Earlier this year, I bought the book “500 Places to Take Your Kids Before They Grow Up,” and I pick it up every few days to read about different trips on the pages I’ve marked. Already I’m planning some of these trips in my head, but on this delightful Mother’s Day I know I’ll be dreaming about a few of the more exciting family trips. Here are my top-five dream spots to go with my family.
- Dude Ranches in Wyoming: Now I don’t think that my youngest kids are old enough, but there’s just something about a dude ranch trip that seems like so much fun to me. Log cabins, horseback riding, nature hikes and square dances in western Wyoming with views of the mountains. Heaven. Two ranches worth checking out include: Triangle X Ranch and R Lazy S Ranch.
- Great Puffins in Iceland: From April to August, eight to ten million puffins nest in the rugged, volcanic region of Iceland. By August, baby puffins are ready to fly on their own, but not without some troubles. The children and visitors to Heimaey Island rescue those who endure crash landings in the night, and then get them back into the sky. Several boat tours around Heimaey Island allow you and your family to study the puffin-inhabited cliffs.
- Sea Turtles in Costa Rica: The top turtle-nesting beach is Tortuguero and visitors can take in two- and four-hour nighttime visits to the beach to see the sea turtles. March through May you can see the giant leatherback turtle on the beaches. July through October you can see the endangered green turtles during their prime nesting period. You can read a post here from The Vacation Gals about volunteer vacations to save sea turtles in Costa Rica.
- Snorkeling in the Grand Caymans: Not only are the Grand Caymans an amazing place for snorkeling, but a stop at Stingray City is a must for your kids to pet and feed stingrays in the water. Popular snorkeling spots with clear warm waters and lush reefs include Cemetery Reef and Smith Cove.
- Walled Mayan Cities in Mexico: The fortress city, Tulum, is supposed to be the best of all the Mayan ruins. You’ll see incredible views over the sea, plus intriguing carvings and temples. You and your family can then float down the river at the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve or tromp through the jungle for bird-watching. Just two hours from Cancun, you can even make it a day trip.
What’s on your list of top places you’d like to take your family? I’d love to hear about your dream vacations and family getaways.