Spring is in the air (sort of) and soon the kids will have their Spring Break. If you’re not flying down south or heading out of town, and can take a few “family” days, why not make it a Long Island Staycation by scheduling a new event or activity each day of the week? Based on weather, you can alternate indoor and outdoor activities and have some busy active days balanced by relaxing times.
Here are 4 Long Island Spring Break ideas for you:
1. Take a drive on western Suffolk’s north shore, starting in the beautiful town of Huntington going east, stopping at any place that appeals to you. In Centerport, there’s the Vanderbilt museum and planetarium which you can enjoy for a few hours. A bit further east, Northport has a beautiful downtown on the water, complete with large playground for kids, a great toy store and a nice choice of places to have a relaxing lunch. Head east on 25 a and you’ll come to Sunken Meadow State park( not sure of fees at this time of year) There’s plenty of hiking, outdoor space, the beach and the boardwalk. Continue east through Smithtown and you’ll come to Landing Avenue’s ( turn on Eckernkamp Road) Sweetbriar Nature Center where you can pop in for a hike or to see the butterfly house for a small fee. Onto St James where there’s some lovely nurseries with all the Spring flowers in bloom. When you hit Stony Brook Village, enjoy the shops, the scenic duck pond, Avalon Park for hiking , the Grist Mill and a beautiful water view. Around the corner on 25a, there’s a wonderful mexican place “Green Cactus Grill” and various other small places to eat as well. 10 more minutes east on 25 a. and you’ll end up in the beautiful town of Port Jefferson where you can wrap up your day with a delightful dinner in Port Jefferson and browsing the many funky shops and boutiques. Kids love to see the ferries coming and going. There’s a sand playground as well as a small play area on the water and several ice cream places as a great way to end the day!
2.Hit up the museums. Did you know Long Island is home to dozens of them? How about choosing 5 and going to 1 each day? Or even 3 in a week?
An educational experience for all and you’ll definitely feel like a tourist. Here are 5 of my favorites but consider also: The African American Museum in North Hempstead, Garvies Point museum in Glen Cove, Hecksher Museum of Art in Huntington, The Hicksville Gregory Museum,Old Bethpage Village Restoration,Sagamore Hill National Historic Site or the Whaling Museum in Sag Harbor. There’s a great listing of museums here
3.Get out and hike, walk and bike the trails of the shores from Fire Island to Shelter Island, Nassau to Suffolk, we’ve got so many to explore with LI’s Greenbelt Trail or just a walk along any beach – there’s a hike for all ages and abilities. Teach the kids about Long Island wildlife, do some bird watching or just get some exercise together. And nothing beats Long Island’s water views!
You can see State Park listings here
4. Stay home. Yes, home. Stay home and bond with some family time. But plan special activities like scavenger hunts for the kids, painting plastic easter eggs, playing tag in the yard, popcorn and movie marathons, game days. If you don’t have little money to spend, you can get creative at home and still have lots of fun. Pinterest has amazing craft ideas for kids of all ages and abilities. Hit up the new releases on Netflix, cable or amazon. Break out the old board games or head to the toy store and buy a new one the whole family will love. How about starting a 500 piece puzzle and when the family is done, celebrate with a pizza dinner or an ice cream run? Let the little ones use sheets to make forts and climb in with them, with a flashlight and a book. If you think out of the box and add some interesting, new and fun activities based on your children’s ages, you can have fun on a budget and not even spend gas money!
Want to venture a bit further?
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