I grew up in a big family, so we’ve been traveling with kids for years! Here are my 10 favorite so far! Any you would add to the list? I’m always looking for new destinations!
- Page, Arizona
Lower Antelope Canyon is one of the most spectacular natural sites in Arizona. The tours aren’t especially difficult so most children would be able to walk on their own. The most physical part of the tour are several stairs at the initial decent into the canyon and a few other sets of stairs throughout.
Also in Page, Arizona is Horseshoe Bend, which is a rather short and easy 15 minute hike to the viewing area.
2. Washington D.C.
There are many kid-friendly sites to choose from in the DC area. At the National Mall there is the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, the fountains at the National World War II Memorial, all within walking distance of United States Capital Building and White House.
History might not be the most interesting for your children, but there are plenty of other museums, gardens and parks to visit, as well.
3. Nashville, Tennessee
Take a stroll down Music Row, right in the heart of downtown Nashville. It is fun for everyone with all the live music, colorful signs, Cowboy Boots and the Pedal Taverns passing by.
Another fun stop is Opry Mills, a mall by the Grand Ol Opry House. There were so many family friendly dinner options, it was hard to decide between Rain Forest Cafe, Dave & Busters, Bavarian Bierhaus or the Aquarium Restaurant, which is what we picked. It did not disappoint! We could barely peal the kids off the aquarium to eat!
After dinner, rent an Animal Rider for $1 a minute and cruise around the mall on giant motorized stuffed animals. At Opry Mills, there is also a train taxi, merry-go-round, kids rides, and a bungee trampoline to do flips in the air.
4. New Orleans, Louisiana
The street car will take you around the city for a great tour and there’s plenty to see for the little ones. It’s rather inexpensive to ride at $1.25. If you plan to hop on and off at different sites, look into the Jazzy Pass to make is easier and more affordable.
There are numerous other tours to take throughout the rest of the city stops. Southern Style tours offers an excellent tour, with super friendly and knowledgeable drivers! The driver made several stops kid- friendly stops throughout the tour, so the kids didn’t get antsy. The little ones especially loved stopping for beignets and hot chocolate!
One of our favorites was Mardi Gras World, a huge warehouse full of giant figurines and retired parade float decor.
5. Chicago, Illinois
It’s always fun to take trains around the city, and it’s especially easy on Mom’s bank account. Chicago has a great train system to transport everyone throughout the city.
There are countless kid-friendly tours, museums and attractions. Even on a rainy day, Navy Pier is nice because the Childrens Museum is indoor. If you’re there on a beautiful day, there is a carousel and a giant ferris wheel out on the pier.
Some other outdoor activities include ice skating in the winter at Millenium Park, strolling the Chicago Riverwalk or taking a water taxi. During March the Chicago River is died green for St. Patrick’s Day.
From the start, Mackinac Island is like heaven for children. The ferry zooms across Lake Michigan, shooting water out the hydro-jets on the back of the boat. On the island, children can ride horses, carriages, bicycles, and even a kayak.
There are some fun toy shops and gift shops that allow hands-on play and you can’t forget about the arcades! A favorite for most, is the free popcorn and duck pin bowling at Woods Restaurant. Ask the bartender for a kiddie cocktail while you’re at it!
If your kids love to swim, Cocoa Beach is great! There are also lot’s of fun gift shops to stroll through. Ron Jon surf shop was hit for the kids with the live shark tank!
Rent a car and drive along A1A Beachfront Avenue – jamming to some Vanilla Ice (. There are a bunch of Amusement Centers for children where they can hold baby alligators or go see manatees, and even a Dinosaur Store. There’s no shortage on fun kids stuff in Cape Canaveral.
8. Rapid City, South Dakota
Around Rapid City, there are tons of stunning sites to see. From Badlands, to Custer State Park, Mt. Rushmore, Crazy Horse and so much more!
You can even head downtown to check out Art Alley and take some colorful photos. We were pleasantly surprised by the outdoor art installation.
9. Put-In-Bay, Ohio
After a ferry ride across Lake Erie, you arrive at a cute little island packed with activities for everyone. The common mode of transportation for the visitors is Golf Carts.
We rented the largest one available, because we were rolling with our whole posse this trip! With four rows of seats with buckles, car seats for the smaller ones, and my mom chauffeuring us all around, we had a blast!
10. Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Book a hotel with a heated pool so you can swim all year-round! Spend some well deserved time at Teton National Park and be sure to stop at the Elk Refuge. Children will love looking at and spotting the abundance of wildlife in Wyoming!
What other cities have you visited with your children? I’m always looking for my next kid-friendly destination!