Outdoor Fun For Winter Break In and Around Bergen County

Day Trips  / 

Even though the temps outside are dipping faster than your kid's oreo in a glass of milk, there's still plenty of fresh-air excitement happening to keep families entertained now, and over the quickly-approaching winter break. In addition to being a chance to enjoy the fresh air while engaging in energy-boosting activities, outdoor adventures can help improve your mental focus, improve your mood, help your lungs and so much more. So bundle up and head to one of these family-friendly outdoor activities over the winter break. 


Ice Skating

The Rink at Van Saun County Park Hone your skating skills at one Bergen County's most popular winter events: Winter Wonderland. While Winter Wonderland is open until January 2, The Rink alone is open until February 26. All ages can enjoy a public skating sessions which includes the option of balancing penguins for kids (or even rusty adults). Plus, find Santa and Mrs. Claus making an appearance this weekend and next.


Bear Mountain Ice Rink Looking for a scenic skate? Bear Mountain offers all-day public skating Fridays-Sundays through March 5. Take a whirl around the rink and take in the scenic views of Anthony's Nose (the Hudson's Highlands 900 foot peak) and the mountainous Hudson Valley. Plus, they have extra skate sessions during winter break week so you have plenty of opportunity to go around the rink. 


Winter Village at Bryant Park In addition to FREE open skating at this popular rink in NYC, Bryant Park offers plenty of entertainment for the family, including frequent skate performances, curling, cafés to keep warm, Igloo rentals, and so much more.


Newport Skates Located in Jersey City, this quiet outdoor rink typically doesn't get too crowded, so you can safely space out and let your little ones go slow while enjoying your skate sesh. Be sure to pre-purchase your tickets before you head out on the ice, and look for special daytime hours during the week of holiday break.


Wollman Rink Another outdoor NYC skating spot, Wollman Rink sits inside Central Park and is open daily with timed entry through March 15. Enjoy beautiful views of Manhattan while you skate, then warm up at the Wollman Café, which serves coffee, hot chocolate and small bites. Look out for the terrace cafe overlooking the rink, set to open next month. Check out their calendar of events before you go for special happenings like hot chocolate tastings and the holiday market.


Tubing and Skiing

Campgaw The ultimate beginner's mountain which sits right in the neighborhood has tubing, skiing and snowboarding so everyone can enjoy. Classes and lessons are available to help beginners feel more comfortable on the mountain, while anyone over 42 inches can enjoy the thrills -- and ice cold chills -- of tubing.


Mount Peter The 600-foot tubing hill at Mount Peter is expected to open December 17 this year, as the mountain has already begun making snow, so keep checking their website for tubing and skiing updates on their 17 trails. Open trails range in difficulty, so all abilities can enjoy hitting the slopes.


Winter Hikes and Snowshoeing 

Lamont Reserve This Bergen County spot holds a ton of history along the 134 wooded acres, which were transformed to 4.5 miles of trails. Trails range from an easy walk around Sneden Ice Pond to a difficult climb on Lamont Rock, making Lamont Reserve perfect for hiking, exploring, sightseeing and snoeshowing (think: hiking but with snowshoes that strap over winter hiking boots). 


Tenafly Nature Center You may have visited TNC for one of their seasonal programs, but did you know you can go to simply explore their trails and wildlife? Trails are open daily, and are short and easy enough for even the littlest explorers to conquer. Plus, you may encounter animals along the way.


Ramapo Valley County Reservation Winter is the perfect time to visit Bergen's largest park area and take a hike, as the crowds typically are much smaller than during warmer weather. Take a walk around Scarlet Oak Pond (dogs are welcome too!), or try out some cross-country skiing which is available in the winter, so you can get in a good workout while you explore.


Thielke Arboretum Sign up and visit the Thielke Arboretum in Glen Rock on January 25, February 1, or February 8 for a Nature Sprouts Winter Sessions for kids ages 2 to 4. Parents and children will enjoy easy winter walks while exploring nature and spending time in the fresh air. 


Outdoor Museums and Gardens

Storm King Art Center Storm King's Winter Weekends, opening January 14, provide an outdoor walking experience through their large-scale sculptures and outdoor galleries. Stay warm at their warming station during your walk, or get in some added exercise by taking advantage of their bike rentals, available weather permitting.


Grounds for Sculpture During the winter, Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton Township offers a number of invigorating exhibits, including the new Night Forms: Infinite Wave through April 2. Video projection, light, sound and a illuminated tree-lined path make it an immersive experience for all ages. 

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