Unique Trips to Take Your Kids on Summer Vacation

School is almost out, which means it’s time to start thinking about summer plans! For many parents, this can be an overwhelming time of year – but planning for summer travel with kids doesn’t have to be stressful, because there are plenty of family-friendly vacations you’d probably never think to choose from, which a travel agent can help you with.  And in fact, according to experts, parents are better off spending their money on vacations than they are spending it on toys, which kids are often bored with a week or two later.

Here are my top picks for unique trips to take your kids on summer vacation from a family-focused travel pro:   

Set Sail on a European River Cruise

Although river cruising has traditionally been viewed as an adults-only activity in the past, the travel industry is now seeing more and more parents taking their kids on river cruises to experience Europe in a different light. An increasing number of river cruise lines, including AmaWaterways, Tauck and Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection accommodate families with special sailings in the summer and winter, ideally timed for school breaks. Europe is jam-packed with places where both kids and their parents can have fun and explore. So what better way to get there than on a river cruise? And here’s an insider tip: once you’re in Europe, Eurail, BritRail and German Rail offer free travel for kids under a certain age who are accompanied by an adult.   

Unleash Your Inner Darwin in the Galapagos

Is traveling to the Galapagos Islands with your kids a good idea? The simple answer is … yes. When you visit the Galapagos, you will be peacefully coexisting with the animals and connecting with them during the entirety of your trip. These beautiful island creatures have no natural predators, so you can rest assured knowing that your family will have unparalleled interaction with them.

Trek to the Peak of Machu Picchu

Nestled among the clouds, Machu Picchu is one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. The Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is by far the most famous hike in South America, and I’m willing to go so far as to say it’s the best hike in the world. But even though you may picture experienced hikers trekking the arduous trail when you think of Machu Picchu, there are many other easier ways to safely get your family to the ancient Incan citadel – it’s even wheelchair accessible.

Trace Your Roots

Here’s an up-and-coming trend you might not know much about that is perfect for your little ones: genealogy travel! Getting your kids interested in their past might seem like a hard feat, but by allowing them to literally walk in their ancestors’ shoes, they’ll feel more connected to their roots than ever before. So, pack your bags and get ready to go, because you never know where you just might end up – your genes will decide that.

Live Like the Irish Kings and Queens

Ireland is a kingdom of magic and mystery, and what kid doesn’t want to experience that? In addition to exploring the enchanting Irish landscape, many castles in Ireland offer activities for the family so your kids can live out their fairytale dreams. With a tremendous number of castles and a solid reputation for being a family-friendly destination, Ireland is the best place to thrill your little princes and princesses.

Get Up Close and Personal with Wildlife in Africa

I know that you’re probably thinking I’m crazy right now for suggesting you take children into the depths of Africa. But I can assure that going on safari with your family is completely safe, and even incredibly educational! In order to learn and absorb, kids need eye-opening, stimulating experiences – so forget about thinking that the kids need to be “old enough,” and go show them that they can learn about the animal kingdom somewhere other than their life sciences class.

More Popular Bucket List Itineraries

OK, so maybe you’re looking for more accessible and popular destinations. Luckily for you, going to places like Disney World or taking a cruise to the captivating Caribbean are right in your backyard. And if you’re looking to see the United States off the beaten path, Hawaii and Alaska cruises are definitely worth looking into.


When it comes to taking your kids on vacation, you want to give them the world – but the options might be overwhelming. To get personalized assistance and tailor-made recommendations for your next summer vacation, locate a Cruise Planners travel agent near you today. Using my tips, work with your travel agent to see what trip works best for you and your family, especially since some destinations have age limits and requirements. Want to know what the best part is about using a travel advisor? It doesn’t cost you a thing and will save you time and money. Now what parents out there don’t need that?






Michelle Fee

Founder/CEO at Cruise Planners
Michelle Fee is the founder and CEO of Cruise Planners, an American Express Travel Representative. A trail-blazing marketing genius, Michelle founded Cruise Planners before working from home was a real concept. Now, with more than 35 years in the travel industry, Michelle invites moms in any stages of their lives to join the Cruise Planners family and experience the work-life balance for themselves.



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