Having children can be a real joy, but they grow up so fast. That’s why it’s important to make the most of your time together. Taking a fun family vacation can help bring the family closer together and will leave them with many memories to look back at fondly, when they’re grown up and have kids of their own. Listed below are 5 of the top family vacation spots that you and the kids are guaranteed to enjoy!
Orlando, Florida is well known for its big 3 theme parks, Disney, SeaWorld, and Universal Studios, but it’s the smaller attractions we’ll be discussing today. Going to the theme parks can get expensive, so checking out some of the lesser known, but still extremely fun attractions will save you money and still allow you to have a great time with the kids. International Drive is full of attractions to visit, like the Coca-Cola Orlando Eye, Dinner Theater shows with many varying themes (murder mystery, pirate’s adventure, jousting knights, a magic show, etc.), Arcades and Go-Karts, Helicopter Tours, and plenty of different dining options. One great place that is highly recommended is Dave and Busters. They have a bunch of video games as well as air hockey and basketball, and most of the games allow you to earn tickets which can be redeemed in the toy section. It’s also a full bar and restaurant, so you and your spouse can enjoy a nice meal while the kids burn off all their energy running around and playing the various games. Definitely a great family experience.
Of course, if you are planning on visiting the theme parks, do keep in mind that Universal and Disney both offer an entertainment area without having to actually enter the park. Universal has CityWalk, which offers restaurants like the Hard Rock Cafe, The Cowfish, Bubba Gump’s Shrimp Co., The Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Kitchen, Burger King Whopper Bar, and many more. They also have an AMC theater, if you want to see a movie while you’re out, and plenty of little shops to get souvenirs. Disney offers what is now known as Disney Springs (formally Downtown Disney) and it has a great variety of dining, Bongo’s Cuban Café, Blaze Fast-Fir’d Pizza, The Boathouse, just to name a few. They are also home to the well-known House of Blues and the NBA Experience (coming soon). They have a luxury bowling alley and movie theater, as well.
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If you want to get lost in the mountains, but still be close to good fun and dining, Branson is the place for you. Located in the Ozark Mountains, Branson is great spot for nature lovers and families. They have it all! Theme parks, dinner shows, great restaurants, hiking trails, and horseback riding are just some of the things you can look forward to if you’re planning a trip to Branson. Silver Dollar City is an award winning theme park that will transport you back into the 1800s. If you’re feeling real adventurous try a ride on the Outlaw Run roller coaster, it was voted the best new ride back in 2013 by Amusement Today. Looking for a good steak? Check out Branson’s Center Stage Grille & Bar. They offer aged steaks grilled to perfection and live entertainment. If you want to bring out the kid in yourself, and make your kids appreciate all their modern tech toys, take them to the World’s Largest Toy Museum Complex. They have over a million toys, some dated all the way back to the 1800s, including superhero figurines, Star Wars collections and model trains. You may even enjoy taking a sight-seeing lunch cruise down the river, they offer those in Branson, too. With so many fun things to do in Branson, maybe now would be a good time to plan a trip.
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DAYTONA BEACH, FL:
Daytona is famously known as “The World’s Most Famous Beach”. It’s a popular spot for Spring Breakers, NASCAR fans, and motorcycle enthusiasts, but if you’re not a fan of those, that’s fine, too. With over 20 miles of beach offered it won’t be difficult to find a spot to lay your towel out and relax. One recommendation is to invest in a boogie board, it’ll provide hours of fun for the kids! Angell and Phelps is always highly recommended for families with kids, it offers a great learning experience is with their tour of the factory and explanation of the whole chocolate-making process (and did I mention free chocolate samples? Yes please!). There’s also a great water park, Daytona Lagoon, located right by the boardwalk, where there are a bunch of popular restaurants, shops, and you may even want to get some ice cream at the Coldstone Creamery to help you cool off. Daytona can oftentimes get crowded, so if you would prefer to stay away from lots of people, check out New Smyrna Beach below.
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NEW SMYRNA BEACH, FL:
New Smyrna Beach, FL is a great pick for those wanting to spend a relaxing weekend at the beach. It’s just far enough from Daytona that it doesn’t fill up too much for Spring Break and the other big events Daytona hosts, but not too far away that you can’t hop in the car and head to Daytona if you wanted to partake in the fun there. You can enjoy great water activities like surfing and kayaking and they even have fish charter boats, which is fun for the whole family. The New Smyrna Beach Museum of History is always a great learning experience and will help get you out of the hot Florida sun for a while. Looking for a great place to eat with the family? Chases on the Beach, is a beach front bar & grill and they have a pool by the bar area, too, which is great for the kids to cool off in. There’s also The Taco Shack, Mellow Mushroom for the pizza lovers, and Aunt Catfish’s on the River. There are plenty of dining options for every appetite in New Smyrna Beach.
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MYRTLE BEACH, SC:
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina officially became a city in 1957 when its population finally hit 5,000 people and is named after the Wax Myrtle, which is a shrub that you can find all over the area. Myrtle Beach brings in around 15 million visitors annually and offers over 60 miles of beaches. There are endless beach activities to enjoy, like sand volleyball and surfing, but of course just lounging with your toes in the white sand may be the perfect option for you. If you want to take a break from the beach and enjoy some other nature spots, check out Brookgreen Gardens or the Murrells Inlet MarshWalk, they offer some great scenery and you’re sure to have plenty of photo ops for you and the family. If you’re looking for a great golf course, Myrtle Beach has over 100 of them in the area, too! They also offer plenty of indoor family entertainment, maybe check out a dinner show or visit WonderWorks, Ripley’s Aquarium or the Myrtle Beach SkyWheel. There’s plenty of fun for everyone. Murrell’s Inlet, right down the road from Myrtle Beach, is known as the “Seafood Capital of South Carolina”, so if you’re in the mood for some delicious fresh fish, maybe head over there and see what the catch of the day is.
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Now, what’s better than planning a fun family vacation? How about saving 80% on your hotel stay? With StayPromo.com you can get really great deals on your stay in exchange for just 2 hours of your time previewing the hosting property’s facility. There is no obligation to purchase anything whatsoever, just spend two hours, looking at their amenities, and that’s pretty much it, you’re on your way. Some of the deals in Orlando even include free passes to local attractions, so not only do you save on your stay, but you’ll get some free entertainment, too. If you’re ok with taking a little of your time to hear about the benefits of vacation ownership and being shown around the property, and if you like to save money, check out StayPromo’s Hotel Getaway Deals.