If you're looking to shake up the summer routines with a special family outing, Queens is a big place with a lot of options. Here are some great ways to celebrate the great Queens outdoors.
1. Go for a bike ride
Look out for that bus! You won't be hearing that while pedaling along the Vanderbilt Motor Parkway in Cunningham Park. The three miles of tree-lined path was once part of a road that was built 100 years ago as a race course for the rich (it cuts across Cunningham Park at 75th Ave and 199th St, and ends at Alley Pond Park at Winchester Blvd). There's also a bike path along the Bayside waterfront (between the Cross Island Pkwy and the Long Island Sound, from Northern Blvd. in Douglaston to the Throg's Neck Bridge) that ends just past Fort Totten.
Check out bike racing at the Velodrome in Kissena Park.
4. Venture out to an adventure course
Nets, swings, ziplines, high ropes... The Alley Pond Park ropes course is not for the faint of heart. There's also a challenging climbing wall. Get your family out there if you dare. Next up: The Amazing Race!
5. Giddy-upGo for a horse or pony ride in Forest Park, with the Forest Equine Center.
6. Sail the high seas
Well, not quite. But you can rent paddle boats and row boats at Flushing Meadows Park's Meadow Lake boathouse, or hire a charter boat at the park's World's Fair Marina. On summer Sundays, LIC Community Boathouse volunteers take folks out in kayaks in the East River, in Hallets Cove. The cove is at Socrates Sculpture Park, where the family can take in some fresh-air art and even have a picnic.