It’s typical for New Yorkers who are ready to start a family to move to the suburbs. They are moving to the suburbs for more space and a backyard because they are tired of their cramped apartments! Many couples and young families who are moving to Long Island are looking for towns that have the conveniences of the city- walkable, vibrant downtown, great restaurants, easy commute to NYC, and of course, good schools too! Below are some of the best Long Island towns for families.
Data: The median Sales Price of Homes is for 12 months period ending January 2023 and the Commute to NYC on the LIRR is based on the fastest train but of course, depending on which train you catch, commute times can vary. Source: MTA and Redfin
9 Best Long Island Towns for Families
Rockville Centre, NY
Rockville Centre is one of the best towns on Long Island for families. Located on Long Island’s south shore, it is a highly desirable place to live due to its top-rated schools, close proximity to the beach, walkable downtown, and convenient location just a short train ride from New York City.
We love that Rockville Centre’s downtown is walkable, making it easy to get around. Plus there are lots of restaurants and local boutiques. Rockville Centre is sometimes called “The Restaurant Capital of Long Island”- with over 100 restaurants in towns, you don’t need to go to Manhattan for good food! Check out Mangia Bene for Italian food and The Tap Room for its large selection of craft beer. Also, if you want farm fresh food- go to Rockville Centre Farmers Market.
Rockville Centre is great for families because it is very near the beach- just a short 15 minutes to Jones Beach! Plus there are many family-friendly activities at Rockville Centre- for example with just the library alone you can fill your kid’s calendar up with library playdates, kids’ book clubs, Dance Parties, and Storytime. Plus you can even rent Museum Passes from Rockville Centre library to go to Long Island Children’s Museum or The Intrepid for free!
|Median Sales Price of Homes||$697,000|
|Commute to NYC on LIRR||35 minutes|
Mineola is a great place to live for families who need to commute to NYC. The LIRR train ride from Mineola to Manhattan’s Penn station is only 33 minutes! It helps that Mineola is an LIRR hub so there are many direct trains to NYC!
Aside from the easy commute to NYC, Mineola is also an excellent place for families because of the schools, parks and playgrounds, and bustling downtown. Check out Churrasquiera Bairrada for Portugese rodizio BBQ or Lost Farmer Brewing Co. for craft beer.
|Median Sales Price of Homes||$646,000|
|Commute to NYC on LIRR||33 minutes|
Sea Cliff is another town on Long Island that is great for young families. Located on the North Shore of Long Island, Sea Cliff is a small village with an artsy, hippie vibe, excellent schools, walkable neighborhoods, and access to parks and beaches. The only downside of living in Sea Cliff is the commute is quite long but the 1 hour train ride is acceptable for many families if they know they can work from home some days.
Sea Cliff has a great downtown with cozy cafes, eclectic shops, galleries, and restaurants. Check out Still Partners for live music and craft beer. And in the summer months, there are outdoor summer concerts at Sea Cliff Beach and Veteran’s Memorial Park, also known as Hippie Park.
|Median Sales Price of Homes||$931,000|
|Commute to NYC on LIRR||1 hour|
Roslyn is one of the best Long Island towns for families. Located on the North Shore of Long Island, Roslyn residents have it all top-rated schools, an easy 50-minute commute to NYC, a vibrant nightlife, and a walkable downtown.
Roslyn has a walkable and charming downtown with a clock tower. You can grab a bite at one of the restaurants and then walk over to Gerry Pond Park where kids will have fun feeding the ducks in the duck pond and burning off energy in the playground. There are also lots of boutiques and a movie theater in Roslyn. The Roslyn Long Island Rail Road station is also within walking distance. Or if you are up for some shopping therapy, you can take a quick 5 minute drive over to the upscale mall, Americana Manhasset.
The Roslyn Union Free School district consistently ranks among the best school districts on Long Island. Roslyn residents have it all- great schools, easy commute to NYC, close proximity to shops and restaurants plus a walkable downtown!
|Median Sales Price of Homes||$1,018,000|
|Commute to NYC on LIRR||50 minutes|
Merrick is one of the best Long Island towns for families. Located in Nassau County, Merrick is a great place to live because of its close proximity to beaches, great restaurants, and easy commute to NYC.
Merrick residents can take the LIRR train ride from Merrick and they are in midtown Manhattan in 42 minutes! Living in Merrick gives you the best of both worlds- close to the city and the beaches! Make sure to check out restaurants on the water, Anchor Down for great seafood, and AcQua for waterfront Italian restaurant.
|Median Sales Price of Homes||$746,000|
|Commute to NYC on LIRR||42 minutes|
Port Washington is another great Long Island town for families. Located on the North Shore of Long Island, Port Washington is a beautiful waterfront community with a charming downtown, excellent schools, and an easy 35 minute LIRR train commute to NYC.
The Port Washington Union Free School district consistently ranks among the best school district on Long Island. The main street is great for families with lots of family-friendly dining options from pizza to ramen. Port Washington residents have it all great schools and a fast commute to NYC!
|Median Sales Price of Homes||$1,023,000|
|Commute to NYC on LIRR||35 minutes|
Long Beach is another great Long Island town for families who love being close to the beach. There is a 2 mile boardwalk in Long Beach where families can bike or relax on the beach. Aside from being close to the beach, Long Beach is attractive for families for its highly-rated schools, restaurant scene, and easy commute to NYC. But do know that the LIRR train ride from Long Beach to Manhattan can be long, around an hour, but it’s so worth it given the close proximity to the beach!
|Median Sales Price of Homes||$698,000|
|Commute to NYC on LIRR||51 minutes|
Cold Spring Harbor
Cold Spring Harbor is another Long Island town for families who want to be close to the water. It’s a charming town with a small, walkable downtown. There are mom and pop boutiques and a few restaurants on Main street.
Cold Spring Harbor is great for families who love to spend time outdoors. You can go kayaking, sailing, hiking or just relaxing at the beach. There are also concerts and outdoor movies in the summer. It’s the perfect town for active families who also want good schools and an easy commute to NYC.
The schools at Cold Spring Harbor are highly rated. The commute to Manhattan from Cold Spring Harbor is about an hour on the Long Island Railroad- it’s a tad bit long but perfectly doable if you can work from home some days.
|Median Sales Price of Homes||$1,458,000|
|Commute to NYC on LIRR||55 minutes|
Babylon Village is one of the best towns on Long Island for families. If you are into boating and want to be close to the water- this is the town for you. It’s the type of town where you can spend your weekends on your boat or just relaxing on the beach.
But it’s not a sleepy town, in fact, Babylon Village is the go-to Long Island town for nightlife. There are lots of restaurants and bars in Babylon Village. The best part is Babylon Village is a walkable town- you can walk to everything including the Babylon LIRR train station!
Babylon schools are also highly rated. And similar to other towns on this list, the commute to Manhattan from Babylon Village is about an hour on the Long Island Railroad- it’s a tad bit too long but so worth it if you love the waterfront lifestyle that Babylon Village has to offer!
|Median Sales Price of Homes||$598,000|
|Commute to NYC on LIRR||56 minutes|
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