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This is a branch of the Met even many locals fail to enjoy. If you’re into a shorter trip, hop on the subway and enjoy the amazing medieval art and architecture overlooking the Hudson River.
The Staten Island Ferry is a fun and free way to get great city views. Snug Harbor Botanical Garden is a short bus ride from the ferry terminal, where you’ll quickly forget you’re in the city at all. Don’t knock it ‘til you try it!
THE BEACH BUS IS BACK! Pre-game on this fast and cheap ride with your buds. In addition to beach lounging, your agenda should include: tacos from Rockaway Taco, frozen sangria (yes, it’s a booze slushy) from Caracas, and partying at Playland Motel.
Less developed than Coney Island; try biking from the 6 train to this beach. When things get busier in the warmer months, take advantage of the quiet nature trails. Feeling adventurous? There’s a nude beach in Section 1—no joke.
The views of Manhattan and Queens are gorgeous, and the air tram is reason enough to go. Be sure to visit Four Freedoms Park at the southern tip of the island—you’ll feel like you’re on a giant ship in the middle of the East River. Ahoy, Matey!
OUTSIDE CITY LIMITS
Named for the nearby lighthouse, this is the largest clothing-optional beach in New York. It draws a fun and accepting crowd, which is probably why a visit to Fire Island is a right of passage for many New Yorkers.
Like many parts of NYC, this New Jersey beach town has experienced a major transformation in recent years. Located two hours from Penn Station on NJ Transit, Asbury Park is home to a bunch of great boardwalk restaurants and legendary music venues. Plus, The Empress Hotel’s gay club, Paradise, has fabulous karaoke nights every Thursday and Sunday.
Only 70 minutes away from Grand Central Station on Metro North, Croton-on-Hudson has many peaceful hiking trails—most notably, the breathtaking Croton Dam. Don’t go home without trying ice cream at The Blue Pig.
MY LIST OF 20 FUN PLACES TO GO WITH YOUNG KIDS
Talkback: Know of other nice places one can visit? Leave a comment below