If you’re planning to travel with your family this summer, you may be interested in a recent study from TripAdvisor revealing the top family-friendly hotels. While TripAdvisor is considered by many to be a trusted source for customer reviews, be sure to do your own research and check out feedback on other review sites on the same properties before booking your stay.
Personally, I’m a big fan of TripAdvisor. On our recent trip to Puerto Rico we looked to TripAdvisor for help with local restaurants and we weren’t let down. The top-ranked restaurant in Fajardo was also our favorite place to eat during our week-long vacation. However, I was less pleased with some of the property reviews on HomeAway, the service we used to find our rental condos. The reviews were more favorable about the apartments than I would have been, so just be sure to look to multiple sources before you decide on where to stay while on vacation.
So, without further adieu, here are the top-10 large hotels and resorts in the United States:
1. KeyLime Cove Indoor Water Park Resort (Gurnee, IL): Located less than one hour from Chicago or Milwaukee, I can see why this resort is ranked number one. Not only does it have a water park, but it has a kids spa, an arcade, and Leapin’ Lizards, a hot spot where kids can make crafts and play games. Be sure to check out the Family Fun-tivities Guide too.
2. Rocking Horse Ranch (Highland, NY): Enjoy a huge water park, horse riding trails, with a trail riding program that starts at age seven, and a wildlife exhibit, where kids can check out camels, zebras, and miniature donkeys. There’s even a reptile encounter that entertains as well as educates on the role reptiles play in ecology.
3. Hope Lake Lodge & Conference Center (Cortland, NY): Hope Lake Lodge is yet another resort featuring an indoor water park, as well as loads of outdoor activities, like fishing, boating, hiking and swimming. Kids will love Bearfoot Den, which features crafts, scavenger hunts and pizza parties.
4. Disney’s Wilderness Lodge (Orlando, FL): A deluxe resort at Walt Disney World, the Wilderness Lodge has a bubbling spring, a waterfall and a geyser fashioned after Old Faithful on property. You’ll also find bike rentals, a pool with a water slide and fishing. In the evenings, check out Chip ‘n Dale’s Campfire Sing-a-Long.
5. WorldQuest Resort (Orlando, FL): Located just one mile from Walt Disney World, this resort is perfect for those planning to take in a few Disney days, plus a few days at other Orlando-area attractions, like SeaWorld and Gatorland. Enjoy a free shuttle to Walt Disney World, outdoor pool and a 24-hour convenience store on the premises.
6. Woodloch Pines Resort (Hawley, PA): Located in the Poconos, Woodloch is regarded as one of the best all-inclusive family resorts, with loads of family activities like scavenger hunts, a zip line, bumper cars, kayaking and a rock climbing wall. You can also enjoy outdoor concerts in the summer and a Broadway-style show four nights a week.
7. Lake Buena Vista Resort Village & Spa (Orlando, FL): You and your kids will love the pirate-themed pool, complete with a pirate shipwreck, waterfalls and shooting water cannons. For younger children, check out the Sky Kids Club for face painting, pool side fun and arts and crafts activities. A game room with video games and pool tables is great for the whole family.
8. Marriott’s Harbour Lake (Orlando, FL): Yet another family-friendly favorite in Orlando, Harbour Lake has a 22,000 square foot miniature golf course, an on-site water playground, and a pirate-themed pool with water slides. With all these fun activities, you may not even want to step out of the hotel to go to Walt Disney World!
9. Floridays Resort Orlando (Orlando, FL): Enjoy a complimentary shuttle to most major theme parks, including Universal Orlando, SeaWorld and Epcot, or enjoy the outdoor water park or the game room during your stay at this all-suites hotel. You can even enjoy the convenience of GardenGrocer.com and have groceries delivered right to your door.
10. Homewood Suites by Hilton Anaheim-Main Gate (Garden Grove, CA): Located just one mile from Disneyland, this property is ideal for families who want to take in not only Disneyland, but also Knott’s Berry Farm or any of the Orange County Beaches. Enjoy complimentary breakfast every day, as well as free dinner (Mon-Thurs), to help offset some Disney costs.
You can view the full list of 2012 Travelers’ Choice Hotels for Families, which includes the best small hotels in the U.S. for families, as well as the most family-friendly hotels worldwide. Do you have a favorite family hotel or resort? Just let me know in the comments section below.
Photo Credit: Dave & Vicki Bohl
Disclaimer: This post contains one or more affiliate links. However, the views and opinions expressed in this blog post are purely mine.