Top Family Vacation Ideas With Kids of All Ages

Happy girls running to the sea on a beautiful sunset
Sol de Zuasnabar Brebbia / Getty Images

Resort vacations are just one way to enjoy time away together as a family and all-inclusive resorts have activities for everyone. Families love the ease of all-inclusive, no-surprises pricing and a smorgasbord of activities. While all-inclusive resorts are popular in the Caribbean and Mexico, it's a myth that you have to travel far to find a great all-inclusive resort. There are fabulous options in the United States including resorts in Hawaii.

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Disney Vacations

When it comes to popular family vacations, no company captures the hearts and imaginations of kids of all ages like Disney. And don't think Disney is just for kids. Grown-ups will love the relaxing resorts, fabulous restaurants, spas, golf and more. You'll find Disney resorts and theme parks on both coasts of the U.S. as well as fun cruises. Disney family getaway vacations include:

And for something different, Disney offers premium guided family tours to destinations in North America and around the globe. Adventures by Disney are not necessarily focused on the theme parks, have a low guide-to-participant ratio, and many behind-the-scenes, VIP experiences that are exclusive to tour participants.

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Beach Getaways

Most families enjoy a summer vacation with plenty of sun, sand, and surf. You can enjoy a beach vacation anyplace there is water—the Gulf Coast, Pacific Coast, Atlantic Coast, and on lakes and rivers with each destination having unique things to do and see. These beach getaways offer kid-friendly fun and a family atmosphere.

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Family Cruises

Cruising keeps growing in popularity as more families discover the joy of sailing and the fun-at-your-fingertips that cruise lines deliver. Every cruise line has its own personality, so it's important to do your research and find one that is a good fit for your family. Start with our Family Cruise Guide​ and consider one of the cruise lines that cater to children with special activities, meals, and decor.

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National Parks

If your kids are nuts about nature and wildlife consider a vacation in a natural setting. Our national park system offers families a wonderfully affordable way to visit our most cherished and beautiful landscapes, view wildlife in their natural habitat, learn about geological and cultural history, and appreciate the great outdoors. National Parks have passports where your children can gather stamps as they visit the parks as well as a Junior Ranger Program and special perks for Fourth Graders. National Parks that are ideal for families include:

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Road Trips

There's no better, or more affordable, way to show your kids America the Beautiful than on a family road trip, which continues to be a national pastime. Here's what you need to plan a car trip with kids. Ideas for family road trips include:

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Theme Parks

Well loved for their high-energy fun and thrills, theme parks are perennially popular destinations for families with kids of all ages. Like cruise lines, theme parks have their own personalities, so do your research to find a good fit for your family. These are some popular theme park destinations.

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City Breaks

Families that love museums, sightseeing, shopping, and the energy of a big city have some great opportunities to vacation together, too.  An urban escape is just the ticket, especially for older children. These cities are particularly intriguing for children and provide good learning opportunities too. 

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Family Vacations in the South

American families like to travel south for sunshine and warm temperatures. Florida and South Carolina are the top two tourist destinations, with other warm states also drawing many vacationing families. There are beaches, natural beauty, American history sites, and some family-centered resorts in destinations including:

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Train Trips

Riding the rails is not only a comfortable way for families to travel, but it lets you appreciate landscapes very differently than from the inside of a car. Top Train Trips in the US and Canada include the Amtrak Cascades which is very scenic and offers four daily round trips between Portland and Seattle; two daily round trips between Seattle and Vancouver, British Columbia; and two daily round trips between Portland and Eugene, Oregon.

Sightseeing trains that are ideal for the family include:

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