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How Long is Summer Break in New York?  

We were all young once. As soon as summer break ended, we daydreamed about all we had experienced through the summer, counting down the days until we could do it again.

Until we could laze around in the water with our friends, make new friends at summer camp, and explore new places with family.

Most of us wished that summer break lasted all year. While it doesn’t last year-round, summer break typically occurs in June, July, and August. The dates vary by state and region.

So, how long is summer break in New York?

New York schools are out for summer break for approximately 2-2.5 months. Most schools throughout the state begin summer break around the end of June and reconvene the first week of September. While there are a few exceptions, most schools and districts throughout the state follow a similar calendar.

Following similar calendars and schedules for all schools in New York benefits both parents and educators, particularly during summer break.

For parents, summer is an opportunity to spend more time with their children and make lasting memories.

How long is summer break in New York?

In New York, summer break lasts two or two and a half months. Summer break typically begins in late June and ends in early September. However, some New York school districts let out for summer break in mid-June, with a return date at the end of August.

Generally, school districts in New York schedule the return from summer break after Labor Day. This enables families to take one last vacation together before returning to school.

How many days or weeks is summer break in New York?

The state of New York has over 800 public school districts, serving kindergarten through twelfth grade. Hundreds of charter, magnet, and private schools also serve students across the state.

There are a number of factors school districts must consider when creating their annual calendar. Since some of these factors are weather-related, it’s impossible for all district calendars to match.

With such diversity in school calendars, determining the number of days or weeks in New York’s summer break can be quite a challenge. The average summer break in New York is 11–13 weeks, or 77–91 days.

What is the last day of school in New York?

New York schools try to organize their calendars to match other districts as closely as possible. Despite their efforts, most schools follow a slightly different schedule than their neighboring counties.

If you’re unsure when your children’s last day of school is, we recommend contacting their school directly or referring to the school’s online calendar.

New York School District calendars

New York has 4,411 public schools spread out over its 800 school districts. Additionally, there are currently 357 charter schools and 231 magnet schools across the state.

Check out a full list of New York school districts to learn more about your region’s school calendar and summer schedule.

Where to go in New York for summer break

Summer is the perfect time to make memories with your family that will last a lifetime. While you may have a list of unique destinations you would like to visit this summer, why not explore the opportunities that await just outside your door?

Whether you’re looking for state-of-the-art theme parks, beach days, water sports, waterfall hikes, or mountain biking, New York has almost 55,000 square miles just waiting to be discovered.

Each year, over 250 million tourists travel to New York State. It’s the perfect place to relax, soak up some Vitamin D, and connect with family and friends.

Before you book your family’s flights to a tropical paradise halfway around the world, consider these epic destinations right here in our home state.

Finger Lakes

While the Finger Lakes region is known for its wineries, there’s much more to enjoy than a nice glass of wine. If your family enjoys getting out in nature, the Finger Lakes is the perfect place to take a family vacation.

With over 25 state and national parks, the Finger Lakes area boasts some of the most stunning lakes, waterfalls, and hiking trails. Spend the day chasing waterfalls and cool off afterward with a dip in the lake.

If you prefer to cool off with ice cream, be sure to check out the Ice Cream Trail, which features the best ice creameries across New York.

There are over 1,000 waterfalls in the Finger Lakes area, so deciding where to begin can be challenging. Watkins Glen State Park is one of the most well-known New York State parks. As you hike through the park, you’ll be treated to over 19 waterfalls and gorges, each beautiful in its own right.

Looking for a more child-centered activity? The Strong Museum of Play in Rochester, which boasts the largest collection of children’s toys, provides the perfect setting for smaller children to just be children.

The Corning Museum of Glass is great for older kids. Here, you can learn the history and culture of glass and glass making, explore the interactive science and technology galleries, or attend one of the museum’s daily demonstrations.

Niagara Falls

Established in 1885, Niagara Falls State Park is America’s first state park. The grounds are pristine, with breathtaking beauty everywhere you turn. With so much to see and do, planning a family vacation to Niagara Falls can be a bit overwhelming.

While the Canadian portion of Niagara Falls has the most stunning views of the falls, it’s also more developed and touristy. The US side of Niagara Falls offers a more pristine, untouched landscape.

There are a number of ways to experience the Falls, each offering its own unique experience. To do it all, you’ll need at least three days. To fully experience this natural wonder, include these activities in your itinerary:

  • Take the iconic Maid of the Mist boat tour to get up close to and even under the breathtaking cascades of Niagara Falls!
  • Take the elevator and walk nature’s staircase into the swirling mists, thunderous sounds, and tropical-like atmosphere at the base of the falls on the Cave of the Winds experience.
  • Get a great view of Niagara Falls from the picturesque Niagara Falls State Park Observation Towers. It’s here that you’ll also find attractions such as the Aquarium of Niagara, the Maid of the Mist deck, and more!

The Catskills

If you haven’t visited the Catskills, you’ll want to put this on your family vacation bucket list. It’s the ultimate kid-friendly destination for families that enjoy spending time outside together.

A few of our favorite Catskills activities include:

Hudson Valley

From hiking trails to museums and water play, Hudson Valley has something for everyone in the family. 

Bear Mountain State Park is a great place to get outdoors and have a fun, family-friendly adventure. Before you leave the park, be sure to take a drive to the top via Perkins Memorial Drive. Perkins Memorial Tower, which sits 1,305 feet above the Hudson River, offers the most breathtaking views in the region.

For a more adventurous experience, explore the famous labyrinth trail on the Mohonk Mountain House grounds. Treat yourself to a stay at Mohonk Mountain House, which sits on 40,000 acres of protected land on a glacial lake.

Here, you can treat yourself to a day at the spa, hike 85 acres of trails, paddleboard, or enjoy some quiet time by the lake.

The Adirondacks

With over 5,000 acres to explore, the Adirondacks region is the perfect place for a family vacation.

The Adirondacks’ High Falls Gorge is the perfect place to hike and enjoy the rugged beauty New York has to offer. This spectacular walk is perfect for all ages and offers stunning waterfall views.

Lake Placid and Lake George offer a break from the heat, where you can enjoy a dip in the water, as well as kayaking, fishing, and other water sports.

Near the center of Adirondack Park is the Wild Center, formerly known as the Natural History Museum of the Adirondacks. Here, you can visit a four-story twig tree house, climb across a massive spider’s web, hike to a bald eagle’s nest, and learn about the region’s animals. It’s truly an experience you don’t want to miss.

Best kid-friendly activities to enjoy in New York this summer break

Most parents don’t have the luxury of taking the summer off. They have responsibilities at home and a job that expects them to show up every day. Fortunately, New York has a wide range of activities to help keep your children engaged and entertained over the summer break.

If you plan to stay close to home for your summer vacation, don’t worry; there are plenty of ways to connect with your family without ever leaving your hometown.

Explore New York’s natural wonders

New York is one of the most beautiful states in the country, ensuring an abundance of outdoor activities.

The Empire State Trail runs from Lower Manhattan to the Canadian border. This 750-mile trail is the perfect place to walk or bike and has multiple public parking access points along the way.

Other outdoor activities New York is infamous for include apple and strawberry picking, cave and cavern exploration, botanical gardens, and hiking the Appalachian Trail.

There’s even a Wolf Conservation Center, where you can learn about our state’s wolves and admire their beauty.

Get out on the water

There’s nothing like summer on the water in New York! Spend a day at the beach, paddle one of our state’s many lakes, or watch the wildlife at Mashomack Preserve on Shelter Island.

In New York City or Long Island, summer is the perfect time to do some whale watching. For the best experience, consider taking a boat cruise, where you can admire whales, dolphins, seals, and other marine life off New York’s coast.

Summer camps and programs

If you’re wondering what your children will do while you’re at work, why not give them the summer camp experience? There are thousands of programs offered across the state. Some offer a well-rounded repertoire of activities, while others provide a focused experience.

Whether your child enjoys horseback riding, sports, or acting, there’s a program out there for them. That way, you can rest easy knowing your kid is supervised, making friends, and enjoying their summer break.

Enjoy the arts

Understanding that families need access to more activities in the summer, many communities host family-friendly events throughout the season.

Check the community calendars in your local area to find out what events your family would enjoy.

The Bethel Woods Center for the Arts hosts concerts and festivals, as does the Sodus Bay Lighthouse Museum.

Farmer’s markets, musicals, and plays are also great ways to get outdoors and spend time with others in the community.

Explore the museums

While summer is a time for rest and relaxation, it’s a good idea to keep your children’s minds in shape over the break. What better way to do that than to visit one of New York’s museums?

From the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Arms and Armor halls and rooftop garden to the Whitney Museum of American Art in NYC’s Meatpacking District, the New York Hall of Science, and the Buffalo Museum of Science, your children will have plenty of stories to tell their friends when they return from summer break.

Theme Parks

Are you an adventure-seeking family? If so, we recommend checking out some of the New York theme parks over summer break. A few of our favorites include Legoland New YorkSix Flags Great Escape, and Playland Park in Rye.

Prefer your thrills on the water? Check out SplashDown Beach in Fishkill, NY.

» MORE: How Long is Summer Break in Texas?