Let’s face it: some trips are simply better than others, and when teens are involved, you want to pick family vacation ideas that are unique, interesting, and at least a little off the beaten path. So if you’re planning a family trip with adolescents, skip the usual been-there-done-that family vacation sites and tourist attractions and try something new instead. After all, your teens are too old for petting zoos, character appearances, and kiddie rides. And even if they aren’t old enough for a vacation with their friends, they can still enjoy a good time with the rest of the family. Therefore, to help you have the time of your lives, here are the best vacation ideas for families with teens that we think all of you will enjoy.
Visit a dude ranch
There’s something special about how kids and adults get together and bond during a week in nature. It’s a terrific opportunity to unplug, appreciate nature, and have good old-fashioned family fun. And even if life as a cowboy might not seem so appealing to teens, they will love the variety of activities they can try out. For instance, they can go horse riding, fishing, hiking, ziplining, or rock climbing. Furthermore, at dude ranches, there are usually other kids they can play with or do fun activities. Therefore, they don’t need to spend all their time tied to the rest of the family members.
However, dude ranches vary in luxury and facilities, so you should do some homework. Choose one that is good for families with teenagers and at a time when you know other youngsters will be present. That way, you will ensure that you and your teens have the time of your lives.
All-inclusive vacations in paradise
All-inclusive resorts are ideal for planning a family vacation and creating memories with the entire family. However, if older kids don’t have family members their age, bringing a buddy or finding a teen-friendly resort might be helpful. After all, there will be activities to keep them busy during the day, and they could benefit from having a same-age pal that can keep up. Teens, for example, can go hiking, snorkeling, kayaking, or take surfing lessons, and meanwhile, you can work on your tan. That is if you choose to go for a vacation in the beach resorts of the Caribbean. Best of all, you even have a winter beach vacation for when the winter season starts. Maui, Kauai, Palm Beach, and Sanibel Island are just a few examples of great winter destinations. At the same time, if you want to go out of the country for an all-inclusive family vacation, you can look at options in Aruba, Costa Rica, or Jamaica.
Take a trip to a national park.
There is no better location for a break from our hectic, technology-filled existence than our great national parks. And that can also be one of the best ideas for families with teens. National parks offer beautiful views and fantastic wildlife. At the same time, they provide the ideal activities for families with children. Therefore, don’t just drive through national parks when you are in them. Instead, go for hikes, learn to kayak, try out ziplining, or go on a treasure hunt. Also, talk to the rangers to find out fascinating information about the park and learn about habitat protection. We recommend you visit Grand Canyon National Park, Yellowstone National Park, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, or Everglades National Park. You won’t be disappointed.
Have some fun in themed parks
Visiting a theme park with teenagers is a different experience than visiting with tiny ones. Teens grow interested in rides and immersive experiences rather than dressing up as or wanting to meet princesses. In addition, some parks, such as Universal Orlando, are meant for bigger kids. Events for older children, such as horror nights and treasure hunts, are often organized there. Other parks that you should take into consideration are Disneyland, Dollywood, or Six Flags. At the same time, you have many water adventure parks to choose from, such as Discovery Cove in Florida, Cowabunga Bay in Utah, or Raging Waters in California.
Go on organized food tours.
Who wouldn’t want a vacation focused on food? Therefore, why not go on a trip where you may immerse yourself in a gourmet journey in a stunning environment, especially if you are a gourmand? On such tours, you can still have a great time even if there is no alcohol tasting to pair with the food as it is customary; after all, it’s important to teach teens that sober activities can be fun. As a result, try culinary tours, cooking courses, or visit farmers’ markets to keep the vacation focused on food while exposing your adolescent to a new culture. Visit several of the best eateries, ranging from high-end to modest street sellers, and ask your adolescents to express their impressions of each. Such trips are available in New Orleans, New York City, Los Angeles, and many other cities.
Try out some cultural trips.
Cultural immersion is always a plus because it helps form character and gives your teen a greater understanding of the world around them. Therefore, you can extend their horizons with the ultimate American road trip, focused on history and significant locations in the country. For instance, you can start with Washington, DC, and visit all the important monuments, museums, and memorials. Then, you can go to Charleston, South Carolina, and learn about the Revolutionary War and the Civil War. Next, visit the Navajo Nation, Arizona, for a glimpse into the prehistoric history and the area’s spectacular natural scenery. New Orleans, Louisiana, is a must-see for jazz music, Creole food, and Mardi Gras. And the list might go on and on, but we’ll let you decide what other destinations will make your adolescent happy.
Make some bucket-list trips.
If your adolescent hasn’t been to Europe yet, expect some sighs and eye rolls after seeing too many museums or cultural spots. As a result, try and take them to some places where they always wanted to go but only saw in movies. That will motivate them to work hard so that one day they afford to visit locations like that on their own. Some good examples of European places you could go to are Paris, London, Florence, Tenerife, or Vienna. If you want to go further, Morocco, Thailand, Japan, Israel, or Peru are all excellent options for teenagers.
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As you can see, we have numerous vacation ideas for families with teenagers. You just need to consult with your kids and pick your favorite together. Keep in mind, however, that traveling teenagers must still stick to their schedule and get enough sleep. As a result, ensure they have enough activities throughout the day to sleep like babies at night.