Planning a Family Vacation: A Chance to Get Together

 

family vacation tips

 

Multi-generational travel is one of the largest-growing segments of travel.  According to the Travel Industry Association, at least three generations are traveling together. Every year, over 5 million three-generation families are going on vacation together.  Unfortunately, this presents those planning the trip with a huge challenge.  How do you cater to everyone?

Thankfully, there are a number of ways you can create the perfect multigenerational vacation.  And, you’ll definitely be rewarded for your efforts. The benefits of family vacations range from spending quality time together.  Additionally, parents having a break from the kids.  So, use our tips for planning a family vacation.  Here are our top tips:

Make Sure Everyone’s Involved

First, make sure everyone is involved in the decision-making process.  They’ll feel more invested in the trip because they’ve had an input into the overall decisions.  Before you book anything, hold a family meeting to discuss ideas. You can set up an online chat so you can all throw ideas around.

Choose the Right Accommodation

Furthermore, vacation rentals are often a much more affordable option for large groups. They allow you to choose the right accommodation that caters to everyone’s needs while also getting the privacy you’ll be looking for from your trip.

The goal of a vacation together is to spend quality time.  However, it’s still important to make sure people can have some time out. For example, you might want to look at places with individual units instead of a large villa.  Furthermore, those who don’t want to party late or need to escape from crying babies can go to their unit.

Just as important, it’s also worth booking everyone into airport hotels like the BWI Airport Marriott. When you’ve got a large group of people traveling together, organizing everyone to be on time can be difficult. So opting for an overnight stay at the airport reduces any risks of people missing the flight.

Spend Time in Groups

It doesn’t matter where you’re heading, there are going to be groups of people who want to do different things.  When you’re planning your family vacation, remember some people will want to go off and do their own thing.  That’s great.

Discuss what activities everyone wants to take part in.  That way, you can arrange small groups who can go off and do separate things.  While this is occurring others can babysit or relax by the pool.

When planning a family vacation, mix and match your quality time.  Set up activities with different members of your family. For example, grandparents could head off to do some sightseeing during the day.  Mom and Dad can go out a night and leave the grandparents to babysit the kids.

Other things to consider include self-catered accommodations. With different meal schedules and preferences, it can be difficult to find restaurants that cater to everyone. Plus, eating in gives you the chance to relax as a family.  Most importantly, it also saves money.

Making sure everyone on vacation is happy isn’t hard.  When you’re planning a family vacation, remember it takes a little planning, consideration, and flexibility.  You and your family will be enjoying the trip of a lifetime!

Stress Free Tropical Family Vacations

 

tropical family vacations

 

Going on vacation when you have kids can be difficult. There’s so much to think about.  For example, what to do with your time and how to keep everybody happy and safe.  It can be done, and we’re going to give you a few tropical family getaways.

Borneo Family Tour

 

tropical family vacations

Wikipedia

Borneo is one of the world’s largest islands and one of the most interesting. There’s a huge range of activities and landscapes to enjoy in this tropical paradise. Perhaps the most enchanting for both parents and kids is the island’s orangutans. The best place to find orangutans is at the Sepilok Sanctuary.  The apes are kept on display.  However, if you head out on a bush tour, there’s a small chance you’ll see these enchanting creatures in the wild.

Borneo is home to many different tribal groups too. You can visit these groups while staying in one of the island’s traditional long houses. The rainforest here hosts many interesting creatures, including pygmy elephants and wild gibbons.  Borneo is open to visitors all year, but the best time to take a visit is between March and October.

 

The Texas Coast

 

Galveston Texas vacation

Wikipedia

If you’re looking for something a little closer to home consider the Texas coast, around Galveston.  Every summer, thousands of families descend on the area looking for warm waters and tropical skies. The main attraction on the Texas Gulf Coast is Galveston island. As this guide to Galveston Island points out, there’s plenty for families to do here. You can take a trip on the Port Bolivar Ferry where there’s a chance of seeing dolphins and do other sightseeing. You can also see some of the island’s many tree sculptures. If you’re into your history, your can pay a visit to the 1877 Tall Ship Elissa, preserved as a monument to the region’s maritime history.

 

Burma

 

tropic vacations

  Wikimedia Commons

Burma has been through political strife over the last few decades.  Recently they have begun to open its doors to the outside world.  As a result, you might not think that it’s an ideal location to take children.  Burma needs to attract tourists if it is to become a wealthy country.

Right now, there’s a wealth of activities being offered that children will love. How about spending some time in the Burmese jungle learning to ride an elephant?  Or sailing to Inle Lake on your very own long tail boat?

There’s plenty of opportunities for children to get involved with the local culture. There are tours, for instance, where you can learn about the lives of traditional fishermen. You can also spend a night in a local village, living as the locals do and experiencing their culture first hand.

The Burmese people are very welcoming and have a very positive attitude to Westerners. More often than not, they learn as much from you as you do from them. When it comes to children, nothing is too much trouble.

4 Top Family Activities in Bali

 

Bali vacations, friendly vacations, vacations

 

Bringing kids along on an exotic vacation can be challenging.  Luckily, Bali isn’t just an exotic island.  I knew that it was the best choice for our first international family vacation because of its high standards for safety and adventure. My 14-year old soccer-loving son (Aaron) and his 11-year-old sister (Olivia) would agree, there are plenty of family-friendly activities in Bali. Fun is pretty much guaranteed if you try out some of the following:

Elephant Riding
Bali’s main asset lies in the island’s picturesque natural landscape. Gorgeous beaches are a plus too. We decided exploring nature by visiting one of the island’s top elephant safari parks. My kids love animals, so it wasn’t that hard of a choice.  We headed to a nearby rainforest where we took our sweet time admiring the endangered Sumatran elephants. The massive exhibit of a mammoth skeleton in the park’s museum is breathtaking. To top it all off, we had a tasty dinner at the nearby lakeside restaurant. Afterward, we returned home with several bags of souvenirs.

White Water Rafting

White water rafting is a fun activity for the entire family, but I don’t recommend it for the squeamish. Olivia decided to stay on the sidelines on our first go-around. She relented it after seeing Aaron having so much fun.  Consult experts before booking a ride, not every place is suited for children.   The Telaga Waja River is only suited for kids 9 years old and above.  The Ayung River is slightly easier and is suitable for children as young as 5.

Waterparks

Bali has perfect spots for water fun. One of the most popular is Waterbom.  It’s a paradise of water slides that made me feel like a kid again.  Aaron and Oliva were screaming their heads off with joy the entire time.  Their water slides that made me feel like a kid again too.
I recommend paying a visit to Splash Waterpark if you have small children. It is smaller, which allows you to keep an eye on your kids across the whole park.  It also makes the children safer in the water park and the experience less dangerous.  Come fully equipped with swimsuits in tow.
Treetop adventures
After splashing around for some time, we felt the need to cap off our vacation with a bang. We knew that Aaron was into sports and that Olivia would likely want to follow her brother’s lead.  The Treetop Adventure Park was filled with all sorts of circuits and courses.
Old fashioned tree-climbing was just what they needed.  Your little ones will want to explore at length leaving you and your weary bones in the dust as you struggle to catch up. The zip line we boarded at the end of our trips makes my head spin.
The island is remarkably kid-friendly.  My children were welcome in most places with open arms. Bali will always be at the top of my list for family vacation spots. I encourage anyone to try it out and see for themselves what all the fuss about.

 

Image-Heather-GreenHeather is a accounting professional turned SAHM of two and a Midwest housewife.  She was born in England, and met the love of her life in Italy while studying abroad. In her free time she enjoys gardening, jeopardy, and planning family gatherings and vacations. 

 

18 Places To Travel Off Season

vacation destination tips


I love to find travel bargains.  First, off season travel gets you the most bang for your travel buck.  So, I start planning my summer vacation off season.  As a result, planning is essential. Deciding where I want to go, and then coming up with a ball park figure on how much it’s going to cost are essential in my planning.  So, I look for places that have great deals off season.  Enduring crowds is bearable, but my preference is for the crowds to be small and the prices reasonable when I travel.

Next, I put together a list of 18 Places To Travel Off Season and when the best deals are offered:

New York in January – It’s the city that never sleeps. You can find great shopping, Broadway shows, sight-seeing, and dining in so many places.  For example, Harlem, Manhattan, China Town, Soho and the list goes on.

Montreal in February – Brush up on your French.  Because Montreal is considered to be cosmopolitan and is the second largest French speaking city in the world.  Also, it is second only to Paris.  Montreal is known for its museums, shopping and great food.

Italy in March – Next, Rome, Sicily, Naples, Venice, and Milan are places that I wish to see.  Milan is famous for it’s designer shops and Leonardo da Vinci’s painting, The Last Supper.  Also, there’s the canals in Venice.  Italians are known for great pizza and pasta.   

Rio de Janeiro in March –  Rio is known for it’s world famous Carnival, beautiful beaches, and the infamous Sugar Loaf Mountain.

Rocky Mountains in April –  You can enjoy the Rocky Mountains from British Columbia and Alberta in Canada.  This includes Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico in the U.S.  The mountains are approximately 3,00o miles from Canada to the U.S. Cross country skiing and snowshoeing are popular in April.

Australia in May – If you like wildlife, Kangaroo Island is the place to go.  Additionally, you can meet sea lions on the beach, kangaroos, koalas, penguins and more on the beach.  Furthermore, you can also snorkel, dive or swim on one of the beaches. While you’re there, head to the Australian Alps and spend your time hiking.

Lake Tahoe in May –  For me, either North or South Lake Tahoe will suffice.  The choice is yours. Lake Tahoe borders the Sierra Nevada, state borders of California and Nevada. Tahoe South is great for skiing, boating, bike trails, and bar hopping.  Tahoe North is great for biking, hiking and golf.  Either way you will enjoy this freshwater lake surrounded by beautiful mountains and alpine trees.  Lake Tahoe is the 6th largest lake in the United Sates.  Great family vacation spot.
 
Dallas in June
– So, if you’re a Cowboys fan this is a perfect city to visit.  And there’s plenty of beef and history in Dallas too.  To name a few, Sixth Floor Museum and Southfork Ranch, which is about 25 miles north of Dallas.

Thailand in June – Thailand is located in Southeast Asia’s Indochina peninsula. Known for its tropical beaches, royal palaces, ancient ruins and displays of Buddha.  Add Asia to your vacation list.

Palm Beach in July – Great beaches, shopping on Worth Avenue and a tour of celebrity homes.  Howard Stern, Tiger Woods, Serena & Venus Williams, and Rush Limbaugh are a few celebrities living in the Palm Beach area.

Caribbean in July
– Choose from the Bahamas, Dominican Republic, St. Thomas or Aruba to name a few. Turquoise water, white sandy beaches snorkeling, diving and great food for reason enough to vacation in the Caribbean.

Las Vegas in August –  What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.  There’s plenty to do in Nevada’s Mojave Desert. Gambling on the Las Vegas strip, catch one of your favorite celebrity’s show, visit Hoover Dam, the Grand Canyon or the Colorado River.

New Orleans in August –  Looking for a diverse city with plenty of French, African, and American cultures?  Head to New Orleans.  It is located on  the Mississippi River and near the Gulf of Mexico.  It provides plenty of action around the clock.  Likewise, if you like it hot, there’s plenty of spicy food to be found there as well.

Martha’s Vineyard in September – Martha’s Vineyard is only accessible by boat or air. Namely, vacationers head to Martha’s Vineyard for its beaches, lighthouses,  farmland, and celebrity sightings.

Vancouver in October – Known for whale watching, Grouse Mountain, ziplines, Capilano Canyon  and horse dawn carriages.

Riveria Maya in November – Next, Riviera Maya extends along the Caribbean coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula from Puerto Morelos to the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve.  Notably, its beautiful white beaches and the bluest water that you can imagine is a major attraction too.

Napa Valley in December –  Last, San Francisco has hundreds of vineyards.  Take a ride on the infamous Napa Valley Wine Train.  In fact, it’s actually a restaurant in vintage Pullman railcars with views of the vineyards.

Finally, select your dream destination and start planning your next vacation today.  Most importantly, you can save hundreds, possibly thousands of dollars traveling off season.  In conclusion, Pack light and enjoy your time relaxing and enjoying the sights.  What’s your dream vacation destinations?