With summer here, I think our kids need to get outside everyday for lots of fresh air, sunlight and exercise. This was a long, cold and snowy winter, so now I like to take advantage of every non-raining day to explore the beauty of New Jersey. It got me thinking about the best parks and playgrounds for kids, those with plenty to do that is fun and free.
So, here it is:
The Top Five Best Parks and Playgrounds for Kids, According to this 30-something Mom of Three
5) Mount Mitchill Scenic Overlook, Atlantic Highlands. This park has an amazing view of Sandy Hook and New York City, as well as Brooklyn. It homes Monmouth County’s 9/11 memorial, as well as, a great playground with two jungle-gym sets. It is the highest natural point along the whole Atlantic coast and a great place to picnic.
4) Dorbrook Recreation Park, Colts Neck. This park is truly amazing with all it has to offer. There is the Sprayground which is a free waterpark for kids. Yes, FREE! There is also a huge playground area with multiple jungle-gyms, swings and seasaws and an awesome sandpit, so don’t forget your kids’ shovels and buckets. There are also multiple paved loops for moms to walk with strollers or for kids to ride their bikes.
All three of my kids love the sprayground. The playground also has this fabulous rolly-slide that my middle son is obsessed with. He loves to say, “ouch!ouch!ouch!” all the way down. Don’t worry, it doesn’t really hurt, he just thinks it’s funny.
3) Huber Woods, Middletown. Huber Woods has a wonderful Environmental Center that feartures many hands on activities for the kids, including weaving baskets, putting on a puppetshow and learning Native American hieroglyphics. The Center resides in the beautiful Huber Mansion which is surrounded by a quick and easy nature trail and gardens. There is also a reptile house where the kids can see snakes and turtles. And it’s ALL FREE!
Across the parking lot and through the field is the park’s entrance to hiking trails. There is a small loop perfect for little first-time hikers or even adventursome moms who want to stroller off-road (like me!).
2) Allaire State Park and the Pine Creek Railroad, Wall. The Historic Village at Allaire State Park offers a step back in time and an eye openning experience for kids of life before cars and video games. The park is also home to the NJ Museum of Transportation and the Pine Creek Railroad which offers train rides on the 1/2 hour for a nominal ticket price.
We had my son’s 3rd birthday party here and it was great fun for the kids! We even got to tour the train sheds.
Across the big parking lot and over the bridge, there is also a nice playground and swing set. The Hisotric Village and Transportation Museum always have festivals and events, so check out their websites for the calendar… it’s family fun for everyone!
1) Longstreet Farm at Holmdel Park, Holmdel. Longstreet Farm is so much fun for the kids and it is FREE! Step back into time as you explore the horse stables, chicken coop and pig pen. You can also tour the old farmhouse with all its amazing antiques and artwork. Situated at the entrance to Holmdel Park, it’s only a cut across the gigantic field to a great playground and covered gazebo. The park also has a pristine lake at the base of the sledding hill. Listen to the frogs croaking and bird watch with the kids. There is also a huge loop around the field which is perfect for biking or strolling or walking or jogging.
I have to say, walking around Holmdel Park is like stepping into another world, it is that beautiful.
I hope you find this information helpful as you plan fun things to do with your kids this summer.
Have I missed any of your Top Five Parks and Playgrounds? If yes, please share in the comment section below. We’re always looking for new places to explore!
This is a somewhat original post for Jersey Moms Blog by Brenda Milouchev, a New Jersey mom. You can also find Brenda writing at Meridian Healthcare’s MomTourage.