I usually write about girlfriend getaways, solo travel and romantic vacations with Mr. S, but one of these days I’ll have grandkids (hint, hint) and I’m already preparing for introducing them to my wonderful world of Champagne Living travel. While there are a multitude of destinations considered kid-friendly, I’ve picked my top 5 for the ENTIRE family (since mom, dad & grandparents have to have a little fun too).
1. Disney World.
My son and daughter-in-law just became annual passholders at Mickey’s home. As an adult I love it just as much (maybe more) than I did with kids in tow, so it goes without saying, that this ultimate family vacation is a great source of joy for adults and kids alike. Whether you stay several miles from the theme park or enjoy the fabulous Disney Resort Hotels, this vacation affords you an endless array of activities designed for the entire family. From Epcot Center to Sea World; from Disney Village to Universal Studios; Water parks to Wildlife parks; no time is wasted at this world-famous resort.
Make sure to do a search of the online travel sites, because there are always lots of special packages to Disney World as well as Southwest Airlines and others. In addition, you can save quite a bit of money by selecting hotels that offer free stays for children, as well as free meals for the little ones. This is one destination where you can easily book a trip based on your budget and stick to it.
2. Sylvan Dale Guest Ranch.
From Alaska to Wyoming, there are a multitude of dude ranches perfect for a family vacation. But, one of the most notable is the Sylvan Dale Guest Ranch in Colorado, approximately 20 miles from Rock Mountain National Park. Here, your family can engage in an array of activities including: horseback riding, hayrides, nature walks, and a host of amenities provided by the ranch.
This dude ranch is perfect for families who love the outdoors as well as enjoy visiting such historic sites as Fort Collins, Old West Museums, and Cheyenne (where you can buy tickets to the world’s largest rodeo held from July 17 to the 26th).
While Oahu has always been a popular destination, it is Maui that attracts family vacationers more than any of its islands. The reason is that it offers a wide variety of activities such as whale watching (seasonal); Lahaina, a famous whaling village; and Maui Ocean Center, home to the largest aquarium in Hawaii.
Your family can also take a ride on the Sugar Cane Train, circa 1890; visit Oheo Gulch to marvel at the spectacular waterfalls; spend a day at Iao Valley and view the Iao Needle; or visit the black-sand beaches at Waianapanapa in East Maui.
For fabulous weather, magnificent sunsets, and beautiful beaches; Maui is the perfect spot to unwind and enjoy spending quality family time.
4. New York.
I’ll NEVER say no to New York. It’s probably the most exciting vacation spot for families. The “Big Apple” has something for everyone; from Broadway to Rockefeller Center, you will never run out of things to do here. Among the many sites to visit is Radio City Music Hall where you can take in a show; Madison Square Garden; the Empire State Building; the Village; 42nd Street, the Theatre District; museums; shopping, fabulous cuisine; the list is endless.
Spend a day walking along Fifth Avenue and stop at St. Patrick’s Cathedral; take a tour of NBC Studios; spend an afternoon in Central Park and visit the zoo there; go to the South Street Seaport or take in a matinee performance on a Wednesday afternoon.
Whether you stay uptown or downtown, you will always be in close proximity to the many historic sites and sounds that comprise Manhattan. Moreover, your kids will enjoy all this city has to offer.
5. Las Vegas.
While there’s nothing I love better than spending the day (or night) in a casino, the city that never sleeps also offers a wide range of attractions for kids. It has become one of the top family destinations in the US today. Moreover, it is an affordable vacation because the hotel packages and meals will fit any budget.
Among the many attractions offered for families include: M&M’s World, the Lion Habitat at MGM, Adventure Canyon, Game Works (a video game-playing wonderland), Sports Park, Circus Circus rides; Dolphin Habitat at the Mirage hotel; Shark Reef; New York, New York’s roller coaster; Madame Tussaud’s; Lake Mead; Children’s Museum (the largest of its kind); and Adventuresdome, the largest theme park in the U.S.
Many of these attractions are free and are well worth visiting. Don’t forget the Flamingo Habitat at the Flamingo hotel or the spectacular water fountain show across the way at Caesars Palace.
For great fun and awesome rides and venues, Las Vegas is a wonderful choice for your next family vacation.
If you have a favorite, let me know….I’ll look into exploring more!