Row, row, row your boat—all over Long Island! Our ponds, preserves, and bays are prime spots for water sports. Get set to make a splash as you row, pedal, paddle, and more at these sporty locations.
Looking for more wet and wild fun? If you're on the East End, check out our guide to kayak, canoe, and paddle board rentals in the Hamptons and North Fork. Or enjoy a spritz at a sprinkler park on Long Island. Use our outdoors guide to explore parks, playgrounds, and other fun destinations on the Island.
Levy Preserve — Merrick
Before heading to the hill at Levy Preserve, check out the kayak launch into the original Meadow Brook. Kayaking is offered at Levy Park in June, July, and August. The brook is tidal, so tours are offered based on the high-tide time for each day. Visitors can also bring their own kayaks. The site also includes three miles of hiking and jogging trails with 18 exercise stations along the way. The 52-acre facility also features a 500-foot fishing pier with sweeping views of Merrick Bay all the way to the Jones Beach tower. No kidding .. there are also Nigerian dwarf goats that roam the property as nature's lawnmowers, and Guinea fowl who assist with the tick population.
Belmont Lake State Park — North Babylon
Chosen by Robert Moses himself to be the regional headquarters for all state parks on Long Island, 42-acre Belmont Lake offers pedal boat, rowboat and kayak rentals from the boat dock from May through early October. You can also bring your own kayak. The park grounds are ideal for picnicking, playground play, hiking, biking, fishing, and more. Bonus: Leashed dogs are allowed.
Blydenburgh County Park — Smithtown
This 627-acre park features Stump Pond, which has been called one of the most picturesque on Long Island. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, visitors can rent a rowboat to enjoy the scenery or fish for pumpkinseed, sunfish, largemouth bass, perch, and bluegill. Other activities include hiking, horseback riding, picnicking, camping, birdwatching, and fishing. Note: There are two entrances to the park, one off of Veterans Highway and the other off of New Mill Road.
Radio-Controlled and Model Boats
Christopher Morley Park — Roslyn
Located in northern Nassau County, this near 100-acre park provides a range of recreational activities, including hiking trails. Follow the signs for the boat basin to challenge your navigation skills. From tennis to handball, swimming and ice skating, playgrounds and picnicking, this park is full of year-round family fun. Bonus: Find the Knothole, a pine cabin in the park that once belonged to prolific writer Christopher Morley.
RELATED: Long Island state parks worth a visit
Enjoy spring "sailing" with your fellow radio-controlled yachtsmen at the Eisenhower Park Model Yacht Club. Photo courtesy of the club
Eisenhower Park — East Meadow
Merrick and Stewart Avenues
The Eisenhower Park Model Yacht Club sails on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday mornings at 10 a.m. from March until the end of June. All are invited to watch, or build your own and hit the pond. There's also indoor swimming, ice skating, an outdoor sprinkler park, as well as fitness trails, a bike riding area, fields, picnicking and more. One of the most unique playgrounds can be found at field 4 too!
Hempstead Lake State Park — West Hempstead
At North Pond, look for the North American Model Boat Association's District 1 folks building and racing their radio-controlled boats. Enjoying a wholesome hobby for all ages, this group gathers sporadically throughout the year. Note: A state permit is required to race radio-controlled boats in the park.