The ranch lies along the banks in a bend of the Brazos River, where summertime means kayaks and campfires. Here you can witness nature at its best, explore acres of pristine hiking trails and scenic terrain, and immerse yourself in outdoor adventure. While swimming underneath a waterfall is usually reserved for weeklong trips to Costa Rica, travelers have a family-friendly (and relatively nearby) opportunity to do just that at Turner Falls Park outside Davis, Oklahoma. Coors Field is right downtown, which makes it easy to catch a family-fun Rockies baseball game. Budget tips: Visitors can go on a free self-guided walking tour of historic downtown Providence, which dives into the making of the now “Creative Capital.” Stop by the brand new Free Play Bar & Arcade that includes over 130 classic video games plus pinball, skeeball, and air hockey, all for free. On a sunny spring day, I sat next to a fire on a stone porch overlooking the vines and enjoyed a glass of Red Caboose Merlot that went down smooth and kept me warm as the breeze blew across the patio. Nearby wineries, including Duchman Family Winery, Driftwood Estate Winery, and Wimberley Valley Winery. Where to stay: The La Torretta Lake Resort & Spa will keep your family entertained for your entire stay. There’s a lot more to Arizona than a ton of sand, cactus, and tumbleweeds, which is why these eight places are the perfect excuse to take a weekend trip within the state. Everyone will love the classic Skyway Drive-In and the creamy treats served up at the old-fashioned soda fountain at Wilson ice Cream Parlor. One of the best romantic getaways in PA, the lodge has 57 rooms and suites with marble bathrooms, private verandas and a view of the gardens, the lake or the rock garden waterfall. Discover and save on 1000s of great deals at nearby restaurants, spas, things to do, shopping, travel and more. Melissa Klurman is a freelance travel writer and editor with more than 27 years experience who reports on travel trends around the planet for, Courtesy Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority, Courtesy Bowling Green Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, We are no longer supporting IE (Internet Explorer), 24 summer bucket list ideas off your list. Where to stay: Tanque Verde Ranch is starting rates this summer around $120 a night. Most Dallasites don’t want their weekend getaway to end with a night in jail. Heading out on the lake in a boat, breaking out the fishing rods, or just putting on a bathing suit and jumping in the water are all great ways to enjoy a summer in Texas. Back at the cabin, it didn’t take long for the soothing babble of Honey Creek to lull us to sleep. “You’ll be treated as a guest in our home, not someone taking up space,” Richard says. Budget tip: For great, free, souvenirs, take the kids shelling along the pristine barrier island sands of Tigertail Beach Park on Marco Island. For a … Don’t miss these 12 other best all-inclusive resorts in the Caribbean. Kids will love strolling the cobblestone streets of Old Montreal and munching on classic croissants and crepes, not to mention visiting more modern sights such as the Biodome to see penguins and learn about natural science. You can watch them for free from the Jacques Cartier Bridge which becomes a pedestrian-only viewing area. I’ll say this about the weekend: it is without a doubt the most fun I’ve had chasing—and getting chased by—African animals on an ex-mayor’s ranch. $450 per night in lodging that fits 7–11 people (two-night minimum), Must do: Have a tasty lunch at the Parkside Diner and then work it off at the Whispering Pines Mini-Golf next door. Don’t forget to check out the city’s National Corvette Museum where every single Corvette in the world is produced. Kids will love the free Friday drum circles in Pritchard Park where they can bang a drum and dance along (the festivities get rolling around 6 p.m.). At Chandler Ranch, you can take a kayak or canoe for a jaunt on the Pecos River, or let minnows nibble your toes in the “Redneck Spa” on the creek. Noted for next time. What was luxurious: the balcony view of the verdant, undulating golf courses and the Texas Hill Country beyond. It was only later that I realized Harvard was the former Plano mayor who brought J.C. Penney to town in the 1980s. Why you’ll love it: If you have baseball fans in the family, you’ll want to focus on Cooperstown, home to The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, where they honor some of America’s athletic heroes. Why you’ll love it: The entry point to the Blue Ridge Mountains, Asheville is a funky mix of breweries (the most per capita in the United States), great food, arts (the River Arts District is a fun and free way to spend a day), history (the Biltmore Estate), free-spirited hippie culture, and spectacular nature. Then, attend a free WaterFire event this summer, where as many as 80 small bonfires are set ablaze along Providence’s three rivers for the annual summer events, creating a free, one-of-a-kind light show that lasts from just after sunset until about 12:30 a.m. Where to stay: Housed in the historic former Baltimore & Ohio Railroad headquarters, Kimpton Hotel Monaco Baltimore Inner Harbor (from $177) is a kid’s dream with 14 Bunk Bed Suites (not to mention the warm cookies we’ve had at check-in). Middle schoolers will love seeing the massive whale sharks at Georgia Aquarium (the largest in the country), visiting the Heisman Trophy at the College Football Hall of Fame, and sampling soda to their heart’s content at World of Coca-Cola. After a day of exploring, cap off the day with a stroll through Main Street Square, a community hub featuring year-round free events for travelers to enjoy, as well as public art such as The Sculpture Project. Wine or beer (it’s BYOB). That’s why I love taking the family to one of Virginia’s most historic and entertaining towns, Williamsburg. 3. The city is steeped in French language, cuisine, and culture. Including 4-story, interactive treetop outposts and an outdoor 1836 Prairietown where kids can visit with 1800s Indiana settlers, and play games and learn a trade from the local interpreters dressed in period garb. Richard showed us the hollow of a pecan tree where a family of raccoons lives; where Native American tribes carved stones in the ground; what he called the “Redneck Spa” on the creek that runs into river, where minnows will nibble on your feet; the land that they are returning to its former life as grazing fields for cattle, so he can make his menu more farm to table. I don’t remember if we were paddling the other three times we capsized, before we eventually abandoned ship and walked (and crawled) through a thicket to the sound of Richard’s voice and the safety of the Mule. The small living area is stocked with criminal- and jail-themed records (I listened to Johnny Cash’s lesser-known prison album, At San Quentin) and a Polaroid camera to take a mugshot in front of the height measurements on the wall. Where to stay: The Westin Montreal, just a block from Old Montreal, is a kid favorite for its glass-bottom pool that looks down onto the street (bring goggles for the best view). Travel to the edge of Texas and stay in a tepee, or find adventure closer to home. Why you’ll love it: Naples-area beaches are regularly ranked among the best in the world, landing on TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards for the Top 25 Beaches in the United States. Why you’ll love it: Want to feel like you’ve jetted across the Atlantic for the weekend and still make it back home for work on Monday? Surrounding the waterfall and swimming hole are explorable caves carved out of the oldest rock formations in the country between the Appalachian and Rocky mountains. Everywhere you look are the stunning peaks and spires of red rocks and sandstone outcroppings. We take care of everything so moms can rest, relax, and rejuvenate. —Zac Crain, Cost per night: The great thing about resorts is that you can drink daiquiris and parent your children without getting a single side-eye glance (obviously, pace yourself). This spectacular national park lets you spend your days walking the more than 10 miles of trail and exploring Lake Erie. Georgetown Drive-In has two digital screens and the sound is played through FM radio. Where to stay: Naples Grande Beach Resort features views of the Gulf surrounded by beautiful lawns, gardens, and reflecting pools, and they just unveiled 50 newly renovated villas, perfect for family getaways. This Jersey Shore gem has a pedestrian cobblestone mall with toy stores and ice cream shops, a small boardwalk with an arcade. Situated just out of the fray, on FM 1291, Flophouze would make a fine home base for hitting the Round Top Antiques Fair. Where to stay: Julie’s Park Cafe & Motel gives you several options for family-friendly lodging at budget-friendly prices, including condominiums and cottages for around $125 during peak season with multiple bedrooms (and bathrooms, a priceless bonus if you have teens) in Fish Creek. Discover 15 more islands in the United States you can visit without a passport. Here are some of our favorite family-friendly beaches around the country. Nestled in the Appalachian region of the southern United States is West Virginia. Things to Do in Lucerne, Switzerland: See Tripadvisor's 41,574 traveler reviews and photos of Lucerne attractions. A sibling to the famed Arizona-based Miraval (perhaps best known as home to Oprah’s favorite spa), the Austin retreat sits on 220 acres of Texas Hill Country surrounded by spectacular views of Lake Travis. From oceanfront retreats to snowy mountain peaks—here are six winter vacations for budget, mid-range, and luxury travelers in New York. We are no longer supporting IE (Internet Explorer) as we strive to provide site experiences for browsers that support new web standards and security practices. West Virginia is covered in mountains and forest, and is an endless sea of green tree tops. Big Bend is as rugged as it is beautiful, which has long meant that its natural wonders were reserved for adventurous sorts who pack a tent or brave the limited, Spartan lodging in the area. For more inexpensive fun, hit the beautiful beaches in San Juan’s Condado and Isla Verde neighborhoods. And a free tramcar traverses 16th Street, so you can leave your car behind while you try out all the great dining and shopping lining the long pedestrian-friendly zone. Budget tip: Sedona is less than a two-hour drive (100 miles) from the Grand Canyon, making it an easy day trip without the added expense of spending the night at pricey accommodations near the national park. The buildings served as his summer home and now make for some interesting scrambling. An oTENIK is a cross between an A-frame cabin and a prospector tent on a raised wooden floor for families or groups of up to six. It is now a productive and sustainable vineyard (hand-picked grapes are irrigated with rainwater) that hosts monthly campouts with food trucks in March and October. —Peter Simek, Be sure to pack: Families can also book the Sand, Sloths, & Skyscrapers package, complete with a visit to the area’s new sloth sanctuary, and a walking tour of Casco Viejo. Younger kids will enjoy peering through the periscope at Door County Maritime Museum with views of Sturgeon Bay and active shipyards; teens will enjoy hiking, biking, and kayaking along the Mink River Estuary. That’s why I love taking the family to one of Virginia’s most historic and entertaining towns, Williamsburg. most stunning desert escapes in the United States. Highway 118 winds up through the foothills of the Davis Mountains before leading down into the expansive flat of the Chihuahua Desert. Don’t miss these top family travel destinations in every state. I flinch at the first pops before spotting a woman in antebellum attire waving me off with her lacy parasol. The Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology and Folk Music Center are local favorites to visit, and there are events going on every week throughout the summer. Children under age 6 are free, while those 6 to 12 are admitted for $6.00. Where to stay: Stay in comfort and convenience under the canopy of the Carolinian Forest in a Parks Canada oTENTik. Most People Don’t Realize These 7 Secret Gardens Around Louisiana Exist. Claremont Village is home to over 150 shops and restaurants (don’t miss the I Like Pie Bakeshop or the frozen treats at 21 Choices) and where you’ll want to spend your evening. Or you don’t, anyway. He bought the ranch in 2001 from the previous owner. 130 West St, Friday Harbor, WA 98250, 866-722-7356 Short vacation ideas: Artful Miami Package It didn’t make the trip home. Why you’ll love it: San Diego’s near-perfect summer weather, the free beaches of Coronado Island, and the museums and outstanding zoo in Balboa Park all add up to a memory-making quick getaway when it comes to family vacations for Southern California parents with kids of any age. Waddle back to your suite at the Residence Inn by Marriott – Carmel, Indiana, which includes full kitchens, complimentary hot breakfast buffet, indoor pool, and outdoor SportCourt and BBQ patio starting at $140 per night. Where to stay: Plan an Arizona stay-cation at the luxurious Enchantment Resort located in the heart of Sedona surrounded by the towering red rock walls of Boynton Canyon. Budget tips: Hike the Ridges Sanctuary Family Discovery Trail to gain a new appreciation for nature at Wisconsin’s oldest private nature preserve. In Missouri, there’s romance at every corner. For the latter, plan a picnic hike to the Craggy Mountains, and stop to smell the berry bushes and take in the exceptional panoramic views of the Craggy Pinnacle Trail. Why you’ll love it: Bowling Green, located just an hour north of Nashville, is tucked in among the rolling green hills of South Central Kentucky’s Cave Country. Summer rates start at $178. Why you’ll love it: Located along North Carolina’s central shore, the Crystal Coast has been a favorite beach destination for generations and represents one of the few remaining natural barrier island systems in the world with 85 miles of sparkling beaches. The theater is now owned by Rich Douglas, who preserved the balcony where black theatergoers were forced to climb through the projection room window to sit during Jim Crow, and who can often be found working the projector for the four showtimes each week. Base yourself near Beaufort, a 300-year-old town filled with pirate lore (Blackbeard’s sunken flagship, The Queen Anne’s Revenge, rests in its watery grave just miles offshore), and plan a trip to The North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores for an up-close look at what lives beneath the seas. Don’t miss taking a spin on the swan boats in the lake at the Boston Public Gardens in Boston Common, and plan a stop at the New England Aquarium and Museum of Science too. Where to stay: Children will love the Chelsea Hotel’s indoor pool with Toronto’s only indoor waterslide; you’ll love the weekend summer rates that are less than U.S. $200. Budget tips: Pack a refillable water bottle and some on-the-go snacks to cut back on additional park costs. Luckily, Harvard, who was not Instagramming, chucked the aluminum feed scoop at the zebra’s ass before he could fully align the kick, sending it staggering back a few steps, restoring order. Pismo Beach Pier is the place to go to throw a line in the water and wait for a tug, while Pismo Beach’s award-winning boardwalk is rife with delicious treats and colorful boutique shops. Rooms start around $95 per night. In the evening, after relaxing around a campfire in the pit dug just outside the bubble, you can crawl under the covers and still watch the stars emerge. And the location can’t be beat. We stopped at Vista Brewing, only a year old, to sample beer flights—the wine barrel-aged Brett ale earning approving nods from the group. After working up an appetite, we ended up at Smokin’ Joe’s Rib Ranch, down the road from the falls. —Eve Hill-Agnus, Must do: luxury camping adventures even indoor people will love. But earlier this year, Basecamp Terlingua, a new “rustic resort” right on the outskirts of the tiny Terlingua Ghost Town, introduced a way to experience the scenery of Big Bend with some of the creature comforts of a luxury hotel. Nestled in the Appalachian region of the southern United States is West Virginia. One of your best cheap vacation ideas is Myrtle Beach, with its bustling, boardwalk, amusement parks, family restaurants, and arcades. Now, learn these secrets to traveling cheap, straight from travel agents. It’s almost summer time, so when you find yourself with a free day or two, load the car up … Everyone around me was doing just that, clinking cups and gabbing with friends and family. Check out these easy-to-get-to destinations and get ready to spring into fun. We quickly split off. (Kids under 5 are free; be sure to print out the $5 coupon from the website for you.) It’s free, but be sure to throw a few dollars in the tip jar for the hard-working musicians. Where to stay: Enjoy swim-in movies, life-sized games, and s’mores at the beachside firepit at the beachfront Sandpearl Resort. Guided hikes are free for kids 18 and under and just $5 for adults. In the fall, hop on The Nickel Plate Express for scenic train excursions featuring educational experiences for families (both kids and parents). Why you’ll love it: For families who love to explore museums and cultural sites, Atlanta is ideal. Depending on where your starting point is will dictate which places are the most convenient, but all of them deserve to be visited at least once in a lifetime! Shed a few pounds at the outdoor fitness pavilion, sip drinks by the pool, play a round of golf, and explore the hotel's scenic surroundings. Teens will also appreciate the more mature tone of the Center for Civil and Human rights as well. These great getaways offer big fun on a small budget. Budget tip: There’s a free sunset festival with live entertainment every.single.night right at Clearwater’s main beach at Pier 60. King bedrooms start at $130/night; rooms with two Queen beds are an additional $15. Having regular short getaways to look forward to encourages a good work/life balance, plus you get to discover multiple new destinations, instead of using all your vacation days in one location. Ask for a high floor facing the park (which is just a few blocks away) and you’ll be able to watch the nightly fireworks from your room, too. Slow moving ground water created underground labyrinths forming an incredible series of … We have the solution—mini-breaks that pack lots of vacation vibes into just a few days and won’t break the bank to boot. There are outfitters in town who can fix you up with your desert sport of choice: canoeing, kayaking, fishing, mountain biking (even small airplane tours). Located near the High Country, North Carolina’s only show caverns allow visitors to glimpse nature at work “inside” the mountains. A slight detour leads into Art Alley, a stunning expression of Rapid City’s creative community. Budget tip: Don’t miss the super fun Pennypickle’s Workshop, a children’s museum that’s designed as the laboratory of fictional Professor Phineas T. Pennypickle, a scientist, inventor, and time traveler; kids under 18 months are free, adults are $5, and kids are $10. Want to save $5,500 this year? Why you’ll love it: If you have kids who love trains, this affordable heartland destination, nicknamed Rail Country, should be at the top of your list. Check out these other affordable cities in the United States. The parents-to-be can enjoy a selection of snacks delivered to the room to indulge a midnight craving. Where to stay: Sheraton at the Falls has summer rates starting at $161, an indoor swimming pool that’s the largest in the area, and is walking distance to many of the top attractions. The Loew's Atlanta Hotel is only a few miles from my house, but staying here made me discover the Midtown neighborhood like a visitor rather than a local (although it was nice to have some insider knowledge). A highlight of the Country Music Hall of Fame is the Taylor Swift Education Center where kids can learn to strum a ukulele or create a take-home art project. If the letter writing rings a bit campy, it’s because Miraval is truly a luxury summer camp for adults—albeit one with the world’s most comfortable bed (the company graciously sells its marshmallowy feather toppers online). This quirky city on the rise has incredible street murals, the Nevada Museum of Art, and the Guinness Book of World Records’ Tallest Outdoor Rock Climbing Wall at the Whitney Peak Hotel. Where to stay: Ocean Edge Resort offers plenty of family fun on a sprawling 429-acres. White’s architectural salvage business, Recycling the Past, is based in New Jersey. Continue Reading. Memorial Day Weekend May 28-31, 2021 Be sure to indulge in some home cooking at a meat-and-three or Nashville Fried Chicken spots. Where to stay: Hotel Alex Johnson is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year; it’s right in the middle of Rapid City and offers rates as low as $99 per night. And you won’t need it. And it was there, wading in the park’s central pool, that I realized resorts are a lot like cruises: you have everything you could ever want—entertainment, food, booze, and waterslides—within yards of your room. Later, when we went out on our own, I couldn’t get out of my head how alone I was with these wild animals, and how constantly interested they were in my whereabouts. These 10 national parks are so far off the beaten path they are practically secret. Find out even more reasons Maui is the best island in Hawaii. Where to stay: The Caravelle offers a beachfront location, multiple pools, a water playground, game room, and kids clubs from just $109 per night. Side trip: Ten minutes later, we were in the back seat of a Kawasaki Mule as he gave us a tour of the property, part of the Explore Ranches family, snug in the crook of the outstretched arm of Texas’ southwestern border. The family-owned property provides an authentic Wild West experience with horseback riding and much more, through Arizona’s most breathtaking desert landscapes of the Rincon Mountains. 3 Day Getaways Book your perfect 3 day weekend getaway today! Where to stay: The Marriott Marquis will wow your family with a lazy river pool in the shape of Texas, and it’s located right across from Discovery Green. Don’t miss these fun facts about the world’s most beautiful waterfalls. Back at Flophouze, I curl up in the Adirondack chair on the porch and wind a fresh woolen skein into a neat ball, listening to the lowing of the cattle and watching as dusk settles in. The succulent ribs and brisket could hang with anything we’ve had on this side of the Red River. Once you’re there, kids will have a memorable time catching a Toronto Blue Jays baseball game at the Rogers Centre right under the CN Tower (you should take a trip up to the top of the tower for the amazing views, too) and riding a moving sidewalk through a shark tank at the neighboring aquarium. No matter what your travel style is, there’s a perfect weekend getaway just waiting for you in North Carolina. 1 Linville Caverns Marion See on map. 45 Mini Family Vacations That Won’t Break the Bank. Do Not Sell My Personal Information – CA Residents. 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