This summer, drive out to a town you haven't explored yet and take a stroll with friends around some of Long Island's best walk around towns. Most of these towns are focused around a main street with one or two intersecting roads with even more shops, restaurants, and places to explore, so you won't need to walk too far to find what you want. This year, go in ith a plan and use this summer guide to make sure that you stop by all of the local attractions that are not to be missed. Also, don't forget your camera, as many of these towns are situated on the water and are great for photo ops with friends with the romantic seaside background.
Port Jefferson: Port Jefferson is a popular harborfront town with a wide variety of shops and eateries. There are also places to bring kids, such as Rocketship Park and the Maritime Explorium, a hands-on science museum, which has a small sprinkler park behind it. Shoppers can find one-of-a-kind clothing and jewelry at the various boutiques, and don't miss the Dusty Attic, Port Jeff's new furniture and decor shop with lots of antique and upcycled finds. Dining in Port Jeff ranges from your typical pizza spot to upscale seafood restaurants like the Steam Room to vegetarian- and vegan-friendly cafes like Tiger Lily. Don’t forget to grab some ice cream before watching the sunset over the Long Island Sound.
Northport: For a quaint Main Street experience, check out the Village of Northport, where you can go to Pumpernickel’s for German cuisine and fresh seafood, and then stop by a retro ice cream parlor. Every Friday evening at 7 p.m., you can also bring your lawn chair or blanket to listen to live music at the dock while taking in the atmosphere.
Huntington: Huntington has restaurants for any palate, including Italian, Mexican, Portuguese, and Irish fare, with plenty of pubs and steakhouses. Don’t miss the Book Revue, one of Long Island’s premier independent book stores for readers and authors alike. The Cinema Arts Centre is also a town highlight, and is one of the few places where Long Islanders can see independent and international films.
Greenport: Greenport has something for every budget, so whether you want to hit the pub or have a fine dining experience, there is a restaurant for you. Don’t miss out on a stroll through Mitchell Park, where you can find a beautiful antique carousel to ride. There is also the East End Seaport Museum and Lighthouse, which has guided tours and gives a great opportunity to amateur and professional photographers alike to capture some beautiful views.
Babylon Village: This lovely village overlooks the bay and has plenty of one-of-a-kind restaurants, such as Fancy Lee, which offers some of the best sushi in the area, and Post Office Café, which offers burgers and a variety of craft beers on tap. If you prefer to cook for yourself, there is a farmer’s market in the summer.
Port Washington: This town has the best views of Manhasset Bay, and offers fantastic Mediterranean fare at Mediterranean Café and Ayhan’s Shish-Kebab. If seafood is more your thing, stop by DiMaggio’s Seafood and Grill, where you can take in the views of the water while you eat. If you are the thrifty kind, stop by the Twin Pines Thrift Shop and see if you can find any treasures to decorate your home. You can also treat the kids by going to the free Tugboat Museum, which is a small tugboat on dry land that houses a tiny museum inside that you can view from each of the portholes.
Freeport: The Nautical Mile in Freeport makes it a busy walking town, but it is worth it for the food, music, and atmosphere. Bring the kids to play 18-holes at Crow’s Nest Mini Golf, and maybe fly a kite at the Catalina Marina and Seaside Park. At night, many bars and clubs are outdoors, and many venues offer live music so you can sing and dance the night away.
Garden City: Head down to Franklin Avenue, also known as “Long Island’s Wall Street,” which has high-end bistros and jewelry shops. On intersecting Seventh Street, you can shop at Pear Tree, EnVie, Coquette, Chico’s, Things and Stuff, Edible Arrangements, Sunflower Fine Art and Framing, and even more. For a fancy night after all of your shopping, head to Walk Street Restaurant, which offers “New American” fare, with fresh takes on fish dishes, salads, and filet mignon.