Sweet summertime. The kids are home from school and it won’t be long before you hear the phrase that echoes throughout every home in the summertime. No, we don’t mean “I’m hungry” (although that’s another common one). We’re talking about the dreaded “I’m bored.” Endless free time is fun for a little while, but your kids will only be happy sleeping in and playing with their toys for so long before they start to get a little stir-crazy. There’s nothing better than a family outing to kick boredom to the curb, but how do you find a destination that will guarantee a good time for everyone?
If you need a little inspiration, don’t worry. We’ve rounded up our top 5 favorite summer family outings for you and your family to try this summer. Each of these destinations has something for everyone and can be adapted to your family’s needs.
1. Check out your state parks
An often-overlooked option, state parks have so much to offer. Whether you are looking for opportunities to unplug and get in touch with nature, or you are more interested in a guided educational experience, state parks are a great option to explore. Make a quick day trip to do some hiking or swimming, or make a weekend of it. Many state parks offer cabins for rent or campsite options, giving you the choice to stay and enjoy nature however you would like. The kids will never forget the wildlife they experience, and you’ll feel relaxed and recharged after spending time in the great outdoors.
2. Beat the heat at a splash pad
As the temperatures rise, the pool is usually the go-to solution. But when your kids aren’t old enough to handle the pool or aren’t strong swimmers, an afternoon at a crowded swimming pool can be really stressful. Splash pads to the rescue! Splash pads offer families loads of water fun for every age. It’s a great way to cool off and burn energy without the risks associated with swimming pools.
If “fun” isn’t what comes to mind when you think about museums, it’s time to update your preconceived notions. Today’s museums offer education and entertainment through a variety of learning methods. Whether you’re looking for some hands-on fun, interactive learning, or a more traditional viewing and learning experience, chances are you can find a museum to accommodate your needs.
When the weather is nice, nothing beats a day at the zoo! Learning about various creatures and their habitats will inspire love and compassion for animals. Not to mention the great exercise you’ll get from all of the walking you’ll do. For an added bonus, check to see if your zoo offers special behind-the-scenes learning experiences.
5. Your local library
Libraries are often forgotten gems in our communities; they have so much more to offer than books! Get your family familiar with your local library and reap the benefits, such as age-appropriate book clubs, summer reading programs, story hour and special events. Some libraries even host special attractions during the summer months. As a bonus, many of these programs are free to enjoy!