School is out, and your crew is ready to roll right in to summer road trip season. But let’s face it, as much as you relish the quality time together in a small enclosed area, how many times over can you whistle along to toddler tunes or referee punch buggy without the bickering coming to a head.  Luckily, our home base (D.C. metro!) is central to a wide variety of places that minimize the drive time and maximize the fun. Head out on the highway to one of these favorites, all two hours or less from the Capitol.

Bayside Break at North Beach, Md.

With a quaint boardwalk perfect for the stroller crowd, and a family-friendly focus, North Beach, along with its geographic "twin" Chesapeake Beach, is a great choice for young broods looking for easy alternatives to busier (and farther) destinations along Maryland's coast. Check out the town's events calendar to learn more about alternating live music and "Crafts and Campfire" nights on the beach. Outdoor movie nights run through September 17 with the film Jurassic World , a perfect choice after a visit to the fossil hunting grounds at nearby Calvert Cliffs State Park.
Online: northbeachmd.org

Where will you be day tripping this summer? Tell us in the comments section below. 

—Carolyn Ross and Ayren Jackson-Cannady