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Top 9 Things to Do in York, Maine with Kids

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When people think of Maine, they often think of the more well-known destinations. If you’re looking for some fun things to do with kids in York, Maine, you’ve come to the right place! In this post, we’ll share some of our favorite family-friendly activities in the area.

York, ME is in the southeastern corner of the state and is an easy day trip from much of New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. Even if you’re traveling from Connecticut or Vermont, the drive is just a few hours and would make a nice overnight or weekend trip. So whether you’re visiting York for a day or a week, we hope you’ll find some things on our list that appeal to you and your little ones.

York, Maine attractions

Long Sands Beach   

This is one of the prettiest beaches in York. It’s also one of the most popular, so it can get pretty crowded. Get there early enough on a summer day to secure your spot and, enjoy its great old-fashioned beach feel. And speaking of old-fashioned, they even have an old-fashioned ice cream shop right on site where you can get some yummy homemade ice cream!

The mile-long beach is a great spot for swimming, surfing, and volleyball.  Public restrooms are available halfway down the beach and metered parking is available nearby.  

Short Sands Beach      

A quarter-mile long, Short Sands Beach is a smaller beach located near the cliffs in Ellis Park.

This small beach has it all! Restrooms, lifeguards (in season), metered parking, a large playground, basketball courts, a gazebo and a large grassy park area. You may also want to enjoy the nearby restaurants, shops, and attractions.

Nubble Lighthouse Christmas - York, ME

Nubble Lighthouse   

You’ve probably seen pictures of it and thought that it might be a cool place to visit. You’re not alone. Nubble Lighthouse is one of the most recognizable and popular spots in York, and it’s easy to understand why.

The views out over the beach and ocean are amazing. Not only that, but they have a very nice gift shop with some great souvenirs. They also have a lighthouse museum you can tour if you want to learn more about how lighthouses work.

If you happen to be in the area around the holidays, be sure to visit the lighthouse to see it all decked out in lights.

York Beach Trolley          

The York Beach Trolley is a great way to get around York, especially if you are staying there for the day with your family. They have several different routes you can choose from that all take you through some interesting parts of town, including a stop at the Nubble Lighthouse. The best part is that it’s totally free! Just hop on and go.

York's Wild Kingdon, York, ME
Photo Credit: H.L.I.T via Flickr

York’s Wild Kingdom Zoo & Amusement Park      

This is the big one. The one on everyone’s list, and with good reason. York’s Wild Kingdom is a zoo and adventure park so it has something for everyone. While you’re at the park, don’t forget to visit the Butterfly Kingdom.

If you work up an appetite while visiting the animals and riding on the rides, there are food kiosks and ice cream stands to stop for lunch or a snack.

Fun-O-Rama Arcade   

Located right on Short Sands Beach, Fun-O-Rama is a can’t miss for the kids. This arcade has video games, a fortune teller, skeeball, and more. The kids love it!

Wiggly Bridge - York, Maine

Wiggly Bridge   

This is a great place to stop and stretch your legs if you happen to be driving through York. Wiggly Bridge is pretty unique and will be fun for brave kids. When you walk on this aptly named bridge, it moves and flexes under your feet.

Cross the bridge to enter Steedman Woods, which is a nature reserve with short hiking trails. Get a break from the sun and crowds while getting a bit of exercise.

Downtown York

York, Maine has a cute downtown area with shops and places to eat that is worth a visit. If you decide to spend a night or more, look into getting a room at one of the hotels downtown to get the full experience of this quaint New England town.

Mount Agamenticus - York, Maine
Photo Credit: nwriggs via Flickr

Mount Agamenticus   

Mount Agamenticus is a must for anyone who loves to hike. Standing at 692 feet tall, t’s the tallest mountain in Southern Maine. The views from the top are amazing; you can see for miles and miles! There are 40 miles of nice trails you can walk to make your way up to the top for views of mountain ranges off in the distance, inland ponds, and gorgeous seacoast.

If you love nature, you will enjoy bird watching, mountain biking, cross country skiing, and sitting down for a picnic. At the top you will find an observation deck, picnic tables, the Learning Lodge, and more trails.

What is York Maine known for?

York is the second oldest town in Maine after Kittery. It is known as the home of the Nubble Lighthouse as well as beaches and dining. It is one of the top destinations in Maine every year and has plenty of family-friendly activities.

Is York Maine worth visiting?

York, ME is a beautiful seaside destination with a small-town charm. While it is a fairly seasonal destination and the summers can get pretty crowded, York is a wonderful place to go year-round for sightseeing, a walk in nature, and photo opportunities at the lighthouse.

There are a number of things to do in York, Maine with kids which makes it a great family vacation destination. Whether it’s summer movies, playing at the beach, or going on a trolley ride, there is something for everyone and kids of all ages!  

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