Hey Snobs! As proud parents of 1-year-old son, Zayden, and avid world-travelers, this past year we have had to learn to merge our family life with our travel life. Now when planning for a trip, we have to take into consideration the “family-friendliness” of the destination by judging the available activities for all ages, as well as accommodations of course. We love creating amazing new memories as a jet-setting family, and hope to inspire you and yours to create such memories too, all whilst experiencing the diverse world and cultures that make up our shared planet.
We have compiled a list of our Top 5 Favorite Family-Friendly Destinations that we’ve experienced so far, and we hope this will inspire you and your family to visit them as well!
1. Nassau, Bahamas
We absolutely LOVE this tropical paradise and just recently arrived back from another trip. With clear blue waters and miles of beaches, there is so much family-fun offered in the Bahamas, whether it’s swimming with dolphins, snorkeling, jet skiing, or all of the above, the Bahamas has it all!
Nassau in particular is one of the more family oriented locations as it is home to the famous Atlantis Resort, which we’ve stayed at multiple times over the years. Atlantis is the perfect family-fun filled resort with it’s very own one-of-a-kind 141-acre waterscape waterpark. Although we must admit that we’re not the biggest fans of the Atlantis’ high prices and what we consider to be mediocre food, we still throughly enjoy our time here for the thrill of the waterpark and other family attractions that you won’t find anywhere else.
Another family-friendly resort on the island is the SLS Baha Mar, which is by far one of our most favorite hotels in the entire world. Its just so snobby! Although the property has three different hotels including the SLS (party hotel), and Rosewood (most luxurious/snobby); we have stayed at the Grand Hyatt which is super family-friendly. They have a private island where you can swim with dolphins and stingrays, and their ferry takes you straight from the dock to the island (about a 10 minute ride). Just be sure to bring your own beach towel to the island as they don’t offer any, nor do they accept cash. Another cool and unique thing to do at the Grand Hyatt is visiting their flamingo exhibit where you are able to get up close and personal with these exquisite birds. They also have family style rooms, as well as various pools that cater to different crowds, including a kiddie pool.
An additional aspect we love about Nassau is the district of Fish Fry. Made up of a bunch of restaurants and bars offering authentic, cultural Bahamian food, Fish Fry is ideal for your family’s breakfast, lunch, and dinner needs.
2. Santa Monica, California
It may not be an “exotic” location but we truly love Santa Monica because it has so much to offer to families. From the famous Santa Monica Pier with its fun and exciting rides, games, and food, to the beautiful beach that is superb for riding Pacific Ocean waves or for playing volleyball, or to riding bikes, scooters, or roller skating along the coast’s pedestrian walkway, Santa Monica is a gem!
The city is also known for its great shopping at the famous 3rd Street Promenade where you can always be sure to catch a ton of unique and talented street performers putting on a show as you walk by, many of whom have gone on to be contestants on shows like America’s Got Talent. There is also a plethora of delicious restaurants to try, especially on Ocean Avenue. A favorite of Cole’s is Meat On Ocean, while Kelsea absolutely loves the Ivy at the Shore.
If your kids are old enough to safely leave alone, we recommend you checking out The Bungalow day club. Adjacent to the beach, stop by here for a relaxing drink in the casual-chic beach styled bar/lounge while your kids soak up the sand and sun.
So although the beach and pier are both overcrowded during peak seasons, Santa Monica is definitely a must-stop destination while vacationing in Los Angeles.
3. Punta Mita, Mexico
A hidden gem just 45 minutes past Puerto Vallarta, Punta Mita is a great fishing village with luxurious hotels such as the W, The Four Seasons, and The Ritz Carlton, all Snob approved. All of these family-friendly hotels offer exquisite dining options, beautiful cabanas on the beach, and AMAZING beaches. Punta Mita makes for a great family destination and many memories to be made here; from riding horses on the beach, to fishing with your family, or stopping by the unique local shops. Also, only 15 minutes from Punta Mita is Sayulita, famous for its absolutely gorgeous surfing beach! In addition, the village offers numerous authentic and delicious restaurants and shops where you can buy some really cool and unique items to take home with you.
4. Juno Beach, Florida
Juno Beach has everything that a super popular, touristy beach in Florida has to offer, minus the overcrowded-ness! Located in West Palm Beach and not too far from Miami, we love that Juno is a much more underrated beach destination where you will mainly find locals. It’s definitely not overcrowded with tourists like many of Palm Beach’s other more popular sands, but that doesn’t mean it’s not as good. For one, it is pet-friendly, so if you happen to be traveling with your furry friend, no problem! It is also one of the densest sea turtle nesting grounds in the world. You can visit their local sea turtle hospital, Loggerhead Marinelife Center, to see these endangered animals, and even join in on their hosted turtle walks on the beach. Just imagine beautiful sand, a clear blue ocean, turtles galore, kids flying kites and building sand castles, and families walking their dogs. It is a beach house’s art work come to life and one of our most favorite family-friendly tropical locations in the country!
5. Whistler, Canada
Located just north of Vancouver and emitting an appearance straight out of a postcard, Whistler is the perfect nature-esque, outdoor adventure seeking destination that caters to all ages. From white water rafting, ziplining, hiking, and especially known for its ski resort, Whistler is your go-to for outdoor family fun and adventure! One of our personal favorite things to do in Whistler during the winter is snow-tubing. It’s extremely exhilarating and best yet, anyone can do it! No training or athletic talent is necessary.
As mentioned, the town is close to Vancouver, about an hour and a half drive on a good day. So, if you’re looking for a “small town vibe” that is still equipped with an abundance of great restaurants and shops, and one that isn’t too far away from a big city, then Whistler is where you need to visit!
Be aware though, Whistler can get very busy with tourists during peak ski season, leaving it a little overpriced and crowded. However, if you can handle the rush of people and higher prices, then Whistler is a definite must-stop for nature loving families.
Hopefully these family-friendly destinations have inspired you to pack up yourself and kids so you can all experience the ultimate family vacate! Let us know what you snobs think in the comments below!
~ Bon Voyage, Snob World.