Day Trips To Take Near New York City

Updated: Aug 22


These day trip ideas are great for NYU and Fordham students. If you just moved to campus and are looking to explore the New York City area, how about a day trip to the Long Island Aquarium. Now, Long Island isn’t exactly near the city so you’ll need to plan to be out for the full day. The good news is that you can get to the Long Island Aquarium by car in about 1 ½ hour or by train in about 3 hours. If you’re taking the train, then rise & shine because you’ll need to head out around 7:00 a.m. to make this day trip work.

Due to COVID, capacity is limited. That means you should book your reservations ahead of time. Entry times begin on the hour, starting at 11:00 a.m. which is perfect because the morning train from NYC will get you to the aquarium around 10:40 a.m. The last entry is at 2:00 p.m. Entry into the aquarium is $35 per adult.


If you miss the 11:00 a.m. entry time, you can grab a bite to eat in the area or take a short walk over to Long Island Canoe & Kayak Rentals. While there, you can join a one hour guided kayak tour which occurs twice per day, one at 11:00 a.m., the other at 2:00 p.m. You can also go solo without a group. Long Island Canoe & Kayak also offers bike ($10 p/hour), paddle board ($35 p/hour) and fishing pole ($10 p/hour) rentals. If you do make the 11:00 a.m. entry time, you can always enjoy these activities after leaving the museum.


Once inside the aquarium, in addition to aquatic life, other exhibits include an American alligator, bird, bug, and Amazon rainforest. Outside exhibits include a Koi pond, penguin pavilion, sea lion coliseum, and more. Finally, you can take a ride down the Peconic River on the Atlantis Explorer Tour Boat; however, while the indoor and outdoor exhibits are included in the aquarium admission fee, this tour will cost an additional $35. Keep in mind that this tour runs at 12:30 p.m. or 3:30 p.m. and lasts 2 hours.


If you are taking the train for this day trip, make sure you wrap things up and arrive back at the train station by 5:15 p.m. to head home. If you miss the 5:25 train, the next train back to the city doesn’t come until 9:27 p.m. and arrives in NYC around 1:00 a.m.


Sample Itinerary: Day Trip to Long Island Aquarium by train

7:00 a.m. Train to Long Island Aquarium

10:39 a.m. Arrive at Long Island Aquarium

11:00 a.m. Grab lunch

12:00 p.m. Enter aquarium and explore indoor exhibits

2:00 p.m. Explore outdoor exhibits

3:30 p.m. Long Island Canoe & Kayak - 1 hour canoe or bike rental

4:30 p.m. Leave museum and head back to the train station

5:27 p.m. Board train to NYC

8:45 p.m. Arrive back in NYC


Sample Itinerary: Day Trip to Long Island Aquarium by train (with boat tour)

7:00 a.m. Train to Long Island Aquarium

10:39 a.m. Arrive at Long Island Aquarium

11:00 a.m. Enter aquarium and explore indoor exhibits

12:30 p.m. Atlantis Explorer Boat Tour

2:30 p.m. Return to the aquarium and grab lunch.

3:00 pm. Explore outdoor exhibits

3:45 p.m. Long Island Canoe & Kayak - 1 hour canoe or bike rental

4:45 p.m. Leave museum and head back to the train station

5:27 p.m. Board train to NYC

8:45 p.m. Arrive back in NYC


Due to the COVID pandemic, hours and capacity may change. Please check websites or call for current hours and possible closings.

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