You have two brilliant weeks for vacation. This is your chance to really spend some quality time with your family. When you recall the last vacation, you realize that you want to avoid the same mistakes: too little time and too much to do, leaving you in dire need of an immediate second vacation to come back from the first – preferably no more traveling than your own home!
You realize that you did not spend quality one-on-one time with your children, which you hoped for on your last vacation. Holidays are meant to reconnect with your family, reconnect and re-learn why you love each other so much. Let’s face it, the stress of work, school and leisure activities can make you easily forget why you decided to create a family in the first place!
This trip to the theme park was wonderful, but you missed talking to your kids as they ran around catching all the rides they could. You may remember trying to slow them down, only to tell them what you had planned next, and forget to ask them all the questions you imagined to answer to how well they were doing.
This is your year. What kind of vacation can you enjoy, relax and have time for conversation? Shout, "come back here!" doesn't count either.
To achieve your goal of family cohesion, consider something more outdoors. In an effort to steer you away from memories of children's campouts and insect bites, imagine something a little more refined, but active. If you ask me, all vacations are pretty active and adventurous. The setting of your adventure can vary greatly from place to place. If you want to spend time with your family but stay in a place to eliminate the headaches of packing and repackaging, you have two great options: go on a cruise or go to a resort that serves families.
There are many resorts that have access to many activities. Family vacation areas for outdoor adventures are becoming more and more popular, especially if the facility offers babysitting in the short term, which allows mom and dad to get some R, R, & R (rest, relaxation and a reprieve).
Your children are in need if the resort is close to a lake, river or ocean that has plenty of bike trails, and includes kayaking, snorkeling, scuba diving or any activity that helps promote independence. Remember they have been saying it for years, "I can do it myself!" Why not cater to this sense of independence while building confidence and a sense of achievement? Save rafting, hiking and canoeing as a family activity so you all have time to enjoy each other's company.
Your safest and easiest choice is to stay in places near national parks. This not only allows you to see the wonders of nature, but provides access to some of the best available outdoor activities. I recommend choosing to stay in hotels versus camping, especially if you're on a road trip – packing extra gear for the outdoors isn't a picnic. There are some places that provide tents, teepees or domes that you can rent and stay in if you ask for proximity to the outdoor air.
It may take some research, but I suggest that you first decide where you want to stay, and then coordinate with the hotel some activities to be done and make it a package deal. A little preparation on your part will ensure lasting memories with you in the spotlight instead of the destination itself.
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