Coyote Point Recreation Area - Places For Kids

Coyote Point Recreation Area

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1701 Coyote Point Dr
San Mateo, CA 94560

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(650) 573-2592
8 am – 5 pm (Dec – Feb)
Extended Evening Hours March – November
$6 for Entry and Parking
$20 for Bus
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DESCRIPTION FOR Coyote Point Recreation Area

Slides and swings, green grass and picnic tables, you can get at almost any park area. Not every park has a castle playground with a dragon theme, unless it's an amusement park, which often charges much more than $6 per person. The five-year-olds and pre-teens have one area for their use, while the toddlers and preschoolers have their own area, so there's less reason to be worried about age conflicts. With over 20 swings and slides, a tire swing, a balance beam, monkey bars, and a 40-foot castle on a hill, there shouldn't be too many reasons to suppose that the kids won't have anything to do. Although there isn't a sandbox or a water zone, parents will be happy to know that there are showers available for...

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TIPS FOR VISITING Coyote Point Recreation Area

1. Dogs can be walked on the San Francisco Bay Trail, but not brought in a car.

2. Snacks can be found at the Marina down the road, though the choices are limited to candy, chips, and sodas.

3. Windsurfing is restricted until August 2014, due to necessary repairs on Promenade Trail.

4. Bathrooms are available on the grounds, but go with your children for safety reasons, and bring an extra bar of soap if it's summer.

5. Bring a windbreaker or light jacket, as the breezes from the marina can get very cool.

6. Serious bikers should know that the bike trail is rather small and meant for recreation, but there is a 20-mile round-trip trail that can be taken from Coyote Point to Redwood Shores.


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BIRTHDAY PARTY AT Coyote Point Recreation Area

Party Time at Coyote Point Park

Telephone: (650) 363-4021

Online Reservation:

Time: Varies Party price: $50 - $300+

Included: Reserved Covered Picnic Table(s), Room for Rented Jumpers Picnic Areas: Eucalyptus, Beach, Magic Mountain

Website Link:

Customizable: Yes

Bring Your Own: Food and Drinks, Decorations, and Tableware (Plates, Cups, Cutlery)

Coyote Point Park is a great facility for holding a do-it-yourself birthday party. If you feel bound and restricted by all of those other facilities, with rules about what you can't do or wear or eat, this is the creative camper's picnicking dream. It's a good idea to bring shoes and socks, and maybe a windbreaker in case of sudden showers, but no one will be hovering over you once you've made...

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REVIEWS FOR Coyote Point Recreation Area

0 Places For Kids review


Hiller Aviation Museum

601 Skyway Rd.
San Carlos, CA 94070

Planes, trains, and automobiles are some of the most fascinating things that kids can see, and Hiller Aviation provides plenty to see and do. While most of the exhibits center around planes, their history, and their photos, there are also special exhibits on model railroads and a weekly Gourmet Food Truck visit. Since the Museum is located at the San Carlos airport, the kids can see modern planes zooming in and out, while they investigate the cockpits and controls of the vintage models and prototypes. With forty exhibits and interactive displays, this is a great way to get your kids interested in the power of featherless flight. Don't forget the Atrium with the airplane models, which are kid-sized and fascinating for a whole host of reasons. You can point out the history of the Kitty Hawk flight with the Wright Brothers' older model, the San Francisco all-metal Argonaut of 1928, the Grumman Albatross that flew around the world, and the collapsible XROE Rotorcycle. There's also a restoration shop where planes are constantly being tinkered with. If you're able to drop by on the weekends before 2 pm, wait in line for the popular Flight Simulator and get the feel of swooping in and out of the clouds. If you can find it, there's even a small theatre with 35 seats. Some of the special events are especially kid-friendly, like the Easter Bunny that shows up in a helicopter. While the kids are waiting for Bunny's arrival or the coming of the New Year, there are bouncy houses to explore and face painting to be done, and occasional magic shows. If you sign up for membership, there are discounts on the planetarium Sky Show that explains constellations used for navigation, live bird shows, or various Merit Badge days. This is a perfect place to bring home-schooled kids or Civil Air Patrol cadets on discounted group rates. The museum is small, so the space is packed with exhibits. Even the parking lot has half of a 747 jet on display, which can be played with until the Simulator is ready. Just be prepared when you enter the gift shop, because the kids will be clamoring for Playmobil sets, model airplanes, and kites – or even the teddy bears with aviator glasses.

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Tilden Regional Park

2501 Grizzly Peak Blvd.
Orinda, CA 94563

If your kids don't know what a working farm looks like, Little Farm would be the perfect place to take them after it re-opens on March 2014. Toddlers will especially be fascinated by the various noises of the animals, which of course they'll want to imitate when you get home. The chickens will cluck, the ducks will quack – and the goats and cows will cluster around to be fed your wilted leftover lettuce and celery from the back of the fridge. (They are not picky about food quality.) The ducks have their own luxury pool with a sunning deck, so on the right day, you can catch them sunbathing as well as swimming. The pigs and rabbits are also good watching and observing value, though the pigs can get insistent about their right to snacks. The horses and sheep tend to be a bit more wary, so it's a good opportunity to teach the kids about the right way and the wrong way to approach different types of animals. Some parents and kids have been able to use their horse and sheep-whispering skills here, so try and see what works through the bars of the gates. There is a small playground complete with water fountains, which might be necessary for the kids to burn up any excess energy in minding their manners around the critters. There's plenty of room for strollers, but remember to strap on sturdy shoes or sneakers if there has been recent rain, as the puddles and mud can take some navigation. Also remember to bring along sack lunches or a picnic basket for the grassy area, just in case hunger calls as well as nature (bathrooms are also free). Especially because everything is free here, including an Environmental Educational Center, there are fewer crowds on the weekdays than on weekends. If your kids are clamoring for more than just animal interaction, Tilden Park also has an antique merry-go-round and a steam train railroad. Lake Anza is also good for swimming if you come in the summer, but can be visually enjoyed at any time. If your kids are budding horticulturalists, definitely do not miss the Botanic Gardens, which hosts a sale of native California plants every Thursday morning from May through December.

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1651 Coyote Point Dr.
San Mateo, CA 94401

If you've explored the great open grasslands, magical Marina, and the dragon and castle playground of Coyote Point, you definitely have to take a peek at CuriOdyssey. This is what used to be Coyote Point Museum, just with a facelift, though parents with fond childhood memories will be relieved to know that there are still personable otters here – ready to entertain through the glass. On Saturdays at noon, the otters are even more entertaining at feeding time, and stick around for some facts and fun with the bobcat at 1 pm. The Animal Connections shows rotate every weekend. You could get introduced to a skunk one week, a hissing cockroach the next, and get lucky with the falcon getting fed on the third weekend. With 100 animals here, from the warm-blooded bobcat to the cold-blooded boa, there should be enough to get the kids excited about going to a zoo in the future. That's if you can tear them away from the butterflies and hummingbirds in the gardens, or the aviary with the majestic golden eagle and ugly turkey vulture. The hands-on exhibits can show the forces of nature, like the Riverbed Experiment that shows water flow and erosion, or backyard science experiments that expand your vision and hearing. Anyone who hasn't yet seen the Exploratorium will want to, after being able to blow the fog to and fro, and playing with the spinning gears. While there aren't a huge number of exhibits here, besides the rain panel and the echo chamber, it'll be enough to whet the kids' appetites for more. There are the same choices here for snacks as at the Marina, mainly chips and string cheese and granola bars. You may want to take along a picnic basket and eat in the general park area before coming to see the animals, especially if the kids need some real food. Just watch out for the gulls and geese, who can get very bold when begging.

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Junior Gym

811 S B St.
San Mateo, CA 94401

Since Junior Gym is a family-run business, they know how important it is to have a blend of structure and variety – from the equipment and activities, to the music played during gym time. There are basketballs to dunk in the nets, trampolines for doing the splits, a balance beam, and a zip line – and the gym is padded for extra safety. Equipment is frequently rearranged so that kids don't get bored doing the same thing all the time. There's also a coffee bar with steaming lattes, so that parents don't get bored and lose focus. Classes are structured based on the children's ages, so that they will be engaged but not overwhelmed. For 45 minutes, toddlers and three-year-olds can attend classes with their parents. That means they'll learn to sing songs, do parachutes, go through an obstacle course, play with bubbles, learn some basic gymnastics skills, and get a hand stamp. From ages 3 to 8, kids can join hour-long non-competitive gymnastics classes, ballet, or sports skills. This is where they can learn to follow a lesson plan with the instructor, and socialize with their peers in classes broken up by age groups. Since kids also need unstructured time, members can come to the twice-daily Open Gym sessions during the week. Parents have commented on the cleanliness of the facility. A professional cleaning service takes care of the equipment and surfaces with non-toxic, earth-friendly disinfectant, while the staff does daily cleaning and spot checks on the doorknobs and bucket of 'tasted' toys. A number of reviewers have said that the owners are very accomodating about missed classes that can be made up on the honor system, and there's a personal feel here that's lacking in some of the chain activity centers geared toward children.

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Safari Run

341 N Amphlett Blvd.
San Mateo, CA 94401

Though the facility at Safari Run seems small, there are plenty of options: fitness classes, open play times, an arcade, and a jungle gym on the playground. Air hockey tables vie for attention along with a giant shoe next to a frog video game in the arcade. Skee ball and whack-a-mole are a good reminder that not everything fun comes on a computer screen. What really gets the kids good and tired is the climbing area with fearsome gorilla and toucan heads, and slides. Also, parents of small children will be glad to know that the younger kids have their own age-appropriate area, so there's less chance of them being run into by the bigger kids. The staff are very conscientious about cleaning, from the obstacle course to the bathrooms, and the drinking fountains feature filtered water – but there is no air conditioning. There are also some rules that have to be observed, such as parents monitoring their kids during Open Play times, which aren't open on the weekends except to reserved groups. Both parents and children are asked to wash their hands before and after play, which helps cut down on the ever-present germ factor. Shoes go in the cubby holes, and waivers need to be signed. However, everyone can still have plenty of fun within those boundaries. If parents and kids come with a group for longer than the hour-long slots at Open Play time, there are computer terminals, large screen monitors, and a lounge where the parents can relax and chat. If you think of it as a smaller version of Safari Jungle meant for kids under the age of 8, this will give a good overall picture. You can come for half an hour for $4, and just check it out.

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