Travel time: 2 hours and 45 minutes by car from NYC
With a 1600-foot vertical drop and 12 miles of trails, Windham Mountain is one of the biggest and best-run ski areas close to NYC. The ski school program for ages 4-9 includes lift ticket, rental and 2-hours and 30-minutes of instruction ($117). Skiing's not your thing? Try the tubing park, or nurse a warm cup of cocoa in the lodge. A free shuttle connects the ski area to the picturesque village of Windham, where you will find comfy hotels and cozy restaurants. Who needs the Alps when you have the Catskills? 19 Resort Drive, Windham (windhammountain.com).