I am constantly telling my kids how lucky they are to live so close to New York City—especially in the summer. From beautiful parks and beaches to a variety of attractions and entertainment, all five boroughs are family-friendly stops, whether it’s for a day, weekend or extended trip. And our sponsor NYC & Company is "spreading the news" on everything the area has to offer for parents and kids.
Can’t wait for vacation? Kids bored with the same park every day? Take a mini-trip without even leaving the state! Hop in the car and head to one of these great NJ day trip destinations. Pick fresh fruit and let the kids pet some barnyard animals; check out a national monument; visit NJ's own Victorian seaside town; head to a giant lake water park; or visit the beach, boardwalk and aquarium all in one day. Enjoy our list of fun day trips for this summer! Looking for more summer fun? Check out our Ultimate Summer Play List!
My husband and I are big fans of Lancaster County's family amusement park Dutch Wonderland, and dread the day our nine-year-old outgrows this sweet Kingdom for Kids. We take at least one road trip here every summer but this year we were invited to visit on opening weekend to check out the park's brand-new dinosaur attraction, Exploration Island.
With so many other animatronic dinosaur spots around, like the Bronx Zoo's Dinosaur Safari and New Jersey's Field Station: Dinosaurs, plus the show Walking with Dinosaurs set to stomp into Brooklyn's Barclays Center this July, you might think my son would have soured on the saurs. But he's as fascinated by the prehistoric creatures as ever. And since the rest of Dutch Wonderland's 43 bucolic acres features a nice variety of safe and clean family rides, live shows and strolling performers, it makes for a great weekend getaway.
A brand-new theme park opens this Saturday in West Berlin, NJ but it's not like anything you've ever seen before. That's because it's the first-ever construction-themed amusement park in all of the US! Inspired by (but not affiliated with) the four Diggerland parks in the United Kingdom and located right next to popular indoor water park Sahara Sam's Oasis, Diggerland USA features a variety of rides made from real-life construction equipment. If your child is fascinated by construction sites, a trip to Diggerland is a no-brainer. But you don't need to be obsessed with bulldozers and tractors and dump trucks to have a blast at this unique theme park.
My two sons and I were recently invited to a media preview to experience what Diggerland USA has to offer families. And considering the older one is a typical hard-to-please tween, I can attest that Diggerland USA isn't just for preschoolers going through that inevitable Bob the Builder phase.
The Jersey Shore may have a bad reality TV rap, but it boasts some of the most beautiful beaches anywhere. From a beachy national park to miles of boards to be strolled, to towering lighthouses – whether you’re planning a day trip or a long weekend, the summer possibilities are endless. Here are some highlights of NJ Shore beaches from north to south. Make your NJ kid a beach baby and head on “down the shore.” And for other Shore fun, check out our Jersey Shore Family Guide.
Nothing will make your family hungrier than a day of fun in the sun at the beach. Whether you are taking your NJ kids on a day trip or for vacation – the Jersey Shore is a great place to visit for the whole family. Finding a kid-friendly place to dine can sometimes be a challenge, however, especially if you're not familiar with the area. Here are some of my personal favorite Jersey Shore eateries (including ice cream!) that are great for kids of all ages! And for more shore fun, check out our Jersey Shore Family Guide.
If Thomas, Percy and James are a part of your daily conversations, take advantage of the many New Jersey train and railroad attractions. Located throughout the garden state, each location offers a different experience, but will surely put a smile on any train lovers face. If you're looking for the Easter Express, the Polar Express, or just a basic train-lovin' experience, these are the hot spots, guaranteed.
Nestled in Sussex Country, Sparta is great little country town and lake community. Whether you are strolling the Lake Mohawk boardwalk or shopping at Olde Lafayette Village, the fresh country air and slower place is a refreshing change. You don’t need to board a plane to explore a new town. By travelling up Route 80, you’ll not only see the beautiful, serene fall foliage, but experience a ‘different’ New Jersey, so head out to Sparta, NJ!
Welcome to Mommy Poppins New Jersey! The free online resource for parents and kids where you’ll get the scoop on what’s fun, unique, outdoorsy, indoorsy, artsy, bouncy, sassy and splashy in the Garden State. Come play with us, won’t you?