Around 40% of families in the U.S. plan on taking a family vacation this year. They are a fantastic opportunity to spend quality time with loved ones, experience a new culture, and take a break from everyday life.
But it can be a lot harder than you think to plan fun things to do on vacation. Everyone has different interests. And, it can be quite time-consuming and overwhelming to research the best things to do on individual trips.
Lucky for you, there are family activities you can do on every vacation to ensure you will all have fun on vacation and that it’s a memorable experience.
Here are some unique vacation ideas you can do on every trip, no matter where you are going!
1. Take a Cultural Tour
One of the most fun things to do on vacation, any vacation, is to learn more about the local culture. You can do this by booking an organized tour with a knowledgeable local so you don’t have to do the research yourself.
Here are some great cultural tours you can take in almost every city or vacation town:
- Walking tour
- Historic tour
- Food tour or cooking class
- Street art tour
- Architecture tour
Some places have tours that are unique to their city. For example, New Orleans and Edinburgh in Scotland are famous for ghost tours.
2. Book an Escape Room
Even if you book your summer vacation in a destination where the sun is always shining, a rainy day could strike at any time. How do you entertain the kids when you can’t go down to the lake or the beach? Well, you could try an escape room experience instead.
They are puzzle rooms where everyone needs to work together to crack the codes in a certain amount of time before the clock runs out. You can find escape rooms in varying levels of difficulty and many are family-friendly.
Here are some of the best family-friendly escape rooms around the US including The Great Escape Room Chicago:
- The Escape Room Indianapolis
- Smoky Mountain Escape Games
- Tri-Cities Escape Game
Most major cities have an escape room so you are bound to find one close by wherever you are.
3. Hire a Vacation Photographer
Do you and your family or your partner struggle to get great photos with everyone in them looking the right way and smiling? Do the photos you ask strangers to take always look blurry and have their thumb in the shot?
Invest in hiring a vacation photographer through Flytographer or Airbnb Experiences. They will be able to suggest great photo spots thanks to their local knowledge. Most of the time, these photoshoots are natural and only last 90 minutes.
4. See the Great Outdoors
If you are going camping or heading out into the countryside, there is so much you can do and explore. Spend your days taking hikes and trying out different sports like sailing or cycling.
Heading into a city? They likely have city parks, so you could bring a frisbee along and spend an afternoon playing as a family while enjoying the local scenery. Many cities like Barcelona and Montreal have hills within city limits so you can get some exercise without even needing to gas up the rental car.
5. Sample the Local Culinary Scene
Eating amazing food is one of the best parts of any vacation. Even if you are traveling within the US, everywhere has its own signature dishes.
For example, you couldn’t visit New York without sampling New York-style cheesecake or hotdogs. You wouldn’t go to Chicago without tasting deep dish pizza and you’d be mad to not eat gumbo in Louisiana.
And you don’t need to research great places to eat in your vacation destination ahead of time. Turn off the main roads and tourist strips and head down the side streets and away from the places that cater to tourists.
There, you will likely find authentic, local restaurants serving great food at a fraction of the prices.
6. Buy Souvenirs and Shop at the Markets
Buying souvenirs is a fantastic way to take a piece of your vacation home with you. You could buy a landscape print or ornament from the place you visited and every time you see it, it will remind you of the great time you had on vacation.
Not a fan of nick nacks or clutter? No problem! Head to an independent store or local craft market and pick up something useful.
Then whenever you wear the t-shirt, pair of earrings, or drink from your mug, it will also remind you of what a great time you had. Plus, you will be supporting the local businesses in the place you traveled to.
7. Create a Fun Postcard Vacation Journal
This is a fun activity you can do as a whole family to remember what an amazing time you had on vacation. Buy a stack of postcards at a local gift shop or tourist attraction and make sure you have at least one for each day of your trip.
At the end of each day, write about what fun things you got up to that day and mail them to yourself. Or, you can keep them and take them home with you.
Hole punch the corner of each postcard and thread a piece of string to attach them together. You could take it in turns to write about your say or you could all write one or two sentences on each card.
Now, you have a cool travel journal with memories and photos of the places you visited on your trip!
Try These Fun Things to Do on Vacation on Your Next Outing
Every family and vacation is different. And every destination offers its own cultural tourist attractions and unique places to explore. But if you ever get stuck on what to do next, these fun things to do on vacation will give you the inspiration you need to keep the good times going.
Want to learn more fun lifestyle tips to improve your vacations and daily life? Browse the rest of our website for tons of helpful advice and useful guides!
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