Getting High With Your Kids: Canopy Walks

I think every kid dreams of flying or climbing to the very top of the trees. Not long ago, if you wanted to see a forest from a bird’s eye view, you needed a harness, a degree in biology, and a ticket to Costa Rica. Lately though, there’s been a small explosion in the number of canopy tours, canopy walks, and zipline tours available stateside. Even in places you might not expect.

While researching 101 Places You Gotta See Before You’re 12!, the folks at Cypress Valley Canopy Tours (www.cypressvalleycanopytours.com) in the Texas Hill Country were super-helpful in providing images. Who knew there were forests in Texas?

There’s a new start-up zipline canopy tour in Western Massachusetts called Deerfield Valley Canopy Tours (www.deerfieldzipline.com) and I’m really excited that we’re going to have one near us in Asheville, North Carolina: Navitat (www.navitat.com) opens on May 28.

Navitat, outside Asheville, North Carolina

Most zipline canopy tours are restricted to kids over the age of eight or 10, but younger kids can usually go on sky bridges or canopy walks. There’s a new one at the Atlanta Botanical Garden (www.atlantabotanicalgarden.org) that we will check out next time we’re down to see the family. But there are also a few really inexpensive options.

We did the canopy walk at Myakka State Park (http://myakkariver.org) in Florida, the first one in the US. At the time, Miss M. was about six and Mr. Big was still in a stroller.

Thankfully, their Aunt Pam volunteered to stay at ground level with Mr. Big, but we went up, including eightysomething Beeps. It was the right mix of adventure/risk and safety for a six-year-old, We fantasize about getting to Costa Rica, but maybe it might be more realistic to try to get to this one: TreeTrek at Whistler Resort in BC:

TreeTrek, Whistler, British Columbia

Any other canopy tours to know about?

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