El Loco at the Circus Circus Hotel's Adventuredome is an indoor roller coaster.
Article
Gambling on a Good Time with the Kids

As summer approaches, one of the hottest destinations in America will be Las Vegas, a place where you don't have to gamble on a good time with the kids. Huh? If the idea of a Vegas ‘family vacation’ seems ludicrous, you’ll be surprised with how much the city caters to young vacationers. Games of Chance Galore Why? Start with the thrill rides and arcades at many casinos...

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Dig This! guests use heavy construction equipment in a huge Vegas sand box.
Article
Las Vegas, Nevada Attractions

We'll roll the dice on this and guarantee fun on your next Nevada vacation -- if you pack our age-appropriate rundown of the best attractions for kids, teens and families in adult-oriented Las Vegas. Great Fun for the Kids (Toddler to Age 8) Circus Circus Adventuredome 2880 Las...

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Woman hiking on the slopes of Mount Teide on Tenerife
Article
These 9 Activities are Better than the Best Beach in Tenerife

The Canary island of Tenerife appeals year-round as one of Europe's best beach destinations, with geographic contrasts that spawn activities and landscapes you don’t find in a typical island vacation. While the Canary Islands belong to Spain, they sit in the Atlantic Ocean off the west coast of Morocco – a cultural plus. Geographically, Tenerife is in Africa; politically, it is in Europe...

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Melody Yang is one of the next generation of bubblicious stars with Gazillion.
Article
Gazillion Bubble Show is Back in Town!

It's survived and flourished through those painful tween years, and now a great kids show -- Gazillion Bubble Show -- is celebrating its 13th birthday as one of New York's best value live theatre experiences. It’s hard to believe that it was 2007, when performer Fan Yang brought his unique brand of bubble artistry to New York City for a limited run. Since then, big and small and...

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A miniature rendition of Parc Guell, in Barcelona seen at Catalunya en Miniatura
Article
Barcelona, Spain With Teens In Tow

If you need a spring break destination that teens will thank you for, Barcelona Spain -- with its own language, cuisine and arts -- is a favorite with this crowd and all ages. Whether your family's travel choices are guided by shopping, dining, history, the arts, Woody Allen's "Vicky Cristina Barcelona" or just a general good time, Barcelona fits the bill.

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Water park at Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak resort.
Article
An Ideal Phoenix Family Resort For Multigenerational Travel

The family amenity specs at the Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak are impressive when seen online:  563 all-suite accommodations including a separate living room, two flat-screen TVs, and a queen-sized sofa bed; two-story casitas with even more sleeping room plus 224 Agave Suites at North Pointe with a concierge and dedicated pool; terrific kids club; and a 4-acre River Ranch water park that features a winding...

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Navajo artisans display their jewerly in Gallup, New Mexico.
Article
Gallup True to Itself

From 200 feet up, the scrubby arid plains of the Navajo Nation surrounding Gallup look soft and inviting, welcoming visitors to pause along Route 66 for a closer inspection. This northwest corner of New Mexico is a melting pot of Navajo, Zuni, Spanish and Anglo cultures -— a very affordable place where the landscape, local traditions and welcoming people guarantee memories your family will not...

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digital rendering of the upcoming Carnival Panorama
Article
Cruise With Kids Vacations And Family-Friendly Ships

Cruises are hot, and we are seeing families cruise with kids in the Caribbean, Europe, Alaska and far-flung destinations like the Galapagos Islands. Given that the industry’s trade organization, CLIA, projects a whopping 30 million cruise passengers worldwide in 2019, you can count on kids being seen and heard everywhere. Why take a Cruise Vacation Now? Parents love cruising because...

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Carnival Vista's Kaleid-O-Slide
Article
The Very Best Spring Break Vacation Ideas

Spring break is our favorite time to get away with the family, an ideal time to travel affordably between the pricey winter holidays and crowded summer months. Why is spring break such a wonderful escape? Maybe because you’ve been working so hard all year. Maybe because you get to feel the sun on your shoulders after being cold for months. Or maybe because you get to spend a week making great...

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Public garden playspace at night in downtown Tel Aviv at Habima Square.
Article
16 Family Experiences You Can Only Share in Israel

Israel, usually marketed as a destination for religious pilgrims, has many unique sites that non-sectarian families can learn from. During my fully-escorted weeklong tour in December, 2018, I discovered 16 experiences that have had lasting impact. I also corrected several misconceptions, including that the climate was warm and dry; it's not necessarily so in winter. Jerusalem Highlights for...

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Great Britain leaving the European Union is one puzzle everyone is trying to solve. Graphic c. EPP
Article
UK and EU Citizens Guaranteed Visa-Free Travel Post Brexit

The clock is ticking towards Brexit Day, March 29, 2019, the day that the United Kingdom plans to break its ties with the European Union. Throughout Europe and the UK, there is mounting confusion about what Brexit means for citizens. Why? Because several points of the negotiated deal for an orderly departure...

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Tom's Cove on Chincoteague Bay, Virginia
Article
Great Grandparent Adventures with Road Scholar

Grandparents know the most valuable presents, the ones that never break and don’t need batteries, are lessons learned and memories made together. This year, Road Scholar offers grandparents the opportunity to give their...

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Quebec City ice skating rink
Article
Quebec Carnaval Celebrates Family Fun In Snow And Ice

Carnaval is a wintry, family-friendly wonderland that comes alive when the temperatures drop in the heart of the “world’s snow capital” -- Quebec City in Quebec province, eastern Canada. As North America's only fortified city, the crenellated walls and castle-like structures of the Old Town are a stunning backdrop to the fun. Spanning three weekends, Quebec will host its annual carnival or

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Skill catching zone at Atlanta's College Football Hall of Fame
Article
Atlanta, Georgia Attractions

Georgia's biggest city -- Atlanta -- welcomes Super Bowl 2019 with many world-class attractions for visiting families seeking culture, history and recreation. Save up to 50% on combined prices for admission to must-see attractions with Atlanta CityPASS

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Lake Tahoe from Northstar's Comstock Express lift.
Article
Northstar California Shows You How to Raise a Snowboarder

Anyone who has a passion for snowboarding and wants to excel should line up at the Burton Academy at Northstar California. At Northstar, snowboarding is more than a sport. “It’s a lifestyle we teach here,” says Luke (Shep) Sheppard, the director of the resort’s unique school. Northstar...

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On Celebrity Edge, a three-story atrium surrounded by dining and nightlife
Article
Celebrity Sighting! A Dazzling New Cruise Ship

Since choosing a cruise for family gatherings makes logistical issues easy and fun, Family Travel Forum was eager to experience the new Celebrity Edge, touted as the “World’s Most High-Design Cruise Ship.” When her preview cruise sailed in December 2018, it gave us a chance to flash forward nearly a decade from a prior cruise vacation aboard Celebrity...

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The welcoming gates of Graceland, the late Elvis Presley's Memphis estate.
Article
We Love Memphis For Music, Music Shrines And Elvis

Exploring things to do in Memphis Memphis, Tennessee is a blast for a lot of reasons—Elvis, music, Elvis, Ducks, Elvis, Civil Rights, Elvis.  Sitting on the banks of the Mississippi River, its rich musical history goes way beyond Elvis and is celebrated all over town.  Nashville may own Country Music, but Memphis IS the Blues, and from the blues came Rock ‘n Roll, and then there was Elvis. And...

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Cuyahoga Valley National Park campgrounds.
Article
Hike And Ride The Rails At Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Located in Brecksville, between the cities of Cleveland and Akron, little known Cuyahoga Valley National Park surrounds the 100-mile-long Cuyahoga River, named by American Indians for its “crooked” shape. It famously caught on fire in 1969 for just 24 minutes because of pollution. Long cleaned and restored, the river now provides a cool place to fish, kayak and relax without the crowds that many...

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The Sandpearl resort boasts a lagoon pool right along the beautiful white sand beach of Clearwater, Florida.
Article
Favorite Clearwater Beach Family Resorts

Clearwater Beach, halfway between St. Petersburg and Tampa, has become so popular that you need to plan ahead to choose the best Clearwater Beach resort for your family. Why? Clearwater delivers a great family beach experience because it’s cheaper than Florida’s East Coast beaches; and it’s on the Gulf of Mexico which is calmer, shallower and therefore, safer for swimmers than the Atlantic....

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A black candle is lit
Article
5 Destinations Where Black Lives Matter

With a super-charged topic like race relations coloring the perception of many American cities, I suggest exploring five destinations where black lives not only matter, they fuel fascinating cultural institutions too few travelers know about. Here are some highlights of African American culture in Boston, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Memphis and Washington DC to enrich your next vacation. Boston,...

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Capitol building in Washington DC at night with snow.
Article
Washington DC Hotels

Washington DC has approximately 132 hotels with 31,673 hotel rooms, (DC Press - 2019) ranging from economical chains to 5-star blowouts frequented by presidents and kings from the world over. The list below represents our favorites for adults traveling with school-age or older children because we know, with so many DC...

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Closeup of manatee and snorkeler.
Article
Swimming With Manatees, Gentle Giants of the Sea

Swim and explore the undersea world of the manatee in Crystal River, home to the largest concentration of Florida manatees in the world. These lovable mammals are native to the bays and fresh-water estuaries around the towns of Crystal River and Homosassa, Florida. Although only 85 miles west of Orlando, it's a vacation experience that's a world away in natural beauty and Southern charm.

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Elvis Tribute Artists
Article
The King of Tupelo, Mississippi

I recently overheard two guys who'd scaled Kilimanjaro, run Class VI rapids on the New River, and rested their heads on the most expensive pillows in Paris agree that, of all their travel journalism adventures, none was as much fun as the Tupelo Elvis Festival in Mississippi. Turns out Tupelo is one of the best places on earth. From my research, Elvis Presley fans who have been...

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Article
National Civil Rights Museum And Martin Luther King Jr.

Even if you've seen the very special Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington DC, your family should not miss an opportunity to visit "his" museum: The National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tennessee. Each winter, this fascinating collection runs several special family programs at the National Civil Rights Museum in honor of Dr. King and African American History...

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Infant flight travel vest by Baby B'Air.
Article
The Baby B’Air Infant Vest For Lap Children

Just because the airplane doesn't give your little ones their own chair, doesn't mean they can't buckle up in a Baby B'Air designed Flight Travel Harness. If you've read our 8 Must Know Tips for Infant and Toddler Airplane Travel you know we are serious about in-flight safety. That's why we love this product. The...

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Article
Okemo Mountain Resort Has What You Need

Okemo has everything you and your family need for a winter getaway. Ten years ago, it was the first ski resort I ever visited, tagging along with a friends’ family to take in the sights of Central Vermont and spend a day learning how to ski. This return trip, over a decade later, was a reminder of what a great destination Okemo is, and I was also able to appreciate how it’s improved… almost as...

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Article
Surviving Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month

Tackling a new sport like skiing -- whether you're my age or a toddler -- is a challenge that the snow sports industry helps overcome each January with Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month. Perhaps a child, a new companion, or a childhood yearning have driven you to try skiing or snowboarding. Some may be ready to face...

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Ice slide installed in the Gaylord National lobby for ICE!
Article
Finding Holiday Magic at the Gaylord Hotel in Washington DC

Situated on the National Harbor, the expansive Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center is a sprawling hotel complex ready to greet visitors with a waterfront experience. It's almost startling how big this hotel feels in an area close to Washington D.C. where real estate is densely...

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A 400-pound Peeps chick rings in the new year in Bethlehem, PA.
Article
Celebrate First Night On New Years

Archaeologists believe the Babylonians were the first civilization to celebrate the New Year, with an 11-day holiday tied to the vernal (spring) equinox starting with a first-night festivity. Sometime during the Roman era, New Year's was set as January 1st, a custom that was adopted in the Middle Ages by many Western countries. For millions who equate New Year's Eve with a party, however, that date...

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kids watching tent setup
Article
Camping 101: How To Look Like An Experienced Camper To Your Kids

Take some advice from a frequent camper who's learned that overnighting in a local park is just as thrilling, and less cumbersome, than a long hike into the wilderness. I want my kids to have the same enriching experiences I had when I was a youth, but I know why my parents sent me camping under the care of others. Simply put, it's not easy, especially for weekend warriors who haven't polished their...

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Article
Top 10 Geek Sights In Silicon Valley

If you're tired of technology taking over your life, take back control in Silicon Valley, where you can see the 10 top tech sights of interest to any geek and nerd. Google is headquartered in Mountain View, Facebook in Menlo Park, Yahoo! and Twitter are in Sunnyvale – all suburbs within a half-hour of San Jose. But Silicon Valley –- silicon...

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Liberty Mountain in Pennsylvania is proud of training every 4th and 5th grader to ski or snowboard free of charge! Photo c. SkiPA
Article
This Year’s Best Ski And Snow Family Vacations

Winter is a great time to get outdoors with the kids, whether it's a family ski and snowboarding vacation at one of North America’s top mountain resorts, snowmobiling or snow shoeing on local trails, fun in the snow on a tubing run or seeing wildlife at a national park. Not only is it healthy to take some vacation days and get the whole family away from their screens; it’s also easy to find...

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Article
Gifts that Give Back – Kids Presents That Help Others

This season, why not skip the long lines, reduce click-fatigue, save money, stay warm, help a good cause and get some adorable gifts that give back? You can live your family values out loud by spending your gift allowance to show the kids how to support many wonderful adopt-an-animal programs, educational initiatives, and life-changing organizations that work around the world. Here are some of the...

Read More    6 min read

Luke's Lobster Roll with Petrossian Caviar
Article
What’s Red and Black and White All Over? A Caviar Lobster Roll!

‘Tis the season for holiday revelry and last-minute shopping, and how great would it be if you could bundle these two activities into an easy breezy family afternoon outing? It would be awesome, right? This holiday season our lobster roll patrol discovered that a favorite, Luke’s Lobster  is garnishing its signature...

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cross-country skiing
Article
Bend, Oregon For High Desert Adventure Vacations

Bend is the focal point in central Oregon for active lifestyles and outdoor adventures, with sun all over, snow fun at Mt. Bachelor and recreation for all ages and athletic abilities. Nestled at the base of the picturesque Cascade Mountains, the resort communities of Bend, Redmond, Sisters and Sunriver, Oregon offer a spectacular year-round setting for outdoor recreation. Each has a lot to offer...

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Hudson174 Stack bike helmet folds down at the ribs reducing its height by 40%
Article
6 Well Designed Holiday Presents to Delight Travelers

As more of us adopt an active lifestyle, brands that once catered only to backpackers and extreme athletes are rolling out high-performance products for everyday use. That they’re designed with portability, weight, style and functionality makes them ideal for travel, too.  Here’s a look at seven items to surprise and delight the travelers in your life. Safety First Means Helmet: 174Hudson...

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Adaptive skiing class
Article
Special Needs Destinations And Programs For Travelers

There are many special needs travel options, both to snow and sand vacation resorts, that offer fun for the whole family, including those with physical or mental disabilities or special dietary needs. In order to assist those interested in disability travel, we have compiled a list of destinations and travel resources that focus on leaving home with companions who...

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Article
8 Ways Travel Alerts Should Impact Your Vacation

Frightening travel alerts, amplified by the 24-hour news cycle and lots of genuinely bad news, have become a daily occurrence… and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Although terror incidents, strikes, swarms of refugees, Zika and extreme politics have affected travelers the past few years, these crises usually don’t deter young parents from traveling the world with their children. But...

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Vail Resorts on a blue sky day makes it all worthwhile; photo c. Hostelworld.
Article
Skiing On A Budget

Mountainside hostels, many private inns and Airbnbs invite families to enjoy snow sports in cheap, comfortable, spotless and private facilities at new style ski hostels. Hostelling has come a long way from your youthful backpacking days; in fact, many refer to young travelers sporting rolling suitcases, iPhones and tablets as "flashpackers" because of their aversion to truly spartan accommodations....

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The swimming pool at Villa Il Palagio in Chianti.
Article
Tuscan Villa Family Vacation in Chianti Farmhouse

If you are craving a getaway "Under the Tuscan Sun," Villa Il Palagio in the heart of Tuscany could be just the spot you are looking for. Once a small, family-owned, bio-organic wine estate nestled in Panzano, Chianti, it has become a 30-room inn located within 32 kms (about 20 miles) of Florence, Siena and San Gimignano,...

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Snowboarding at Serre Chevalier.
Article
France Skiing Hostel Style – Six Nights Room, Board from 248 Euros

In a special promotion only a youth hostel could afford, the Serre Chevalier Hostel in the village of Bez, southern French Alps near the Italian border, is welcoming Hostelling International members with a top value full-pension package. The hostel, a recently renovated collection of three...

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Article
A Bethlehem, PA Christmas for a Holiday Wonderland

While some of you may hear the name Bethlehem and picture mangers and farm animals, the revitalized former Steel Capital in eastern Pennsylvania has their own take on the Christmas season. Bethlehem, PA Christmas is a sight to behold and taken on with enormous civic pride, since 1937. Picture a Blast Furnace Light Show and expanded holiday programming running concurrently...

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Article
Las Vegas Christmas: A Big Party in Las Vegas for the Whole Family

Did Santa pack a Las Vegas Christmas vacation for your family this year? This city, known for its lights year round, is a fun family destination because businesses go all out with holiday décor, free outdoor festivities and hotel offers. Keep in mind that Las Vegas can be colder in winter than visitors expect. So lay out your holiday...

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Article
Christmas In New York City – The Best Holiday Attractions

Grab the kids and get into the holiday spirit by experiencing all that Christmas in New York City has to offer during the November to January winter holidays when most family activities are free. Recently, I’ve been bursting at the seams with holiday spirit (I had too much to eat at Thanksgiving), and being in the city that never sleeps, I’ve found an endless list of activities...

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Article
A Cultural Christmas In Oaxaca, Mexico

Mexico's colonial gem of Oaxaca honors every Catholic holiday, but nothing is as colorful or fun as the Festival de la Noche de Rabanos, a world-class Christmas family vacation. Oaxaca, Mexico is one of the country's better-kept secrets. A center of craft and culture, it is, at first glance, an obvious mentor to New Mexico’s Santa Fe. Although we love visiting Fanta Se (as it’s...

Read More    5 min read

woman at laptop computer
Article
Our Favorite Vacation Deals and Booking Sites

We are often asked how to save money planning a vacation, so we are sharing our favorite sites for discount travel booking. We really do use them all. You can click on any of these site ads, search for your needs and pay for your bookings through them, knowing they are trustworthy.  Through our affiliate relationship with them, we will get a small commission payment. Our commission doesn't cost...

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Roswell crash site model is on show at the International UFO Museum in Roswell.
Article
In Roswell, Aliens Among Us

When a loud noise forced foreman William Mack Brazel to hop in  his pickup truck and inspect Foster Ranch, he found such strange debris in a corn field that he assumed it was the wreckage of a UFO and the victims, aliens. That was July 2, 1947. About 75 miles away, the closest New Mexico town -- Roswell -- quickly became known as the “flying saucer crash site.” Roswell has long played on...

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Lantern display at Global Winter Wonderland, a Las Vegas popup attraction.
Article
Top Holiday Lights Celebrations Across America

We love the holiday season, when bright lights, Christmas decorations, menorahs, colorfully wrapped gifts and imaginative retail displays illuminate cities and towns around the world, regardless of whether there is sun or snow outside. For many, ’tis the season to spend time with family, bake and decorate (see our

Read More    18 min read

Prague Castle is one of the port excursions on a Uniworld river cruise. Photo c. Uniworld
Article
Family-Friendly River Cruises

With 17 ships in its fleet, Uniworld is considered a first-class river cruising company. The company has been recognized by both the 2018 Travel + Leisure "World’s Best River Cruise Line" and the Globe Travel Awards "Best River Cruise Company" awards, as well as several recognitions from Conde Nast Traveler...

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James Bond Aston Martin
Article
James Bond Tricks and Tech in London

Over the last half century, James Bond has become a household name, synonymous with everything that is suave, smart, and sexy. With over 20 hit movies, a massive fan base, and some of the most beautiful machines to ever be caught in a secret agent car chase, London recognizes that “Bond, James Bond” is worthy of its very own, very large exhibit. Why not spend a weekend and embrace it? Bond...

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The Silent Night Chapel in the village of Oberndorf © Tourismusverband Oberndorf
Article
Experience a Silent Night 200 Years Old

Families are welcome to witness the 200th anniversary of “Silent Night” as Salzburg and neighboring Austrian communities celebrate the song heard round the world. Since its first performanceon December 24, 1818,“Stille Nacht, Heilige Nacht” has been translated into 300 languages and dialects and still resonates with music lovers of all faiths. How Do You Celebrate a Song? Austria...

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The Red Bar in Grayton Beach, Florida
Article
3 Great Florida Beach Towns to Celebrate New Year’s Eve

A family vacation to Florida over New Year's can be a low-cost, beachside adventure with hiking, biking and plenty of attractions. The cities and quaint oceanside towns dotting Florida's Gulf Coast are often overlooked for their warmer weather cousins surrounding Miami and the Keys. But there's still plenty to do in the crisp winter air from South Walton to Panama City Beach to Clearwater Beach, before...

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Ca'd'Zan, the Ringling Estate in Sarasota, Florida. photo c. Ringling.org
Article
7 Florida Hot Spots to Visit That Don’t Include Disney or Universal

With 271,000 miles of road, more than 30,000 lakes, 11,000 miles of waterways and over 1,300 miles of coastline beaches that touch the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, it's easy to explore Florida beyond the theme parks. The Sunshine State is home to one of the 15 oldest cities in the United States, and features 11 professional sports teams from hockey to NASCAR and golf. There's something...

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field of Christmas trees
Article
Christmas Tree Farms: Where and How to Harvest Your Own Tree

Family excursions make the holidays special, so why not take the kids to a Christmas tree farm this winter? We make it easy with this guide to the U-Pick Christmas Tree Farm nearest you. Did you grow up with a fake Christmas tree? According to the National Christmas Tree Association, about 20% of all...

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Article
12 Reasons to Love Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows

Those who recall Vice President Richard Nixon opening the VIII Olympic Winter Games here on February 18, 1960, know Lake Tahoe’s Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows resort simply as “Squaw Valley.”  And, after 58 years, it just keeps getting better. Here’s why. Beginners love it. Squaw Valley’s learning terrain is...

Read More    4 min read

View of the water from Nikko, Japan at dusk.
Article
Nikko, Authentic Japanese Immersion

If you’re considering a family trip to high-tech Tokyo, a side trip to traditional Nikko should be on your list. This beautiful city with a strong sense of place is far enough off the tourist track to feel like a discovery yet it’s only a 2-hour train ride north of Tokyo. An interactive dive into the Edo period Imagine a theme park where costumed re-enactors are dressed in kimonos...

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Park ranger demonstrates gold panning to guests at Marshall Gold Discovery State Park in Coloma.
Article
Multi-Gen Families Strike it Rich in California Gold Country

Sippy cups and stemware come together seamlessly in Coloma, a town that's two hours northeast of San Francisco with an unusual convergence of multi-gen family fun. How about white water rafting in the morning with your grads and wine tasting in the afternoon? Or, staying with preschoolers at a family-friendly bed and breakfast with a sandy beach next to its luxurious pool? All ages can try panning...

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Article
How To Avoid Typical Travel Ripoffs

As smart as we all are about buying vacation packages online, it's even smarter to refresh our "scam" antennae every once in awhile about new ripoffs. Booking online seems so simple — you search for the lowest rates, you click, and you’re on your way. But being your own travel agent isn’t as easy as it might seem, according to ShopSmart magazine from Consumer Reports. The consumer...

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The Grand Canyon is magical in winter
Article
Hear The Whistle Blow On The Grand Canyon Railway

Come aboard the historic Grand Canyon Railway for a comfortable train trip that will wow grandchildren. The journey travels through time between the Old West town of Williams, Arizona and the rim of the majestic Grand Canyon. Until I met my husband, I had never heard of anyone riding a train.  I don’t mean riding a train to get somewhere, but riding it for the sheer pleasure; such as taking...

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Windsor Castle with the British flag welcoming visitors.
Article
Join the Royals at Windsor Castle

One of the noblest of treats on a London holiday lies on the outskirts of London -- the town of Windsor and its famous Windsor Castle, which makes every visitor feel regal. The Royal castle, dating from the 11th century, is still used today by Queen Elizabeth and the Royals as a private weekend residence. Perhaps most famously, it was the wedding venue of Prince Henry of...

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