Weekend Trips

Top 5 Day and Weekend Trips From New York City 2009

200812311223.jpgThis summer we wrote about some great day and weekend trips near New York City. From the farms of Westchester to the parks of Long Island and even places you can visit without a car. You can find more family friendly day and weekend trip ideas in our archives under the weekend trips category.

Here are our top 5 day and weekend trips posts from 2009:


Free Skiing for Fourth and Fifth Graders near New York City

Picture 6.pngAfter some pretty bad years for skiing, they say it's going to snow a lot this year. If it's true I'll feel pretty lucky to get a good ski year when my daughter is in fourth grade. Why? Because fourth graders get to ski for free. New York, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire and Vermont all have free ski programs for fourth, and sometimes fifth, graders and you can apply to all of them.

Click on the links below for applications and more information, but the basic deal is that you apply for a ski free passport and you will receive a booklet of 3 passes per participating ski resort that allow your child to ski free when accompanied by a paying adult. The applications cost between $10 and $19, or in the case of New Hampshire, they require a little school project about NH skiing history. The passbooks also usually include one free lesson also.

Columbus Day Weekend Fall Festivals on Long Island


Picture 1.jpgFall brings lots of things with it: cool mornings and chilly nights, great colors and foliage, plenty of Holidays, and, it's a great time of year for getting out of the city to enjoy the crisp Fall air. So we're giving you a couple more reasons to hop on the LIE for some Fall Festivals worth a day trip this Columbus Day Weekend.

For more fall day trip ideas and Long Island fun check out our New York Halloween Guide.

New York Apple Picking and Fall Festivals

[UPDATED: 9/21/08]

Growing up in New York City, one of our family traditions was going apple picking in the Hudson Valley every Fall. It's a tradition I've enjoying continuing with my own kids because it's a great day out in the country, it's economical (considering the price of apples from FreshDirect), and it's even trendy (if you're into the locavore thing). It's a great activity for Columbus Day Weekend, but there are also a bunch of free Apple Festivals right here in NYC if you don't feel like taking the kids traveling.

10 Cheap Labor Day Weekend Getaways for NY Families

Picture 9.pngYou don't need to burn a lot of dough or fossil fuels (meaning even more dough) to have a great Labor Day Weekend. We've got 10 fun family activities that you can enjoy for cheap or even free.

Labor Day Weekend for me is all about having one last hurrah for summer, so these activities all focus on getting outside, either with an easy day trip from New York or doing something in the city that makes you feel like you're not. This isn't like most of my free and cheap lists. Some of these activities cost a bit of cash, but I figure, if I'm staying in the city or skipping the hotel, it's worth it to pay a little bit to feel like I'm getting some vacationing in.

Here's 10 ideas that will take you away, without getting too carried away:

Family Friendly Day Trips from NYC Without a Car

In my post about the farms you can visit in Westchester, I mentioned that it is easy to get to Philipsburg Manor and Stone Barn Farms without a car, using public transportation. I thought it would be cool to write about some of the other day tips you can take from NYC using public transportation. There's really no reason to be stuck in the city just because you're car-less (or want to save your gas money on, say, the down payment on an apartment). There are plenty of fun family day trips that can be easily accessed using Metro-North trains or busses.

The MTA actually has an entire section of their website dedicated to what they so romantically dub MTA Getaways . You've probably seen this advertised in the subway, but I know I never really looked into it before. Many of the trips you could do any time, but the MTA has also worked with local tours and groups to create specific event packages.

Here are some car-free day trips that are definitely worth a try:

Farm Fun for City Kids at NY State County Fairs

Are you raising a city kid who thinks that milk comes in a carton and apples are from the bodega?  On second thought, we all know New York City kids are way too precocious for that but I would bet that most of your kids feel more comfortable on a subway than they do on a farm.  And, even though they "know" where milk comes from, have they ever actually milked a cow?  

If you are looking for a way to get your kids to connect more to the food on their plate, try taking them to one of New York State's county fairs.  County fairs are filled with animals, award winning vegetables and lots of farm demonstrations. With county fairs every day of the week throughout New York State for all of July and August if you are planning on heading out of the city you should check these listings to see if you can bring Old Macdonald to life for your little one.

Day Trippin' - get more out of getting out of NYC

We love NYC in the summer, there is so much to do and it's less crowded. But, its also great to get out of town to spend some time in nature, swim in the ocean and check out new places. For all of July and August, in addition to our regular posts, we will be posting suggestions for fun day and weekend trips that you can take with kids. Here are a few quick suggestions to get you started. Any of these ideas would be great for something to do with the kids this Fourth of July Weekend.


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