We've said it over and over: getting outside with your family is one of the best things you can do for your mind, body and spirit. That said, we also understand that camping—that age-old ritual of packing the car full to capacity with gear, food and reluctant kids and driving off to an outdoor paradise full of biting bugs, far-off bathroom facilities and, again, those reluctant kids—can be, quite frankly, the worst. Camping with kids can be challenging (to say the least) but it's so important to get outside as a family. Outdoor family adventures can be enjoyable with a just little planning.
When it comes to incredible access to outdoor recreational activities of all shapes and sizes, there's nowhere quite like the Bay Area. From biking across the Golden Gate Bridge or through Muir Woods to hiking Mt. Diablo or the Santa Cruz Mountains, the possibilities for family outdoor adventures in the Bay Area are practically endless.
Oh, the places you'll go....at camp this summer! We're sharing our favorite local outdoor recreation areas in the Bay Area for the whole family so you can get outdoors and get active at the places we travel to at camp during the summer! These California outdoor recreation areas for the whole family are just a start of an active lifestyle.
According to the Child Mind Institute, children in the United States “spend 4 to 7 minutes a day in unstructured play outdoors, and over 7 hours a day in front of a screen.” Experts agree that outdoor time is incredibly beneficial for children (and their parents). Playing outside means kids are, “smarter, happier, more attentive, and less anxious than kids who spend more time indoors.” The health benefits of outdoor time are not just luxuries but as important as eating balanced meals, getting a good night's sleep and social, community ties.
Hikes don’t have to mean “YIKES”! I’ll admit it. It wasn’t my finest mommy moment. During a hike, our 6-year old sat down in the middle of the trail and refused to budge. He said he was done. He went on strike. A hike strike. He was too big to carry and too young to understand reason. He meant business. What finally uprooted my child? A bribe. We’ve all done it, right?? I’m not proud we promised him a trip to Dairy Queen if he got up and finished, but I swear he would still be on that trail today, sprouting roots in that very spot, if it were not for the lure of the Blizzard. While I have no doubt my child is stubborn, I learned with a few tips and tricks the hike strike didn’t have to happen. Hopefully, our suggestions help your family have a meltdown-free, fun-filled day outdoors. A little planning goes a long way so here are some tips & tricks for hiking with kids. Because hiking requires almost no special equipment, it’s easy to wake up one beautiful morning and decide that today is the day you’re going on a family hike. Let me be honest with you. Today is not that day unless you’ve already done some planning.