Let the adventure begin!

Hi! I’m Brittany! Central Jersey-based mom of my own Little Brady bunch. Our family loves a good adventure and loves to travel. Travel...Something we all wish we could do more of. Traveling gets us out of our comfort zone and away from the rat race of our everyday lives. Going on these adventures with our children shows them it’s a great big world we live in! Even experiences just beyond their immediate environment can give them a better understanding of the world we live in. So whether it’s financial restraints or time that you don’t have. From taking a trip to the local farm up the road or flying across the globe and exploring a new country, both can be exciting and humbling experiences for people young and old. Here I will share my family’s affordable adventures. Ideas for a local NJ day trip to Summer vacations and everything in between! Follow us on our next adventure!

My Top Local Picks

Favorite local family day trip adventures

These are a few of my favorite county parks and local farms to spend a fun-filled afternoon exploring with the family!

Big Brook Preserve

Pack your sifter (or spaghetti strainer 😆) and get ready to find some real fossils here! Spend the afternoon in the flowing brook beneath a beautiful canopy of trees. My link below is to Big Brook Park but be sure when using the navigation on iPhone to type “Big Brook Preserve” do you get to the right place. It’s just a small lot off the side of the road in Colts Neck, NJ. You will hike down about a half-mile trail before you reach the small ravine where you will find the brook. Oh, and did I mention it’s part of the Monmouth county park system so it’s FREE! 🎉🙌🏻

Allaire Community Farm

Allaire Community Farm is so cute! A great way to spend the morning or afternoon. For a small entry fee for the “petting zoo,” you can wander the grounds of the farm and see all the animals from small chickens to large horses. You can also purchase a bag of food to bring with you along the way. There is also an adorable little barrel train that circles the farm for another few dollars a ride. There is also a large covered picnic area you can sit and have lunch. Check their website below for hours and any other info you have questions about.

Happy Day Farm

From summertime berry picking and sunflower fields to the adorable fall festivities and pumpkin patch, Happy Day has year-round fun! Pack your wallets though because it is never a “cheap” afternoon. Between entry fees and every activity add on you will definitely spend a bit of money spending the afternoon here, but once a season for the adorable photo ops and yummy lemonade is definitely worth checking out you will have a great time. Check the website link below to see the latest happenings at Happy Day. I know things are a bit different from the COVID-19 regulations so be sure to check their website.

Deep Cut Gardens

Part of the Monmouth county park system, this magical little place in Middletown NJ is full of incredible trees and beautiful blooming gardens. It is truly like something in a fairytale. It’s FREE to spend the afternoon exploring the grounds. There is so much to see and beautiful koi fish pond my kids sat next to in awe of all the giant beautiful fish. Also, keep your eyes peeled for some colorful “monster in the park” rocks hidden along the way..we found one and hid it for
The next people it was very exciting for the kids. 😁

Watkins Glen, NY

Weekend Camping trip to Watkins Glen, NY

If you live in or around the Tri-State area a trip out to Watkins Glen on Seneca Lake is a great weekend getaway. This cute little lakeside village in upstate New York is more commonly known for its NASCAR track (for those that are into that 🤷🏼‍♀️) but also holds a beautiful state park that is a waterfall wonderland! Also, Seneca Lake has a wine trail and many great family-friendly craft breweries for mom and dad! My family and I rented the most adorable Farmhouse style camper, decked out in shiplap, subway tiles, and all. We stayed at the Clute Memorial campground on the lake (no-frills) perfect for the family and close proximity to the town, the state park, and the lake. (All within a half-mile radius) Linked below is the camper we stayed in, the state park, boat rental, breweries, and wineries we visited during our weekend adventure!

Farmhouse Camper!

This adorable camper was perfect for our stay at Watkins Glen! Kim was a great host! All we had to do was book our campsite and show up! Everything was set up for us at the campground! Our family of five fit very comfortably in the camper. It was nice to have a kitchen to prepare breakfast and grill at dinner (grill she also provided.) Don't forget roasting s’ mores on the campfire at night! It was a super affordable and unique experience I would highly recommend! (But not for fussy travelers)

Farmhouse camper Air BnB

Clute Memorial Campground

Great campground on the lake (no-frills) Everyone is very friendly. Across the street are the lake and a public park where you can catch some beautiful sunsets. There is also a state park which my boys loved!

Book your campsite here!

Watkins Glen State Park

Absolutely Magical place! Get there early to avoid crowds, hike the gorge trail, the views are breathtaking. Wear your sneakers and bring water and snacks as there are places you can sit along the way and take a quick break. My six-year-old son was able to hike the entire way but it was a feat for him. I carried my two-year-old daughter some of the way up and all of the way down (wouldn’t recommend 😥) Some sort of sling or hiking backpack you could put your smaller kids in would be recommended. Check out the park website for guidelines and hours linked below.

Park website

Grist Iron Brewery

Great brewery with great food and awesome views of Seneca lake. We had lunch here it was very family-friendly would highly recommend!

Grist Iron Website

Boat Rental

We did a 4-hour boat rental one morning (which was plenty) I believe it was about $250 plus tax. We also rented a tube to pull behind the boat which I believe was an extra $25 but worth it! The kids had a blast and so did mom and dad. The lake water is so clear and very deep! We were told it’s an average of 600ft deep! I would highly recommend it was a great way to spend part of the day. The views were amazing! Linked is the Marina we rented from. It was a strange location off the side of the road but the staff was very friendly and the boat rental was easy and fair priced.

Anchor Inn & Marina

The tasting barn

A cute winery and “tasting barn” With small bites, great wine, and great views. It was a little fancier then I would’ve chosen to bring the kids to but we brought them anyways and nobody cared 🤷🏼‍♀️. There wasn’t much for them to eat as I knew this before hand and we fed them before we went. The menu has charcuterie and things of that sort. Even if the kids are with you I would still recommend. My husband and I enjoyed our time there and the kids watched their iPads 😆. Linked is the website check it out see if it’s for you!

The tasting barn

Lake Norman, NC long weekend

Fun filled long weekend on quite Lake Norman

Lake Norman was a little gem I found during the quarantine. It was still chilly spring in N.J. and the kids and I were going stir crazy and NEEDED a getaway! Most people from our area go down to the Outer Banks or Myrtle Beach but we opted for something different. I found a last-minute affordable Air BnB, we packed up the car and dog and made the 9-hour drive down to North Carolina. First of all, I weary about an Air BnB that was dog friendly...I wasn’t sure what to expect. Was the place going to be covered in pet hair and smell like a dog?
We pulled up to the adorable little A-frame lake house and I was so pleasantly surprised. The pictures online did not do the house justice at all! It was beautiful! Sparkling clean, and full of fun activities for our family to do all weekend long! There was an awesome little beach for the kids, two docks, a tiki bar, kayaks, a playground, and much more! The grocery store was maybe a mile away so I went shopping the day we arrived and we didn’t leave the house for the rest of the trip! It was an amazing trip we will definitely return! The link to the Air BnB we stayed in is below!

A weekend in Cape May, NJ

Get some R&R during a quiet weekend in Cape May. Located at the southernmost tip of NJ, Cape May is a beautiful little Victorian village. Cape May is not the Jersey Shore as you know it, it is quiet and peaceful. There are also many great restaurants shops and a beautiful beach! Below I have linked few recommendations for a relaxing yet fun-filled family weekend in Cape May!