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How To Volunteer On Vacation

Choosing a volunteer vacation when so many have entered mainstream travel options can be a daunting task, especially for families and teens. It's truly an opportunity to see the world, enrich lives, serve others and, for students, even give their college resumes a boost. Here are some tips to help families select an appropriate volunteer vacation, then make the most of...

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Ice slide installed in the Gaylord National lobby for ICE!
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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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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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The Red Bar in Grayton Beach, Florida
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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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No-Cost Fun In Indianapolis, Indiana

Head to Indy for concerts, museums, history, transportation and endless fun throughout spring, summer and fall (winter's cold!) The best things in life are still free, at least in Indiana's capitol of Indianapolis. Spend the day listening to music, learn about the city's rich history, get involved in the Arts, and make your way through downtown: all for free. You might discover that Indianapolis doesn't...

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10 Family-Friendly Ways to Spend the Holidays in Las Vegas

Las Vegas is known for it's over-the-top live shows, casinos and adult-sized fun. But there's plenty for kids and families to do, especially during the holidays. From multiple Santa sightings to light displays, Las Vegas is the holiday town that never sleeps in 2016. Winter Wonderlands, Shipwrecks and Scuba Diving A local and tourist favorite alike, the Conservatory &...

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Jacksonville’s Great Outdoors (And Beyond)

As we packed up the car and double checked our contraband (sugar-free suckers, charged up kindles, books, and markers), my daughter asked again what the place was called we were going. "Jacksonville! It's a city in Florida." I told her and made sure I had enough coffee to sufficiently caffeinate my way through the next 5-1/2-hours in the car with my kiddos.  "But I thought we...

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Gathering The Clan, Reunions At Florida’s Disney World Resort

There's no easier way to plan a togethering vacation -- what small family reunions are sometimes called -- than at a Disney theme park with grandparents in tow. Let's look at some recent stats. We know that more than 37% of grandparents who travel, have traveled with their grandchildren on one or more leisure trips...

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The Lotz House in Tennessee

Nashville is more than music, riverfront, and great food. Its surrounding area also has a rich history dating back to the Civil War era. My family and I recently took a trip to the city and explored the Lotz House. Imagine the cheerful occasion of celebrating your daughter's 6th birthday. Loved ones gathered, presents to open and smiles around...

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Giddyup for Upscale, Cowboy Living at Westgate River Ranch Rodeo

Westgate River Ranch Rodeo will change everything you thought you knew about Florida and its amusement park haven around Orlando and Winter Haven. The upscale ranch beckons family travelers looking for a more upscale experience than the usual camping and cabin grounds with livestock...

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Legoland Florida Resort: Is the Hotel or Beach Retreat Better?

When we opened up the door to the LEGOLAND Florida Hotel room, I knew whoever had designed it must have had children of their own. The first thing you saw was a cubby area with a wall decorated to look like a castle, then a television and bunk beds. A special card with a LEGO character on the front let my daughter know the room was...

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The Latest News on Disney Price Increases

On its opening day in 1955, Disneyland opened its doors to families willing to pay just $1 for adults and $0.50 for children to create their first magical memories and recreate storybook fun. It's easy to get nostalgic about the good old days where you just needed loose change to get into Disney....

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Spend Three-Days in Florida’s State Parks

Give me 72 hours and I'll show you a side of Florida you never imagined. Planning a Florida family vacation usually involves rushing from theme park to theme park to hop on the latest ride and pose in front of a selfie-worthy attraction. The other Florida family favorite is full of sunny beaches and sailing across the waters on a first cruise with kids clubs galore. But there's a softer side to...

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Disney’s Animal Kingdom Illuminates the Imagination

I have a confession to make. I had never been to Disney’s Animal Kingdom until I stepped through the park gates as dusk approached to check-out their new evening initiatives. I was expecting a pleasant evening of animal viewing and light shows, but was dazzled by lights soaring across riverways, sunset safaris and high-energy. It was so much more than I expected. Over the years, I had...

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Disney Springs Celebrates a New Era of Family Magic

If you haven't been to Downtown Disney for awhile, newly renamed Disney Springs, you're in for a big surprise. The area was once home to Pleasure Island with friendly nightclubs, comedy acts and lounges drawing in adults and parents weary after a day at the theme parks. A New Era for Disney Commerce Today, the area has rapidly transformed into a premiere destination...

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Rainy Day Activities in Orlando

Hitting the Orlando theme parks may conjure up images of sunshine and blue skies, but especially in summer, families often encounter an overcast and damp day. You can still enjoy everything from Disney to Universal in the rain, though little and big kids alike may not find it the adventure they were hoping for. If your plans are flexible, venture past the theme parks and find something fun...

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Live Like a Local on Vacation

Going on vacation doesn’t have to resemble living out of a suitcase while your kids run wild. Vacation homes and condos make for a comfortable and relaxing stay, whether you remain in your own home state or travel across the country. We’ve discovered a few...

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Enjoy Thanksgiving Luxury at Marriott Palm Beach

Whether you're traveling to Florida, visiting Grandma, or just enjoying the sunshine in your home state; get out of the ktichen and enjoy Thanksgiving dinner in luxury this year.   Skip the generic restaurants with overcooked turkey and gather around a traditional holiday dinner at the

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Celebrating Oktoberfest in Florida

Oktoberfest has always been a reason to celebrate whether you're traveling with family or reveling in the fun and sampling German "Bier" without the kids. You can find an Oktoberfest festivity in just about every corner of the world, with festivities borrowing from Bavarian traditions and peppered with schnitzel and sausages. Despite its reputation for sandy beaches and hot weather, Florida is no...

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How to Go to Disney for Free and Score Deep Discounts

According to Walt Disney World's website, going to Disney on select dates for 6-nights, 7-days ranges from $2,390 to $3,29 for a family of 4 staying at Disney's All-Star Resorts. That may not sound too steep when considering the prices are packaged for accommodations...

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10 Best Kid Friendly Hotels in Las Vegas

Las Vegas hotel deals conjure up images of glittering high rise casinos, high-rollers and high-end luxury. But the City of Lights has plenty to offer families from outdoor fun to indoor amusement parks. Fortunately, kids love the excitement of live entertainment, music and great food just as much as adults. Kick-off your vacation in Las Vegas in luxury in one of Las Vegas' selection of kid...

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Year-Round Fun in Panama City Beach

Known for its sugary white sandy beaches and turquoise waters, Panama City Beach has rapidly grown from a quiet beachside military town to spring break partyland and finally a family-friendly destination.  You probably already knew Panama City Beach could keep the kids entertained with activities from go-karting to boogie boarding. But there are also has plenty of indoor options for rain days...

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My Kind of Beach at Playa del Carmen

Situated on Mexico's Caribbean coast, Playa del Carmen is a waterfront refuge that attracts domestic and international tourists to its thriving main street and apres-beach scene. 

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Canada’s Quebec Province Celebrates Diversity as a Gay-Friendly Destination

As same-sex marriage gains a legal foothold, more gay families are looking for the perfect honeymoon combining romance and family-friendly fun.With the recent expansion of same-sex marriage laws and policies in the United States, the gay community is celebrating their newfound rights to become legal partners. The new push for marriage equality will open the doors to equal health coverage,...

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Disney Simplifies Generational Travel

Stepping out to curbside with suitcases, car seat, toddler and travel crib in tow, I was already overwhelmed. Disney was still a few hours away and we had to get through the busiest airport in the world, Atlanta Hartsfield, down to Orlando and over to the Kingdom. Our young daughter could barely contain her excitement to see “The Castle!” and wanted to get there as soon as possible.I’ve...

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Why Beaches Turks and Caicos Is A Favorite Family All-Inclusive

While there are plenty of resorts and accommodations to choose from, Beaches Turks & Caicos paves the way for the most family-friendly, all-inclusive beach resort in this island nation and its baby care makes it a standout. The resort is organized by themed villages — The Caribbean, French, Italian and Key...

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Introducing Golf To Kids: Directory Of Learning Programs

If your kids are showing signs of taking the PGA circuit by storm, follow these tips on introducing them to the world of golf. We recommend ways to to find the best Junior Camps, how to plan family golfing vacation ideas and more.The kid golfing craze started around the same time Tiger Woods hit the mainstream and made the sport cool for younger generations.  Fortunately, the travel...

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Ghost Towns of the American West

Up for a bit of a scare blended with historical haunts on your next vacation; discover the ghost towns of the Southwest in Colorado, Montana, New Mexico, California, and Utah. Learn about the history of the Gold Rush, the daily life of miner's and the ghostly remains of today. After a family visit, you'll be able to see for yourself if they're really haunted by gold miners past.Before...

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Six Easy Safety Tips For Theme Parks

Keep your family safe during your next theme park adventure with these six easy tips.Trips to the theme park are usually on the top of every child's wish list.  But when kids make a beeline for their favorite rides, theme characters, and treats, parents are left scrambling to keep everyone safe.  But with a little planning and innovative thinking, every theme park outing...

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Top Cheap European Hotel Chain: Premier Inn

The Premier Inn chain based in the United Kingdom is a winner of FTF's Top 10 (Cheap) Getaways For Family Travelers 2008 award. Here is a look at the chain today. Booking budget hotels for the Grand Tour of Europe can be a daunting task.  Granted, while en route (and not being too picky), a family can easily find a tiny, not-so-nice room at a local B&B for under Euros 50 a night....

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Top Cheap Campground Getaway: Eurocamp

Eurocamp in Europe is a winner of FTF's Top 10 (Cheap) Getaways For Family Travelers 2008 award, and here is a look at the chain today. Camping always seems like a good idea for families. It's eco-friendly, and in the great outdoors there is more space to play and that cozy home-from-home feeling that only a tent can provide.  Of course, that's only until the kids learn they have to...

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Columbus, Ohio Attractions

The capital and largest city of Ohio, Columbus has a reputation for a varied economy of politics, education, and a thriving retail history.  While Columbus is often overlooked as a family destination, its collection of economical entertainment and attractions options has created an influx of tourism over the years. While visiting Columbus, bring your Tiny Travelers to a...

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Nashville, Tennessee Attractions

Learn about Music City Nashville's history, visit an 1800's print shop, cruise on a riverboat, and see the Parthenon without ever leaving the South -- and at great prices to boot. When the "100-year-flood" of the Cumberland River hit Nashville during the rains of May 2010, the roiling waters took down the The Opryland Hotel, the Grand Ol' Opry, the Country Music Hall...

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Club Med: Mexico And The Caribbean

Club Med remains on the top of our list for favorite family brands as one of the few family all-inclusive resorts, with good packages, award-winning baby care and Kid's Clubs (and you should all know, Family Travel Forum has given them plenty of awards), idyllic settings, wide range of activities, sports, fine dining, spas and entertainment.  Almost all of the resorts listed below include...

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No-Cost Fun in Boston, Massachusetts

Step back in time on the Freedom Trail, see a movie at Boston Harbor, and make a work of art at the Children's Museum -- all for free!Step back in time on the Freedom Trail, see a movie at Boston Harbor, and make a work of art at the Children's Museum -- all for free! Boston may best be celebrated for its rich history, cutting edge art scene, academic achievements, political entanglements...

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No-Cost Fun In Atlanta, Georgia

See the best of Atlanta -- its outdoor recreation, arts, science museums and live entertainment -- without spending a dime. Now that's a cheap family vacation. Atlanta, Georgia earns its celebrated reputation as the capital of the south. Award-winning museums, parks, arts, great food and historical neighborhoods round out the offerings for Atlanta family vacations local and visitors...

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Beating The High Cost Of Family Vacations

Don't let a down economy ruin plans; use my tips, tricks, and deals on everything from airfare to vacation rentals worldwide and your foursome will travel as cheaply as one. When the economy suffers, travel seems to be one of the first industries to take a hit and it's not long before the news wires start spreading their worry woes across the globe. Parents who once spent their...

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No-Cost Fun In Finland

With the Pound and Euro toppling our dollar, head to Helsinki for free attractions, kid-friendly festivals, and outdoor fun.Anyone who's been to the pump lately knows that skyrocketing gas prices also means a dramatic increase in airfare. With fuel surcharges, taxes, and complicated fees, those bargain tickets are starting to look more like a mortgage payment than economical getaway. So when...

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No-Cost Fun in San Diego, California

San Diego's temperate climate, rich history, ethnic culture, and art offer budget savings for family travelers.California's second largest city of San Diego attracts year-round visitors with 70-miles of beaches along the Pacific Ocean, access to the Anza-Borrego Desert and views of the Laguna Mountains. It's no secret the city's 4,200 square-miles of temperate climate and coastal beauty...

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Carson City, Nevada

Take a break from Lake Tahoe's slopes and Reno's casinos with a visit to nearby family-friendly Carson City, Nevada, celebrated for its namesake legendary frontiersman and scout, Kit Carson. The city’s rich history is found in its state capitol building and in sites that date back to the ca.1859 Gold and Silver Rush. But Carson City is perhaps most embraced as a family-friendly...

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Hocking Hills, Ohio

Discover adventures in exotic caves, churning waterfalls, and rolling hills -- without ever leaving the Midwest.When you think of wooded forests, sandstone rocks, cascading waterfalls, and ominous caves, the state of Ohio probably doesn't come to the forefront of your mind. But venture just an hour south of Columbus, 3½ hours south of Cleveland, or 2½ hours north of Cincinnati to discover...

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A Fairy Tale in Prague, Czech Republic’s Capital

Come see the spires of kid-friendly Prague, shop, party, dine and absorb European history without ever entering a museum.When you step into Prague, Czech Republic, you’ll think you’ve stepped into the pages of a real-life fairytale. Kids will love the views of the spires, towers, and majestic castle in the distance. Its rambling cobble stone streets are home to scenes in such movies...

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No-Cost Fun in Jacksonville, Florida

Spend a week touring Jacksonville: see historical ships and concerts, indulge in chocolates, and play outdoors -- without spending a dime.Most families look to beach resorts, Disney World, Miami's bustling city, or Key West's historic charm for a traditional Florida getaway.  But for family-fun without the expensive price tag, Jacksonville provides endless free events and attractions to choose...

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Miami Beach International Travellers Hostel

We were determined to discover Miami on a budget.  Looking for a reasonable hotel in South Beach for a girlfriend getaway within proximity to the beach, restaurants, and shopping wasn't an easy feat. It required a lot of discussion, complaining, wishful thinking, squabbling, and scouring the Internet for deals.Turns...

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Telluride And Mountain Village, Colorado

Telluride's summer festivals, hiking, mountain climbing, and nature walks make for a warm-weather getaway that's even more popular than its ski season.Telluride's pristine mountain valley location, rich history, and proximity to world-class snowsports took the area from ghost town to bustling tourist destination around the 1970's. Over the years, Telluride and the adjacent Mountain...

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Little Five Points, Atlanta, Georgia

Last week I visited my parents in Peachtree City and headed to Atlanta to have dinner in Little Five Points at The Vortex for burgers. This little urban neighborhood still retains some of the grit of old Atlanta before condos starting growing like wildfire throughout the city.Little...

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Old Orchard Beach, Maine

Visit New England's only oceanfront amusement park for old-fashioned rides, live entertainment, lobster dinners, and a walk through history.Old Orchard Beach, Maine, known as New England's only Beachfront Amusement Park, lies just 98-miles from Boston, 12-miles from Portland, and about 300-miles from New York City. A convenient day-trip or frugal weekend getaway from neighboring metropolitan...

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Geocaching With Kids Teaches Map Skills

Entice your children with geocaching – a fun, interactive, technological, original way and cheap way to explore either your next destination or your own backyard. One of the latest phenomena in GPS technology combines a high-tech scavenger hunt, coordinates, mapping, and tourism into one game called geocaching. A hand held hiker's GPS, cell phones with GPS enabled technology, or other...

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Historic Budapest, Star Of A Hungary Vacation

Known as “Little Paris” or “Paris on the Danube,” Budapest is a fascinating city, rich in history, and cultural wonders.Budapest is more than just a stunning cosmopolitan city in Eastern Europe. Visitors flock here for exotic food, antiques, shopping, bargain prices, entertainment and history. Hungary’s struggle against both Nazi and communist occupation offers...

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Edinburgh, Scotland’s Royal Past

Take a walk down Edinburgh's Royal Mile and explore the city's medieval past, architectural wonder, sordid tales of gore, cosmopolitan flavor, and kid-friendly attractions.Edinburgh, Scotland evokes a sense of whimsical charm with its looming castles, sloping hills, cobble stone streets, and the smell of hops drifting over the city. Pronounced by locals as "Edinburro"...

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The John Lennon Wall in Prague, Czech Republic

While visiting the Czech Republic last week, we ventured out to see the infamous John Lennon Wall.  It was once just an ordinary historic wall without much significance to the city of Prague. But during communist control in the 1980's, John Lennon inspired graffiti and Beatles lyrics started appearing on the wall.  In 1988, the communist regime of Gustav Husak became annoyed with...

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The 1956 Uprising of Hungary Against Communism

Hungary suffered through a double blow of dictatorship during its recent lifetime. First by the the Nazi regime, which was defeated in WWII, and again with Soviet communism. Communism invaded shortly after the Nazi regime's fall, and officials were said to have wanted to punish Hungary for not siding with Russia during the war.Although communism was eventually defeated in 1989, there were...

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Memento Park, The Remains of Communism in Budapest, Hungary

It really wasn't all that long ago that communism was alive and well in Eastern Europe.  Until 1989, Hungary was a communist country and only after many years of protest and struggle was the country eventually freed. Budapest is a beautiful city with ornate architecture and is often called "Paris on the Danube."  In the evening, the city's buildings and bridges...

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Whisky Tour in Edinburgh

Last week I went to the Scotch Whisky Tour along the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, Scotland.  It was a cold, rainy day and we needed some fun indoor options.  I had never given much thought to whisky or scotch or how it was made, but figured it would be a warm and dry way to spend the hour. At the beginning of the tour, visitors receive a complimentary glass and a splash...

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