Families in Pennsylvania's Lehigh Valley don't have to travel to the big city to find enjoyable activities for their little ones. Enjoy aquatic activities or fun in the snow, a morning of discovery at a museum or an afternoon of exploring at the zoo. From water slides to hay rides, the valley is a treasure trove of recreational and educational activities for your thrill-seeking preschooler or toddler.
Kids aged 2 through 5 are drawn to coloring, painting and creating at the Crayola Experience (crayola.com) in Easton. You and your little one will learn hands-on, the history of crayons and the Crayola brand. Create special memories with your child as you explore and enjoy dozens of activities and interactive projects designed just for your toddler or preschooler. For your budding scientist, the Da Vinci Science Center (davincisciencecenter.org) in Allentown will engage your little one in activities designed to help him explore counting, reading and shapes.
Explore the world of animals at the Lehigh Valley Zoo (lvzoo.org) in Schnecksville. Open year-round, the zoo houses more than 275 animals and will delight both toddlers and preschoolers with special attractions, shows and horse-drawn wagon rides around the zoo. If bugs and frogs set your tyke’s heart all aflutter, she’ll love the Bear Mountain Butterfly Sanctuary (bearmountainbutterflies.com) in Jim Thorpe. Hand feed butterflies, make crafts and explore the indoor live-flight “flutterarium," with programs and attractions designed just for your 2 to 5 year old.
3. Fun in the Snow
It’s not winter in the Lehigh Valley without snow, and that means skiing and snowboarding. Preschoolers aged 4 and up can learn to ski or ride in the protected environment of the Children’s Learning Center at Blue Mountain (skibluemt.com) in Palmerton. There’s even a one-day program, offered seven days a week and taught in a progressive station setting. Bear Creek Mountain Resort and Conference Center (bcmountainresort.com) also offers lessons for preschoolers, with one-on-one lessons offered for kids aged 4 to 5 years.
4. Amusement Parks
Toddlers and preschoolers alike love fun and games, and what better place to play than the amusement park? Dorney Park and Wildwater Kingdom (dorneypark.com) in Allentown is actually two theme parks in one, with pint-sized attractions in both the amusement park and the water park designed with your 2 to 5 year old in mind. Wintertime in the Lehigh Valley is all about snow sports for big folk, but if your little one gets tired of sledding and snowballs, no worries. He's sure to have a blast splashing away in the indoor waterpark of the Great Wolf Lodge in the Poconos (greatwolf.com).
- The Crayola Experience: About Us
- Da Vinci Science Center: Preschool Kidiscovery Programs
- Lehigh Valley Zoo: About Us
- Bear Mountain Butterfly Sanctuary: About
- Dorney Park and Wildwater Kingdom: Things to Do
- Great Wolf Lodge: Explore by Age
- Blue Mountain: Kids Program
- Bear Creek Mountain Resort and Conference Center: Snowsports School
- Thinkstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images