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15 Ideas For Your Family’s Vacation Wish List

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What will next year’s family vacation be for you? Another week at the beach? A first trip to Disney? Heading home to the family? How about something more exotic?

Family vacations can–and should–be about experiencing new things with your kids and having adventures together.

Even if you don’t have the trip of a lifetime coming up, it can be fun to talk about dream about the destinations and activities that would be on each family member’s wish list for a future vacation. Maybe there’s one that all of you are willing to save up for!

Here are 15 truly inspiring destinations and activities to give you some ideas. We start far away in Australia, go around the world, and work out way back the to U.S.

Which ones would top your family’s list of vacation ideas?

15 Amazing Family Vacation Ideas

Australia

1. Swim in a Pink Lake, Western Australia

Hillier Lake in Australia is beautiful, serene and calming, surrounded by lush green vegetation with the ocean nearby. It’s also pink!

Tourists come from near and far to float and bob in this salt lake, located on Middle Island, off the country’s soutwest coast.

swim in a pink lake in Australia

The secret? A special algae makes the water pink, even in a container.

Read more: Visit Senegal’s pink lake, too

Africa

 2. Breakfast with Giraffes, Kenya

Giraffes are stunning creatures, not only because of their long legs and protruding necks, but because they’re gentle and surprisingly graceful mammals.

In Kenya, you can practically have breakfast with them as they stick their necks through the windows of the Manor House (top). It makes for an utterly unique and fascinating experience– and an epic photo!

Your kids will make an intimate connection with these animals, even as they try to steal your breakfast.

Read more: What to expect on a safari.

Check with the U.S. State Department’s Kenya brief before traveling here with kids, though.

 3. Trekking with Gorillas, Uganda

There are only 800 mountain gorillas left in the world. They’re rare and endangered due to poaching.

Uganda mountain gorillas are gentle, fascinating and endangered

You and your kids can observe them and learn on how to protect them on a spectacular walking adventure with the Gorillas in Uganda.

Asia

 4. See the Cherry Blossoms in Kyoto, Japan

The beautiful cherry blossom flowers cover Japan in spring turning places like Kyoto into a pink fairyland The cherry-blossoms are deeply symbolic to the Japanese, representing the beauty of life and new beginnings of spring.

the cherry blossoms in Kyoto are spectacular

The lessons of cherry blossoms: Life is beautiful, fragile and short lived, so slow down once in a while to look around and enjoy it.

Read more: What to do with kids in Kyoto
5 Small Japanese Cities to Visit With Kids

 5. Visit Hindu Temples, the Indian Himalayas

The Himalayas are vast, straddling 1,500 miles across India, Pakistan, China, Bhutan and Nepal.

A Hindu Temple sits on the roof of the world in India

The Indian Himalayas hide a series of remote and startling Hindu Temples, open to anyone willing to make the trek to the roof of the world.

6. Walk on Diamond Beach, the Maldives

Firstly, the Maldives are absolutely exquisite, the definition of paradise, with crystal clear waters and pristine beaches.

Water sparkles like diamonds on the Maldives

But the most impressive is Diamond beach, where the water glistens at night with bioluminescent plankton. It can look as though it has thousand of diamonds floating ont eh surface.

Your kids will think it’s magic but you can tell them it’s something even better: Nature!

Europe

7. Hot Air Ballooning, Turkey

Picture hundreds of multi-coloured hot air balloons floating in the sky above an enchanting town built into solid rock.

It sounds outer-worldly, but you can experience this magnificent sight in Cappadocia, central Turkey.

Up and Away in a beautiful balloon in Cappadocia

The prettiest times of the day are sunrise and sunset.

Hot air ballooning is nothing like other means of flying; even people exceptionally afraid of heights enjoy it.

But if you prefer to stay earthbound you can enjoy a rooftop picnic that allows you to look up at the balloons and down at the town.

 8. Husky Sledding, Finland

If your family doesn’t mind the cold, husky sledding can provide an extraordinary ride through a breathtaking winter wonderland.

What better way to see the snow-filled Finnish country side than being pulled on a sled!

The best way to see Lapland is on the back of a dog sled.

The sledding happens in Lapland—pretty close to the north pole, and only from January to May.

Plan ahead: Choose the warmest clothes from our top parent recommendations
• Download our winter vacation packing list

 9. Witnessing the Northern Lights, from an Igloo, Finland

Finland is the only country to appear twice on the list.

After your sledding, maybe you’ll be lucky enough to experience the Northern Lights, a natural phenomenon of greens, blues, pinks and reds dancing in the sky with an electric glow.

The best time to see them is in winter, also the best time for sledding.

A snug way to see the Northern Lights, in a glass igloo in Finland

And one of the coolest ways to do it is by staying in a glass igloo.

You and your kids can cuddle in bed while staring up at the colourful swirls in the sky. Pure perfection!

If you asked me which of these 15 spots are top of my bucket list, I’d say this one. Absolutely!

 10. Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Iceland is one of the most breathtaking places in the world, filled with waterfalls, glaciers, mountain ranges and natural warm-water lagoons.

the Blue Lagoon is fun for all ages

The most famous of its geothermal spas, the blue lagoon is also the biggest. There is room for young and old in this pool that’s surrounded by eerie volcanic landscape.

It’s close to Keflavik airport. So the next time you fly IcelandAir schedule a few-hours layover to work out those airplane kinks.

Read more: Plan a Babymoon in Iceland.

 11. Visit StoneHenge in the U.K.

Mysterious Stonehenge often tops of the list of history enthusiasts. The prehistoric monument dates back to 3100 BC and we still have not unlocked most of its secrets.

Stonehenge is on a lot of bucket lists

Visit on a day trip from London to decide how you think it got there and what it was for.

Bring a zoom lens and don’t plan to get up close with the stones; ropes now keep tourists at a safe distance from the stones.

Read more:  20 Things to Do in London With Every Age Kid

 12. Kayak through the grottos of croatia

Croatia is full of hidden gems, which is why it’s fast the rise as a popular European destination. One experience that stands out even her is kayaking through the underground turquoise waters of the Blue Grotto.

A different way to Kayak in Croatia -- underground

It’s an unique and captivating journey that you won’t easily find anywhere else in the world!

Best dress in water-resistant layers, it can be chilly down there.

South America

13. Experience the Rio Carnival in Brazil

Carnival in Rio De Janeiro is the biggest and most popular pre-Lenten celebration in the world.

Carnival can be a blast for families with older kids

It’s an exhilarating street show that features overwhelmingly large man-made floats, women dressed in their most glamorous, glitzy dance attire, and lots of samba music.

Thousands of people turn out to watch, cheer, dance and sing along. It might be overwhelming for young children but for you are and your teens it can be an awe-inspiring experience.

14. Iguazu Falls in Argentina

No, it’s not Niagara.

For the nature lovers, Iguazu Falls in Argentina and Brazil can be a magical experience.

Iguazu Falls is a natural wonder that spans two countries

The largest waterfall system in the world, Iguazu is made up of 275 falls that span two countries.

You can experience the falls from the sky by helicopter, from various lookout points, or from below by speedboat.

This bucket list experience shows your family the power and beauty of nature.

United States

 15. Snorkel with Turtles in Hawaii

You can snorkel in crystal clear water with some of the rarest marine life on earth without leaving the U.S. On Oahu and Maui families can take snorkel trips to bays and coastal areas where turtles make their home.

Nothing gets kids as excited on a snorkel tour as seeing these impressive shelled creatures swimming by. Your kids will want to take one home, but it’s best to take a good long look and leave them undisturbed.

Plan Ahead: Download and print our Beach Packing List

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