Splash at the museum, learn yoga poses for baby or plan a family outing to the zoo. These are some of the best things to do with infants and toddlers in Cleveland. – Tonya Vinas

The Children’s Museum of Cleveland

10730 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44106
(216) 791-7144

The Children’s Museum of Cleveland has a mission to provide educational programs and activities to young children, including infants and toddlers. The interactive exhibits are designed to appeal to all of the senses, so very young babies and toddlers will be able to participate. For example, Splish! Splash! is a water-oriented exhibit where kids can simply put a hand in the cool water to experience how it feels, or don a raincoat and interact with the multiple levels of flowing water by diverting streams, climbing up and down a demonstration of how a water cycle works, and/or pretending to be a weather forecaster on a news program. Throughout the museum, climbing and use of large muscle groups is encouraged, as is make-believe. Some areas, such as the farm/barn display, are designated specifically for the smallest, least-mobile children. Hours are 10 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. daily. Admission is $7 per adult and child; 11 months and under are free.

Inspiral Motion

20620 North Park Boulevard, No. 204
Cleveland, OH 44118
(216) 320-9446

Inspiral Motion offers classes specifically for mom and baby and mom and toddler. (Fathers and other caregivers are welcome, too.) Baby and Me Yoga is designed to help moms get back in shape after giving birth and introduces basic yoga techniques such as breathing, stretching and strengthening to both mother and child. The class is described as “calm” and “loving.” Parents learn gentle hands-on poses to do with babies that help to stimulate muscles, as well as encourage good digestion and regular sleep. Toddler and Adult Yoga is designed for kids 2 to 5 years old and an accompanying adult. The classes often occur only once a quarter, but are worth waiting for as they teach lifelong yoga practices.

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo

3900 Wildlife Way
Cleveland, OH 44109
(216) 661-6500

New parents find that a visit to the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo is an excellent family outing for an infant, especially if the family also includes a toddler. Nearly every area is stroller-friendly and has exciting colors and movement to attract a baby’s attention, plus has lots to see and do for toddlers. The zoo’s miles of paved walkways encourage a slow and easy pace, and there are ample places to rest if needed. Toddlers will be fascinated by the monkey house and hill, as well as zebras, elephants and polar bears. The Australian Outback is also a great place to take toddlers because of the pint-sized displays and climbing areas. The zoo is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day of the year, except Jan. 1 and Dec. 25. Children under 2 are free, and on Mondays, all Cuyahoga County and Hinckley Township residents are free. Admission fees range from $5 to $11, depending up age of visitor and time of year.