New York City

8 Indoor Water Parks Perfect for a Warm Getaway Near NYC

Indoor water parks offer summertime-style family thrills year-round and many are just a car ride away from the New York City metro area.

With winter's icy chill upon us, many families start looking for ways to escape the city for a warmer locale. Jet-setting to a tropical island might seem ideal, but if you're looking to stay a little closer to home, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Hudson Valley indoor water parks and resorts are a closer option for beating the winter blues.

We've found eight warm and wet indoor resorts perfect for kids and families that are less than two-and-a-half hours from Midtown Manhattan, along with a couple of bonus suggestions for further-flung options. Most indoor parks keep temperatures around a hot and humid 85 degrees year-round, creating a perfect beach day in any season! So leave the sunscreen at home, dust off that bathing suit, and hit the water.

Check out our NYC Weekend Trips Guide for more destination inspiration.

10 Tips for Visiting NYC From Local Parents

New York City makes a magical vacation spot for families year round. From its world-class cultural institutions to the bright lights of Broadway, towering skyscrapers, history-steeped, old cobblestone streets, and well-known landmarks, there's plenty to entertain your family whether you're here for a day, a week...or even longer.

While a vacation in the concrete jungle can be an action-packed experience, it can also be a challenge. Read on for our parent-tested tips to make your New York City family vacation one to remember.

No-Car Skiing Day Trips: Ski Bus Deals and Packages from NYC

Don’t let the lack of a car keep you from hitting the slopes this winter. Nearly all of the big (and small, for you first-timers) ski resorts nearby offer bus or train package deals from New York City. These packages are convenient, wallet-friendly, and often include discounted lift tickets and equipment rentals.

Even if you own a car, these deals are worth considering: After a hard day on the slopes, it's wonderful to kick back and relax while someone else battles traffic back to NYC. These destinations, in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, offer ski packages to get your family to the mountains.

Find more ski and snow sports fun in our Family Ski Guide, covering the tri-state area and beyond.

Best Restaurants Near Rockefeller Center for Families

Some of those who visit regularly or work near Rockefeller Center admit they find the dining choices less than exciting. But whether you're there over the holidays to see the famed Rockefeller tree, ice skate, check out the holiday windows, or to enjoy one of the other fun experiences in this action-packed complex, you'll need to eat eventually, and there are some good restaurant options if you know where to look.

Here are our top picks for kid-friendly eateries near Rockefeller Center, and for more family-friendly restaurant options in NYC, check out our Restaurant Guide.

Weekend Fun: Holiday Parties, Christmas (and non-Christmas) Shows, Maker Fun

One week deeper into the holiday season, and festive celebrations rule the Mommy Poppins calendar. Standouts this weekend include the Christmas Party in Washington Market Park, Holiday Blvd in Hudson Park, Holiday on the Hudson, Holiday Time in PaleyLand, the Chanukah Art Festival at the Jewish Children's Museum, the Hanukkah Family Celebration at the Museum of the City of New York, and the Winter Family Fair at the Morgan. Plus, Christ Church's 10th Annual Blessing of the Animals!

Looking for a great holiday show? We have a curated list of the Best Family Shows in NYC for Christmas 2018 (that aren't the Nutcracker) plus the full 411 on all those Nutcrackers as well. Hans Christian Andersen tales are playing all over town: there's The Snow Queen at Galli Theatre, The Emperor's New Clothes at Brooklyn's Puppetworks, and a quartet of Andersen stories at the New York City Children's Theater. New this weekend: Boing at the Duke on 42nd Street, as well as Angelina Ballerina's Very Merry Holiday Musical, plus productions of A Christmas Carol in Greenwich Village and Brooklyn's John Bourne Theater

Little makers and crafters are in luck this weekend, with opportunities to make die-cut ornaments on Staten Island, try traditional Irish crafts midtown, create pomanders at Morris-Jumel, up-cycle wearables at BRIC, or craft cookies and sweets at the 10th Annual Taste of Christmas Cookie Walk.

For more December fun, check our December GoList, our Holiday Fun Guide, and our bulging Event Calendar. And don't miss out on all the FREE activities taking place this month!

Nutella Cafe Brings New Level of Chocolatey Goodness to NYC

Hang out with my 5-year-old long enough, and she'll inevitably ask for a Nutella sandwich. The creamy, chocolatey spread is practically its own food group in her eyes, so the arrival of a Nutella Cafe in the Union Square neighborhood was cause for a sugar-high induced happy dance.

It took us two trips—thanks to the down-the-block line on our first visit—to get inside the sweet new eatery. Read on to find out if it deserves a spot on our list of must-try sweet spots for New York City kids.

Outrageous Holiday Light Displays in the Lower Hudson Valley

‘Tis the season for checking out all the awesome holiday light displays in the area. And we’ve got some great ones for you: Along with a some decked-out houses in Westchester, the Lower Hudson Valley has its own share of festive light shows—including a house with more than half a million (!) lights, a drive-through Christmas Wonderland, and even some brightly lit bugs.   

For more holiday fun, be sure to check our Holiday Fun Guide and Event Calendar, and follow us on Facebook.

Know of any other light displays we should check out? Drop us an email, and be sure to sign up for our newsletters to stay in the loop. 

Times Square with Kids: What to Do Beyond the Usual Tourist Spots

New Yorkers often dismiss Times Square as too crowded, touristy, and overpriced, but if you look a little closer, there is plenty of kid fun to be found around this NYC hub—even for the most jaded urban dwellers.

We're not talking about the typical tourist attractions such as Madame Tussauds, the Hard Rock Cafe, and Ripley's Believe It Or Not, which do have plenty for kids to do. Instead, we've got the scoop on 16 cool, under-the-radar things to do with kids near Times Square whether you're killing time before a Broadway show, entertaining out-of-towners, or just find yourself in this NYC neighborhood.

Visiting NYC with kids? Check out more top attractions in our Visitor's Guide for Families.

Lincoln Center with Kids: 15 Fun & Mostly Free Things to Do

Lincoln Center, the grand performing arts mecca on Manhattan's Upper West Side, may seem out of reach to many. Prices for the fancy, high-culture shows are beyond most family budgets, but that shouldn't keep you away. From watching the iconic fountain dance to rooting out hidden gem performances that cost little-to-nothing, Lincoln Center is a rich cultural destination you don't need to be rich to enjoy. Here are our top 15 FREE or low-cost things to do with kids at Lincoln Center.

25 Christmas Movies to Fill Your Family with Holiday Cheer

 Is your house brimming with the magic of Christmas and the holiday season? When the tree has been trimmed, and all the gifts have been wrapped, it's time to put the kids into those Christmas jammies to snuggle up with the perfect family Christmas movie. Don’t let picking the wrong festive flick turn you into a Grinch.

Unlike the naughty list, this holiday movie list is filled with positive messages, classic tales, and just the right amount of seasonal cheer. So, pop some popcorn and enjoy a family movie night with one of these Christmas classics perfect for kids. 

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