“In our classic beach town there are many adventurous and simple, fun activities to entertain kids – from fishing and surfing to pony riding and candy stores,” said Laraine Creegan, Montauk Chamber of Commerce Executive Director.
In anticipation of the upcoming summer season, the Montauk Chamber of Commerce kicked off a marketing campaign to inspire families to vacation in the Hamptons hamlet. “15 Ways Kids Can Be Kids on a Montauk Vacation” shares fun ways that kids can be kids, parents can relax, and families can unwind together as they create memories that will last a lifetime. “For parents that want their kids to unplug from technology, play outdoors, and just be kids, a Montauk vacation has it all,” noted Creegan. “We’re revealing 15 of those ways.”
15 Ways Kids Can Be Kids on a Montauk Vacation:
1. Find a beach. Engage the kids with a bucket, sand and water. Dig holes, build sandcastles, search for shells and driftwood. Gin Beach on the Sound is good for families with young ones. At the Hither Hills State Park ocean beach, there’s a playground, picnic tables, shower, restroom, changing area and store.
2. Go boating, fishing, surfing or whale watching. Montauk has all water sports. Rent pedal boats, paddleboards, surfboards, kayaks, sunfish, a twin motor sport boat for water skiing, tubing and wake boarding. Enroll kids 6 to 16 in a sail that teaches the fundamentals. A fun “Take a Kid Fishing” excursion teaches angling techniques. Both programs in July and August are sponsored by the Chamber.
3. Go for a horseback ride at a ranch and climb on the wagon ride when you’re finished. Believe it or not, the oldest cattle ranch in the U.S. is in Montauk! Deep Hollow Ranch caters to both new riders and experienced riders, and led by a professional cowboy or cowgirl.
4. Hike the Seal Haulout Trail from Route 27 up to the Sound. It’s a pretty, wooded, beginner hike suitable for 3-year-olds and up. In late winter and spring, go during low tide to see seals hanging out on the rocks.
5. Fly kites at the Edward Ecker Park on Navy Road. Bring a picnic lunch, a fishing pole for the Pier or sneakers for the Hither Hills Hiking Trails that are right there.
6. Spend the day at the Montauk Downs State Park. There is a beautiful 18-hole golf course, tennis, two pools and places to eat. There are Pros to give private or group lessons.
7. Listen to live music during the summer. “The Green” at the Gazebo right in town has free performances on Mondays and Gosman’s in the Harbor has free concerts on Sundays, both from 6 to 8 p.m. in the summer, while the kids dance, run, play and make fast friends.
8. Build a Bonfire on the Beach. Grocery stores have everything you need to get your bonfire going — firewood, lighter fluid, marshmallows, sticks and even pre-packaged kits for making s’mores. Check regulations to build your fire to code.
9. Frolic in a playground at Alexi’s Place at the Montauk Playhouse. Children will love the small jungle-gym area (no swings) at Montauk Playhouse and the Montauk School.You’ll find a swing set (with a bucket-shaped baby swing, too), a softball/baseball field, tennis courts, and skateboard area, at Henry “Hank” Zebrowski Memorial Park.
10. Take a walk around Town and the Harbor. Pickup sweets and toys at kid-friendly hotspots for ice cream, candies, retro and craft toys. Find locally made popsicles and ice cream. Bring cash as credit cards are not accepted in some of the shops.
11. Mini-golf at an outdoor arena at the entrance to downtown. With 18 holes, this is an ideal venue for your family to connect and have fun. A cash only spot.
12. Explore Montauk Point Lighthouse. An East End favorite, Montauk Point Lighthouse is the oldest lighthouse in New York State and the eastern most point of Long Island. Older kids will better appreciate its history (commissioned by George Washington), but the park around the lighthouse offers fun for all ages. Children who want to climb the tower must be 41″in height.
13. Go to the Farmer’s Market. Kids can discover artisanal lemonade, popsicles, root beer, cookies, pie in a jar, peaches straight from the local farm, plus treats for the adults, too. The Farmer’s Market takes place in the summer on the Montauk Village Green on Thursdays, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
14. Investigate mysterious Camp Hero. Initially used as an Army base, Camp Hero also served as an Air Force Base, commissioned by the U.S. Army in 1942. Hike to find a house with a secret exit…a dead end with old guard booth…concrete beach bunkers – all of these are the “secret spots” to be discovered. This excursion is suitable for older kids.
15. Swim in the pool at your hotel. This is especially great for young ones because the ocean can sometimes be a bit cold for them. Some hotels have wading pools.
For more information, visit www.montaukchamber.com.