Family Vacations


What is your vacation style?
Does your style match the style of your spouse and other family members?

I enjoy relaxed vacations with touches of class. I want to stay at a nice hotel in a beautiful area, read by the pool, eat good food at charming restaurants, tour museums and gardens, and shop. I also enjoy a day or two at theme parks.

My husband loves active vacations, with boating, skiing, hiking, biking and other adventures. He shops *before *vacation for sporting equipment related to the trip. He wants to shop ahead for groceries as he prefers it if the place we stay comes with kitchen facilities. He doesn’t like theme parks.

Our kids? Pools–great. Theme parks appreciated. Fast food restaurants preferred; sit down restaurants not as much–some don’t like to wait for food. Various levels of acceptance of sporting activities and they tire out at different rates. Youngest who ride in backpacks or in bike trailers when we’re on adventures usually ready for activity once the rest of us are tired. Nice shops and museums that mom likes–not as popular. Cheap souvenir shops–good.

I’m curious about other people’s family vacation styles. If you have different styles, how do you accomodate them?


my wife would prefer to stay at nice places and hang out at the pool with just a bit of site seeing and with no prior plans for what we are going to see while there.

i on the other hand would rather rough it at the best western and plan 12 hour trips of site seeing and museums and go go go go.

see as much of the important stuff as possible where we are at cause we might not ever go back.

in fact we just got back from a 2 week vacation sort of like this.

neither of us really care for amusement type vacations or outdoor type stuff except for hiking though, i WILL do some thrill rides but wont make a day of it.


We are very rare with vacations, our last was to NYC. :slight_smile:

Good time was had by all, not a theme park or swimming pool in sight. Just soaking up the city.


My brother and I are both grown and have families of our own now. We all rent a beach house on the ocean and it is understood that we all have different styles.

Mom LOVES the beach and she is up and on the beach very early in the morning. My sister in law is the same way - so she and mom hit the beach while the rest of us sleep in.

My brother and I both work a lot - so not having to go to work or check emails and return phone calls is vacation enough for us. We are content sleeping in and veg’ing on the couch. We try to do minimal planning, but we know there will be at least one outing to the mall or something. There is also a water park near by that we hit. But we all enjoy the relaxed nature of it all.

We bring what we can from home food wise (dont want to pay resort prices) and each adult has to take a night to cook. Mom and Dad always get the first two nights. They do burgers and dogs and BBQ so the left overs become lunch the rest of the week. But you cook and clean on your night to cook, so you really only have to be in the kitchen one night. Left overs become lunch and we go out to a nice restaurant one night while we are there.

We do look for different and fun stuff to do each year - this year it was the ghost walk, one year it was a dinner cruise. But the biggest thing is, we know going in that we are all different. Mom cant fuss at us if we sleep to noon, we dont fuss at her for being up at o’dark thirty.

It’s a great time every year.


We are ecclectic when it comes to vacations.

We try to take the kids into consideration, but that always can’t be a factor.

This year, we are having a stay-cation, unless we get the rest of our act together and go to Missouri and Southern Illinois. We will take the train into the City and see different things. We will eat what and where we can afford to do so.


Stay-cation–I like it. :thumbsup: I assume no packing required. The packing and unpacking (ontop of all the other activities and dealing with young children in what usually ends up being less that child-proofed environments) leaves me so exhausted that I often feel I need a vacation after our vacation!


I hate travel, but love new places. I don’t like hotels/motels, because I can’t get past the “gross” factor. I like to swim, but not in pools (chemicals make my skin itch), oceans, or lakes (too many living things). Pretty much just leaves rocky-bottomed rivers with a current fast enough to flush out all the snakes and fish. If my house could grow chicken legs and walk to our vacation spot, and I could have MY bed, MY towels, MY linens, MY stuff, all in a new place to explore, it would be great.

That said, we’re mostly a family of campers. Hiking, swimming, biking, etc.

Actually, reading over my insane list of likes/don’t likes, I realize, once again, how blessed I am to have found my husband, who thinks my personality ticks are “amusing”.


This is our first year taking a “Family vacation”. We’ve been married for 2 years and don’t have any kids yet, though. :slight_smile: We’re going camping with some friends of ours for 4 days. I’m really excited. We’re pretty simple people, we don’t need much and we love nature, so it’ll be perfect for us.

Next year we plan on taking a full week with just us. I’m also anxious for that!



never knew there was a name for what we do EVERY year, lol. Hubby and I have had one official vacation, our honeymoon. We blew alot of money to go to Florida and were paying off some debt for quite awhile after that but I’m sure glad we went! My parents never did go on a honeymoon and have never been able to afford a vacation so I didn’t want to end up like that. At least we’ve had one good one.

Our next major trip is going to be to Montreal to see hubby’s family. We are going to wait until Lily is old enough to manage away from home. I am thinking 4 will be a good age, but only time will tell. I want her to be able to remember meeting that side of the family, have fun in the swimming pool, and enjoy the amusement park they have there (La Ronde). And I have only been to Montreal once but it was in the winter so I’d love to go back in the summer and exprience what I missed the first time around.

As for styles, since hubby and I don’t go anywhere I’m not really sure, lol. But our interests are similar (except that he LOVES scuba diving and I’ve never tried and don’t really want to, lol)… but we both like nature (mountains, oceans, hiking, horsebackriding etc) and we both like some planning mixed with lots of leisure. Neither of us are big shoppers.

But the one area we differ is that he would be satisfied with a tent and I’d like a cabin, lol. I can do as much outdoorsy stuff during the day as the next person but I want a comfy bed and a hot shower to come back to at night! Not to mention INDOOR plumbing:thumbsup:**


A cruise is a fabulous way to intergrate different types of interest. There is travelling and activities that can be done on a ship. My husband and I went on a cruise. He like to do historical sites and scubba diving. I like the movies and karaoke. It was a fabulous time. They even have children activities. If affordable, we would like to take our children on a cruise with us every 5 years.


We go to the National Parks to enjoy the beauty & nature.

Generally not too much pre-planned since we mostly hike and view wildlife. We identify the trails we may want to hike prior to our arrival and take them one at a time.

No amusement parks and no beaches.


It’s feast or famine at our house!

When the kids were young, we went to the Finger Lakes region of NY, since we had relatives there w/ a cabin. We couldn’t afford more.

In 2003/ 2004 we saved up for a family trip to London and Rome. The kids were older and getting close to leaving home; we wanted to do something BIG before they left. That was our last big vacation.

I like to schedule some things on a trip, but also leave time to just hang out, go for ice cream etc.


we always did one family vacation each year, and then each of us took separate trips to our own parents with the kids, and at least a long weekend alone or with friends. I grew up camping and that is always my ideal family vacation, but DH hates it. Kids did not care as long as we were someplace with a pool and please “a slide in the water, Daddy”. Theme parks were outside our budget as a destination but there are at least 3 in Ohio so we managed one a year, usually the local one (Geauga Lake, now closed after a brief stint under 6 flags management).

We usually planned a sight-seeing driving circle tour --around lake Ontario or another great Lake, a nearby state-PA, Ill-Wis, Washington DC & no. VA, KY-mammoth caves and environs, Tenn-Smokeys, Gatlinburg etc., Myrtle Beach, Niagara Falls, NC
with stops at motels (usually no-name, off the interstate on the US route through the town, cheaper, more fun).

we made at least one stop at a historical site, usually a Civil War battlefield, leading to that famous complaint “Mom, is this going to be historical?” or history musuems, especially living history exhibites like colonial settlements, 19th c farms etc. That was my profession and avocation so I insisted. Old bookstores were always a feature, and golf for DH. ONe “kiddie” type attraction (Gatlinburg is great for that stuff) but ALWAYS a waterpark with a water slide (mom stayed dry thank you very much but kids and dad loved it).

our couples trips usually involved business in some way, but also made room for golf for him, historical sites and bookstores for me

DD goes on family vacations with all her in-laws where they rent cabins at some resort that has kid stuff, pools, golf for the men, shopping for the women (these people are huge outlet and flea market shoppers), kid stuff.

now we have a one-week get-together with the girls and their families at a central location family outdoor resort type place. We have a reunion of sorts and Christmas-in-July where we do the b-day and gift thing for the whole year as a gift exchange, games, mapquests, puzzles, mini golf tournaments, and all the typical resort activities. We did a destination vac once with all of us to Orlando, but I have no desire to do it again.

my ideal vacation? fly to an exotic spot of historical and/or literary interest, see the sights on a tour, come back on my own to places that interest me, browse old bookstores, and any kind of boat trip, excursion or tour on a river or lake. happy hour with margaritas by the pool is a definite plus

so we will be in Mohican country in central Ohio at the end of the month with all our kids and grandkids for a week, outdoor resorts in adjoining cabins (think luxury condo with log exterior), golf, canoing, kayaking, tubing, fishing, riding, pools, state parks, hiking, all outdoor stuff you can think of in a gorgeous location. I will be babysitting with the infant, others are old enough to run in packs.


LOL. We just got back from spending time with my in-laws at their cabin. That’s why I need a vacation! :wink: I like PuzzleAnnie’s idea of separate trips to visit one’s own parents.


Yes, I enjoy that, and state park too. Camping at those is a great family vacation as many suggested. (While I like nice hotels, it’s very difficult to find affordable accomodations for my whole family.) National and state parks usually have some sort of water or beaches for swimming, such as rivers, oceans, lakes and streams. I also enjoy taking walks and hikes and seeing plants in their natural setting. I wrote in the op that I like touring gardens, and God’s gardens as found in nature are most spectacular.

Some out-of-state relatives will visit us next month, and I want to show them a state park that’s a couple hours from us. Our family took a couple vacations there in the past, and I really enjoy it there. My husband did too, but when I suggested going there again, he complained that we’ve been there several times already. Yep, it’s hard to please everyone.


My husband seems to think that every other month one needs a vacation. His idea of vacation is a LONG distance from home, as far as you can get with the time alloted, and then a physical endurance test with either biking or hiking, or both. Sleeping outdoors is preferred.

I like to travel, but I HATE the pressure of an itinerary. I have enough to do at home, I don’t want to have to do anything or go anywhere when I’m on vacation. This is completely impossible with my husband involved, who must have the plan in place, with the destination and goal in mind. It makes me bonkers. And I don’t need to travel every couple of months, once a year would be just fine by me.

So now we have young children, which means we are having to completely redesign our vacation styles. Physical endurance tests (such as a twelve hour hike in the mountains) are not practical with a toddler. And to wander aimlessly picking and choosing what I want to do with the direction of the breeze does not mix well with snacks and naps and schedules.


Hmmmmmmm. What is this vacation everyone speaks of…:confused:

I’ve gone on a honeymoon (short weekend trip not even worth the drive) and moved several hundred miles, that is the closest thing to a vacation in many years. I guess I’m going on a lot of stay-cations:shrug:

I’m glad so many of you are able to pull it off with kids especially…enjoy!


I probably sound like a spoiled brat complaining that I don’t get the vacation of my dreams when some people don’t even get vacations. :o


Nope you just sound normal.:wink: :slight_smile:


DH and I have always gravitated to the mountains, about one and a half hours from our Sydney homes (where we grew up and then lived for the first eight years of our marriage). We both spent many happy childhood holidays there which always builds strong ties to a place. We loved the cooler climate, the bushwalking, breath-taking scenery, the quaint towns, each with their own charm and appeal, entirely surrounded by a World Heritage Listed National Park.

We even spent a couple of days at the end of our honeymoon in the mountains, pressing our noses against real estate agents’ windows dreaming impossible dreams…

Every little chance we got for a break we headed up the mountain. It was our sanctuary, our refuge, where our hearts lay.

Eight years later our dream of living up in the clouds came true. Our town is quite quirky and full of characters, so it’s an interesting place to walk around. It’s arty, with lots of muscians, writers and artists in residence so there are numerous festivals and interesting events. There are lots of hippies, greenies, nature lovers and those seeking an alternative to the materialism of city living and a slower pace of life. Many young families seeking less expensive housing with Sydney prices so high. We also have a large indiginous community - the original inhabitants of the mountains.

All over town we constantly hear languages from around the world and we feel so privileged to live in a place that people travel so far to visit. We love holidaying in our own town. I’ve never heard the term stay-cation before - it’s a classic and describes us perfectly. :slight_smile:

Sydney is also a wonderful place to holiday in and I actually love it all the more now that I have put a little distance between us. :stuck_out_tongue: We love a day at the beach, a ferry ride across the harbour, under the Bridge, past the Opera House, a walk around Circular Quay and through the historic area of The Rocks, the Botanic Gardens, the Zoo, the Aquarium, the Art Gallery and all the museums, shopping all over town, eating all over town, the Sydney Festival, free open air concerts in The Domain, paying a visit to St Mary’s Cathedral after a walk through Hyde Park…these are a few of our favourite Sydney things…too much to choose from. Can’t forget World Youth Day!!!

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