From the thrilling rides and the laughter at the midway to the soft serve ice cream, corn dogs, and saltwater taffy, there’s a reason why families flock to beaches boasting wooden planks and non-stop excitement, year after year. Take a stroll through the gallery below to discover our picks for best boardwalks to visit with kids of any age.

Long Beach Boardwalk – Long Beach, Wa

You won’t find any rides or corn dogs on this beach boardwalk. Instead, look for seabirds, grassy dunes, kites, and a quiet vibe from visitors and locals alike. The popular Long Beach Boardwalk stretches for almost half a mile with awesome views of the Pacific, plenty of picnic areas for resting tiny legs, and bathrooms on each end of the trek (score!). Tons of action can be found on the planks during the Washington State International Kite Festival, held during the third week of Aug., and as for those hot dogs? Walk the short distance to downtown Long Beach, and you’ll find plenty.

Where to eat: Grab goodies from the local market for a beach picnic, or dine at Cottage Bakery & Deli.

Good to know: Crossing beneath the Long Beach Boardwalk at the halfway mark is the eight-mile Lewis & Clark Discovery Trail

Online: funbeach.com/longbeachboardwalk

photo: lillyeyes via flickr

Which boardwalk is your favorite? Share with us in a Comment below. 

—Gabby Cullen