Looking for kid-friendly Botanical Gardens on Long Island? Nassau County offers a bunch that are great to let your kids explore (just don’t let them pick the flowers).
Old Westbury Gardens
Kids will love running through the lush gardens in Old Westbury Gardens and playing in 2 kid-sized cabins. Strollers are welcome. though you may have a little trouble navigating around some of the areas (like the steps in the back of the Phipps Mansion). There are family programs — on certain Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, you will need to pre-register for some of them.
Hours: Open every weekend from April 2nd, and every day EXCEPT TUESDAYS, from April 25th to October 31st from 10:00 am until 5:00 pm.
Admission $10.00 — Adult, $ 8.00 — Senior (over 62), $ 5.00 Children 7-12, Children 6 and under are free
Location: 71 Old Country Road, Old Westbury, NY 11590, (516) 333-0048
Bailey’s got stunning gardens and forests, which offer a lot for families to discover. There’s a Children’s Habitat that encourages children to touch, dig, collect, build, hide, climb and make noise. Also check out the wild flowers in the woods and the frogs and salamanders in Bailey’s ponds, streams and forests. Plus, you can picnic there (just remember to pick up after yourself!).
Hours: Open year round to the public everyday, from 9 am to 4 pm.
Admission: Free (but donations are welcome)
Location: 194 Bayville Road (corner of Feeks Lane and Bayville Road), Lattingtown, NY 11560, (516) 571- 8020
Planting Fields Aborteum
This public arboretum and historic site is located in Oyster Bay, New York. A former Gold Coast estate, there are 409 acres of greenhouses, lawns, gardens, paths, and stunning plant collections. Coe Hall is the 65 room Tudor Revival mansion, which is open for tours spring through fall. The Planting fields may work better for kids 10 and up. Families can get a catered brunch in the barn every Sunday from Periwinkles Catering.
Hours: 9-5pm daily, open April 1st to Labor Day, then weekends from September to October 31st.
Admission $8 per car, Free in the winter season
Location: 1395 Planting Fields Road, Oyster Bay, NY (516) 922-9210
Clark Botanic Garden
There are children’s programs on Saturdays kids ages 7-11. Each workshop costs $25 and you must register in advance. Includes a hands on workshop and tour of the garden. Click here to download the registration form or call (516) 484-2208.
Hours: 10 AM to 4:00 PM daily, winter weekends closed except for scheduled events.
Admission: A voluntary donation is greatly appreciated.
Location: 193 I U Willets Road, Albertson, NY, (516) 484-8600
By Nancy Johnson Horn