5 East End Summer Adventures for All-Ages Family Fun

Erik Peterson with cow striped bass enjoys East End summer adventures
Local fisherman Erik Peterson shows off a cow striper

East End summer adventures await this season! Experience majestic natural surroundings, observe area wildlife and get your blood pumping with these exciting outdoor activities that are fun for the whole family in the Hamptons and North Fork.

5 East End Summer Adventures

Go horseback riding on the beach in Montauk
Go horseback riding on the beach in MontaukGetty Images

Horseback Riding
8 Old Montauk Highway, Montauk

Experience nature and beautiful beaches on horseback with Montauk’s Deep Hollow Ranch — the oldest working ranch in the U.S. and the “birthplace of the American cowboy.” This 350-year-old ranch offers rides for all level of rider, whether you’re a young novice or a crusty old cowpoke. Western-saddle trail rides will take families in small groups or private tours along Block Island Sound, the Atlantic Ocean, Oyster Pond and even historic Native American lands and those of early European settlers — all delivering fabulous coastal beauty to highlight your East End summer adventures.

Call 631-668-2744 or visit deephollowranch.org for reservations and info.

Enjoy East End Summer Adventures at Bootleggers Run at Splish Splash Water Park
Bootleggers Run at Splish Splash Water Park

Splish Splash Water Park
2549 Splish Splash Drive, Calverton

Certainly not the place for natural splendor, this Riverhead water park will absolutely bring thrills and spills for the whole family instead. Open May 28 through September, the massive, 96-acre park has restaurants, shops, multiple themed areas, pools, rivers, waves and lots of exciting slides and rides. Splish Splash has everything from kiddie areas and tubing on Lazy River, to free drops at Shotgun Falls, 50-foot speed slides, and the epic Hollywood Stunt Rider raft tunnel in the dark.

New for 2022, check out the Hyperlight, an electric light and sound themed waterslide experience opening at the park this summer.

Visit splishsplash.com to explore the huge number of available rides and attractions, dining and shopping options, and rates for tickets and four levels of season pass.

Charter a boat in Montauk to fish for striped bass
Charter a boat in Montauk to fish for striped bassGetty Images

Fishing Charters

The East End is loaded with fishing charter options, and any one will provide hours of family fun. Whether you want to jump on a party boat with dozens of others or charter a private excursion, a day on the water might be just what you need. Depending on the month and what’s biting, anglers can catch all sorts of fish, including robust striped bass, battling bluefish, tuna, sharks, flounder, black seabass and even mahi-mahi.

In the Hamptons, try Dan’s Best of the Best winner My Mate Charters (mymatecharterboat.com) with Captain Pete Casale for private charters out of Montauk, or hop on the Miss Montauk II (missmontauk.com) party boat for all-day fluke fishing, 7 a.m.–4 p.m., out of Montauk’s Westlake Marina.

On the North Fork, check out Dan’s Best of the Best winner Captain Bob Fishing Fleet (captbobfishingfleet.com) out of Mattituck to join the fun on large boats or more exclusive six-person charters, or contact the Peconic Star Fleet for all-day open boat fishing out of Greenport (peconicstarboats.com). A search online will find dozens of other reputable captains and charters all across the Twin Forks.

East End Summer Adventures - whale watching off Montauk! Humpback whale breaching
Go whale watching off Montauk!Getty Images

Whale Watching
462 West Lake Drive, Montauk

Join the Viking Fleet, which also offers great fishing charters, and CRESLI (Coastal Research and Education Society of Long Island) for a thrilling, five-hour adventure spotting marine wildlife in all its splendor. Starting in July, boats hit the high seas, passing the Montauk Lighthouse out to open water in search of whales, dolphin, sea turtles and a variety of birds in their natural environment. A qualified marine biologist narrates the tour and answers any questions from guests.

Food and beverages are available for purchase onboard. Sunblock, a hat, protective layer of clothes and sunglasses are a must, and you’ll definitely want to bring a camera, too. The Viking Fleet offers East End summer adventures with just 10 trips in July, 10 in August and three in September, so book now to ensure a spot for you and your family.

631-668-6700, vikingfleet.com/whale-watching

Peconic River in Riverhead is home to your East End Summer Adventures
Peconic River in Riverhead is waiting for you to paddle it!Getty Images

Paddle the Peconic River
89 Peconic Avenue Riverhead

Take a break from the ocean and enjoy a lovely paddle along the Peconic River in Riverhead. This 15-mile river begins in the wetlands of central Long Island and runs east at a nice, easy pace, turning from freshwater to a brackish estuary around central Riverhead before spilling into Peconic Bay.

Visit Peconic Paddler, speak to a rental expert who will help find the right canoe, kayak or stand-up paddleboard for you, and then hit the water! Paddle at your own pace as you take in the the local flora and fauna, chat or sing with your fellow paddlers, and get some exercise in the process.

Call 631-727-9895 or visit thepeconicpaddler.com for more info including pricing, available boats and boards, and more.

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