7 Must-Do Long Island Day Trip Ideas for Families

For those of us lucky enough to live on Long Island (especially during the summer months), there’s plenty of time to explore everything our beautiful home has to offer. But for families who might be coming in for just a few days, it's essential to make the most of your time here. With that in mind, we’ve come up with our top seven must-see locations for those taking a quick trip to Long Island.

Exploring these places—and we've included both indoor and outdoor fun so you don't have to worry about the weather—will leave you making plans for another visit ASAP. And for more to do in the area, be sure to check out our Events Calendar and Long Island Spring Fun Guide.

10 Kid-Friendly Breakfast Places in Somerville

During the last few years Somerville has become a haven for both foodies and families. With more parents with little ones moving into the city, many kid-friendly restaurants have been popping up all over town. 

While going out to dinner with small children isn’t always a fun or relaxing experience, breakfast is often a much better option. The next time you’re looking to dine out with the whole family, try one of these Somerville breakfast spots sure to please parents and kids alike.

Weekday Picks: Jet Propulsion Lab, Carnival of the Animals, Stargazing, April 25-29

Mark your calendars and book your Ticket to Explore: The annual open house at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory is coming up the weekend of June 4th and 5th, and for the first time the free tickets must be booked in advance. They become available online Monday April 25th at 9:00am, so settle in front of the computer with a big mug of coffee and get in a virtual queue; these golden tickets are likely to go fast. Each applicant can reserve up to five spaces. If you score, you could follow up with an afternoon at the Science Center, where you and the kids can have a blast checking out Endeavor and other space related oddities.

Leave your computer home the rest of the week and head out into our fair city. Dance with Camille Saint Sëins’ Carnival of the Animals at the Broad Theatre in Santa Monica, revisit Marty McFly at a free screening of Back to the Future, or keep the space theme going by contemplating the universe at Garvey Ranch Observatory in Monterey Park, where you can make your own telescope and party with the stars.

From the desert to the sea, Mommy Poppins'  Event Calendar has you covered.

Weekday Event Picks for NJ Kids: Spring Festival, Hiking Adventures, April 25-29

As April comes to a close (already!), get outside and soak in the spring at seasonal events like Hiking Adventures: A Toddler’s Perspective, Mommy & Me Class at Rizzo’s Wildlife World and Cape May Spring Festival. Plus, put away the wallet and enjoy some fun freebies, like Whole Foods Wonder Wednesday Kid Club, Uptown Storytime and Story Stretchers. And don’t forget to check out our Event Calendar for even more options!

Weekday Picks for LI Kids: Cherry Blossoms, Earth Day, Cinderella, April 25-29

Many Long Island kids have off for spring break this week. From crafting cherry blossom trees and creating your own biodome to learning about space and taking in some live theater, there's plenty of fun things to do for families staying local. And this is just a sampling of what's going on this week, so be sure to check out our Long Island events calendar and our Spring Fun Guide. You can also get the best events of the week sent directly to your inbox each week if you sign up for our newsletter.

The Acro-Cats: Traveling Kitty Talent Show and Unlikely Cat Adoption Event

We laughed; we cried; it was better than Cats. Well, actually it was cats, and we didn't really cry, but I'll stand by better than Cats—because instead of going home with Memory stuck in my head, I went home with my son intent on training our cat (infinitely preferable). What I'm talking about is The Acro-Cats, an unusual touring show I stumbled upon this weekend that offers a solid hour of feline performances. The show is currently playing at North Hollywood's El Portal Theatre, and in May it moves on to a short run at the Art Theatre of Long Beach. If watching kooky cat ladies convince rescue kitties (and a few other random critters) to perform unlikely tricks sounds like it could give you a chuckle, then read on. It certainly tickled our funny bone.

Hidden NYC: 21 Fun Things To Do in Central Park

Central Park was created as a respite for the teeming masses of Manhattan.The 843-acre jewel is home to woodlands, meadows, lakes and wildlife, and years later still offers a respite to all New Yorkers. Today, more than 40 million people annually visit the lush expanses of the country's earliest public parks. Its 21 playgrounds make it a destination for families from all over the city and world.

Central Park isn’t a place to tire of easily. My family's daily commute to school takes us back and forth across the park, for which I thank my lucky stars. But it's easy to lose perspective and forget how much this massive green space has to offer locals and visitors alike. With that in mind, we've rounded up 21 fun sites and scenes worth exploring in New York City's big backyard, from the obvious playgrounds and sledding hills to more obscure destinations. Enjoy.

Weekday Picks for Westchester Kids: Children’s Book Day, Hurray for Jane, Apr. 25-29

All ages have activities to look forward to this week in Westchester, with cleverly designed events for families to choose.

Whether your teen is considering college, an advanced degree or a role in the military, the College Conference is your one-stop destination for fact-finding. For cultural immersion without leaving home, bring your kids to Children's Book Day, where they’ll be treated to education and entertainment about Salsa music and more.  For biographical immersion, celebrate the anthropologic contributions of Jane Goodall at Hurray for Jane!

More good news: As is often the case, all of our top picks for the week are FREE—and there are many more where that came from on our Event Calendar! Read on and click through for more of our weekday faves.

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