York, Maine, is a beautiful place to visit for just about anyone, but it’s a particularly lovely place for families thanks to all of the kid-friendly activities it has to offer. If you’re planning on spending some time here and want to add a few family-friendly items to your itinerary, take a look at these things to do in York, Maine, with kids, and you’ll surely find plenty of inspiration.
- Go to Long Sands Beach
- Head to Short Sands Beach
- Take a Lighthouse Tour
- Head to the Zoo
- Visit an Amusement Park
- Check Out a Butterfly Exhibit
- Ride the York Beach Trolley
- Check Out Fun-O-Rama
1. Go to Long Sands Beach
Few places are more appropriate for kids to be themselves than the beach. There’s room to run, space to swim and play, and sandcastles to build. And you can easily keep an eye on them while you relax in the sun.
Long Sands Beach offers over a mile of sand where you can set up camp and spend the day or go for a relaxing stroll with the whole family. There’s also a gear rental shop and a designated area for surfers.
2. Head to Short Sands Beach
Short Sands Beach offers a slightly different experience than Long Sands does. There’s a smaller area for relaxing by the shore, better proximity to shops and restaurants, and a playground for the kids.
Another big draw for this beach is how close it is to one of the most kid-friendly destinations in all of York: York’s Wild Kingdom Zoo and Fun Park. You can relax by the water before or after you stop by the park to play games, go on some rides, and meet animals.
3. Take a Lighthouse Tour
Checking out a lighthouse isn’t just one of the best things to do in York, Maine, with kids — it’s one of the best things to do in Maine in general. The state is home to 65 beautiful lighthouses that can be found all along its coast and islands that can be found just off of it.
In York, you’ll find the tallest lighthouse in New England, the Boon Island Light, and you’ll also find the Cape Neddick Nubble Lighthouse. Both of these lighthouses are located offshore on their own small islands and cannot be visited. However, they can be seen on a boat tour, and the Nubble Lighthouse can be seen from a lovely vantage point in Sohier Park.
While younger kids may not be as fascinated by the history of these lighthouses as you may be, they will no doubt be impressed by their beauty and their sheer size even when viewed from a distance. Make sure to bring them by the Nubble Lighthouse gift shop to grab them a souvenir.
4. Head to the Zoo
York’s Wild Kingdom Zoo and Fun Park is easily one of the best things to do in York, Maine, with kids. They have a tremendous array of activities for the whole family, including a zoo, a petting zoo, an amusement park, and a butterfly kingdom.
The Wild Kingdom Zoo has a ton of exhibits offering you and your kids a chance to meet animals from all across the planet, including African lions, ring-tail lemurs, alpacas, zebras, prairie dogs, cassowaries, ostriches, monkeys, parrots, parakeets, camels, and much more.
5. Visit an Amusement Park
The amusement park at York’s Wild Kingdom Zoo and Fun Park has a variety of kid-friendly rides, such as a merry-go-round, a rollercoaster, go-karts, a super slide, and bumper cars. For children under four feet tall, there are three special kiddy rides. Other attractions include mini golf and midway games.
6. Check Out a Butterfly Exhibit
The Butterfly Kingdom at York’s Wild Kingdom Zoo and Fun Park is a beautiful exhibit spanning 5,500 square feet and containing various species of colorful butterflies from Central and South America, as well as some birds and small mammals. You and your family can walk freely through the butterflies’ habitat and see them up close and personal. This exhibit is highly recommended.
7. Ride the York Beach Trolley
Your kids are likely to get a kick out of simply taking a ride on the York Beach Trolley, but you’re more likely to get a kick out of the convenience that it offers. It can bring you to or near to a ton of the most fun and interesting parts of York without costing you a cent. It’s hard to argue with free.
8. Check Out Fun-O-Rama
If you’re looking for indoor things to do in York, Maine, with kids, then Fun-O-Rama is the answer. Conveniently located right next to Short Sands Beach, this arcade is packed with everything your kids are looking for, from classic arcade games to claw machines, skeeball, and much more. It’s the perfect option for a rainy day when the kids are restless.
York, Maine is Fun for the Whole Family
Hopefully, now, you have a better idea of how to have some family fun during your stay in York, Maine. There’s so much more to do, though, so be open to a change of plans should something catch your eye once you’re here.
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