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Being a parent means learning to juggle lots of things. Multi-tasking becomes second nature for parents, especially as they learn to juggle nap times, meal times, daycare and school drop-offs, you name it. Parents do this on the daily while still having to prioritize time for their own self-care and relationships. With all of these responsibilities, the thought of getting out of the house may seem like a tall order, but here are 6 things to do with babies and kids for a fun day together.
Grouped according to theme, these 6 day trips offer things to do with babies, toddlers, and older kids. With these day trips, everyone gets a chance to get out of the house, have fun, and recharge their batteries. Don’t let the stress of packing all the baby gear intimidate you. Pack what you need, buy what you forget, and let the feeling of wanderlust guide you for the day.
6 Things To Do With Babies & Kids
1. City Day Trips
One of the best ways to get out of the house and find fun things to do with babies is exploring a city. Whether it is the city you live in or a new city an hour away, be a city explorer!
Before venturing out, check out the city’s website, Wikipedia page, or even a visitor/tourism page. In this day and age, there will most certainly be an online presence for any city or town. Use these pages as a resource for planning purposes such as where to park, where to play, what to see and what to do.
When it comes to city exploring with kids, good things to do with babies are the kid-friendly places and spaces. Visits to libraries, especially children’s wings, offer entertainment, education and respite from the drive. Other good city spots include a visit to the town’s city hall, public parks or zoo. Strolls through inviting plazas and exploring public fountains are also good things to do with babies and kids. These are great ways to get some exercise and explore the vibe of a downtown.
2. Museum Day Trips
Planning a day trip around a visit to a museum is one of the most memorable things to do with babies, toddlers and kids. In fact, there’s plenty of research to support the numerous benefits of museum visits with children. Among these benefits are the development of critical thinking skills, introduction of unknown worlds and subject matter, and opportunities to stimulate the imagination.
There are a wide variety of museums types to visit. If it’s not a children’s museum, then most museums and cultural institutions will offer a child-friendly guide or list of exhibits that are more stimulating to the younger set.
Not often considered part of the museum tourist circuit, a botanical garden is also a great way to spend the afternoon with children. Botanical gardens often have rich cultural heritage, scientific research, and fascinating living collections. Other good museums for kids include Natural History Museums and Science Centers.
3. Farm Day Trips
The Midwest is definitely the heartland of farming for the country. However, even those living in urban areas can often find a farm within range of a short drive. Because of this, a farm visit is a great road trip chock-full of fun things to do with babies and kids.
Depending on the type of farm, there will be a variety of activities to keep the family entertained. Some working farms will have livestock and other animals in areas for kids to get close and learn a bit about livestock and other farm critters. They might also get to learn about the milking process of a cow, see pony grooming demonstrations, and walk away with a greater understanding of the food chain.
If visiting a u-pick farm, then the kids will have lots of fun picking seasonal treats like apples, berries, pumpkins, or wildflowers. But, make sure the family remembers farm etiquette before you go so that kids stay on paths, kids aren’t sampling products, and that the parents check with the farm for their public hours before dropping in unannounced.
4. Coastal Day Trips
Visits to the seashore are a great day trip with kids, especially if you reside in a coastal state. There’s nothing like feeling the sand between the toes, catching a cool breeze from the water, and smelling the salty water air.
A coastal day trip doesn’t have to be all about beach play. There are other fun and different things to do with babies and kids when visiting the coast. One such idea includes a visit to tide pools. Tide pools are teeming with marine life. A visit to the tide pools affords little ones the opportunity to see the unique creatures that call the intertidal zones home. Before visiting a tide pool, check a tide chart for the area to make sure that your visit is timed with low tide for the best viewing experience.
Other good coastal activities include visits to aquariums or marine science institutes. A marine science institute is usually associated with a college or university. These centers place a greater emphasis on the research and education of oceans, lakes, and other bodies of water. They usually offer programs to the public and a chance for kids to see current experiments in person.
5. Roadside Attraction Day Trips
If kitsch and offbeat are more your thing, then why not venture out for the day and visit roadside attractions. A roadside attraction is a feature along the side of a road or highway that’s meant to attract tourists. A fun thing to do with babies and kids, these are the types of novel and unusual monuments or geographical features that motorists drive by and wonder about without ever stopping. Well, why not try stopping next time!
To help locate a roadside attraction within a day’s drive, there are a few resources online to help with planning. Roadside America offers field reports and visitor tips for each state. Altas Obscura is another resource for scooping out offbeat attractions. Both sites can help geotarget roadside attractions by state or zip code.
Read More: Are you looking for a longer trip? Here are the 10 Best Weekend Getaways for Your Family.
6. Nature Day Trips
Being outdoors amongst nature is a great way to spend the day with the kids. A day trip to a hiking destination can do wonders to recharge the batteries for adults and kids alike.
When planning which areas to visit and hike, check to see if a nature center is affiliated with the destination. Nature centers often offer things to do with babies, toddlers and kids such as story times, ecology walks, and animal displays.
As parents plan a hike, it is recommended to pack proper sun protection, water, snacks, and a small first aid kit. And, make sure to read up on the wildlife and native plants to the area so that inquisitive kids don’t mistakenly touch the wrong thing.
Whichever your day trip style might be, one of the most important things to pack is a positive attitude and a smile. Share and tag your next road trip pics #dailymom to inspire other families to get out of the house and do the same.
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