Boston, Massachusetts, is popular for its rich history, diverse cultures, and strong legacy of arts and education. The Boston area is a great place to be during the summer, with an amazing collection of theaters, restaurants, and entertainment options for kids.
The city also has a good number of summer camps credited by the American Camp Association for children to enroll in. This includes faith-based camp programs, day camps, overnight summer camps, sports clinics, leadership camps, and much more. As an effortless way to find a summer camp, here are five of the best summer camps in Boston, MA.
Top 7 Boston Summer Camps
Throughout its 11-year history, this free camp has provided a safe environment for Boston kids to express their creativity, interact with peers, and gain leadership skills.
Camp Harbor View's name derives from its location on Long Island in the Boston Harbor. With a harbor just outside the campgrounds, campers can enjoy plenty of watersports, from kayaking and boating to fishing. There's also an Olympic-sized pool for kids to test their strokes under the supervision of trained instructors.
At Camp Harbor View, learning and fun coexist in harmony. Campers are introduced to concepts in STEM and related areas through hands-on classes taught by experts. Sports are plentiful, with basketball, lacrosse, football, golf, and yoga clinics.
The summer camp also welcomes artsy high-schoolers and runs multiple arts-and-crafts, performing arts, and literary arts classes. In addition, it trains young campers in the art of leadership — increasing their confidence and courage through obstacle courses and practical classes.
Children in grades 6-12 can register for any of the 10-day programs at Camp Harbor. For each day, you can expect daily trips to the Boston Harbor, education activities, fun games, food breaks, and occasional special events.
Nobles Day Camp prides itself as a fun and caring camp place for boys and girls to spend enriching summers. The summer day camp offers specialty camps, including clinics for volleyball, football, and many more.
Kids in pre k and kindergarten are introduced to camp life through the Owls Nest program. Campers are allowed full control over their schedule and can choose activities they find interesting.
As campers get older, they move to advanced summer programs. Camps for students in grades 1 - 9 offer a mix of learning and recreational activities, including video production, sporting games, and crafting classes.
Opportunities for older campers include twice-a-week field trips to exciting locations and impactful leadership training sessions. Your camper can also join select community service projects and develop a sense of responsibility and respect for the environment.
The 187-acre campus is near the Charles River and offers kayaking, canoeing, boating, and other exciting watersports. The total camp ratio at Nobles Day Camp is 1:3, which means every child gets due attention and support throughout their stay. The camp is broken down into four sessions that run for two weeks apiece.
Camp Sewataro is an ACA-accredited summer camp operating out of its location in Sudbury, only 40 minutes from Boston, MA. The day camp offers campers ages 3-15 opportunities to learn worthwhile skills while helping them grow in a supportive environment.
The camp has a plethora of traditional camp activities for those interested in individual sports like archery, paintball, tennis, and golf. The camp also runs basketball, lacrosse, soccer, football, and volleyball sessions for larger groups.
Sewataro is surrounded by nature, making it easy for youth to explore the natural world as much as possible. From fishing to gardening to horseback riding, they can immerse in the beauty of nature and create memorable experiences.
The summer fun doesn't stop with sports at Camp Sewataro. Youngsters can improve their knowledge of the arts with classes in dance, drama, painting, and music. Field trips to nearby places like Mt. Wachusett are also a fun addition to the program.
Camp programs are open to students in pre-k through 8th grade. You have full control of your child's schedule and can choose from two-week, four-week, six-week, and eight-week programs.
Mass Audubon offers day summer camps that revolve around spending time and learning about the outdoors. Kids are encouraged to learn new things in a non-competitive and supportive environment through hands-on projects.
With the large properties, there are plenty of things to do for kids. Campers can partake in activities like birding, hiking, gardening, and much more. The gorgeous landscapes provide opportunities for kids to immerse themselves in the great outdoors and grow closer to nature. In a world where children spend a lot of time on tablets or phones, it’s never a bad idea to spend their summer enjoying what the natural environment has to offer.
They also have an overnight camp in New Hampshire for kids interested in receiving the traditional camp experience.
The YMCA of Greater Boston operates a boys camp and girls sister camp — North Woods Camp and Pleasant Valley Camp. Both are located on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee and accept campers of all ages and grades, including high school students.
North Woods Camp for Boys welcomes young boys to a safe and healthy environment that encourages bonding, personal development, and a fun experience.
Pleasant Valley Camp for Girls is the perfect place for young women to spend the summer holidays. They get to try hands-on activities, explore their interests and connect with people from different parts of the world.
The 200-acre campground that houses both camps is great for physical activities and outdoor exploration. You can go horseback riding, ski on the lake, navigate ropes courses, and try your hand at archery.
The two summer camps for boys and girls have a similar structure and curriculum. Each camp has a specific section for ages 8-10, 11-12, and 13-16. A typical day at the Pleasant Valley and North Woods camps includes activity periods, rest hours, and food breaks. Campers also get opportunities to relax, reflect on their experiences, and interact with peers. They also offer other year-round programs.
Founded in 1913, Boston Children's Museum is one of the oldest in the world. Every summer, the museum organizes Explore It full-day STEM camps for kids in the Boston area.
The Explore It week-long summer camps combine practical, hands-on learning with age-appropriate recreation to give campers a rich experience. With the skills gained during the month-long summer program, your child leaves this camp with a new sense of self and greater confidence in their abilities.
The Explore It summer camps support kids as they learn the various STEAM disciplines. Lessons are tailored to the needs of young children and incorporate games and animations to ease aid comprehension. Just as they improve their cognitive skills, campers participate in fun outdoor activities designed to benefit their physical well-being.
It’s an excellent opportunity for campers to build social skills and interact with peers beyond their immediate environment. The camp helps children create long-term friendships, collaborate on projects, and develop essential teamwork skills.
7. Camp Shriver
Camp Shriver is an all-inclusive sports camp where every child can play, learn, and interact, whether they have a disability or not. Through sports, campers learn new skills, form relationships, and improve their esteem and self-confidence.
At this free camp, professional coaches mentor kids in soccer, basketball, swimming, and other sports. The camp is open to all kids ages 8-12 and in grades 3-6.
You don't have to worry about camp fees or finding financial aid. Camp Shriver works to relieve parents of the financial burden of camps, providing everything from transportation to feeding campers. In addition, campers receive free camp gear after their registration. All you pay for is a small fee for camp registration. Few camps offer better perks than Camp Shriver — and those are not as inclusive.
The beauty of Camp Shriver lies in its welcoming atmosphere, despite it being a top sports camp. The camp's inclusive environment is what children need to flourish with a 1:1 ratio of kids with disabilities and those without disabilities.