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Fun Stuff to Do With Toddlers on Long Island, New York

by Sarah Bourque, studioD

Long Island, New York encompasses both Nassau and Suffolk counties. The numerous towns and cities in these counties are included in the New York City metropolitan area, but have a suburban feel. Long Island features many activities that are family-friendly and perfect for toddlers. The issue will not be finding a fun activity for your little one, but finding the time to explore them all.

Indoor Fun Activities

The Cradle of Aviation in Garden City includes the Junior Jet Club, a play area with plenty of interactive, aerospace-themed activities for little ones. Toddlers can also explore the book corner, build with Legos, climb the space station, and "pilot" the space shuttle. When it's time to move on, head to the adjacent Nunley's Carousel building to ride the huge, historical carousel. The Long Island Children's Museum is also located in Garden City. Your toddler will likely love the 44,000-square-foot hands-on play museum. Be sure to check out the bubble room, huge climbing structure, construction zone, and TotSpot. Safari Adventure in Riverhead is pure fun for your child, too. A massive sized four-level play structure features tunnels, slides, and balls.

Amusement Parks

Splish Splash Water Park in Calverton offers your family 96 acres of fun. The park has its share of adult attractions, but there is more than enough for the little ones to do here. An octopus pool, elephant slide and an interactive pirate ship with water cannons, climbing ropes and slides will likely thrill your toddler. Adventureland, an amusement park in Farmingdale is in operation since 1962. Here, toddlers can hop on several kiddie rides including the spinning cars, Alfie's swings or the kiddie carousel. Little kids also enjoy the water rides, arcade, carnival games and the chance to say, "Hi" to the park's own superhero mascot.

Educational Activities

The Center for Science Teaching and Learning is set on a 17-acre preserve in Rockville Centre. Your toddler will delight at Amazing Animals, the 3,000-square-foot live animal exhibit with reptiles, amphibians, birds, and mammals. While there, check out the hands-on puppet theater, fossil hunt and animal matching game. You and your tot can also explore the walking trails. The Long Island Aquarium and Exhibition Center in Riverside allows your toddler to get up close and personal with fascinating marine life. The whole family will have a fun, learning experience as you view the huge all-living coral reef display, the touch tanks, sea lion shows, a 120,000-gallon shark tank, and rotating exhibits. The Maritime Explorium in Port Jefferson allows little ones to learn about the Working Waterfront. They can build a bridge, control a water taxi and make a water wheel.

Seasonal Activities

The Long Island Fair occurs annually, typically in mid-September, in Old Bethpage. Kids can spend the day enjoying magic shows, puppet shows, musical performances and storytelling. Pony and wagon rides are available, along with friendly kid races, farm animal displays, and yummy food vendor booths. Hicks Nurseries in Westbury hosts a holiday celebration every December, ending on December 24th. Here, kids can meet the two live reindeer, Dancer and Prancer. They also get to enjoy cookies, a Christmas story performance, and fun holiday decorations. The Nassau county Strawberry Festival in Bellmore is an exciting summer fair that occurs from mid-May through early June. Your little one can enjoy the scrumptious strawberry treats, plus the carnival games, rides and performances.

About the Author

Sarah Bourque has been a freelance writer since 2006 and is based in the Pacific Northwest. She writes and edits for the local publisher, Pacific Crest Imprint and has written for several online content sites. Her work recently appeared in "The Goldendale Tourism and Economic Development Magazine" and "Sail the Gorge!" magazine. She attended Portland Community College where she studied psychology.

Photo Credits

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