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4 Warm Places for a Family Winter Holiday Without a Passport

by Barbara Rogers

Dec 2, 2022

© Alexander Shalamov | Dreamstime.com


Even in places where snow doesn’t cover the ground, winter can make family travelers dream of someplace warm. Spending a February vacation in the Caribbean may be tempting, but, for most islands, everyone in the family will need a passport. These sunny destinations don’t require one.


Florida Keys
Pristine beaches are everywhere, especially at Fort Zachary State Park. At Key West Aquarium, kids can hold rescued sea turtles. Take a ferry to Dry Tortugas National Park for shallow beaches and snorkeling among the ruins of Fort Jefferson.


Puerto Rico
Take a bike, kayak or trolley tour of Las Cabezas de San Juan Nature Reserve to explore lagoons, coral reefs, forests and spooky mangrove swamps. Or just hang out on the white sands of Flamenco Beach, one of the world’s most beautiful beaches, with shallow turquoise water and great snorkeling opportunities.


Virgin Islands
The Caribbean islands of St. Thomas, St. Croix and St. John are U.S. territories, so no passport is required to travel here. Start at Coral World Ocean Park to introduce kids to the marine life surrounding these islands. They’ll meet sharks, stingrays and more sea creatures as they explore the underwater observatory. Teens will enjoy the aerial adventures at Tree Limin’ Extreme Zipline in St. Thomas.


Sanibel Island
With reliable sunny skies and daytime temperatures in the mid-70s, this resort region on Florida’s Gulf Coast is a favorite for its laid-back vibe. Kids won’t be able to resist treasure hunting on the shell-strewn beaches, hoping to return home a suitcase full of beautiful seashells. Sightings are almost guaranteed on dolphin cruises, and the whole family can kayak through the mangrove swamps. The flat terrain and miles of paved trails free of cars invite leisurely exploration by bike.


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