When you want your vacation to be just as amazing for you as it is for your kids—that’s when the travel planning gets serious. Or seriously fun. Need help? How-to-go meets where-to-go with these family vacation ideas that’ll make you say, “The more, the merrier!”—and mean it.
Classic Family Road Trip
Best for: Families with younger kids who want flexibility and ease. (No schlepping gear and toys on a plane.) It’s also a great way to ease back into travel with your family.
Where to go: Anywhere you want! That’s the beauty of a road trip—you can pick the route and what to see based on your family’s favorite things. Got budding history buffs? Meander through Virginia to Colonial Williamsburg, where you can be whisked back to 18th-century life. Wild West fans will enjoy a DIY safari drive through South Dakota’s Custer State Park, where the buffalo still roam. For science geeks, try Florida’s Space Coast. You can feel what it’s like to pilot a shuttle at Kennedy Space Center, then sink your toes in the sand at nearby Cocoa Beach or further up the coast at Daytona Beach. Start your journey with one of our itineraries across the U.S.
The AAA Way: Map your route (including rest stops) ahead of time using the AAA TripTik Travel Planner. Then use the AAA Mobile app along the way to find gas stations, restaurants, hotels and more. Here are more ways to save with AAA on your next family road trip.
Best for: Busy families looking for a place to get away from it all, knowing that rooms, meals and daily fun are included in one price. The spaces that all-inclusive resorts offer—for beachside lounging, trail hiking, snorkeling and more—also make it easier to keep a safe distance from other guests.
Our insider’s guide has everything you need to know about staying, eating and playing at all-inclusive resorts.Discover More
Where to go: The Caribbean and Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula are chock full of these pay-once, play-forever resorts—and many are built with families in mind. Kid-friendly perks, like kids’ camps, teen-only clubs, and multiroom suites with bunk beds and game consoles, are plentiful. And so are the adventures, from kayaking to horseback riding, sailing to snorkeling.
The AAA Way: Your AAA Travel Advisor can help you plan and book an all-inclusive resort getaway with exclusive member benefits. They can also review travel insurance options with you.
Best for: Families with discovery in their DNA, who’d rather leave the details to the experts. Guided vacations are led by knowledgeable travel and well-being directors, who help take the worry out of the experience. Also consider small group tours—called bubble tours—that offer a way to travel with just your family members.
Where to go: Guided trips are a hassle-free way to travel with kids. Many tour itineraries are peppered with just-for-kids delights. Imagine taking the family to the rainbow-hued hot springs of Yellowstone National Park, where you can witness Old Faithful spewing a fountain of steam some 130 feet into the air. Or, when the time is right, introduce the kids to France on a river cruise along the Seine, hopping off the boat for museum scavenger hunts and bike rides around the Palace of Versailles. Guided trips also make it easy to explore iconic music sites, such as the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville and the Memphis Rock ’n’ Soul Museum.
The AAA Way: AAA Vacations’ guided and custom trips come with exclusive member perks and are built based on AAA Members’ input.
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Best for: Families seeking the relaxation of a resort and the fun of destination-hopping. The two types of cruises that are sure to be trending as ships ply the world’s waters again—river cruises and ocean cruises to private islands—are both equally suitable for families looking to set sail.
As cruising returns, these rivers and private islands may top your must-see list.Explore More
Where to go: Cruising is like exploring the world on a floating hotel. You only have to unpack once, and you get to explore lots of different places. A perennial top pick for families: the Caribbean, where cruises can be from three to seven days long—a bonus if time off is in short supply. While some cruise lines are well-known as kid-friendly (Disney Cruise Line, anyone?), lots more are getting in on the act. Today’s ships are loaded with diversions the younger set will love—from video game arcades to laser tag, surfing simulators to high-speed waterslides. And there are plenty of ways for adults to enjoy alone time while the kiddos hang out in (safe and supervised) camps or teen lounges. Ask your travel advisor about ships with multiroom suites or connecting cabins—perfect for varying bedtimes. River cruising offers domestic options—such as along the Mississippi River—as well as options abroad, including the Seine, Rhine and Mekong rivers.
The AAA way: Your AAA Travel Advisor can help you reserve a cruise, select travel insurance and more—so you can explore confidently. You can also find and book a cruise online. Many cruise partners offer exclusive AAA Member benefits.
Theme Park Thriller
Best for: Families with teens eager to test out the newest, tallest, loopiest rides, and those looking for rich experiences. Here are two stories of how one family made their return to theme parks.
Where to go: Orlando is theme park Shangri-La, with Walt Disney World® Resort, Universal Orlando Resort and SeaWorld Orlando. While you’re in Florida, visit Adventure Island Tampa and Aquatica Orlando, where you can spin and splash down the newest slides—Solar Vortex and Riptide Race. Thrills abound outside Florida, too, at parks such as Ohio’s Cedar Point and Dollywood® Parks & Resort in Tennessee.
The AAA Way: Members get discounted theme park tickets.