No one could blame you and the kids for wanting to get out of the house, feel the wind in your hair and maybe let out a primal scream or two. While ziplines generally take the winter off, when they reopen for the 2021 season, expect lots of  COVID-19 safety measures. Here are places you can go ziplining with the kids in or near NYC on Long Island, in the Poconos, Connecticut and elsewhere.

P.S. Click here for more ideas on what else you can do with the kids in NYC now!

photo: Julie Larsen Maher/WCS

For the Zip at the Zoo: Treetop Adventure and Nature Trek at the Bronx Zoo

The Bronx Zoo's Treetop Adventure and Nature Trek is home to a couple of ziplines. There are some new rules, of course. Tickets must be reserved and purchased online in advance, masks are required at all times, and you must practice social distancing. The Spanning more than 400 feet in each direction, the pair of ziplines travel 50 feet above the Bronx River, with the platform for the zip back even higher than the initial launch pad. (You zip across, then zip back.) The zipline is outfitted with dual, side-by-side lines for double the zipping fun. Additionally, each course of the Treetop Adventure does include a short zipline element in various forms, such as the boat zip, pictured above.  Participants must be age seven or older, between 50 and 275 pounds, and able to reach 5’6″ from flat feet. Visitors can choose to do just the ropes course, just the zipline, or opt for a combo ticket to do it all. Read our full review here! 

Bronx Zoo Treetop Adventure and Nature Trek
Nature Trek included with Zoo Total Experience Ticket: $36.95/adult; $26.96/kids 3 -12; $31.95/senior; free/kids 2 and under
2300 Southern Blvd.
Bronx
718-367-1010
Online: bronxzoo.com

For the Newest Zipline in Town

Wild Play Element Park opened at Jones Beach summer 2019. You can see the COVID-19 safety measures Wild Play is instituting here. 

This extreme fun spot features a 700-foot zipline along the beach, and there are four ziplines side-by-side, so you can zip as a family if you like. (Kids must be seven or older and minimum height is 4' 8".)   There's also adventure courses (rope ladders, platforms, ziplines, etc.) for all levels—classic, extreme, and a kids course, that's just 15 feet in the air. In search of even more thrills? Try the WTF Jump (What's To Fear? Jump), a quick, but safe descent from 40 feet off the ground. Regular zipline is $19.99; kid's zipline is $24.99, and adults can come along to help. 

Wild Play Jones Beach
2600 Ocean Pkwy.
Wantagh, NY
Online: wildplay.com

To Traipse Among the Trees: The Adventure Park at Long Island

The Adventure Park at Long Island's "Aerial Forest Adventure Park" is an elevated obstacle course of sorts made up of 15 ziplines and 140 challenge bridges. (Its newest one, "Grand Rapids", has nine ziplines.) Spread out over seven acres of woodland, the park features five different color-coded trails (similar to those found at ski resorts) so each member of the family can pick their own degree of difficulty. Reserve tickets online for three hours of fun, which also includes the park's safety orientation. Go at the end of the day for "Last Call" and climb for a reduced price. If you just can't get enough, join the Adventure Club and climb any time for $29. Ziplining is for those ages seven and up. Ticket prices are as follows: 12 and over: $56; Ages 10 & 11: $49; ages 7 -9: $42; Last Call (last three hours): $39 Note: They also do birthday parties!

Adventure Park at Long Island
75 Colonial Springs Rd.
Wheatley Heights, NY
613-983-3844
Online: longislandadventurepark.org

photo: Camelback Resort

To Tag Team with a Friend: Camelback Resort

Just 90 minutes away from New York City in the Pocono Mountains, Camelback Mountain Adventures is home to the longest twin Zip-Flyers in North America (that's 4000 feet!), as well as 1000-foot dual zip lines, a TreeTops adventure course, and Pennsylvania's only Mountain Coaster. The 1000’ dual zip lines are $15 for one ride, $19.99 for two rides (for one person), Twin Zip Flyer rides are $39.00, and packages are available when bundling with other activities. In October, you can zipline or ride the "Monster Coaster" in the dark for extra thrills and chills! 

Winter brings new fun, like snowtubing and skiing, and the epic  Aquatopia waterpark operates year-round.

301 Resort Dr.
Tannersville, PA
570-629-1663 Ext. 3
Online: camelbackmountainadventures.com

To Get Your Adrenaline Pumping: The Adventure Center at Skytop Lodge

Not for the faint of heart, Skytop's 3000-foot Treetop Adventure Course includes seven zip-lines, plus obstacles like elevated bridge-ways, logs hanging from ropes to walk across, ladders, and a cargo net. Reservations for the three-hour, year-round experience must be made in advance, and if one high-octane journey isn't enough, you can opt to stay the night at Skytop's historic mountain lodge and do it all again the next day. Paintball, rock climbing, and more await the adventurous.

What: The Adventure Center at Skytop Lodge

Where: 1 Skytop Lodge Road, Skytop, Poconos, PA

When: Year-round, with groups departing every half-hour from 9 a.m.

Ages: 10 and up, participants must be able to reach a height of 5'11 with their hands while standing flat-footed on the ground and have a waist size less than 41".

Cost: $30 per person if you're a guest at the resort; $40 per person if not.

Online: skytop.com

To Make the Most of a Day Trip: Treetop Adventure Course at the Turtle Back Zoo

Here's another place to combine your zipline with a zoo. If you’re feeling up to it, the zipline also has an attached junior and adult adventure courses featuring world class aerial obstacles. Get ready for an awesome day, and be prepared for your kids will sleep the whole way home!

What: Treetop Adventure Course at the Turtle Back Zoo

Where: 560 Northfield Ave., West Orange, NJ

When: Weekends only through late fall

Ages: 6 and up; participants must be between 80-250 lbs for the zipline

Cost: $15 for zip-line; Junior Course $20; Adult Course $30

Online: turtlebackzoo.com/ropes-course

To Do 2 in 1: Boating and Ziplining at Kittatinny Canoes

Despite the company's name, Kittatinny Canoes can also hook you up with a zip-line — dual racing ziplines, as a matter of fact. After a welcome and orientation with your zip guides and detailed instruction in "Ground School" (where you'll learn body-position, steering and breaking) you'll head to the top of Kittatinny's private mountain and drop 36 stories before hitting land again. (The up to two-minute ride features views of the Delaware River, the trees below, and cars you can wave to.)  Zipliners must weigh at least 60 pounds, but children who are 40 pounds or more can canoe, kayak or raft even if they can't fly through the air.

What: Kittatinny Canoes

When: April –October, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Where: 3854 State Route 97, Barryville, NY

Ages: 8 and up, provided weight requirement is met, between 60 – 250 lbs.

Cost: Weekdays – $37 per ride, per person. Weekends – $39 per ride, per person. Discounts are given if multiple rides are purchased per person and for bundling activities.

Online: kittatinny.com

For a Zip With a View of Lady Liberty: Adventures at Governors Island

Adventures at Governors Island offers a few ways to have fun on the island. Among them is the "Flywire Zip line," a 300-foot ride that starts from a 35-foot peak and reaches up to 21 miles per hour. Two adventurers fly side-by-side, and views on the way down include the Statue of Liberty and the skyline of lower Manhattan. (Riders must be at least 40 inches tall and weight between 45 and 250 pounds. Cost is $12 per person, or $20 for two people. Additional attractions in this fun zone include the 3,600-square-feet Amazen' Maze (that requires finding your way out and cracking a code while you're in there); a 3D climbing challenge, and Mini Golf. check the park's Facebook account for breaking info on hours due to weather, etc. 

Governors Island, western shore, opposite Liggett Terrace 
Online: adventuresgovisland.com

To Adventure Locally: Adventure Course at Alley Pond Park

If you're dreaming of an American Gladiator sort of zipline experience for the family, get ready to pinch yourself, because that exact scenario exists in Queens. Created as a team-building exercise for groups, the Adventure Course at Alley Pond Park tests a participant's courage, strength, and endurance for free on Sundays — and it's within city limits! The free Sunday programs are held May - November  at 9:30am-1:00pm. Individuals are welcome, just make sure to get there early; participation is first come, first served. In July and August, you can pre-register each Monday via lottery.

Adventure Course at Alley Pond Park
Alley Pond Main Path and Winchester Boulevard, off of Union Turnpike, Queens.
Online: nycgovparks.org

For an Indoor Starter Zipline: Kids 'N Shape in Queens or Staten Island

If you want to start off a little less extreme, check out either location of indoor playground and kids fitness center Kids 'N Shape, where in addition to lots of other diversions (bounce houses, slides, ball pits, tumbling mats, and oversized blocks and balls) there are indoor ziplines. Both locations (Staten Island or Howard Beach) hold Open Play sessions throughout the week, and the ziplines are opened periodically throughout these times. (A staffmember supervises.) Check the open play calendar for times, and note that there's a max of 50 kids per session, with admission on a first-come, first served basis. Cost is $12 for two hours of open play.

162-26 Cross Bay Blvd.
Howard Beach
718-848-2052

153 Main St. 
Tottenville, NY
718-227-8300
Online: kidsnshape.com

— Ilyssa Smith & Anna Knoebel

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