Top Vacation Spots for Families With Teens

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The family vacation: a time for kids to get excited and parents to hope and pray that events run smoothly. Can adolescents in your clan get just as excited as your younger kiddos?

Teens want to have freedom on vacation, but quality family time is so important. After all, this is a time away from school, activities, and hopefully, some technology.

If your little ones are not so little anymore, the idea of a family vacation might be enticing to them. However, this is when kids can actually be a wonderful travel companion. They’re mature (hopefully-lol), curious, and don’t need much tending to. Just be sure to give them some time to relax.

Taking them to the right vacation spot is the first step to having a successful trip!

Here is a list of our top five top vacation spots that have something for parents and the teens alike.

Rock-and-roll emporiums, sporting venues and stadiums, pristine beaches for surfing, or hair-raising adventure parks — these vacation spots are teen-friendly hubs with a ton of teen-friendly activities, no matter where their interest lies!

Read on for some inspiration on family vacation ideas with teenagers and putting together a family vacay that every member of the family will cherish for a long time to come!


Honolulu, Hawaii

A beautiful spot that manages to strike the right balance between being a cosmopolitan city and a tropical paradise, Hawaii is a great spot to start off with if you’re wondering where to take a teenager on vacation! There’s just enough teen-friendly city fun as well as outdoor delights in surrounding Oahu.

You could try family-friendly activities such as hiking, snorkeling, kayaking or half-day tours that cover Oahu’s key attractions (such as the Pearl Harbor Memorial), or just hit the famous Waikiki Beach; you can sip a mojito and work on your tan while the kids pump up the adrenaline with surfing lessons from the locals.

Better yet, take a page from the Hawaiian Royal Family and opt for an outrigger canoe surfing session instead!


Oralando, Florida

Home to some of the best family-friendly activities, Orlando is a no-brainer when it comes to fantastic family getaways that also have all the makings of agreat teen vacation!

Sure, they’ve outgrown Mickey and Minnie, but the thrilling roller coaster rides here will likely more than make up for that!

Disney World Resort, SeaWorld and Universal’s Islands of Adventures are fun places to go for cool activities such as swimming with dolphins, parasailing and jet-skiing; alternatively, take an airboat ride through the Everglades for a fun family day trip.

It’s easy to dismiss Orlando as kid-friendly only, but the area is host to a range of teen-friendly activities; there are tons of spots the teens will dig, such as Gatorland to meet the ‘gators, Discovery Cove, K1 Speed for some crazy go-karting and iFly Orlando for the adrenaline-junkies!


Washington, D.C.

Home to some of the world’s best museums and most famous landmarks, Washington, DC, is brimming with great vacation spots and activities.

The guided Segway tours of the city will probably go down in all your books as one of the city’s most fun experiences and, of course, selfies are a must in front of the city’s many impressive monuments!

If you’re a family of museum buffs, Washington’s many museums are must-visits, such as the National Museum of Natural HistoryNational Geographic Museum, the International Spy Museum (a great one for all the 007 aspirants out there), and the National Gallery of Art, to name a few.

If the adolescent of your clan has a media obsession, the Newseum is a must-visit, with its exhibits and interactive broadcasting studio.

The fashion-forward shops of Georgetown are a great spot to head to after the Newseum visit, while catching beautiful nighttime views of the city, after dark, from the illuminated Capital Wheel, is a great way to end the day.


Gatlinburg, Tennessee

At Gatlinburg, it’s “good vibes only”; the place exudes a warm, friendly, relaxed air that makes it such a great vacation spot for families, with its exciting, lively range of restaurants that can satisfy a wide range of appetites, preferences and tastes!

Explore the 800 miles worth of hiking ground and beautiful trails at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park; the park also has activities such as fly fishing and horseback riding.

Don’t forget to take a family photo at the area’s mossy waterfall or against the breathtaking views at the Clingmans Dome observation tower.

Even better, catch more incredible views from a helicopter; there are many great helicopter tours run by efficient operators that are a must-consider experience!

All in all, Gatlinburg offers a great combination of city life and outdoor adventure, making it a really great vacation spot for tweens, teens, parents, and everyone in between!


Beaver Creek, Colorado

Beaver Creek is all about “family-friendly”; the resort has a ton of activities that make for some wholesome family fun, such as ski lessons, cross-country snowshoeing and ice-skating.

The whole family can brush up on their skiing skills with the resort’s fantastic instructors or bond around a rented fire-pit!

Haymeadow Park, Red Buffalo Park and Thursday Night Lights make up the main attractions during winter; the lattermost is a spectacular way to end the day with lights and fireworks. No matter how “cool” your teen tries to be, these fireworks are magical enough to impress anyone!

Another family-friendly attraction is the EpicMix, where you can get family photos captured and race your friends.

However, don’t dismiss Beaver Creek as a winter wonderland. Beaver Creek is just as great for a summer vacation as it is for a winter vacation; enjoy activities such as hiking and horse-riding on the beautiful green hillsides!


For a complete list of 21 family vacation ideas with teenagers, visit Family Destinations Guide, Top Spots to Visit.

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