Going on vacation is a great way to create lifelong memories with a family, but those with babies and toddlers may feel as if any major trip is going to be nearly impossible. Along with safety issues, some parents are concerned that the overall stress levels will outweigh the fun they will have. For those that are finally ready to take the plunge and go on vacation with their young children, here are four ideas that are exciting for kids, affordable for parents, and a great overall time for a family of any size.
Unlike almost any other vacation destination, parents can handpick a cruise that is designed specifically for families with younger children. While some cruises focus on entertainment for adults, gambling, or nightlife, other cruise lines cater to families with children under the age of 10. Some of the most popular ships are essentially floating theme parks with countless scheduled and non-scheduled activities for the entire family. Parents that want to save some money should consider cruises closest to the Equator between December and May for warm and dry weather without the crowds.
A trip to the beach is one of the most popular options for families, but it can also mean some extra stress on parents. Crowded beaches have a variety of safety concerns for younger children and parents will have to constantly be alert, especially if any of their kids are not strong swimmers. Lake camping or staying at a resort beside the lake can provide many of the same activities as the beach in a slightly more controlled environment. Unlike the frenzy of beach towns, lake camping is often a blend of families and locals looking to enjoy a relaxed time. In most locations, lake vacations should be scheduled during the end of summer to avoid chilly water from melted snow.
An all-inclusive resort may sound like a major drain on a family’s budget, but these companies do have some advantages for parents with younger children. First, parents will know exactly who much the vacation will cost from start to finish. Lavish dinners, poolside drinks, or children in need of a midnight snack will not result in unwanted costs at the end of the trip. All-inclusive resorts are also designed to have activities for guests of all ages as well as whole-family adventures. Depending on the resort and its location, parents may have options ranging from snorkeling and water sports to guided tours and daycare services.
For families that are looking for a rustic trip, a ranch trip is a great alternative to resorts and cruises. Much like an all-inclusive resort, parents will know exactly what they will be spending for the entire trip before they step out the door. Food and other amenities will be included and families can make these vacations as adventurous or relaxing as they would like. Every state throughout the country has ranch resorts that cater to families with younger children. Many also offer day trips for the kids, group activities, and adults-only nights with supervision for the children.
Having younger children does not mean that a family needs to forgo their vacation plans until their kids have grown up. While it will take some extra planning beforehand, these four options are a great place to begin the search for a vacation that your family will remember for a lifetime.
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