10 Places To Go When You Want To Spend Your Family Vacation Right Here In Westchester

How to plan a local “staycation,” from Natasha Caputo, director of Westchester County Tourism



Washington Irving's Sunnyside

Skip the summer road trip ritual (complete with traffic jams, high gas prices, and one too many bathroom pit stops) and spend your family vacation right here in Westchester. Natasha Caputo, director of Westchester County Tourism, recommends hitting family-friendly destinations throughout the county. Her top 10 list includes some perennial favorites, and others you might have missed. Mix and match based on your family’s interests, location, budget, and tolerance for crowds:

1

Kensico Dam Plaza After a long closure to upgrade the electrical system, the Kensico Dam Plaza is back in all its glory. Enjoy the playground, fitness trail, green space, pathways for running and biking, and festivals throughout the summer. • 1 Bronx River Pkwy, Valhalla (914) 328-1542; parks.westchester.gov.com

2

Rye Playland You’re not a true Westchesterite until you’ve visited Playland at least once. (See “How To Get The Most Out of Playland,” below, to maximize your visit.) • 100 Playland Pkwy, Rye (914) 813-7010; www.ryeplayland.org

3

Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture Get your agricultural fix at this 80-acre farm and educational center on a former Rockefeller estate. Take a self-guided tour (download the Stone Barns app for help), sign the kids up for a class, or just enjoy watching the animals roam. • 630 Bedford Rd, Pocantico Hills (914) 366-6200
www.stonebarnscenter.org

4

Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts The county’s cultural cornerstone offers a fun summer music festival. The lineup includes Dancing at Dusk; American Roots Music Festival; Pops, Patriots, & Fireworks; and Igudesman & Joo. • 149 Girdle Ridge Rd, Katonah (914) 232-5035; www.caramoor.org

5

Washington Irving’s Sunnyside Bring some history into your staycation with a tour of Washington Irving’s home and grounds overlooking the Hudson River. Guides dress in period costume to show off the dramatic The Legend of Sleepy Hollow author’s estate. • 3 W Sunnyside Ln, Irvington (914) 591-8763 www.hudsonvalley.org/historic-sites

6

The Arts Exchange Housed in the ArtsWestchester building, a former bank in downtown White Plains, the gallery’s summer lineup includes STE(A)M, an exhibition exploring the intersections of science, technology, engineering, math, and creativity. • 31 Mamaroneck Ave, White Plains (914) 428-4220; www.artswestchester.org

7   

Teatown Lake Reservation Summer is a great time to visit this nature preserve and education center. Located on 1,000 acres, including the 41-acre Teatown Lake, families can enjoy classes, lectures, and outdoor activities—all focused on nature and the role of biodiversity in sustainable living. • 1600 Spring Valley Rd #1, Ossining (914) 762-2912; www.teatown.org

8

LEGOLAND Discovery Center Westchester Perfect rainy-day summer fun: see New York's top landmarks made out of LEGO bricks, learn secrets from the Master Model Builder, try out the indoor soft play area, and take a LEGO Factory tour. • 39 Fitzgerald St, Yonkers (866) 243-0770 www.legolanddiscoverycenter.com/westchester

9

Grand Prix New York Two quarter-mile go-kart tracks, a four-lane slot car road course, 12 bowling lanes, an arcade, a giant bouncy castle, and a gaming pavilion: Need we say more? • 333 N Bedford Rd, Mount Kisco (914) 241-3131; www.gpny.com

10

Lyndhurst A visit to the historic house and its 67-acre park is a must for anyone interested in 19th-century architecture, decorative arts, and landscape design. 635 S Broadway, Tarrytown (914) 631-4481; www.lyndhurst.org