The chill is in the air and vacation time is here. So, what's a parent to do with kids who just want to have some fun? Here's the cold weather good news: Where there's a will to take the time to create some quality family time, there's definitely a way.   You and the kids don't have to spend your time with your noses pressed up to the cold glass wondering what to do for fun in the icy cold. Get out and get going.   Day trips aren't just for the warmer months. There are lots of places to go, people to see and things to do together. So, pack up for a long day and get in the car.   Here are some ideas for family winter day tripping:  

  • For those who like being in the cold and snow, if the weather is cooperating, get in the car and get to Campgaw in Mahwah, NJ.

  This snow sports academy camp offers lessons in skiing for the very young ones (4ퟀ�6 ) as well as a hill for the beginners with magic carpets.   There's also snow tubing and racing. and a dedicated beginner hill with magic carpets for easy access to the top. The camp also offers season passes.  

  • If you want to keep things a bit simpler, there's always Holmdel Park in Holmdel, NJ

The park, a part of the Monmouth County Park System, not only has lots of hills on which to sled, tube and slide, it also has a pond for skating and a little lodge where snacks and hot cocoa can be bought while warming up. There are also plenty of places to hike in the park and the opportunity for cross-country skiing, if that's your family's passion.   Another feature loved by kids and adults alike is the Historic Longstreet Farm in the park.ퟀ�There are all sorts of animals to see there as well as live demonstrations.  

  • On the subject of animals, if you would rather go indoors for your fun and keep the chill out, you can check out aquariums in Jersey.

  Thereퟀ�s Adventure Aquariumퟀ�in Camden for those who like a largerퟀ�display of fish and little shows.   Adventure Aquarium has sharks, stingrays, and all the fish one would find in an aquarium, including penguins. It also has something unique ퟀ� hippos!   Then thereퟀ�s Jenkinson's Aquariumퟀ�in Point Pleasant Beach for enthusiasts who prefer a smaller setting.ퟀ�  At Jenkinson's, you and the kids can experience the touch tanks for sea stars and sand sharks, and there's even a fun feeding time with the seals that the aquarium personnel will introduce you to. The Point Pleasant boardwalk is right there, too. Though it's winter, you can still have some fun in the arcade.  

  • Have you ever heard of a bugseum? Yes, it exists. If your little ones are fascinated by the little ones, check out Insectropolis in Toms River.

  There, kids can explore what is called Creepy Tavern, Hive Airport, and Bug University, and learn everything they wanted to know about insects.   There are also touch presentations. Yikes!  

  • For those who want to talk with the animals, Turtle Back Zoo in West Orange, NJ, is a great place for families to visit any time of the year.

  There are all sorts of interesting species to see, such as wolves, black bears, monkeys, giraffes, hyenas and more. And the zoo has a special all-weather feature ퟀ� the endangered species carousel.  

  • For a not-so-ordinary zoo experience that offers a touch of humanitarianism, there's Popcorn Park Zoo in Forked River, NJ.

  The zoo features a wide variety of animals with ailments or survivors of abuse. And, yes, you can feed them popcorn!  

  • As if these aren't enough ideas to keep you and yours busy, there's a classic suggestion ퟀ� Liberty Science Center In Jersey City, NJ.

  The center offers an all-around entertaining educational experience, full of displays, hands-on experiments and more.   These day trip ideas should keep you and your family quite busy. Try one or a few. Explore. Enjoy. Make family time fun!