If you or a loved one has ever dreamed of herding cattle across the open plains or facing down bad guys in a lawless town, treat your family to a Western adventure. Several historic destinations celebrate the Old West with reenactments, stagecoach rides, rodeos and other family-friendly activities.
Infamous for the shootout at the O.K. Corral, this Southern Arizona mining town retains its Old West feel with wooden boardwalks, dusty streets and original buildings like the Birdcage Theater, now a museum. Don’t miss the O.K. Corral, where you can watch a reenactment of the gunfight and visit the Tombstone Epitaph newspaper.
Want to really experience the Old West? Take a stagecoach ride through town. Then, head to the Good Enough Mine. On the mine tour, you’ll enter one of the area’s first mines and learn about the silver mining industry that made Tombstone rich. Round out your visit with a stop at Old Tombstone Western Theme Park to pan for gold, take aim in the shooting gallery and watch the daily gunfight shows. The park also offers a half-hour trolley tour through Tombstone and Boothill Graveyard.
Another notorious Western town, Deadwood comes to life with shootouts, traveling medicine shows and the capture of Jack McCall in front of Saloon No. 10, where he killed Wild Bill Hickok. For a schedule of the Main Street reenactments or to watch McCall’s trial, visit the Deadwood Alive website.
Some of the biggest names in Western lore passed through Deadwood. The Adams Museum showcases the personal belongings of Wild Bill Hickok, Calamity Jane and others while its affiliate, Days of ’76, houses more than 50 historic wagons, carriages and stagecoaches. For a change of pace, tour the Broken Boot Gold Mine or pay your respects to Hickock at Mount Moriah Cemetery.
With a rail line that could ship cattle east, Dodge City, Kansas, became one of the major endpoints on the Western Cattle Trail. Experience what the cowboys might have when they arrived in Dodge City roughly 150 years ago at the Boot Hill Museum. Stroll down the boardwalk, order a sarsaparilla at the bar, get a can-can lesson or watch re-enactors gunfight on what was originally the site of Boot Hill Cemetery.
Nearby, the Gunfighters Wax Museum shares space with the Kansas Teachers’ Hall of Fame. Visit the wax museum to see the likenesses of Wyatt Earp, Sitting Bull, Jesse James and others.
The last stop for supplies on the Chisolm Trail before crossing into Indian Territory, historic Fort Worth earned the nickname “Cowtown.” Learn about the industry at the Stockyards Museum, Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame or National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame. Then, stake your space to watch one of the two daily cattle drives at 11:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. along East Exchange Avenue.
From Memorial Day through Labor Day, parents and kids can practice roping, learn how to saddle a horse, hear chuckwagon stories and more for free behind the Livestock Exchange Building. Or, purchase tickets for the daily rodeos held year-round at Cowtown Coliseum or Pawnee Bill’s Wild West Show every day at 2:30 and 4:30 p.m.
With postcard-perfect vistas and Victorian-era towns, the 235-mile San Juan Skyway Scenic and Historic Byway in southern Colorado is one of the nation’s most beautiful road trips. That’s especially true during the fall when yellows, oranges and reds blanket the San Juan Mountains and rolling hillsides.
Between all the apple picking, cider drinking and seasonal hikes your family has in mind, there’s plenty of fall fun the whole crew can enjoy, pups included. Bring your family pets along on your next fall family adventure with this list of inclusive activities.
The sister properties of the Park Royal Golden Cancun and the Grand Park Royal Luxury Resort, also in Cancun, offer families a vacation full of beach fun in a style personalized for your tribe’s vibe. Both properties, located two miles apart, open to the crystal-blue ocean, are framed by the fine white sand for which Cancun is famous, and are family-friendly, but that’s where their resemblance ends.
The National Museum of American Jewish History showcases a special exhibition based on a book of the same name: “Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.”