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Going on vacation with kids under the age of 10 can be a huge challenge. It can be hard to plan activities around sleep times, find places to eat that kids will like, and find places to stay that won’t break the bank.
But traveling with your little one can also be the best family vacation, since it gives you the chance to see new things and spend a lot of time with your family.
Check out the best places for kids under 10 to go on vacation.
1. LEGOLAND Florida
LEGOLAND is for kids ages 2 to 12 and has parks in Florida, California, and soon New York. Here, the roller coasters are just a little bit less scary than at other big-name parks. This is great for kids who are new to thrill rides or take a while to get used to them.
At LEGOLAND, you can enjoy rides, shows, and, of course, amazing landscapes made out of LEGO bricks. Bring your minifigs to trade with park workers, and if you want to have even more fun, stay at a LEGOLAND hotel with a theme.
Masters of Flight, Unikitty’s Disco Drop, and Battle of Bricksburg are the newest rides at LEGO Movie World. They are all based on popular movies from the past few years (a water blasting battle).
2. Venice and Sarasota in Florida
Many families go to Florida for Disney World, but if you go to the West Coast, you can find some other great places for families to visit. Venice and Sarasota are great places for families to go if they want quieter beach time, maybe after a busy day at Disney. There are a lot of beaches, family-friendly restaurants, and other things to do here. Siesta Key Beach in Sarasota is often on lists of the best beaches.
We love going back to the Mote Aquarium in Sarasota, which has a working research lab and an animal rehabilitation center. Here, you can get close to the animals in the area and pet baby sharks and stingrays or say hi to Hugh and Buffett, the two manatees who live there.
Keep an eye out for tiny black triangles in the sand on the beaches near Venice, which is known as the “Shark Tooth Capital of the World.” These are fossilized shark teeth.
3. Vienna in Austria
In addition to having a lot of historical and artistic treasures, many European cities are also very family-friendly, and Vienna is no exception.
We loved taking our kids to the mile-long Night Market (Naschmarkt) and stopping to try ice creams along the way. Schonbrunn Palace is a summer palace for the Habsburg family. It has guided tours for children and a Children’s Museum and a demonstration of how strudel is made right on site. In the gardens, kids can also run around in a Baroque maze that was made to look like the one that was there in 1720.
One of the best parts of a trip to Vienna is the Prater amusement park, which has a Rollercoaster Restaurant. This is a robot-run restaurant where food and drinks are brought to you on roller coaster tracks.
If you can make the trip, take your kids to the Kinderhotel Almhof for a special time. There are kids’ clubs and activities like ski lessons right there.
4. Chicago in Illinois
The city Chicago, in the Midwest is known for its glitz and glam on the Magnificent Mile, but it also has a lot of family-friendly activities.
Plan time for the big attractions, like the Shedd Aquarium, which has 5 million gallons of tanks with interesting animals, and the Field Museum of Natural History, which has the world’s largest T-Rex, SUE. While your kids run around and play, you can check out the interesting public art at Millennium Park.
Take a walk along Navy Pier to see Chicago’s Lake Michigan shoreline and maybe ride the Ferris wheel or a tour boat. Baseball fans can watch a game at Wrigley Field, and those who like to live on the edge can look out over the city from 1,353 feet up on the Skydeck of the Willis Tower. When you add a Chicago dog or deep-dish pizza to all that fun, you have the perfect place for a family vacation.
5. Frisco in Texas
Frisco is a great place for families with kids who love sports or video games because it is home to the Dallas Cowboys, headquarters and practice field at The Star, as well as the National Soccer Hall of Fame and the National Videogame Museum, both of which just opened.
Late in 2019, KidZania, an international interactive theme park for kids, opened in Frisco. This made it the first city in the United States to have it. KidZania is basically a city where all of the jobs are done by kids. Kids can learn to be a doctor, pilot, veterinarian, banker, or window washer and earn KidZos along the way.
During the summer, you can watch a Frisco RoughRiders game at Dr. Pepper Ballpark, where you can float on a lazy river near the outfield.
6. Victoria in British Columbia / Canada
Victoria, which is on Vancouver Island, is full of beautiful gardens and green spaces. Fisherman’s Wharf is one of our favorite places to walk around with our kids. There, you can look at the colorful little waterfront homes, get some fresh seafood, say hi to the harbor seals, and take a water taxi (big fun for young kids). On certain dates, the water taxis even put on a free “water ballet.”
Victoria’s Chinatown is the second oldest in North America. Fan Tan Alley is a great place to eat noodles and do some shopping (the narrowest street in Canada).
Do you have a young person who is interested in insects? You can see live bugs from all over the world in tanks at the Victoria Bug Zoo. You can also go to the Royal British Columbia Museum, which has exhibits that are both interesting and fun and cover 550 million years of natural history.
7. Portland in Oregon
Portland is a great place to go with your family if you want to hike and do other outdoor activities in the fresh air, but you also want the conveniences of a big city and a laid-back vibe. Around Mt. Hood, there are many hiking trails for people of all sizes. Stop at a ranger station to find out which trails to take.
Skibowl has a lot of outdoor fun in the summer, like ziplining and mountain coasters. In other parts of Portland, public parks and playgrounds smell like pine and have lots of open space for kids to run around.
Walk around downtown and stop at places like Powell’s Books and Voodoo Donuts, as well as the many family-friendly craft breweries.
8. Albuquerque in New Mexico
Albuquerque is probably best known for its annual Balloon Fiesta in the fall, but there are lots of family-friendly things to do all year round. During the winter, you can take your kids to any of New Mexico‘s ski areas for lessons, sledding, and other fun things to do in the snow that are just for them. The Petroglyph National Monument is another great thing to see. It is one of the largest petroglyph sites in North America, with carvings that date back between four and seven hundred years.
There are three pools and a waterslide at the Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort, as well as horseback riding and cultural activities like making bread, adobe bricks, and leather stamps. At this resort, which is owned by the Santa Ana Pueblo, you can try bread straight from the pueblo oven every day and see dance shows and hear stories under the stars every Friday.