Hotels & Resorts

5 Day Trips Perfect for Fall

Now that it is allegedly cooler outside and you can leave your house without fear of overheating, it's the ideal time to visit these nearby spots that could feel pretty miserable during summer. Before the holiday season gets into gear, pack up the car and take the kids to look at gators or see where Texas' favorite ice cream is made. We've rounded up five fun day trips below.

Sleep in a Lighthouse and More Hudson Valley Family Resorts

The Hudson Valley is an easy weekend getaway for those in the New York City vicinity. Its proximity makes getting there a breeze, even with a car full of kids.

Once you’ve arrived, natural possibilities abound. In fall, leaf peeping is spectacular and farms are ripe with pick-your-own fruit options and stands selling warm donuts and sweet cider. The Hudson Valley is history heavy, with names such as Roosevelt and Vanderbilt prevailing. Pedestrian-friendly towns such as Hudson, New Paltz, and Saugerties attract hip New Yorkers and their kids like bees to honey. There are a variety of overnight accommodations at a range of prices, from an all-inclusive dude ranch to a stately Grand Dame hotel to a farm stay.

Get packing for a quick getaway to this wide-open region just north of NYC.

Be Cool: Bond with Teens & Tweens at Hunter Mountain in the Catskills

With a tween and a teen in the household, it’s not easy for my family to find activities we can all get excited about. And planning a trip together? Fugghedaboudit. However, we recently discovered the sweet spot where we can adventure together as a family and have plenty of space for relaxing at the end of the day (because, as we’re learning, teens need LOTS of space): Hunter Mountain in New York’s Catskills. With an itinerary of ziplining, hiking, swimming, Skyriding and lounging in our suite, we were all very happy campers. There’s much on Hunter Mountain and in the surrounding area to appeal to both parents and older kids. Here are some highlights, including outdoor adventures, special dining-shopping hybrids and ample opportunities to chill out (or whatever the kids say these days).

Blue Waters Antigua: A Luxury Spot for Family Vacations

Blue Waters Resort and Spa in Antigua is not your everyday vacation destination. This luxury spot is perfect for that special-occasion getaway, especially a multigenerational family vacation. With villas that can be configured for 1-6 bedrooms and a staff that makes sure everything goes smoothly, families can plan a truly get-away-from-it-all trip, including all the logistics and interests of a big-family vacation, and feel confident it will be a hit.

Antigua is known for its laid-back and friendly people, bright blue waters and 365 sandy beaches. Blue Waters Resort offers all that, with luxury suites, and service to boot. The staff is as friendly as it gets and bends over backward to make sure you are happy.

Experience NYC in True Princess Style at the Lotte New York Palace

With a 3-year-old and 7-year-old daughter, princesses long ago took over my home. We've got dress-up clothes, dolls, movies, sing-along-microphones, and multiple tiaras, but never have my girls felt quite as regal as they did on a recent stay at the Lotte New York Palace where we were treated to a truly magical experience as royal guests with the luxury hotel's Palace Princess Package.

Located in the heart of Midtown Manhattan, the Lotte New York Palace offers a perfect destination for a staycation (as we enjoyed) to celebrate a birthday perhaps or as a treat for out-of-towners looking to make their visit to NYC extra special for a certain princess. 

Camelbeach Mountain Waterpark Opens Toddler Area, Mummy's Oasis

A popular Poconos resort's water park, Camelbeach Mountain Waterpark, opened a new toddler and preschooler outdoor attraction this summer, Mummy’s Oasis. It's a fun-themed kids zone for those 48 inches and under and definitely a great place to park your family to cool off. It's one of the reasons we added this Poconos attraction to our list of best water parks near NYC for toddlers.

We visited earlier this summer and have the scoop on the dumping buckets, mini water slides, and more. Check out the NYC Beaches, Pools and Water Parks Guide for more splashing fun or our roundup on 15 Awesome New Jersey Water Parks.

Rainforest Adventure Awaits at Ecotourist Gem in Honduras

Imagine eating breakfast while toucans soar from tree to tree just feet from your perch. By day, you hike the same trails that cougars roam at night. And your evening activity is prowling the resort paths spotting kinkajous, tree frogs, and spiders as big as your fist. This is not a canned jungle-themed ecotourism resort experience; this is the jungle. And you are in it.

Off the radar for many, Honduras offers 300,000 acres of protected rain and cloud forests and beautiful Caribbean waters with one of the last unspoiled coral reefs. The Lodge and Spa at Pico Bonito, named for the national park it sits in, is one of the independent properties trying to draw more ecotourism to help ensure that the amazing natural resources, and the stunning array of wildlife that live in them, persevere.

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