20 Ways to Beat the Heat on Long Island This Summer

Chill out at Splish Splash Water Park. Photo courtesy of the facility
Chill out at Splish Splash Water Park. Photo courtesy of the facility

Looking for ways to beat the heat on Long Island? Here are 20 awesome options.

Deep summer usually brings high temps and plenty of humidity, leaving Long Island families scrambling to find ways to cool off. Whether you want to bask in the sunshine or chill in central AC, there are plenty of options in both Nassau and Suffolk counties to help you beat the heat—and all are guaranteed fun for every age. After all, you want to enjoy every bit of summer before school begins. 

Find more great outdoorsy things to do in our Summer Fun Guide, and be sure to bookmark our frequently-updated Long Island Family Activity Calendar

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1. Take a Plunge at Jones Beach

Long Island is home to plenty of beautiful beaches—Jones Beach happens to be the most-visited on the East Coast. If your kids get bored just playing in the sand, pay to one of the beaches with an on-site playground

2. Cool Off at a Spray Park

You can turn on the sprinklers at home or take a drive to one of Long Island's sprinkler parks and splash pads. Some have playgrounds nearby, and a few are even FREE.

3. Chill Out at a Movie Theater

Sit back and relax in an air-conditioned theater while you all enjoy a family-friendly film; perhaps Lightyear or Minions: Rise of Gru? You can also catch a summer flick as the sun goes down with these free outdoor movies for kids

RELATED: Long Island Water Parks, Slides, and Pools to Cool Off in this Summer


The mini lanes at Coram Country Lanes are perfect for the littlest bowlers. Photo courtesy of the facility

4. Strike Out for a Bowling Alley

Cool off and hit the lanes at one of these bowling alleys on Long Island. The Kids Bowl Free program has locations throughout LI where your children can bowl all summer at no cost to you.

5. Take a Dip in a Swimming Spot

We are spoiled for swimming options on LI: We can swim in the ocean, at the nearby community pool, and of course, there are plenty of lessons available for kids who are just getting their feet wet.

6. Make a Splash at Water Parks 

Families can take a trip o Splish Splash to spend the day on its variety of super-fun water rides. But there are also some smaller—but just as fun—water slides peppered throughout Long Island. And who doesn't love a little adrenaline rush?

7. Enjoy the Arts at Theaters

Northwell Health at Jones Beach and The John W. Engemen Theatre have some really cool family-friendly shows lined up for the summer. 

RELATED: 25 Bucket List Things to Do This Summer With LI Kids


PlasterCraft is a great way to beat the heat. Photo by the author

8. Get Hands-On at Plaster Craft Shops

Letting the kids paint their own plaster craft is a great indoor activity when it’s raining or too hot and humid to be outside.

9. Check Out the Local Library

Pick up some books and enjoy the many activities and perks your local library offers. Both Nassau and Suffolk have libraries with a variety of kid-friendly programming.

10. Get the Scoop on Ice Cream Shops

Pay a visit to one of LI’s old-fashioned ice cream parlors for a sweet treat.

LI beat the heat Boy shooting a water gun
Get out the water guns for hours of water fun in the backyard. Photo by Rose Gordon Sala

11. Have a Backyard Adventure

No need to travel. This roundup of DIY water games will keep everyone happy all summer long.

12. Anchors Away on the Water

Cool down with a kayak, canoe, or paddleboard rental, or check out one of the top surfing schools

13. Explore the Long Island Children's Museum

LICM is fully air-conditioned and filled with activities for little ones. If you are there on a Thursday, pop in on storytime, where toddlers and preschoolers hear a new book, and take home a related craft kit to keep the fun going. 

14. Take a Flight of Fantasy at the Cradle of Aviation

Garden City's Cradle of Aviation has attractions that will delight everyone from toddlers to teens. Anyone into gaming will want to check out the Long Island Retro Gaming Expo this August.

RELATED: Top Beach Playgrounds on Long Island


Take on the challenges at WildPlay at Jones Beach. Photo by Diana Kim

15. Tackle Obstacles at WildPlay At Jones Beach

Feel the wind at your back as you traverse an oceanside obstacle course and zipline. Finish off the day with a dip in the water and a picnic at nearby Jones Beach. 

16. Catch a Fishing Charter

Hop aboard one of these family-friendly fishing charters or drop a line at one of these fishing destinations.

RELATED: All the Top Summer Day Trips Near Long Island


Explore the many many boardwalks on Long Island. Photo by Jaime Sumersille

17. Stroll Some Boardwalks

Feel the breeze as you stroll some of these family-friendly boardwalks on Long Island. 

18. Carve Out Time to Ice Skate

There's no better way to cool down than to hit the ice. These indoor ice skating rinks will quickly transport you to winter. 

19. Find Your Groove on the Greenway

Explore Long Island's South Shore as you bike or walk along the fully paved Coastal Greenway. This 14-mile trail runs along Ocean Parkway and has stops at playgrounds, beaches, and even spray parks to keep everyone cool. 

20. Pitch a Tent at Campsites

Sleep under the stars at one of the many campgrounds on Long Island. Some are on or near the water to offer cool nighttime breezes. 

 

Riverhead Cardboard Boat Race
Peconic Waterfront - 9:00 AM Pick
Bubble Palooza & Color Fun Run Festival
Tanger Outlets Deer Park - 9:00 AM Pick
The Long Island Retro Gaming Expo
Cradle of Aviation Museum - 10:00 AM Pick
Story Thyme at the Sylvester Manor Farmstand
Sylvester Manor - 10:30 AM Pick
Splish Splash, Animal Baths at LICM
Long Island Children's Museum - 12:00 PM Pick
Neighborhood Guides
Activity Guides