What's your favorite beach getaway in the Golden State? Over the coming months, we'll be highlighting dozens of our favorite kid-friendly beach destinations around the country and beyond.
We're continuing our series with California, whose celebrated coastline offers an abundance of family-friendly beach towns. Here's a starter list of fabulously kid-friendly beach towns--with many more to come, so watch this space:
Got kids? Like family vacations? While you probably don't visit About.com Family Vacations every day, there are easy ways to make sure you never miss a getaway idea, piece of family vacation advice, or a terrific getaway deal:
- Sign up for my free weekly family vacations newsletter and you'll get a recap of the week's top stories in your inbox.
- Follow About.com Family Vacations on Facebook.
- Follow my family travel boards on Pinterest for tons of getaway inspiration.
- Follow me on Twitter.
- Follow me on Google+ and join my family vacations community.
Will the hurricane season of 2014 be quieter than normal or unusually active? It seems to depend on whom you ask. Experts have started issuing predictions for the coming hurricane season. While some say that 2014 will bring fewer hurricanes than normal, at least one pundit is predicting a busier-than-normal season. The bad news: That pessimistic forecast comes from the only expert to get it right last year.
I'll be keeping you posted on predictions for the 2014 hurricane season, so watch this space. The National Hurricane Center will weigh in next month.
Where does your family love to get your fill of beach time? Over the coming months, we'll be highlighting dozens of our favorite kid-friendly beach destinations around the country and beyond.
We're continuing our series on the glorious Gulf Coast, known for its sugary beaches and sparkling turquoise waters. Here's a starter list of fabulously kid-friendly beach towns--with many more to come, so watch this space:
Does your family have a go-to beach or are you open to some fresh ideas? Over the coming months, we'll be highlighting dozens of our favorite family beach destinations around the country and beyond.
We're kicking off our series in the sunny Southeast, home to a dazzling array of awesome possibilities from the Carolinas to the tip of Florida and up the Gulf Coast. Here's a starter list of wonderfully kid-friendly beach towns--with many more to come, so watch this space:
Feel like taking a road trip this weekend? Death Valley is looking stunning these days, thanks to a wildflower bloom that's more vibrant than usual. The National Park Service reports that California's desert park is reminiscent of a Monet painting, with shades of gold, pink, purple, orange and white dotting the landscape. According to the NPS's Wildflower Update, the bloom is a result of rainfall in the higher elevations of the park, znd the Park Service is predicting the colorful show will continue through the summer.
Want more inspiration for where to hit the road? Check out 7 Spectacular Spring Drives with Kids.
Looking for an affordable family beach destination? I just returned from four gorgeous days in Daytona Beach, a laid-back Florida beach town that became famous as the party backdrop for "MTV Spring Break."
Twenty-five years since the series left Daytona, the college spring breakers are long gone. They've been replaced by happy families who come to enjoy an impressive number of ways to have affordable fun, from zip lining in Tuscawilla Park to stand-up paddleboarding on the Halifax River to building sandcastles on the "world's most famous beach." The perfect spot on that beach just may be Sun Splash Park, a public space with a shady playground, splashpad, interactive fountain, picnic tables and--gasp!--even free parking.
In nearby Ponce Inlet, you can climb 203 steps to the top of the historic Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse and visit the seat turtle hospital at the Marine Science Center. For a family of four, admission to both attractions costs less than $30.
For more on this budget-friendly beach town, check out my Daytona Beach vacation planning guide:
Are your kids obsessed with Olaf the Snowman? Does your whole family know every word to "Let it Go" (like these firefighters who calmed a scared little girl by belting out the song with her)? Then you, like millions of other families, have been (frost)bitten by the Oscar-winning animated film. Here are three ways to get "Frozen" on your next Disney vacation:
- Enter the "Frozen" Adventure Sweepstakes for a chance to win an eight-day trip to Norway with Adventures by Disney. The itinerary lets you bask in the backdrop that inspired Arendelle in true Disney style.
- Disney Cruise Line will be offering sailings to Norway in 2015.
- Here's where to meet Elsa and Anna at Disney World.
We've become used to cruise ships launching with an ever-more-exciting array of bells and whistles, and yet it's hard not to be impressed by Royal Caribbean's Quantum of the Seas. Set to launch in November, the newest ship in RCI's fleet is positively packed to the gills with "first at sea" experiences that will wow families, from the flexible stateroom configurations to lineup of incredible experiences and stunning spaces. Here's a sneak peek at what all the fuss is about.
Good news for families planning a visit to DC: The scaffolding surrounding the Washington Monument will be coming down this week in preparation for the Monument's re-opening on May 12. The Monument has been closed since August 23, 2011, due to damage received in a 5.8 magnitude earthquake. It is now in the final stages of the restoration, which included repairs to more than 150 cracks in the structure.
Tickets for tours will be available on the NPS reservation page starting on April 16 at 10 am. The Monument will be open starting May 12 from 9 am until 10 pm until the end of summer.
More Planning Resources for DC and the Chesapeake Bay Area: