climb and repel from the walls wearing a harness. I am always surprised by how much my kids love it and how well they do at it. You can pack a lunch, too, and enjoy an indoor picnic when everyone needs to refuel.
Check out the Edge Rock Gym website for hours and pricing.
Hint: Groupon almost always has deals for this place. We usually end up paying around $12 per person for a day pass.
Beaches Rock Gym
I have yet to check out the Beaches Rock Gym but am definitely putting it on my list for the summer. This rock climbing gym is a little different in that it offers bouldering where you climb without a harness.
It may sound dangerous but the walls aren’t super high and I am sure, since the offer pricing for kids 10 and under, that they would not be intentionally putting children at risk. We’re excited to give it a go!
Check out the Beaches Rock Gym website for hours, pricing and waivers.
Grow Family Yoga
Grow Family is a yoga studio located in the Avondale area of town that offers yoga classes for the entire family. They also have open play times for those hot and/or rainy days! It’s a great place to stay active indoors.
All prices listed on the Grow Family website are for the entire family, too, not just one person. They have very reasonable drop in rates as well as membership and class pass rates.
Jacksonville Ice and Sportsplex
I recently took my kids to the Jacksonville Ice and Sportsplex for the first time and we all had a blast. It helped that they have ice “walkers” for rent rent since my younger two looked like baby deer learning how to walk.
Make sure to check out the Jacksonville Ice and Sports website to see open skate times (there are only certain times you can waltz in and skate) as well as other activities and attractions there. They do offer skating lessons to those who might be interested.
Hint: I know we are in Florida but this place is COLD so dress appropriately. Also, Tuesday night is BOGO admission and skate rental!
Skate Station Funworks in Mandarin
If you are looking for a classic roller rink experience then the Mandarin Skate Station Funworks is where you need to be!
My husband and I recently took our children here for the first time and it was quite the entertaining experience watching them learn how to navigate life on 4 wheels. Thank goodness they had “walkers” to rent to increase their stability.
Check out the Mandarin Skate Station Funworks website for more information on times and pricing. They offer skating lessons as well!
You guys, have you heard of Kids Bowl Free?? It is a nationwide program offered during the summer where kids GET TO BOWL UP TO TWO GAMES FOR FREE every single day of the summer if they want to.
I mean, come on! That’s phenomenal.
Now, you do still have to pay for shoe rentals but that is pretty cheap. Also, we occasionally drop some cash at the snack bar or arcade so we usually don’t get out of there without spending some money.
If parents want to bowl they do have to pay but I usually don’t. Typically, I just help my kids if needed and watch.
Visit the Kids Bowl Free Website for more information and to register your kids.
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Chuck E Cheese’s
Okay, confession time. I love this place. Most parents don’t. I think there is a lot of nostalgia there from when I was young and would go with my family on “special” occasions. I find myself always stealing my kid’s play card to try and win them more tickets. Heaven help me if I ever get let loose in a Vegas casino.
There are three Chuck E Cheese locations in the Jacksonville area. Check out their website for more details on locations, hours, prices and specials. Currently, they have a $14.99 per hour ALL YOU CAN PLAY deal on Wednesdays.
Adventure Landing Arcade
In the way of indoor activities, Adventure Landing offers a fun arcade and laser tag. If you are looking for more, they also have a great water park, mini golf, go-karts, batting cages and a small roller coaster.
Check out the Adventure Landing website for more details on attractions, hours, pricing and summertime deals.
Just an FYI: There are 3 Adventure Landing locations in the Jacksonville and St. Augustine area but only the Jacksonville Beach location has the Shipwreck Island water park.
Dave & Buster’s
Dave & Buster’s is an arcade and a restaurant combined. This arcade is very fun and entertaining but is more appropriate for older kids.
If you have only one child, then you should be fine no matter what but, if you are juggling multiple kids, it is easy to lose sight of a kid if they go wandering off in a different direction. The building is larger and darker inside with several sectioned off areas for kids to explore.
Check out the Dave & Buster’s website for more info on hours, pricing and specials. I do know that Wednesdays are half priced games!
Museums & Educational Encounters
We visit Jacksonville’s Museum of Science and History (MOSH) a few times each year but always at least once in the summertime.
MOSH offers seasonal as well as staple exhibits centered around animal encounters, science, Jacksonville and Florida history as well as outer space.
The museum has a planetarium with several show options throughout the day. My favorite attraction there is the Extreme Science Show. My kids love the tree house play area.
Check MOSH’s website for more info on hours, pricing and attractions.
Hint: Jacksonville’s friendship fountain is located directly behind the museum and is lined with semi-shaded benches if you’d like to enjoy a picnic lunch with downtown views after your visit to MOSH.
Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens
The Cummer is Jacksonville’s art museum and houses one of the best collections of art and artifacts in all of the southeast. The Cummer also offers art and educational classes for children of all ages, a cafe and nearly 3 acres of gardens and grounds to explore.
Check out their website for more info on hours, pricing and class times. Do know, however, that the first Saturday of every month is FREE admission for ALL! That’s pretty amazing.
I mean, you can’t beat the calm quiet of the library on a hot summer day. Plus, it’s FREE! The Jacksonville Public Library has several branches and all of them offer awesome, year-round classes and activities for people of all ages.
I always think we will just “pop in” to the library for a quick visit but usually end up spending a good hour or two exploring.
Check out the Jacksonville Public Library website for the location closest to you as well as activities and programs offered there.
Hands on Children’s Museum
The Hands on Children’s Museum has been a favorite of ours for years now. Locally owned, it is an indoor play place for children ages infant to 12. Here, kids can be kids and do what they do best… put their hands on anything and everything and try it all out.
They have puppets, a miniature grocery store, train tables, a room only for children 0 to 3, slides, ball pits, an outer space room with a rocket ship, a stage with dress-up clothes, a post office, bank, a variety of emergency vehicles and much more.
We can usually spend at least 2 hours there and there are tables out back to eat a picnic lunch of you plan for it.
They offer a VERY reasonably priced annual membership as well as day passes. Check out their website for more info!
Hint: This place gets CROWDED in the summer with all the summer camps that come there on field trips so call ahead to make sure you go on a day/time when there will be no camps.
Ripley’s Believe It or Not!
The Ripley’s Believe It or Not museum is about 45 minutes outside of Jax in St. Augustine.
If you’ve never been to a Ripley’s Believe It or Not then it is definitely worth a visit to feast your eyes on the strange, the shocking and the beautiful exhibits they have there.
Check out their website for hours, pricing and attractions.
The Georgia Sea Turtle Center on Jekyll Island
The is on our list of must-do things this summer. A few of my friends have been recently and cannot say enough good things about it.
Located about an hour and 20 minutes outside of Jacksonville on Jekyll Island, the Georgia Sea Turtle Center is a conservation program dedicated to increasing awareness through sea turtle education, rehabilitation and research programs.
A general admission day pass is around $10 and you can come and go as you please.
I have been told there are trees to climb, bikes to rent and paved trails to ride on right outside of the center. I have also heard there are wonderful lunch and picnicking spots nearby.
Check out their website to get information on hours, pricing, programs and to buy tickets online.
Color Me Mine
Color Me Mine is a paint-your-own-pottery studio located inside the Avenues mall. You pay a studio fee, pick a piece of pottery to paint (an additional cost) and they will fire and finish it for you to pick up about a week later.
They also offer weekly specials (like BOGO studio fees on Tuesdays), kid’s night out and other summertime, one-day camps. Check out the Color Me Mine Website for additional information, prices and hours.
The Creative Me Art Studio is located in St. John’s County, between St. Augustine and Jacksonville. It offers several arts and crafts classes for children and adults of all ages.
My family has not been yet but I’ve got my eyes on a few events for the summertime such as their Cookies-N-Canvas class, Family Fun Nights, Crafternoon activities as well as their Cartooning class.
Take a peek at the Creative Me Art Studio website for more information.
For the Younger Kiddos
Bae & Bee
Bae & Bee is a Montessori inspired indoor play place for younger children (infant to preschool). They have two Jacksonville locations, one closer to the beach and one IN Bartram Springs closer to St. John’s County.
This is a membership-based play area meaning, in order to play there, you must have a membership. They do offer six different membership options depending on you family’s needs.
Check out the Bae & Bee website for more information on hours and prices as well as classes offered.
My Gym is also a membership-based play place that offers classes for kids ages 6 weeks to 13 years.
They have two Jacksonville locations. One on Beach Boulevard closer to the beach and one in Mandarin. I had my first son there for about a year when he was too young for organized sports but needed to get out and play. He LOVED it!
Check out the My Gym website for hours, classes and pricing!
Sensory Towne is an awesome little indoor play area that was created by a Jacksonville mom who has a child with special, sensory needs. The Sensory Towne tag line is Changing the Brain Through Play.
They offer classes, special events and after school activities. The have membership options as well as open play passes. Check out the Sensory Towne website to see their calendar of events and for more information!
Other Indoor Ideas
IKEA Smaland and Cafe
That’s right! Jacksonville has an IKEA now! Woot!
You guys, with a little bit of patience and some sturdy tennis shoes, you can seriously spend the better part of your day in IKEA with your kids.
First, drop them off at the Smaland play place and enjoy an hour of browsing by yourself. Next, pick them up (take a deep breath, put on your patience pants) and let them explore the store with you. Stop by the IKEA cafe for lunch, drinks or snacks. Last year kids ate free on Tuesdays, too. Amazing!
This one may seem kind of lame but find a Dollar Tree, give your kids each a few bucks and let them take their time picking a few things out. It is a cheap way to buy some time inside and they will LOVE it.
Seriously, lady? Chick-fil-A?
Yes, I’m serious.
The people are nice, the food is amazing and they have a play place. Get there at ten to beat the breakfast and lunchtime rush, buy some coffee or lemonade and let your kids play while you sit back and sip. Of course, I recommend actually eating a meal there, too!
Bonus: Cow Appreciation Day for 2019 is Tuesday, July 9th. Free entrees and kids’ meals if you dress up like a cow!
Avenues Mall play area
In the Avenues Mall, in front of JC Penny there is a small play area for younger children (maybe best for ages 1 to 5). Of course, while you’re there, you could also plan to stop by the food court for lunch, Build-a-Bear to make a snugly friend or Color Me Mine to paint some ceramics!
I hope you enjoy your time in my hometown of Jacksonville, FL.
Exploring my own city with my kids for the past 8 years and finding all the indoor options to cool off during the summer has been an adventure!
Do you know of any other indoor Jacksonville gems that I am missing?? Comment below and I will gladly add it to my post!