Summer’s Top 10 Family Destinations
Families Heading to Theme Parks and Beaches this Summer
With Memorial Day weekend and the unofficial start to summer fast approaching, Travelocity travel experts dug into the website’s summer booking data to discover where families will take their summer vacations in 2011. Overwhelmingly, families will travel to beach destinations in the U.S. and the Caribbean.
1. Orlando: Orlando is, not surprisingly, the number-one family destination for summer 2011. With theme parks galore and some of the summer’s most competitive room rates, fun and value reign supreme on Orlando vacations.
Average Daily Rate for Orlando hotels: $87
Disney’s Aninmal Kingdom Lodge
2. Cancun: A destination once known for spring break debauchery, Cancun has reinvented itself as a family-friendly destination. It comes in as the number-one destination for families traveling internationally, and two on the overall list.
Average Daily Rate for Cancun hotels: $184
3. Honolulu: Four destinations in Hawaii made their way into the top ten summer destinations for families, but of those, Honolulu comes out on top. Direct flights to Honolulu are available from many U.S. cities, making getting to world-famous Waikiki Beach a breeze.
Average Daily Rate for Honolulu hotels: $136
4. Maui: Famous as a honeymoon destination, Maui vacations are also a favorite for families, especially during the summer months. Turns out kids and couples alike love the beautiful beaches, where the sand color ranges from white to black to red.
Average Daily Rate for Maui hotels: $181
5. Kauai: Beautiful coastline and secluded beaches are a given on Hawaii vacations, but Kauai is the perfect island choice for active families and nature lovers.
Average Daily Rate for Kauai hotels: $154
6. Bahamas: Cheap flights to Nassau make getting to the Bahamas both easy and affordable. Though not technically part of the Caribbean, expect the same beautiful white-sand beaches, hotels in every price range and flowing rum punch.
Average Daily Rate for Bahamas hotels: $235
7. Kona: Found on the island of Hawaii (or, The Big Island), Kona is an excellent destination from which to explore. From mountains to rainforests to the world’s most active volcano, this island is also the state’s most diverse.
Average Daily Rate for Kona hotels: $141
8. Puerto Vallarta: Puerto Vallarta is Mexico’s second-most-popular destination for families this summer. Mexico vacation packages are always a great value and this beach destination on the country’s west coast is no exception.
Average daily Rate for Puerto Vallarta hotels: $146
9. Turks & Caicos: Talk about an island that just keeps getting more and more popular – Turks & Caicos climbs up the list of top-booked destinations each year. Caribbean vacations are always popular for families and this island is proving to be a top pick.
Average daily rate for Turks & Caicos hotels: $248
10. Dominican Republic: Rounding out the top 10 most popular summer destinations for families is the D.R. and it’s no wonder. There are many direct flights to Dominican Republic every day, so towing the kiddies and all their stuff is no problem. Plus, Dominican Republic resorts come in every shape, size and price range.
Average daily rate for Dominican Republic hotels: $161
My name: Genevieve Shaw Brown. I also answer to Genny and Gen.
How I earn my keep: I work at Travelocity.
Greatest travel lesson learned: I travel for my job, but I've learned work is work, vacation is vacation, and it's best not to try and do both on one trip.
Fondest travel memory: There are so many... but a recent experience was being totally jet-lagged and waking up pre-dawn in Koh Samui, Thailand, and watching the sun rise with my husband on the beach. We talked about what all our friends and family were doing at that very same moment as the sun set back home in New York.
First thing I do in a new place: Peruse the local restaurants and map out my dining strategy for the duration of my trip. Dining strategy = eating at as many restaurants as humanly possible.
First thing I do when I get home: Put a push pin on the destination I just returned from on the map of the world that hangs on the wall above my couch.
Travel ambition: To cover that map completely in push pins.
My most beloved place in the whole world: Cockle Cove Beach in Chatham, Massachusetts.