With another School Break just around the corner, I’m sure you’re trying to think of Free Things to do with Kids in the Hudson Valley or, at least, that you can do inexpensively.
The problem is, that most Hudson Valley Activities that are both convenient and fun can also cost a lot of money. That can be a real burden for many and, especially, those with large families.
Trust me, I know…
I’ve been in your position many times and after much trial and error, I think I have a solution for you…
If you’ve ever wondered what things you can do, for free, with your kids in the Hudson Valley, then I am here to help you.
After much researching and lots of visiting, the places listed below are sure to make any outing a special one! Take a look and let me know what you think…
FREEBIE ALERT: For additional places to Visit in the Hudson Valley, you can check out my Free Download, Free Things to Do in The HV Now at the bottom of this post.
Hudson Valley Activities
Tips for enjoying the day doing Free Activities in the Hudson Valley:
⭒ Plan your day ahead of time.
⭒ Make sure to Double-Check the days and times the places/activities are open. They often change seasonally.
⭒ Check the weather, as some of these places are outdoors.
⭒ Take lots of photos so you can later reminisce your outing.
⭒ Remember: You don’t need to travel far or spend a lot of money in order to have fun!
No matter what age you are, there continues to be a sense of curiosity in everyone. It is in our nature to go out, explore, learn and try new things. And the Hudson Valley is a wonderful place to explore and do all of that. There are so many things to do with kids in the Hudson Valley, that the list seems endless.
The Hudson Valley consists of 10 counties. From Farms to Art Centers and everything in between, this beautiful region offers an exceptional selection of kids activities within each and every one of its counties.
You don’t need to travel far in order to find some free things to do and that everyone will enjoy.
Below are 9+ Free Things to do in the Hudson Valley. You can enjoy them during school breaks and/or during any time of the year.
Make sure you come back and check this list of ideas when you’re looking for something fun to do. These places and activities are not limited to having an outing with children but can also be enjoyed by adults just the same.
No 1: Stony Kill Farm
Stony Kill Farm – Stony Kill Farm is a working farm located in Wappingers Falls, NY (Dutchess County). This is one of my favorite Hudson Valley Kids Activities, although I will admit, that I also enjoy going without my children.
They have the Barn open to the public on Saturdays and Sundays from 11am-1pm. Parking and entrance are free (a donation is always appreciated).
In addition to the animals, there is a play area which makes this one of the Top Free Things to do in the Hudson Valley. Children can explore the hands-on activities and learn more about the farm animals and equipment used to run a farm.
No 2: Trailside Museum and Zoo
Trailside Museum and Zoo – located at the Bear Mountain State Park, the zoo and museums are open Year-Round from 10am-4: 30 pm.
Although the zoo & museums are FREE (a donation is always appreciated), there is a parking fee to enter and park at Bear Mountain State Park ($10 per car).
This outing is particularly enjoyable for kids and it is also educational for parents. The majority of the animals on site are being rehabilitated from injuries in the wild or when in captivity.
In addition to the animals, there are four (4) Museums on the property: Herpetology Museum, Nature Study Museum, Geology Museum and History Museum. Each is unique and incredibly interesting to visit.
With all these wonderful things to do at the Trailside Zoo & Museum, you can guess why it’s one of the top Hudson Valley Activities.
No 4: Untermyer Gardens
Untermyer Gardens – Located in Yonkers, NY, the uniqueness of Untermyer Gardens doesn’t lie in its beauty and grandeur. It also doesn’t lie in its views of the Hudson River. What makes Untermyer SO unique is that it is a ‘Walled Garden‘.
This is hidden gem in the Hudson Valley makes it one of the top Free Things to do in the Hudson Valley. Walking into Untermyer makes you feel as if have entered an enchanted, secret garden and you somewhat expect fairies to fly by you as they chase each other.
Spend an afternoon here. Trust me when I saw you will be swept away in the beauty or enjoy one of the tours (for a fee) offered on the weekends.
No 5: West Point Museum
West Point Museum – Located in West Point, NY, the West Point Museum is typically not what people go to West Point to see. Just outside the gates of the Famous Military Academy stands a museum full of history.
Whether you’re a history buff or your kids are interested in history, the West Point museum has an amazing collection of artifacts and models. The showcases are filled with objects, models and both educational and interesting information.
In addition, they have a cannon collection in the basement that will leave you in awe. The museum is open daily from 10:30am-4: 15 pm and is always free (a donation is always appreciated).
No 6: Hike the Hudson Valley
Take a Hike – Weather permitting, the Hudson Valley offers an abundance of hiking trails in every single county.
TIP: Best Resource for hikes around the area is HiketheHudsonValley.com
Some Favorite Hikes include: (Links direct you to posts from HiketheHudsonValley.com)
- Little Stony Point in Cold Spring, NY
- Mount Beacon in Beacon, NY
- Dover Stone Church, Dover Plains, NY
- Constitution Marsh & Indian Brook Falls, Garrison, NY
As some of you may know, I’m not a hiker or an outdoors person, but I do like to take walks outdoors. The ‘Hike the Hudson Valley’ Website offers an abundance of information regarding hikes for all fitness levels.
I can’t wait to make a list and start exploring some of these places myself.
And don’t forget about the Walkway Over the Hudson!
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE:
This is what happens when you visit the Walkway Over the Hudson State Park
No 7: Rockland Center for the Arts
Rockland Center for the Arts – located in West Nyack, NY (Rockland County).
My favorite part of RoCA is the Catherine Konner Sculpture Garden. It’s open year-round from Dawn to Dusk and is free to the public (a donation is always appreciated).
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE:
How to Best Explore the Rockland Center for the Arts
No 8: Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture
Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture – located in Tarrytown, NY. Open from Wednesday through Friday 10am-5pm. The farm is open year-round.
They offer tours (for a fee), and the farm itself is open to the public for free on Wed, Thurs, and Fri. There is a fee on the weekends.
No 9: National Purple Heart Hall of Honor
National Purple Heart Hall of Honor – located in New Windsor, NY. This is another great FREE location for those who love history.
You can stroll through the Hall of Honor and look at photos and medals associated with each branch of the Armed Forces. You can also enjoy the day outdoors at the New Windsor Cantonment located on the same grounds.
During the warmer months, the New Windsor Cantonment hosts reenactments and several fun and educational events.
No 10: Historic Sites all around the Hudson Valley
Did you know that most of the grounds where our most famous and popular historic sites are located have no entrance fee?
That’s right…. A fee is charged for tours of the Historic buildings, not to walk around the property.
The following places allow visitors to enter the grounds and walk around for FREE:
- Vanderbilt Mansion, Hyde Park, NY
- Lyndhurst Mansion, Tarrytown, NY
- Franklin D Roosevelt National Historic Site, Hyde Park, NY
- George Washington’s Headquarters, Newburgh, NY
No. 11: Hudson Valley Nature Centers & Museums
Just like the Historic site, many Nature Center do not charge a fee to walk on the grounds.
Some local favorites include:
No 12: Museum/Art Centers Monthly Free Events on Select days
Museum/Art Centers Monthly offer Free Events on Select days – Keep in mind that many places in the Hudson Valley offer a FREE day once a month. Make sure to check out their websites for the exact days.
Some of these places include:
- Pelham Art Center
- Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum, Poughkeepsie, NY
- Free First Saturdays at Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, NY
- Blue Door Art Center and the offers free weekly art workshops for children (Registration required).
- DIA: Beacon
No 13: Visit a local or, ‘not-so-local’, Hudson Valley Park
Local parks and playgrounds – Weather permitting, get in the car or take a train to explore a playground in another town or area of the Hudson Valley.
What can I say? I love a good park. With so many to choose from I’m sure you will find your own favorite in the area.
- Tibbett’s Book Park in Yonkers
- Long Dock Park in Beacon, NY
- Bowdoin Park in Wappingers Falls, NY
- Franny Reese State Park in Highland, NY
- Hudson Highlands in Cold Spring, NY
- James Baird State Park in Pleasant Valley, NY
- Black Creek Preserve, Esopus, NY
- Clarence Fahnestock State Park in Putnam Valley, NY
- FDR State Park in Yorktown Heights, NY
- Hastings-on-Hudson Community Gardens, Hastings-on-Hudson, NY
- MacEchron Park in Hastings-on-Hudson
- Croton Point Park in Croton-on-Hudson, NY
- Willson’s Wood Park in Mount Vernon, NY
Where will your next outing take you?
Now that you have some ideas and a starting point, go ahead, and start planning away. Let me know what your next adventure will be in the comments below!
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Until The Next Adventure…
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