Summer time is here which means it's time to plan fun day trips for you and the family. Whether you love the beach, the mountains or just finding a good place for relaxing, you can find it all just a short car or subway ride away from the center of New York City:
- Surf and Sun: If you're looking to escape the city for a weekend, there are plenty of beaches close by that are easily accessible by car, boat or even the subway. The beaches are all different from one another so it just depends on what suits you. Try Fire Island in Long Island for pristine beaches along the Atlantic Ocean. A true respite from city life, Fire Island prides itself on being free of cars and chaos. Jacob Riis Park in Queens is a sandy beach especially popular among locals, and it has a rich history. Opened in 1932 and named after accomplished New York City journalist Jacob Riis, the park is part of the Gateway National Recreation Area. Its famous Art Deco bathhouse, which boasts octagonal brick towers that rise above the beach, is an architectural landmark. Coney Island, Brooklyn is a classic New York experience. This summertime favorite offers a sandy beach right up against an old-fashioned boardwalk that leads you to Luna Park, the island's popular amusement park. Enjoy a hot dog at Nathan's, which has been serving its famous frankfurters to beach-goers since 1916.
- Upstate Escape: Nestled in Orange County, about 60 miles north of New York City, is an artisanal foodie paradise called Warwick. Despite its small size, the town offers a wide range of cuisine at award-winning restaurants. Surrounded by rolling orchards and farmland, you can start at the downtown farmers' market on Sundays for the best of local pies, pesto and peaches. Stick around and try one of Warwick's many restaurants, which are often buzzing on weekends. Save room for dessert, for nearby dairy farms and creameries serve up scoops of gourmet ice creams all day long.
- Explore the Outdoors: If you’re interested in a more active weekend trip, outdoor enthusiasts should head about two hours north of the Big Apple, in the Catskill Mountains region of the Hudson Valley. Hiking is immensely popular at Catskill Park, which offers 35 peaks at heights greater than 3,500 feet. Or hike to Katterskill Falls, a 260-foot, two-tiered waterfall. The Catskill Scenic Trail is a 26-mile path in Delaware County where locals and visitors love to hike, mountain bike, or go horseback riding.
For tips on how to get your family and car ready before you head out on the road, read our road trip safety checklist.
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