Increasingly, when it’s time to hit the road, it’s a full family affair. Not just parents and kids, but grandparents too. Where do you go when you have a family structure that includes a mix of ages, interests, physical capabilities and other differences? The easy answer is to head to a multigenerational family resort where you can keep everyone happy.
If you want family vacation ideas that create cherished memories instead of a trip everyone wants to forget, dig deep to find the right destination. This means finding the ideal fit for all family members, including older relatives, children, young adults, adult children, single parents and other members of your extended family. Accounting for the interests and needs of multiple generations is all about finding adaptable destinations with a lot to offer.
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While a lot depends on what matters most to you and your crew, here are a few ideas to get a family discussion going about where to jet next. These large family resorts, family glamping resorts and kid-friendly family resorts in the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean cater to every age group, from grandchildren through the adult generations and older adults. Whether you’re a multigenerational household looking to expand your horizons or are meeting up with people in a destination, these spots offer adventure, relaxation and everything in between.
1. Hyatt Regency Grand Reserve Puerto Rico
Rio Grande, Puerto Rico
Framed against the backdrop of the nation’s only tropical rainforest, the Hyatt Regency Grand Reserve Puerto Rico, with its all-suite bungalow style accommodations, is set on a natural reserve. Parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles can play one of the two 18-hole world-class Tom Kite-designed golf courses, indulge in massages in the full-service spa on property, and lounge on the beach. The teens, tweens, and kids can play in three pools within the resort including Puerto Rico’s largest lagoon-style pool, and explore the floating waterpark off the beach.
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Venture off property and explore the waterfalls in El Yunque National Rainforest only a few miles away. If you’re game, kayak in one of the three bioluminescent bays on the island, zipline, or explore the nearby 18th century fortress Castillo San Cristóbal in San Juan. At Carabalí Rainforest Adventure Park you can ride horses on riverside trails through the rainforest or take ATVs into the foothills. Finish off your days at any of the five on-site culinary eateries while enjoying the sunset.
2. Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo
Guanacaste, Costa Rica
For those who are young or just young-at-heart, the Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo has something for every age. Located along the Peninsula Papagayo, a 1,400-acre outdoor wonderland, the Costa Rican resort offers restorative views of the Pacific Ocean and serves as a jumping-off point for once-in-a-lifetime family travel adventures.
From solo treks to family outings to senior travel adventures, the area is the perfect spot to relax or reconnect with loved ones. After a day spent ziplining, hiking a volcano, surfing, or exploring by electric bike, guests can return to the resort for a dip in one of the four swimming pools or a soothing treatment at the spa. Parents and grandparents can take a little time to unwind while their little ones are cared for and entertained with a multitude of activities, including scavenger hunts, dance classes, guided nature hikes, or snorkeling. All meals for kids under five are complimentary.
3. Kimpton Seafire Resort and Spa
Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
Prepare to be dazzled by aqua water. Step foot on the Seven Mile Beach and you’ll know why this stretch of Grand Cayman has been named one of the best in the world. Kimpton Seafire Resort and Spa makes its home along these famous shores. If relaxation is a priority, the Spa at Seafire has you covered, with thermal mud body treatments, salt of the Caribbean Sea deep relaxation massages, and other ultra-relaxing options. When you’re recharged, choose among every water sport imaginable.
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Beyond the beach, Grand Cayman has more than 200 dive sites, underground caves, a botanical garden, forested trails, museums, and more. When your kids want to do their own thing, drop them off at Camp Seafire, with programs for ages four to eight and nine to 12, and a new theme every day.
4. Bear Camp Wilderness Camp
Chilko Lake, British Columbia
For adventurous families and active seniors with a love of the great outdoors, consider Bear Camp in the Pacific Coast Mountain Range at the juncture of Chilko Lake and the Chilko River. Once a fishing and hunting camp, it’s now a glamping-style tent camp. The main log structure is the gathering point for meals, cocktails and appetizers, and organic snacks.
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Summertime at Bear Camp is all about river rafting, hiking, rafting, biking, fishing, kayaking, canoeing, paddle boarding, horseback riding, and archery. While you can still take advantage of those activities in September and October, the star attraction during those months is seeing the bears. Up the adventure factor by adding a one or two-night stay at the Glacier Camp, where you’ll stay in the wilderness in a safari tent at the foot of a glacier. Rock and ice climb if you dare.
5. Brasada Ranch
Powell Butte, Oregon
The family-friendly Brasada Ranch resort in Central Oregon is situated on nearly 2,000 acres. Multigenerational living arrangements abound: Choose ranch house suites or one of the cabins, complete with living room and kitchen arrangements, to serve as your home away from home.
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There are plenty of dude ranch activities to keep your family busy at Brasada Ranch. For younger children, pony rides are always fun; for everyone else, horseback rides wend through the high desert. Relax in the Athletic Club’s two outdoor pools and spa, and indoor kiddie pool. The Brasada Canyons golf course keeps golf vacation lovers happy.
Kid-oriented activities abound as well. Choose age-appropriate curated activities including astronomy, paint kits, and puzzles. And teens (as well as parents and grandparents) can enjoy strength training, riding a Peloton, and yoga classes at the Athletic Center.
6. The Broadmoor
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Set at the base of the Colorado Rockies is the AAA Five-Diamond Broadmoor. Make the pools a priority; choose from an indoor pool or the heated 11,000-square-foot infinity outdoor pool featuring two water slides and two 14-person whirlpools, plus a kiddie pool.
The big dilemma will be choosing among the 800 rooms on property. Should you go for the Estate House, a Gatsby-style, 12,000, five-bedroom private historic mansion; the brownstones, with their gourmet kitchens and private wine cellars; or the cottages that overlook the East golf course and Cheyenne Mountain? Then there are the wilderness properties—an entire dude ranch, including horses and a lake; luxury cabins with hot tubs at 3,000 feet (Camp Cloud); or the cabins and lodge at the Fly Fishing Camp.
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Spend your days golfing, playing tennis and pickleball, hiking, mountain biking, boating or canoeing, or for something truly memorable, ziplining. The experience includes moderate hiking, walking over a suspension bridge, and making a controlled 180-foot rappel. Aging parents in search of slower speeds can opt for an easy walk with a naturalist or boating on Cheyenne Lake.
No worries if the weather doesn’t cooperate: Play is a restaurant with six bowling lanes plus a host of games including shuffleboard, a pool table, foosball, Xbox, PlayStation, and Wii. The Broadmoor also has its own movie theater. When adults want grown-up time, the Broadmoor’s Bee Bunch entertains kids three to seven, and Mason Bees offers kids eight to 12 activities including arts and crafts, games, movies, falconry, storytelling, outdoor recreation, educational activities, and even field trips to Cheyenne Zoo. Half-day, full-day, and evening kids camps are available daily.
7. The Whiteface Lodge
Lake Placid, New York
The welcoming Whiteface Lodge is tucked into the woodlands above Lake Placid. The lakefront, all-suite, AAA Four Diamond resort is a showcase for handcrafted Adirondack-style and luxury. Close to hiking, skiing, and some of the best family vacation spots in the U.S., it’s ideal for outdoorsy families looking for a mountain retreat. Family-friendly complimentary amenities include a 56-seat movie theater, game room with a two-lane bowling alley, fishing pond, nightly s’mores, and ice-skating rink. And the resort’s complimentary children’s club, Kamp Kanu, is open seven days a week during the summer for children ages three to 10.
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While little ones are doing educational activities such as science experiments and arts and crafts, parents can dine at KANU, toast craft cocktails at Peak 47, or enjoy whiskey and bourbon flights accompanied by a cigar at one of its two open-air lean-tos equipped with concierge service. Or, they can chill at the award-winning Spa at Whiteface Lodge.
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