8 Best Family Vacation Spots to Visit

By  //  June 1, 2021

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Looking to plan a family vacation sometime soon? Let’s face it—it can often be difficult to find a vacation spot that interests all of your different family members.

While your children may want to visit amusement parks and participate in different activities, you may crave a few scenic views and some much-needed rest and relaxation.

Fortunately, the U.S. is home to all sorts of versatile destinations that the whole family will enjoy. Here are the eight of the best options you should consider!

1. Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg, TN

The Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg area is home to all sorts of activities and attractions that will appeal to both you and your children.

Of course, the Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg area is known for its many amusement parks, museums, and dinner shows. You’re not likely to run out of activities at any point during your trip!

But this fun little area also happens to be tucked away in the Great Smoky Mountains. At any time, you can break up the noisy downtown thrills with a scenic hike, zipline tour, or whitewater rafting adventure.

2. Orlando, FL

No list of family vacation spots would be complete without Orlando, Florida. In terms of activities for children, Orlando hosts some of the world’s most beloved amusement parks. Disney World alone saw 20.96 million visitors in 2019!

Whether it’s one of four Disney parks, Universal Studios, or SeaWorld, your kids will enjoy a wide range of thrills and become enthralled with the sheer spectacle these parks have to offer.

What’s more, while Orlando is inland, you can still access many of Florida’s beaches within a 90-minute drive. Enjoy a day at Cocoa Beach or Daytona Beach to break up all of the amusement park fun!

Keep in mind, however, that Orlando transforms into a hot, humid, and more “touristy” location during the summer months. If you’re interested in making a family trip to Orlando, Florida, consider visiting during the spring, fall, or winter—when the climate may be more moderate and when fewer people are also visiting.

3. Grand Canyon, AZ

You don’t have to traverse all four corners of the globe to land upon some of our world’s most breathtaking natural wonders. Rather, just take a trip to the state of Arizona and behold the beauty of the Grand Canyon—a 277-mile-long, 18-mile-wide, and mile-deep chasm eroded years ago by the Colorado River.

There are many different ways to keep your whole family engaged while visiting the Grand Canyon. Hike the Bright Angel Trail or South Kaibab Trail. Take the Emerald Cave kayak tour. Check out the Navajo bridge. You can even book a 45-minute helicopter flight over the canyon!

Just be sure to pick your vacation dates wisely. Arizona is notoriously hot during the summer months.

4. Washington, D.C.

If you’re looking for a vacation spot that offers a unique blend of historical significance and fun activities, the nation’s capital, Washington D.C., fits the bill.

Of course, Washington D.C. is home to the White House, located on Pennsylvania Avenue. But is also home to the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument, and the Library of Congress.

After you’ve explored some of our nation’s rich history and the kids start getting restless, consider visiting the Smithsonian’s National Zoo or the International Spy Museum!

5. San Diego, CA

If what you and your other family members value most is warm weather and beautiful beaches, consider making San Diego, California your next destination.

San Diego’s many nearby beaches include La Jolla Cove Beach, Coronado Beach, Pacific Beach, and Sunset Cliffs Natural Park. Of course, you can spend the day in a beach chair but you can also go sailing, snorkeling, boating, or whale watching at many of these locations.

The city is also home to the world-famous San Diego Zoo, the Birch Aquarium at Scripps, and the USS Midway Museum—allowing you to enjoy plenty of attractions outside of beach activities.

6. Maui, HI

At 727 square miles, Maui is Hawaii’s second-largest island. It’s not every day that you’re able to take up a hike or helicopter tour over a dormant volcano, but you’ll get that opportunity when you visit Haleakala State Park. You’ll also get to spend time getting acquainted with nature at some of Maui’s other trails and state parks.

Of course, no trip to a Hawaiian island is complete without a snorkeling adventure that allows you to see multicolored fish, sea turtles, and other gorgeous creatures off the island’s coast.

However, be sure to save up your pennies before considering a trip to Maui. The state of Hawaii is notorious for its higher-than-average cost of living and costly expenses.

7. New York City, NY

NYC is simply a must-see location, and its significance in history and popular culture alike is something that should be experienced by every American Family. While the normal hustle and bustle of everyday life in the Big Apple can become overwhelming, it’s the perfect vacation spot for a brief trip.

Everything is bigger and better in NYC. Your children will likely enjoy witnessing some of the largest toy stores in the country, while you’ll enjoy multi-story clothing and department stores.

Be sure to visit the 9/11 Memorial Museum and Freedom Tower to witness an important part of our nation’s history. Then, check out the iconic Empire State Building, and book a tour of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island!

Perhaps NYC’s most famous attraction, however, is Times Square. Each year, over 41.9 million visitors pass through this hotspot—more than anywhere else in the U.S.!

8. Myrtle Beach, SC

If you’re looking for a family vacation spot that has a little bit of everything, it’s hard to go past Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

In addition to great weather and top beaches, Myrtle Beach is home to Ripley’s Aquarium, the Hollywood Wax Museum, and more mini-golf parks than you could possibly visit in a single trip.

Also, bring your appetite, as you’re sure to enjoy large portions whenever you go out to eat!