Summer is an ideal opportunity for family vacations. The sun is shining, the kids are already off from school and making plans is that much easier.
While the possibilities seem endless, many families opt for fun trips to the beach or Walt Disney World. These are great, fun places for a quick family vacation, but maybe not necessarily great for keeping kids’ brains growing during the summer months.
The first, and probably most obvious, way to increase the academic merits of the family vacation is by introducing museums to the family trips. Washington, D.C. is the perfect candidate for trips of this type. From the National Museum of Natural History to the Newseum and the National Air and Space Museum, there are tons of museums in the area to supplement the sightseeing and make the trip all the more educational.
New York City
New York City is another great destination for families with museum-hungry kids. Museum is home to the New York Hall of Sciences and the Children’s Museum of the Arts. New York is home to countless shows and great dining opportunities, making it great for parents as well as kids.
For some education outside the realm of museums, consider a family trip to one of the country’s many national parks. National parks give kids and families as a whole a great opportunity to experience some of the wonders of the natural world firsthand. The great thing about national parks, you can often tack one onto an existing trip. If your family is making a trip to the Pacific Northwest, consider a trip to Mt. Rainier National Park. To see which parks you can add to your summer vacation, see which parks are nearby.
For a historic vacation, consider Colonial Williamsburg this summer. This small town experience brings visitors back to the days of colonialism in an immersive way. If the trip isn’t exciting enough, consider taking a daytrip to nearby Busch Gardens to satisfy the rest of the family hoping for an amusement park.
If your family already has your summer trip planned, it might not be too late to add some educational elements. If you’re planning a trip to Walt Disney World, for instance, you can always visit the Hall of Presidents for a quick history lesson.
Zermatt’s colorful ski boutique-lined Bahnhofstrasse, stylish apartment-style lodgings of every description and views of the Matterhorn from every angle make up one of Europe’s most family-friendly destinations — and it certainly does not hurt that it is proclaimed the “world’s best ski resort” by organizations like SnowOnline.com year after year. During the warmer months, meanwhile, you will see many family groups with kids strolling the shopping streets (sometimes alongside a herd of about 50 free-range Valais Blackneck goats around 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.), enjoying fondue and pizza at nearby cafés, and taking advantage of the many hiking and bike trails.
San Diego is a great destination for families looking for fun no matter what time of year it is, but this fall, there is plenty to do for everyone — even when you have a budget. Thanks to year-round sunshine, the best way to explore this city is by heading outdoors and enjoying the beautiful weather.
The movies and cruise vacations actually have a lot in common: fascinating ports of call, making friends with interesting people, new sensory experiences, the constant change of scenery. When you think about it, it’s no surprise many classic comedies and romances are set aboard cruise ships, including Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953) with Marilyn Monroe, Royal Wedding (1951), An Affair to Remember (1957) with Cary Grant, the more recent and kid-friendly Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation, and the long-running television series Love Boat.