Most within 1.5 hours of NYC, some of these are accessible via MetroNorth. You can also rent a ZipCar for the day (check out the Mount Sinai recreation website for a better deal on ZipCars). Download the AllTrails app to help navigate/find even more great options.
Ringwood State Park
Pine Meadow Lake Loop
Storm King Mountain
Take a break from the NYC heat especially in those hot August months.
Coney Island – beaches and roller coasters all in one. Check out the Mermaid Parade here every June. Get here via subway.
Brighton – less crowded than Coney Island with excellent Russian food within walking distance of the beach. Get here via subway.
Long Beach and Jones Beach – both great options accessible via the Long Island Railroad (LIRR). Pack a lunch as there are fewer food options here.
Sandy Hook Beach – nice beach with nearby hikes accessible via NJ Ferry
Storm King – an open air sculpture park that’s definitely worth a visit
Opus 40 – a stone sculpture park in an abandoned quarry near Woodstock