Great travel is the holy grail of family time: To see the world, expand our horizons, and experience unforgettable adventures together is everything we want our family time to be, all wrapped into one. That’s the dream anyway. The reality is that planning a big trip can be so daunting you want to throw up your hands and just stay at home. It’s no wonder all-inclusive resorts are so popular, just show up and your hardest decisions concern the buffet.
But there’s no substitute for amazing travel with your kids. If you’re like me you want to pack lots of stuff into your days, but not at the expense of having crabby, exhausted kids. There’s no reason to give up hope of doing the things you want or just sticking to vacations at Disneyland. Finding the perfect balance and knowing a few tricks to planning itineraries that optimize your days will help you have better, more adventurous vacations.
It‘s taken me years of practice to figure out how to plan itineraries that keep everyone happy, expose us to new experiences, and still feel enough like a vacation that I don’t need another one once we get home. The heart of my travel planning comes down to knowing how to balance cultural experiences with kid-friendly fun, while making the logistics as seamless as possible. I’ve boiled my technique down to 10 simple steps that anyone can do to have amazing vacations. If I can turn my grumpy kids into world travelers, you can too.