Family vacations can supply lifelong memories, but to ensure that every member of the family is satisfied; Mom and Dad want to relax, the kids want to swim, everyone wants to spend quality time together, and nobody wants to be bored. While there is no correct way to travel together, doing research ahead of time will keep your focus on relaxation instead of anxiety. For a guaranteed happy time had by all, check out the best family vacations in the U.S.

The 9 Best destinations for your family vacation in the U.S. are:

1. Orange Beach, Alabama

Orange Beach is a well-known family beach destination. Spending your days lounging by the pool, trying extreme water activities, and experiencing awesome attractions are just a few of the great things to do in Orange Beach with kids. White-sand beaches shelter a maze of bays and bayous in Orange Beach, a relaxed family vacation spot on the scenic, sunny Gulf Coast. It’s one of the best places to go with kids who love to play in the sand and saltwater, whether you’re spotting dolphins, teaching your children to bait a hook on a private fishing charter or just building sandcastles on the picture-perfect beaches.

2. Orlando, Florida

Packed with kid-friendly attractions<style=”font-weight: 400;”> and theme parks, Orlando is arguably the kid vacation mecca. Get soaked with a front-row seat for SeaWorld Orlando”>’s whale and dolphin show, buy some space-themed memorabilia at the Kennedy Space Center Shop, then get creative in the Crayola Experience Orlando, a colourful playground of art, fashion and fun. The home of Disney in Florida is the largest in the area and sees more tourists than any other of their international ventures. Any family can find a way to have fun with four theme parks, two water parks, a shopping, dining, and entertainment complex, 21 resort hotels, and eight golf courses at your disposal.

3. Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming.

If you have energetic children in tow, frolicking around the country’s largest official state park in the contiguous U.S. is a great option. Not only will your family witness some of the world’s most breathtaking landscapes, but Yellowstone is also known to feature a plethora of wildlife, making your vacation into a great tool for educating children about the environment. Yellowstone National Park was the first national park, commissioned by Ulysses S. Grant in 1872. But this park isn’t old news yet. It continues to attract millions of visitors each year.

Photo by Jenny Smith on Unsplash Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming.

The picturesque views of towering mountains and powerful waterfalls are certainly picture-worthy. And camping among them would be almost any child’s dream. If you are lucky, you might catch a glimpse of the natural inhabitants of the park, deer, bison, elk, and even bears. Being that Yellowstone sits on top of a volcanic hot spot, several sections of the park appear almost other-worldly, with various geothermal features. Pools of water take on vibrant hues of emerald, azure, and even gold and orange, with natural minerals and algae. And the granddaddy of all, Old Faithful, a geyser that spews a burst of water up to 180 feet in the air, multiple times every day.

4. Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

The beauty of a Pigeon Forge family vacation is the ability to find something to entertain every member of your family. <style=”font-weight: 400;”>Explore the natural and manufactured wonders of this sleepy yet industrial Tennessee town. The state has a few unique theme parks within its borders, with one that may stand out more than others: Dollywood. If your family is not as keen to browse the authentically Southern attraction of Dolly Parton’s namesake park, Pigeon Forge also borders the Great Smoky Mountains, National Park.

5. San Diego, California

For a sunny West Coast adventure, San Diego will tick several boxes. The San Diego Zoo is one of the largest in the world, known for its open-air, cageless exhibits for a more humane experience. There is also the undeniable draw of the beach and cuisine, which is heavily influenced by its border with Mexico. Among the best family vacation spots in California, San Diego is packed with kid-friendly experiences and fun places to go with kids. Budding wildlife biologists can spot everything from pandas to polar bears at the San Diego Zoo or look beneath the waves at SeaWorld San Diego, an aquarium, theme park and oceanarium rolled into one. Legoland California is a quick drive up the coast, and your kids can catch their very first waves in the warm water and gentle breaks off pretty La Jolla.

6. The Grand Canyon, Arizona

We cannot omit this geological wonder, either; the Grand Canyon is an unforgettable sight located in northern Arizona. This destination might just make you think of cliche family road trips and movies from the ’90s. But, the Grand Canyon really should be on everyone’s bucket list. The massive canyon carved out over millions of years by the Colorado River, is something truly awesome to behold. It even earned UNESCO-site status for its importance to the story of our earth. The park features other attractions and activities to entertain and tire out even the most rambunctious little ones. There are, of course, difficult and technical hikes you could take, but the Rim Trail is one of the most family-friendly. There are parts of the hike that you can even take via the back of a donkey if you don’t want to do the walking yourself. Or, take the kids on the Grand Canyon Railway to view the majestic desert scenery from the comfort of a railcar. Stop by the Canyon Field Institute to learn more about the local geography and wildlife that call the canyon home.

7. Park City, Utah

If skiing and snowboarding are a family sport then park city is the best destination for your family vacation, with the largest lift-accessible ski terrain in North America. Park City, is a veritable playground for both young travellers and mature travellers alike. And as a bonus, the climate in Utah makes for a unique experience during any season.

Photo by Ben Amaral on Unsplash Park City, Utah

Obviously, a wintertime visit would lend itself to ski lessons, thereby shredding Park City’s famous powder. For the less adventurous soul, tubing is also a fun option. During warmer months, the ski resort closes down and makes way for zip lining, mountain biking, and mountain luging. Venture off the beaten track and explore the mountains on a hike or horseback. All year-round, the site of the 2002 Winter Olympics, called Olympic Park, is open for thrill-seekers looking to try their hand at bobsledding or aerial skiing.

8. Washington DC

The nation’s capital isn’t just for bigwigs and politicians. Nearly every family can find something in this city that will provide a fun and memorable experience. Introduce your kids to the Founding Fathers on a family vacation to Washington, mixing a dash of history with plenty of kid-friendly attractions and tours. Hop-on, hop-off bus tours are a flexible way to take in D.C. highlights at your family’s pace. All the Smithsonian Museums are free to visit, For a truly special experience, look into the Smithsonian Sleepover program, where kids and parents can spend a night in one of the city’s most popular attractions. Raising a future James Bond or Mata Hari? The kid-friendly International Spy Museum is a favourite with would-be double agents. At the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, kids can learn about the process of printing money, and watch the treasury in action.

9. Atlanta, Georgia

For starters, it is home to the largest aquarium in the country. Indeed, the Georgia Aquarium was the largest in the entire world when it opened in 2005. You can see 500 different species of marine life, including otters, dolphins, whales, sharks, and even the behemoth whale shark and giant manta rays. Kids can go eyeball-to-eyeball with enormous whale sharks at the Georgia Aquarium, an underwater wonderland that helps place Atlanta among the best family vacation spots in the South. Older kids will love a superhero- or a zombie-themed tour of Atlanta’s film sites, and the World of Coca-Cola is packed with interactive and multimedia exhibits to keep kids engaged from beginning to end. For the child that is interested in a journalism future, plan to see the CNN Center, the headquarters for the media outlet where you can get a behind-the-scenes look at how the news gets to the world.

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