Summer days and summer sun are here to stay! Don’t worry about how to keep the kids busy, we’ve got awesome ideas for things to do in the Bay Area with kids this summer. Head to a new spot around town and make some memories for the whole family!
photo: Stern Grove
1. The the music fill your soul and put on your dancing shoes for a summer concert. From Stern Grove to a Folk Festival, here’s the low down on where to groove.
2. Dining with views of the Golden Gate Bridge? Yes, please! This list has all the best outdoor dining spots.
3. Skip the produce aisle and head to a local farm to pick your own berries!
4. Gimme s’mores! You don’t have to go camping to get these ooey-gooey treats around town.
photo: Evan Zimmerman/Murphy Made
5. Take the kids to the theater! We are especially looking forward to School of Rock performing in San Jose from June 4-9.
6. Spend a night at the museum (or the zoo) when you book a family night at one of these unique overnights.
photo: Kate Loweth
8. Check out Quarry Park in Rocklin where you can zipline over the quarry!
9. Get your cotton candy, funnel cake and Ferris wheel fix at a county fair. There are eight happening around the Bay this summer.
10. Visit Japan without getting on a plane. You can get all the ramen, taiyaki and Sanrio you want in San Francisco’s Japantown.
11. Plan a wine country weekend and let the kids come along!
12. Spend the afternoon exploring these bike paths and bike parks that are perfect for the tiny two-wheelers.
photo: Tenaya Lodge
13. Get your glamp on! Book a few nights at a nearby cabin, yurt, lighthouse or safari tent (with real bathrooms and showers!). We are especially looking forward to checking out the new cabins at Yosemite’s Tenaya Lodge.
14. Stay up a little past bedtime and watch one of your favorite movies outdoors, under the stars.
15. Check out Bill’s Backyard, the awesome outdoor discovery area at the Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose.
16. Cool down in calm waters. Check out one of these swimming beaches perfect for kids!
17. Grab your kids some free grub at these restaurants where the shorties eat free.
photo: Kate Loweth
18. Road trip time! Spend some time exploring these 10 California road trips.
19. Explore the great outdoors on a hike that is perfect, even for the youngest hikers.
20. Have the kids tried all of these iconic San Francisco desserts? What are you waiting for?
21. Bike rides, kayaking and awesome eats are waiting for you in Healdsburg.
22. See the world from the dinner table: Try a kid-approved exotic dish at a local restaurant to add some spice to your meal routine.
photo: Kate Loweth
23. Touch a starfish! Head to a nearby tide pool and get up close and personal with local sea life.
24. Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! If a day at the SF Zoo is in your future, read our guide so that you don’t miss any of the animal magic.
25. Jump in a kayak and explore your city by sea.
26. Talk about fresh eggs: spend the night at a nearby farm!
27. Skip the sunscreen and jump into one of the Bay’s best indoor pools.
28. Pint-sized Picassos and mini Monets will love these art centers where you can drop in for a day of inspiration.
29. Get your STEM on at these science centers from SF to Sausalito where the kids can learn about robots, animals, space and more.
30. Head to Corona Heights and check out the Randall Museum. Bonus, admission is always free!
31. Where’s the only place you can visit an aquarium, planetarium and natural history museum, all under one “living” roof? Our California Academy of Sciences guide is all you need to make the most of your visit.
32. Hop on a cable car and explore all that Market Street has to offer. Get the insider’s scoop here and save some time for a slice at Delarosa.
photo: Justin Ennis
34. Ever enjoyed lunch while underwater bowling? Make your next meal out a memorable one (in a good way!) at one of these themed restaurants where there’s more than just burgers and fries.
35. Get a date night on the calendar. Head out on the town after you drop the kids at one of these drop-off play spots.
36. Plan the perfect picnic. We’ve got a shortlist of the best spots right here.
photo: Monterey Bay Aquarium
37. On a hot day, the Monterey Bay Aquarium is the place to be. Get our tips on how to maximize your day there.
38. A day in Golden Gate Park doesn’t have to break the bank. It is full of free activities and sun shine. Summer is the perfect time for a visit.
39. Eat under the sun by dining at one of SF’s many family-friendly restaurants with outdoor seating.
40. Make this the summer the kids perfect their kicks. Enroll them in swim lessons at one of these trusted locations.
photo: Jesus Camacho
42. Presidio Twilight is back and even better than ever with lawn domes where you can hang out with your friends (available on a first come, first served basis)! Check out this list with even more Presidio highlights.
43. Get some up-close-and-personal time with the animals at these wildlife centers.
44. Visit CuriOdyssey, climb the dragon-themed playground at Coyote Point and enjoy the uniquely-delicious waffles at Eggettes when you visit San Mateo.
45. Hop aboard these ships that offer a history lesson on the water.
46. Find out how your favorite foods are made, from jelly beans to fortune cookies, by going on a family-friendly food factory tour.
photo: Melissa Bouse
47. Make your way to the East Bay. There are playgrounds galore and we’ve shared our favorites with you.
48. Take a trip to the islands without leaving the Bay Area—Alcatraz and Angel Island.
49. Pitch your tent at these campsites where you can hear the crashing waves as you curl up in your sleeping bag.
50. Two words: Ice Cream.
Featured photo: iStock