UNESCO World Heritage sites, endless vistas of stunning lakes, vineyards and rolling estates: just another day in the Loire Valley region of France. If this sounds like your dream destination, that’s because it is. Escape from reality into a fantasy land of European charms, history, luxury and quaint, quintessential French delights in the Loire Valley, but with all the shopping, dining, unique town activities and family fun your kids can handle.
The Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Card recently launched BoldFamilyTravel.Chase.com, an interactive, online resource allowing families to plan future travel together. The launch followed the Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Card Survey of parents and grandparents that revealed most parents believe children are important resources for planning family vacations and that one-third of parents don’t currently involve their children in planning but would like to.
In Central California, the 100-mile San Luis Obispo County coastline — from Santa Barbara County to Monterrey County — attracts families for all its outdoor activities on land and at sea. There’s plenty to enjoy for non-activists too, along the California Highway 1 Discovery Route. The region’s topographic splendor is obvious even while driving, but it’s a WOW! from the heights of the spectacular, art-filled Hearst Castle. Plus, there are shops and galleries, fun places to eat and drink, and tasting rooms to sample regional wines along The Pacific Coast Wine Trail. (As I was driving, I did more listening than sipping, but I learned about the wines and winemakers.)
Among many of New Zealand’s alluring qualities, most foodie families know it’s a must visit for wine tasting vacations. New Zealand’s sub-tropic climate and diverse landscape allow for a variety of grapes and winemaking styles throughout the country, resulting in a vast selection of wines — all the more reason to book a family trip and prepare to traverse the varied landscape in search of your new favorite vineyard.
Napa is a celebrated romantic destination for Valentine’s Day (or President’s Day weekend and wedding anniversaries, for that matter). And what’s there not to love? The best-known wine production in America has going for it fantastic, spring-like weather, first-class dining, and a refined and sophisticated mix of familiar and emerging wineries. In fact, Napa Valley in some years has had more tourists populate its fields than Disneyland. For couples planning quality downtime, those crowds can deflate the romance factor.
When you hear fresh seafood and shellfish festivals, it’s easy to think of summertime in New England and the famous, lobster-teeming shores of Maine. While summer on the East Coast may be awhile away, crabbing season on the West Coast is right around the corner.