Some of my favorite memories as a child are centered around family vacations.
Some of them were very simple, and some were a little more extravagant. I am so grateful my parents worked hard and saved so that we could spend that time together; whether it be floating the river in a neighboring town or going to the white beaches of Gulf Shores, Alabama. Those memories are priceless.
Now that I have my own family, (and a cattle rancher husband who works 6 days a week, RARELY takes a day off, and thinks vacations are a “bother”.) I am especially set on us getting uninterrupted, away from the cows, time together. Our kids are young, and though some of them might not remember every trip we go on, it’s still a beautiful experience.
Some of you might dream of, or are already planning a family vacation. I know I am already making plans for this summer!
Obviously each of us is working with a different budget, different locations and different family needs, so maybe there’s not a “one size fits all” vacation. That being said, we wanted to tell you about our families’ personal favorites, as well as a few from readers. Maybe this will spark some ideas in you?
It doesn’t really matter WHERE you go, as long as you’re TOGETHER!
Be sure to read more of our tips for traveling with kids HERE.
Here are some of our personal favorite places we’ve gone. I want to know what yours are!!!! Will you comment below and fill me in on your favorite family vacations or where you dream of going?
Yellowstone National Park
In short, here are the reasons we love Yellowstone:
You guys, I know. Cliche right?
I never considered myself a Disney person, but I quickly became one.
A lot of people told us it was dumb to go with kids so young (We had 4 kids at the time – 6, 4, 4, and 9 months) and that they “wouldn’t remember it”.
They were wrong.
It was pure magic. I wouldn’t call it relaxing…. but traveling with little kids rarely is.
The kids thought every aspect, every character, everything…was real. We started our days early and went till night. They did AWESOME.
I could write a whole post about Disney alone.
(NOTE: Even my husband, who thinks vacations are totally unnecessary and a waste of money says this was the BEST time ever….)
Get park tickets from undercovertourist.com
They’re legit and will save you some dough OR if you’re looking for a discount on a package deal, we LOVE GetawayToday they have some fantastic deals for Disney Land.
Also, consider renting a nearby condo/house if you don’t mind driving to the parks. We booked a condo through Homeaway.com and LOVED it. We went in January and found better deals during the “off season”; not to mention we literally WALKED onto a lot of rides!
It’s a bit extravagant; but I SWEAR to you, it was cheaper than we ever thought it could be (I have some secret tips for that!) and it was worth EVERY penny saved. We will always look back at this trip with Tinkerbell worthy twinkles in our hearts.
Next on our Bucket List: San Diego (Booked through a favorite agency, www.getawaytoday.)
This is such a great great place for family vacations.
Gorgeous, white sand beaches without the need for international travel, beach houses, fun zones, great outlet malls, etc.
We decided to go with a beach house for making your own food, and cheap entertainment right outside your door (the beach). We love feeding seagulls (picture attached) and crab hunting at night. If you don’t know what crab hunting is, basically you walk the beach at night with a flashlight and catch tiny, tiny, tiny, white crabs in water bottles and then let them go. It’s a blast!
Cannon Beach, Oregon/Oregon Coast
The Oregon Coast is great for ALL ages. We took our kids (6, 4, 2, 9 months) last summer with my big family. We stayed for one week. It’s fun to drive from the top of the Oregon Coast to the Redwoods in Northern California. There are Amazing sites to see everywhere along the way. Tide pools, light houses, hikes, beaches, waterfalls, all right there! We saved money but going in together with my parents and siblings on a beach house so accommodations were very inexpensive. For more details on this amazing trip, read my post, 12 Reasons the Oregon Coast is even better than Disneyland.
Our next trip on our family bucket list is Zion’s National Park and The Big Five in Southern Utah.
Cabo san Lucas, Mexico
( Can I just comment about that WATER???)
Here’s what some of our readers said:
Cabin in Hocking Hills
Towards the entrance of the drive up is a place called The little North Pole. It is an amusement park themed after the North Pole. The kids loved it and they got to see Santa it was fun! Rides built right into the side of the mountain! We were also close to Garden of the gods and the Cliff dwellings all very interesting!! We were also close enough to take a quick drive and go to the Royal Gorge Railway and ride the train, a first for us all. We ate on the train and were able to walk outside while the train was moving to take in the sites. It was a great trip all around for all ages!