Taking a vacation with kids or teens is easy when you join us on an active family vacation. To help you choose your next family trip, we've rounded up the top 5 family vacations for 2019. From Morocco to Iceland, these family itineraries will satisfy the curiosity, energy levels and attention spans of multiple generations.
PERU & MACHU PICCHU
Machu Picchu is on so many travelers’ Top 10 lists. After this family tour, your kids and teenagers will recommend it to their friends, too. You see, it's not just the wonders of Inca culture. This multi-sport vacation includes some real thrills like whitewater rafting on the Urubamba River and mountain biking in the Inca's Sacred Valley. Our local guides introduce them to llama herders and a Peruvian family who invites them to dinner. Just when it doesn't seem like it could get any better, we ascend to Machu Picchu. This mystery city peeks out of a cloud forest, and we provide personally guided visits to suit every age. (And if you're wondering about the altitude, our highest point is about what you'd experience at a ski resort.)
The Galápagos Islands can really push a family’s “happy buttons.” The close-up looks at penguins and iguanas and sea lions are almost too cool to believe. The landscapes are like nothing you’ve ever seen, and the climate is great. Too bad for most visitors that they tour the islands by cruise ship. Everybody can get stir-crazy in the limited space. And the fun of ship-to-shore Zodiac rides wears off after 4 or 5 trips. That’s why we prefer an island-based Galápagos family vacation. There’s plenty of elbow room to walk, swim in our boutique hotels’ pools, and watch for blue-footed boobies out the back door. You can go sea-kayaking right from the dock outside your door. We have easy access to clear lagoons for snorkeling, great trails for mountain biking, and white beaches for lounging. Even if you weren’t bumping into a titanic tortoise or a strutting flamingo at every turn, this would still be a fantastic active family vacation. And unlike those tourists marooned on their boats, we get to hang out with the locals and get a feel for what human life is like among the wildlife!
Our own kids say it was their best day EVER. Our family vacation in Morocco found us four-wheeling the Moroccan plains, then clambering onto a camel, swaying into steep Saharan dunes to watch the sun set, and settling into a Berber encampment to eat and sing and dance around the campfire before nodding off in a carpeted luxury tent. The very best day...unless you count spotting wild monkeys on a walk in a cedar forest, hanging out with shepherd families, watching the snake charmers in Marrakesh, squeezing past donkey carts in the ancient alleys of Fès, or biking along the dikes in an oasis. As adults, we love Morocco, and it's even better to enjoy family vacations in Morocco with the kids. The terrain ranges from snow-capped mountains to deep, colorful valleys carpeted with fields and date palms. You'll meet members of our extended family who welcome us onto their farms and into their homes. We stay in lovely hotels, every one with a swimming pool. And the best surprise of all is the warmth and pride with which the Moroccans welcome us and make everyone feel comfortable and well cared for.
VENICE, FLORENCE, & ROME
Join us in these three must-see cities...to see them like most families never get the chance! In one perfectly timed week, you'll discover the best of Italy without feeling like you're in a rush. Our local guides know how to get you a ride in the best gondolas, find the creamiest gelato and pull strings to get kid-friendly access to Michelangelo's David and the Sistine Chapel. Near Florence, you'll live and play like a Tuscan famiglia at a countryside hotel with swimming pool, easy access to bicycles and walking paths, and a treasure hunt in Siena. We bring sprawling Rome down to size from the Trevi Fountain to the Colosseum. Best of all, you'll meet pizza-makers, art experts, and gladiator trainers whom all give Italy a happy personal spin for your family.
Iceland may just be the perfect outdoor family vacation destination. How can you go wrong with volcanoes and puffins and walking on glaciers and rides on Icelandic horses? The island has a unique cultural story and a bubbling, steaming, erupting geology that’s unlike anywhere else on earth. Short attention spans do well in Iceland because there are so many fun and different things to do. If you’re not walking on a black beach, you’re snorkeling in clear-as-glass water or walking in wavy lava fields. And all of the multisport activities are included at no extra cost. In the company of your local guide, you’ll get the inside scoop on the human history and tectonic action that is constantly changing this amazing land. Family-friendly hotels include a deep country lodge named the “Best Hotel in Iceland” and a hip Reykjavik property right on the main shopping street. Prepare to be totally amazed!