No one needs to be reminded of how precious the fleeting moments of family vacations are. Those characteristically sultry days that just seem to whiz by year after year are critical to promoting healthy family culture. Subsequently, vacation planners everywhere take their best shots each summer to make the time with their families as memorable and impactful as possible. Here are some ideas for mapping out unforgettable vacation activities that could very easily become annual family traditions.
Breathtaking Outdoor Adventures
Aspen, Colorado will always be known for its first-class ski resorts, but the surrounding natural environment also lends itself to some great summertime fun. Since it is normally a good idea to survey a region’s landscape before exploring it in-depth, Aspen visitors have the option of taking off on one of the city’s spectacular hot air balloon rides. A typical tour of the stunning mountainous region begins at dawn and ends with a congratulatory champagne or sparkling cider brunch where participants receive official flight certificates as souvenirs. From above, tour guides can point out the best trails and scenic areas for days of biking, horseback riding and kayaking.
Yellowstone National Park is home to numerous species of mammals, amphibians, reptiles and birds. Park visits are ideal for families with children of all ages who are curious about the natural environment and its inhabitants. Besides the self-guided park activities, children can participate in special initiatives that are led by park rangers like the ranger adventure hikes, young scientist program and junior ranger program. All park events promote critical thinking skills, problem solving abilities and a respect for the environment.
Journeys in Experiential Learning
It’s generally true that many Parisians forsake the City of Light during the summer in favor of cooler climes near France’s Mediterranean coast. The warm-weather months offer Paris visitors rare windows of opportunity to explore the city’s famed design district without being crushed by crowds. Budding fashion and interior designers happily find that tours of textile boutiques can lead them all over the fascinating city. Families that want to get the most out of their haute-couture adventures book tours with knowledgeable guides (1) who are often design students at the local universities.
Everybody benefits from a household of skilled cooks, and families that choose to vacation in the lovely Riviera Maya region can imbibe in the area’s fresh produce while learning to make authentic Mexican cuisine. After playing and relaxing at one of the district’s famed beach resorts, many visitors report to the International Kitchen’s Riviera Maya cooking school campus (2) for four days of culinary cultural immersion into Mexico’s past and present.
Lend a Helping Hand
Taking a volunteer vacation is one way for families to reinforce their values relating to citizenship, social responsibility, environmental stewardship and compassion. Volunteers to Kilimanjaro in Tanzania (3) can personally interact with children orphaned by the AIDS epidemic. Those who choose assignments in Cartago, Costa Rica (4) can bring joy to the city’s often-marginalized elderly population through lunch visitation programs. Both of these regions offer first-class tourism activities in addition to opportunities to make a difference in the lives of the people who live in those areas.
Modes of modern travel put the world at the fingertips of adventurous vacationers. Families that strive to produce members who are imaginative and inquisitive thinkers have nearly limitless vacation possibilities.