Boston

12 of the Best Outdoor Water Parks in the US

If your kids love the adventure of amusement parks but are looking for a way to cool off this summer, an outdoor water park might be just the ticket for your family. We've searched out some of the nation's best to compile this list of our favorite family-friendly water parks with relaxing pools, splash pads for toddlers, and thrilling water slides and rides for teenagers.

From New England to Orlando to California, there are plenty of water parks from which to choose. At some of these water parks, visitors can ride the ups and downs of a water coaster, slip through a trap door on a drop slide and spin around an oversized funnel slide for maximum thrills. To truly chill, just pick up a tube and float down a lazy river or rent a cabana with poolside dining.

Have your heart set on a water park vacation but don't want to risk the weather? Check out our list of the 10 Best Indoor Water Parks for Kids in the US.

8 Great Theme Parks For Families in New England

For a memorable family outing jam-packed with exhilarating rides, indulgent snacks, and giggle-inducing character interactions, head to a theme park. We have some great choices here in New England and rounded up our eight favorites for families with kids ranging from toddlers to teens. Some are close enough for a daycation while others are better suited for a weekend getaway; regardless, they all make for a quick escape from the every day blahs. For even more local thrills, explore our theme and water park guides for Boston and Connecticut, and if you have a few extra days for fun and relaxation, check out our Best Amusement Parks Near NYC

Mother's Day Weekend Fun for Boston Kids: May 11-12

While some moms may be content with a nice breakfast in bed, I'm sure many (like myself) also want some quality family time on Mother's Day weekend (in addition to a special breakfast, of course!). This weekend families can enjoy porch side entertainment, not one but two lilac fests, and lots and lots of bubbles. Hopefully the weather cooperates for this brunch and hike as well as this citywide-favorite parade for the littlest of ducklings. Our spring fun guide has even more ideas for embracing mother (nature), and our event calendar this weekend (really, the whole month of May), is packed with seasonal, kid-centric activites. Now, get out there and celebrate family—and spring!

8 Special Family Campgrounds near Boston with Extras for Kids

For many families, camping is an annual ritual. For others, it’s an interesting (but maybe daunting) possibility. Truth is, camping is a wonderful way to explore the outdoors while spending serious quality time with your family—and you can do it all for much less money than you'd spend at a hotel or rental home. While Massachusetts is home to many campgrounds, these go out of their way to create a kid-friendly experience that combines adventure and creature comforts—with a little something extra for tiny campers! For an even more rustic experience, check out our picks for tent camping spots.

50 Fun Things To Do in Las Vegas with Your Kids

Once America's playground for adults, in the last decade Las Vegas has become one of the most popular family vacation destinations. While it is possible to book a sitter to enjoy some grown-up time on the strip, it would be a shame to visit this desert town and not experience the great natural attractions, museums, and family fun you can find a little further afield.

We took a recent trip to Vegas with our young children (aged two and six) and really had a blast exploring kid-friendly activities both on and off the beaten track. Here are my recommendations for the top things to do with kids in Las Vegas.

12 Boston-Area Restaurants Where Kids Can Play While You Eat (and Relax)

It’s one thing to go to a kid-friendly restaurant, where you know you won’t get any dirty looks from the proprietors or other patrons. But family dining heaven might just be a place that also allows kids to play—the idea being that you can actually enjoy your meal after they wolf down theirs. We decided to round up a list of such restaurants, focusing on ones that serve up truly good food along with some sort of entertainment. We call that a win-win!

Weekend Fun: Star Wars, Sailing, and Cinco de Mayo; May 4-5

Arts and culture events abound as May kicks off in Boston. Star Wars fans can join together for their favorite day of the year (May the 4th—get it?), and anyone who appreciates Mexican culture (or just a good fiesta) can celebrate Cinco de Mayo the next day. There's a festival celebrating all things Polish and another dedicated to waking up the Earth. What about a chocolate block party or a fairy fest? If the weather cooperates, there is also (free!) sailing on the harbor.  

For more fun this weekend and beyond, take a peek at our May GoList and our Spring Fun Guide. And if your summer plans are still up in the (spring) air, check out our Summer Camp Guide for last-minute ideas for keeping the kids busy after school lets out. Shorts' weather will be here before you know it!

15 Free and Fun Things to Do in May with Boston Kids

Spring may technically arrive in late March, but for those of us in New England, it doesn't really start to feel like spring until May. Getting outside and enjoying all the family-friendly spring activities Boston has to offer can definitely add up, cost-wise, so here are our picks for family fun that is also free. For even more free family activities, visit out our Boston Spring Fun Guide and check our calendar often.

May GoList - Best Things to Do with Kids in Boston

We’re feeling festive this month! For our May edition of the GoList, we’re highlighting fabulous and free spring festivals, annual Mother's Day traditions, and performances you won't want to miss. As you check out our top picks for things to do with kids in Boston and the 'burbs this month, click through to the event listings so you can add them to your calendar. Also, be sure to bookmark our Spring Fun Guide for even more family fun opportunities in and around town. Plus, we'll still send our free e-newsletters with our family-friendly event picks every week. Happy planning!

Secrets of Atlantis: 10 Tips for a Bahamas Family Vacation with Kids

Like many kids, my boys started begging to go to Disney around the time they could walk. Once they were swimming, however, the object of their spring break fantasies became Atlantis—the Bahamas mega-resort known for its gigantic water park, marine life encounters, and luxe casino. For years, unsure whether a place nicknamed "Vegas by the Sea" was the best choice for a family vacation, my husband and I brushed aside their pleas. But after another harsh Boston winter, we broke down and booked a trip, figuring our boys were at the ideal ages—12, 10, and 7— to appreciate all the 'tweeny bopper fun that Atlantis offers (and for which it charges big).

We had a fun-packed five-day stay, and along the way, accumulated plenty of advice for other families who are considering an Atlantis trip, including whether or not it is a kid-friendly destination. Here are the main things moms and dads should know to make sure their vacation in Paradise (Island) lives up to the hype.

Find more top places to stay on vacation in our Hotels & Resorts Guide for Families.

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