The Getaway
Great American Family Vacation Destinations

Family vacations are special and full of precious memories and standout moments. Whether you're planning a multi-generational vacation or just seeking to escape some with the kids, there are lots of interesting places to go that all the family will enjoy. Places with a variety of things to do and destinations with activities for rainy days will ensure no one gets bored.


01 Sedona, Arizona

Sedona mountains, view of Bell Rock, in Arizona, USA Wildroze / Getty Images

Sedona is less crowded than the famous Grand Canyon, but there's still a lot for families to see and do. There are easy hikes, incredible geological formations, and the famous Red Rocks. You'll also find a lot of family-friendly campsites and resorts in the area. Close by, the town of Jerome has a mining heritage site, and Flagstaff is a dark sky city and perfect for watching the stars.


02 Mystic, Connecticut

Mystic is a village in New London County, Connecticut, in the United States. Mystic is located within the towns of Groton and Stonington. Mystic is a major New England tourist destination. The village is known for its maritime heritage, historic ship-captain's homes, excellent dining and two immense casinos DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images

The curiously named town of Mystic is ideal for families who love a nautical theme. It's like stepping back in time as the entire town looks like a 19th-century shipbuilding port. Families can experience an authentic historic experience and take boat rides from the seaport. There are lots of good places to eat out and a range of places to stay. You'll find cycling and easy walks among the many things to do here.


03 Chicago, Illinois

Chicago Street. Subway train. Traffic. Park. thisnight / Getty Images

For a family city break, Chicago has a lot to offer. There are great places to eat in Greektown and the famous views from Sky Deck Chicago. There's Museum Row, beaches along the Lake Michigan shoreline, and lots of opportunities to watch a sporting event. You'll also find children's theater productions and concerts and some of the best places to shop in the USA.


04 Acadia National Park, Maine

hiker taking in the views in Acadia National Park

Your family won't forget the views of Acadia National Park. Take a drive to the best viewpoints and enjoy a picnic or hike some of the easier trails. You'll find a beautiful unspoiled coastline too. There are some excellent places to stay and dine out with lobster, a specialty of the area.


05 New Orleans, Louisiana

Saint louis cathedral and jackson square in new orleans, louisiana, united states at sunset f11photo / Getty Images

New Orleans is an excellent child-friendly destination. There's Storyland, the Louisiana Children's Museum, and even a child-focused tour in the French Quarter. There are steamboat cruises, a chance to taste beignets and other local foods and enjoy the music. New Orleans also has some excellent hotels within easy reach of the main attractions.


06 Omaha, Nebraska

Omaha has a lot of things to amuse kids on vacation. They will love the Omaha Children's Museum and the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium. There's also Fun-Plex, an amusement park, and several green spaces to enjoy. Families will also find a wide range of restaurants and hotels in the city.

07 Destin, Florida

family on the beach - surfboard valentinrussanov / Getty Images

Kids will love the calm waters and places to fish along the Destin coastline. Henderson Beach State Park is one of the best beaches for families. The dolphins and penguins at Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park will keep families amused for hours, and there are also lots of boat trips to spot more wildlife.


08 Yosemite, California

back view of active family of two, father and son, enjoying valley and mountain view in yosemite national park noblige / Getty Images

You can't beat Yosemite for wild scenery and a range of family-friendly activities. There are easy hiking trails, fishing, and rafting here as well as the chance to spot wildlife or get close to the giant sequoias. You'll find campsites and motels, places to barbecue, and relax in this vast parkland.


09 Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Busy Gatlinburg street in summer time with tourist and cars. Miro Vrlik Photography /

The Great Smoky Mountains are just one highlight in Gatlinburg. There are miles of horse riding, biking, and hiking trails in spectacular scenery. It's possible to spot deer, elk, and even bears on the trails. Young children will enjoy the Gatlinburg Space Needle and the Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies or even Sweet Fanny Adams Theater. In Gatlinburg, the family can watch artisans work on jewelry and other crafts.


10 Williamsburg, Virginia

A horse drawn carriage rolls down a tree-lined street in Williamsburg, Virginia Greg Meland / Getty Images

If your family enjoys history, Williamsburg is a great place to spend a vacation. There are museums and reenactments to learn about the Revolutionary War and monuments to many historical figures. There's also places to chill out, including Water Country USA and the amusement park Busch Gardens. You'll also find a good range of places to dine out and some great hotels close to the attractions.


11 Orange County and Hudson Valley, New York

Woman Enjoys Sunset Catskills Mountain View NY Boogich / Getty Images

Orange County is famous for Legoland, which will delight most families. There's a lot more from farm experiences to amusements and museums. There are boat trips down the Hudson River and even a chance to spend a day in the US Military Academy. The Trailside Museums and Zoos will also keep kids amused, and there is also rafting on the Delaware River.


12 Sandusky, Ohio

Wicked Twister. Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio Arkady / Getty Images

Sandusky offers a small-town experience for a family vacation but has a lot to keep everyone happy. A Lake Erie Island cruise is popular, and kids will love Cedar Point Amusement Park. All the family will feel a touch of nostalgia at the Merry Go Round Museum. The water slides at Great Wolf Lodge is another fun activity for families, and there's also miniature golf at the Ghostly Manor Thrill Center.


13 Steamboat Springs, Colorado

Balloons float over Bald Eagle Lake during the 38th annual Steamboat Springs Hot Air Balloon Festival in Steamboat Springs, Colorado Rhona Wise /

Steamboat Springs is a good all-year destination for families. There is skiing and snowboarding in winter and walking on easy trails in summer. You'll find beautiful scenery in the fall at Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest. The entire family will love the thrill of riding on the Outlaw Mountain Coaster, and if that's not enough, there's tubing on the Yampa River.


14 Helen, Georgia

People enjoy tubing down the Chattahoochee River in North Georgia on a warm summer afternoon in Helen, GA. BluIz60 /

Helen is a small town but charmingly constructed. It looks like something from a fairy tale as it has been designed to resemble a Bavarian town. Families will love the Christkindlmarkt and art tour here. There's tubing down the Chattahoochee River, vineyards, and waterfalls to find on walking trails with the family. And you'll be able to find some excellent hotels and campsites in the area.


15 Juneau, Alaska

sunset over alaska fjords on a cruise trip near ketchikan

Juneau is a great place for a family vacation. You can walk easy trails, spot whales and go out wildlife watching, and even see the Mendenhall Glacier. There are boat trips to the Tracy Arm Fjord, and you can explore the Glacier Gardens rainforest park. Juneau has some great places to stay and a wide range of eateries.


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