Beneski Museum of Natural History, Amherst College

If you’re traveling to western Massachusetts and have a dinosaur-lover in your family, then the Beneski Museum of Natural History at Amherst College is a must-stop! The Beneski Museum is a small, but well-stocked natural history museum featuring a wide variety of dinosaur artifacts, including the skulls of a Triceratops and a T-Rex! The museum also has full skeletons of animals from the Pleistocene, including a mammoth, a mastadon, and a sabertooth cat.

There’s an entire room dedicated to fossilized dinosaur footprints, many of which were found in the surrounding Pioneer Valley. If this piques your child’s interest, it would be worth your time to stop over at Dinosaur Footprints in nearby Holyoke. This Trustees of Reservations site is home to over 130 dinosaur tracks imprinted in slabs of sandstone.

All in all, the Beneski Museum is a great (and free!) way to spend a few hours in the Northampton-Amherst area. I know my three year old is already begging to go back!

Distance from the interstate:

The Beneski Museum is approximately 6 miles off Interstate 91, in Amherst.

Hours of operation:

Tuesday – Sunday 11am–4pm
Additional hours on Thursday evenings from 6pm to 10pm

Admission or ticket prices:

Free for everyone!

Food services:

There are no food services at the museum, but Amherst College is a beautiful spot for a picnic. Alternatively, there are lots of good cafes and restaurants in the town center of Amherst.


The museum is located at 11 Barrett Hill Road, Amherst College, Amherst, MA. Full directions are available.