Surrounded by ocean, farmland, mountains and great cities, the New York – New Jersey – Connecticut tri-state region and Pennsylvania have unlimited potential for family weekend getaways.
Although New York City is often the top U.S. destination for international tourists, the families who live and work in this bustling metropolitan region are always looking to vacation elsewhere. And since residents of the densely populated tri-state region are affluent and adventurous, hundreds of hotels, resorts, family camps, B&Bs, spas and a myriad of other accommodations have sprung up to accommodate them.
Within a 200-mile drive of the city, you’ll find a rich variety of weekend getaways. If you don’t have a car you can rent a temporary Zipcar; hop on Amtrak, MetroNorth or New Jersey Transit; board any of the many competing low-cost bus lines, or book a cheap flight from one of three major airports. The choice is yours.
Short Breaks & Weekend Getaway Ideas from New York City & Environs
Whether your family is looking for a short break holiday, a cheap vacation package, a fun last minute excursion to break up a road trip, or a weekend getaway from everyday routines, there are lots of options within a short radius of the tri-state metropolitan area.
The following weekend getaway roundup includes some of our family’s favorite kids’ destinations, for those who want big city action or a laid-back beach experience. There are, of course, many other choices for spending your time and money on a short break, so we’ll just highlight some of the top local attractions, kid-friendly festivals and events that suit all ages.
Weekend Getaway Vacations Within 100 Miles of New York City
New York Metro Apple Farms
New York, New Jersey and Connecticut offer a variety of apple and pumpking picking farms. Expect plenty of weekend entertainment.
A Weekend in the Hamptons
The Hamptons aren’t just for the rich and famous — discover the best activities, beautiful beaches, and accommodations for all budgets in this Long Island, New York vacation spot.
Doral Arrowwood Resort
Families looking for a rowdy and active getaway close to the tri-state area should check out the Doral Arrowwood for great value and a great time.
Windham Mountain – New York’s Secret Ski Resort
When time and circumstances don’t permit us to get to the very best or biggest mountain for a snow getaway, this metro-area New York secret offers a real vacation and savings.
Westchester & Ulster County Halloween Fun
Upstate, families can cringe at the Headless Horseman hayride or wander through the creepy Horseman’s Hollow for a creepy weekend.
Overnight in Tarrytown, New York
It’s close to the city and surrounded by small town charm and good restaurants, making Tarrytown a good base for exploring the Hudson Valley.
A Weekend at the Jersey Shore
Check out two different beach scenes (and we don’t mean the TV show), minutes from each other on the Jersey shore, for a weekend, mini-vacation or daytrip.
Navigating the Jersey Shore
If you’re hungry for more of the Jersey Shore, check out this guide that features five of the shore’s top family destinations.
Connecticut Family Attractions
There’s so much to see and do in nearby Connecticut, which boasts the nation’s oldest themepark, amazing aquariums, and classic New England towns.
Top Family Attractions In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
History, culture, great food, friendly citizens and plenty of city style combine to make Philly one of our favorite family urban weekend getaways.
Sesame Place & Buck County Pennsylvania
What’s better for little ones than spending the day with their favorite characters from Sesame Street? How about a weekend getaway with age-appropriate coasters, a big waterpark and cheap motels.
Family Fun Action In Bucks County Pennsylvania
Offering families everything from water slides to farms, from sports to history, Bucks County has plenty of attractions to entertain your family on your next vacation.
Great Wolf Lodge Poconos
This indoor waterpark hotel within a quick drive of New York, New Jersey and Philadelphia families provides an ideal, weather-proof getaway all year round, plus refreshing fun for all ages.
Rocking Horse Ranch
Family-owned since 1958, and ultra family-friendly dude ranch with lots of on and off horse activities for all ages of cowboys and cowgirls
Historic Hyde Park, New York
History buffs will be thrilled to tour the Home and Birthplace of FDR; his Presidential Library; and Val-Kill, Eleanor Roosevelt’s cottage for information and insights into the life and work of the 32nd president and his wife. Nearby, you can walk over the Hudson River on a 1 1/4 mile bridge.
Take in a performance, visit a cool museum, go to the races, soak in the spring’s water, shop, relax at a venerable hotel – what to do first?
A classic amusement park and other family pleasures in northern Connecticut
Madison Beach Hotel
Authentic New England flavor at a nearby Madison, Connecticut hotel that puts out the welcome mat to families with babies.
Ideas for Short Breaks Within 200 Miles of New York City
There’s plenty to see and do around New York’s capital with exciting day-trips as well as a chance for some “old fashioned” fun
Resort at Split Rock, Poconos
A great resort for families with school-age kids, who can take advantage of the spacious grounds and supervised activity programs; that is, when they’re not on the water slides.
Pennsylvania: Poconos Family Hotels & Resorts
This friendly mountain region has welcomed outdoorsmen and honeymooners for generations, and is now setting its sights on the family market.
Pennsylvania Dutch Country Resorts & Hotels
It’s your choice between country inns, farm stays, resorts and motels as you tour the classic Amish country surrounding pretty Lancaster.
Mystic: Connecticut’s Playground
This fun-packed region boasts an endless array of marine life, whale kissing, recreational activities and ice cream. This how-to guide shows families a wonderful weekend.
Zipping to New Heights at Hunter Mountain
With snow or without, the Catskills’ Hunter Mountain has zipline adventure tours that enable families to rip through and above the trees at thrilling speeds.
New York’s Gore Mountain Ski Resort
Skiers and riders unite behind New York’s least known but favorite mountain resort, an Olympic legacy where the snowsports life and chairlifts run on the local track.
Catskills & Upstate New York Family Resorts
Catskills Family Resorts for Summer Fun
If you recall the family camp where Baby worked in “Dirty Dancing” you’ll understand why these rustic, meals-included summer resorts are so much old-fashioned fun with kids.
Dude Ranches of the Northeast
Live like a Western cowhand or rodeo star in the Northeast at New York’s Pine Grove or other nearby Catskill Mountain dude ranches.
Mohonk Mountain House for All Ages
90 miles north of New York City in tranquil New Paltz, NY lies one of the nicest resorts we’ve ever seen. Come take a look.
Emerson Resort & Spa
This quiet, metro-area resort provides a perfect mother-daughter spa getaway or teen weekend for families who want to enjoy the Catskills together.
Lighthouses for the Night
Ever thought about staying in a lighthouse? Several historic beacons offer affordable family-friendly lodging on the lakes of northern New York state.
This story was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question, and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.