Plan Your Visit

Here you’ll find everything you need to know to make the most of your time at The Carle. This short film also gives a preview of what you’ll see and do.

Hours

Summer Museum Hours
Thursday – Friday 10 am – 4 pm
Saturday 10 am – 5 pm
Sunday 12 pm – 5 pm

The Bookshop, Art Studio, and Reading Library hours are the same as the Museum.

Holiday Closures

Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Day

Gallery Closures

To prepare for a new exhibition, we occasionally must close one of The Carle's three galleries. Please check our current exhibitions page to see what is on view. Please note: The Eric Carle Gallery is closed for installation through September 9, 2021.

Admission

Ticket Prices
Adult $9
Youth (ages 1 to 18), Student, Teacher, or Senior $6
Members Free

Purchase Advance Tickets

Reserve admission tickets now to secure a spot as visitor capacity is reduced. Walk-ups are not guaranteed. Members and non-members can make an online reservation for a specific day and arrival time block (morning or afternoon). We ask that visitors arrive during the time block listed on their reservation so we can manage the number of people in the building at a given time. On average, a visit to The Carle lasts 1.5 to 2 hours.

Free and Discounted Admission

Members receive free admission and a 15% discount in the Bookshop. You can also find other ways to save on admissions, including The Carle Community Fund which provides complimentary admission to qualifying families, schools, and educators.

Directions

The Carle is located in the town of Amherst in Western Massachusetts. It borders the campus of Hampshire College and the Yiddish Book Center.

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art
125 West Bay Road
Amherst, MA 01002
413-559-6300

By car

The Museum is approximately two hours from Boston, one hour and 45 minutes from Albany, and three hours and 15 minutes from New York City. For visitors coming from the east, we recommend taking the Massachusetts Turnpike (I-90) to I-91 north.

By public transportation

Air: Most of the major airlines offer flights to Bradley International Airport, in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, about an hour from Amherst.
Train: Amtrak runs regularly from New York City to Springfield, Massachusetts and, less frequently, to Northampton.
Bus: Peter Pan offers bus service from New York and Boston to Springfield, with connections to Amherst. Pioneer Valley Transit Authority (PVTA) provides local bus service.

Illustration of fish family.
Leo Lionni, Illustration for Fish is Fish (Alfred A. Knopf). Leo Lionni Collection, Gift of the Lionni Family. © 1970 Leo Lionni.

Beyond the Galleries

The Carle offers visitors of all ages many ways to experience picture books. Listen to stories or read a favorite book. Make art. Enjoy a picnic or take a wildflower walk! 

 

Woman and three children playing in meadow.

Take a stroll through a 100-year-old apple orchard surrounded by meadows. 

Two children printing with paints in the Art Studio

Experience the creative joy of making art.

Two students reading a picture book together
Explore new picture books and rediscover old favorites.

Accessibility & Guidelines

Family walking in Great Hall

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, The Carle has implemented a number of new visitor policies, and continues to update them as the situation evolves. Here you can learn about our current guidelines and what you can expect during your visit.

Visitors in Gallery.
To help people of all ages and abilities enjoy our museum, The Carle provides a host of services and accommodations.  

Dining

cafe with big windows looking onto orchard and people sitting at tables inside and outside
The Carle does not have a restaurant, but our Carle Cafe eating area offers a Berkshire Naturals vending machine, stocked with healthy snacks. Visitors are welcome to bring food to eat in the Carle Cafe or at an outside picnic spot. Atkins Farms Country Market, a local grocery store less than a quarter of a mile away, sells salads, soups, and sandwiches. Esselon, a ten-minute drive from the Museum, is a popular lunch restaurant. 
Illustration of party foods.
Eric Carle, Illustration for The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Collection of Eric and Barbara Carle. © 1969, 1987 Penguin Random House LLC.

Tours and Groups

Two adults with class.

By viewing artwork, reading stories, and making art themselves, student groups can gain a first-hand appreciation of picture books and storytelling.

A group touring the galleries
University and community groups can make the most of their visit with the guidance of The Carle’s tour staff.

Explore the Area

Downtown Amherst with a person on a bike.

A college town with a rich literary history, Amherst and the Five College area offer a variety of lodging and restaurant options, as well as a vibrant music and arts scene.