Does the idea of being cooped up in a motel room with your kids make you think twice about a family vacation? It does for me! Here are some ideas that will change your mind.
Family vacations create memories for lifetimes. Some are good. Some are not so good. The goal of any vacation is to have a good time, and enjoy the company of your kids. But we all need some space. The type of lodging you choose for your family vacation may be the most important decision you make. So how do you find vacation lodging that works best for your family? Here are some ideas.
Larger units – Consider a family cabin rental, a condo, or even a furnished apartment. Sometimes smaller lodges have 1 or 2 units that fit the bill. Just make sure you have more than one room. That makes all the difference.
But keep in mind; larger units often have minimum stays. So look for a unit you can rent for a week. And plan your vacation based on excursions from where you are staying. Not only will this give you more space, it will likely save you money. And, you can unpack once and make yourself at home. But larger units, especially at a good price, are harder to find, and book sooner. So plan early!
Common Space at a Lodge or Resort – A more traditional room with 2 beds is a lot more tolerable if there is a good amount of public common space. A lodge where there are activities and places to hang out and explore both indoors and outdoors make a huge difference. If your kids are older, they will have somewhere to go to “create some space”. Or, maybe it’s you who needs to “get away for a while”! If your kids are young, splitting them up between you and your spouse for a period of time can work wonders. Just make sure you choose your lodging that has somewhere fun and interesting to walk to other than your room.
Mix it up to help your budget – More space in lodging generally means more money. But here’s an idea that has worked for my family many times. Plan your vacation in 2 phases. The first phase is the active part. This is the part where we see the sights and do all those tourist things. We expect to be on the go, and mainly just need a place to crash. So a budget hotel does the job.
The second phase is the relaxing part. Here’s where we stay at a resort or cabin where there is a lot of space, preferably both in the unit, and out. We mainly relax and enjoy what the resort has to offer. And we take advantage of the close by activities we can walk to, or drive less than 10 minutes based on local recommendations. It’s usually at the end of this phase we find it hard to leave. That’s how we know we had a good time, and a successful family vacation!