Best Labor Day weekend getaways to take this year

Labor Day weekend getaways are the perfect way to enjoy some r&r before the hectic school year begins

Photograph: Shutterstock
By Rebecca Jennings, Elizabeth Gerst, Dorkys Ramos and Danielle Valente |

We regret to inform your family that summer 2018 is coming to a close. To avoid the long faces, you might want to start planning one of these epic Labor Day weekend getaways ASAP. Closing out the season on a high note is the best way to avoid those back-to-school blues. 

Options are aplenty, from family-friendly resorts to bustling cities and tranquil locales. You can round out the summer with adventure or some simple r&r—it's all up to you and the family. 

What are you waiting for? It won't be long before you're indulging in cider and scary movies thanks to the best fall activities for kids, so might as well take advantage of an extra dose of summer while you can! 

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the best family vacations from NYC

Looking to head out of town? Book a stay at the best family resorts, enjoy one of these family weekend getaways or enjoy the great outdoors at one of these family campgrounds near NYC.

Labor Day weekend getaways

Photograph: Courtesy Hershey Entertainment & Resorts

Hershey Lodge

Travel time: 2 hours and 45 minutes by car from NYC

There's no sweeter place to vacation this LDW than Hershey. The park is home to 70 amusement park rides, delicious chocolate and the irresistible Hershey Triple Tower, a “choose-your-thrill” ride that lets riders pick from three drops. Then hop on Laff Trakk, an indoor “glow-coaster” the takes passengers through a funhouse. The fun continues at Hershey Lodge where Hershey characters and animals from ZooAmerica will greet little ones. Hershey, PA (

Photograph: Courtesy Hilton Hotels & Resorts

Mystic, CT

Travel time: 2 hours and 30 minutes by car from NYC

It's all about underwater adventure when visiting Mystic. Visit sea creatures at the Mystic Aquarium ( or go back in time with a pitstop at the Mystic Seaport ( to catch a glimpse at the old wooden whaleship and buildings from the 1800s. Set up shop at the Hilton when the day's over (

Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flicker/CBMM Photos

St. Michaels, MD

Travel time: 4 hours and 15 minutes by car from NYC

Known as “the heart and soul of the Chesapeake Bay,” St. Michaels has the quiet charm of a 19th-century seaport, with ample family activities: There’s boating, fly-fishing and golf to try as a family, or you can zip through town on a bike or scooter. While parents might want to make time for antiquing, kids will be reeled in by the action-packed Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum ( For seafood lovers, the area is brimming with decadent dining options (the blue crabs are a must), including Stars restaurant at the Inn at Perry Cabin ( Head to the St. Michaels Inn when you need to refresh. (

Photograph: Courtesy Krista Kulp

Skytop Lodge

Travel time: 2 hours and 30 minutes by car from NYC

This 5,500-acre lodge in the Poconos has a few accommodations to choose from to cater to all kinds of families. The Main Lodge has a library, arcade and indoor pool; the Inn is located by a gold course; the roomy Cottages are great for larger families. Head outdoors to find nature trails, waterfalls and a beach by the lake and take part in a long list of awesome activities, including rock climbing, archery and paintball. Skytop, PA ( 


Rehoboth Beach, DE

Travel time: 4 hours by car from NYC

You’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time when you visit Rehoboth Beach, a low-key town with sandy beaches and mild waves for enjoying with little ones. It even has an old-fashioned boardwalk with a theme park! ( The Rehoboth Beach Bandstand offers free surfside concerts, and after your show, stop by the town’s Ice Cream Store ( offers flavors like Bacon, Cereal Killer and Booger (don’t worry, it’s vanilla ice cream mixed with green-colored caramel). Stay at Avenue Inn & Spa at the end of the day (

Photograph: courtesy CoCo Key Water Resort

CoCo Key Water Resort

Travel time: 1 hour and 30 minutes by car from NYC

Bad weather won’t bust this trip: Located just 12 miles from Philly, CoCo Key packs all the fun of a traditional water park indoors. There’s Parrot’s Perch, an aquatic jungle gym with bucket dumpers and slides, the 300-foot Coconut Grove lazy river to float down on an inner tube, the Dip-In wading pool for the littlest swimmers, a lily pad balancing course and even a splash basketball course inside a three-foot pool. For the daring, there’s a four-story Shark Slam and the dark, twisting Barracuda Blast slides. It’s all connected to the Hotel ML, which has arcade games like Dance Dance Revolution, Guitar Hero and Skee-Ball—and everyone gets to go home a winner. (

Photograph: Courtesy Pinegrove Family Dude Ranch

Pinegrove Family Dude Ranch

Travel time: 2 hours 20 minutes by car from NYC

Equestrian fans will find lots to love at this 600-acre ranch—horseback riding, pony rides and lasso demonstrations are just some of the activities offered here. After your trotting adventures, join in on line dancing classes, rock climbing, hayrides and water slides. Cap off the night by sharing stories of your day around a campfire. Three meals a day are included in the package, perfect for families who’d rather spend their energy taking in all that nature offers. 30 Cherrytown Rd, Kerhonkson, NY ( Prices start at $169 per adult per night.

Pine Lake Manor

Travel time: 2 hours and 45 minutes by car from NYC

At this all-inclusive Catskills resort, guests of all ages will find a calendar of activities to keep them busy. Put your sports skills to the test by signing up for tournaments in basketball, tennis, shuffleboard and bocce. Fitness-focused family members can bust a move in Zumba classes while energetic kids can jump in the bounce castle or take it easy on the wagon rides. Marshmallow roasts, movie nights and DJs spinning fun beats are just some of the other cool activities available. Greenville, NY (

Lake Placid, NY
Photograph Courtesy of

Ridin-Hy Ranch Resort

Travel time: 4 hours by car from NYC

Urban cowboys and cowgirls can saddle up for a good time at Ridin-Hy, an all-inclusive 700-acre dude ranch. Depending on the season, families can opt for riding lessons, banana boat rides, tubing or some peace and tranquility on the green grounds. Activities abound at night, from beachside bonfires to outdoor movies, and there's something for visitors of all ages. Yeehaw! Warrensburg, NY (518-494-2742, 

Photograph: Courtesy Rocking Horse Ranch

Rocking Horse Ranch

Travel time: 2 hours by car from NYC

There’s much more to do at this ranch than the name suggests, though your stay does include horseback riding and pony rides. A private lake offers the chance to water ski, kayak, paddleboat and fish, plus there are two heated pools. If it’s not warm enough for a swim, you can walk nature trails, play outdoor games (think basketball, shuffleboard, mini-golf, tennis and softball) and indoor activities (like an archery range and nightly live performances). Labor Day weekend bonus: a fireworks show. Highland, NY (

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