Inside: The Best Family Vacations with Teens (Fun for Everyone).
Planning the perfect family trip can be difficult especially when you have to consider EVERYONE in the family, including those picky teens.
When you’re planning the perfect vacation you want to make sure to take everyone’s interest into consideration. Like adventure, entertainment, hobbies, and even some learning opportunities. This is why we broke down some of the best family vacation ideas that will tick off the boxes for everyone in the family.
Check out our favorite family vacations with teens and why they are so perfect.
Best Family Vacations with Teens
1. Honolulu, Hawaii: A beautiful spot that manages to strike the right balance between being a cosmopolitan city and a tropical paradise, Hawaii is a great spot to start off with if you’re wondering where to take a teenager on vacation!
There’s just enough teen-friendly city fun as well as outdoor delights in surrounding Oahu.
You could try family-friendly activities such as hiking, snorkeling, kayaking or half-day tours that cover Oahu’s key attractions (such as the Pearl Harbor Memorial), or just hit the famous Waikiki Beach; you can sip a mojito and work on your tan while the kids pump up the adrenaline with surfing lessons from the locals.
2. Long Beach, California: Truth be told, there’s very little margin for error when you pick a beach for family vacations with teenagers!
At California’s Long Beach, kids can have personal encounters with sand tiger sharks and catch up-close-and-personal views of sea lions, tropical fish, and all the marine fan at the Aquarium of the Pacific.
3. Orlando, Florida: Home to some of the best family-friendly activities, Orlando is a no-brainer when it comes to fantastic family getaways that also have all the makings of a great teen vacation!
Sure, they’ve outgrown Mickey and Minnie, but the thrilling roller coaster rides here will likely more than makeup for that!
Disney World Resort, SeaWorld, and Universal’s Islands of Adventures are fun places to go for cool activities such as swimming with dolphins, parasailing, and jet-skiing; alternatively, take an airboat ride through the Everglades for a fun family day trip.
Family Vacation Ideas with Teenagers
4. Washington, DC: Home to some of the world’s best museums and most famous landmarks, Washington, DC, is brimming with great vacation spots and activities.
If you’re a family of museum buffs, Washington’s many museums are must-visits, such as the National Museum of Natural History, National Geographic Museum, the International Spy Museum (a great one for all the 007 aspirants out there), and the National Gallery of Art, to name a few.
5. Gatlinburg, Tennesse: At Gatlinburg, it’s “good vibes only”; the place exudes a warm, friendly, relaxed air that makes it such a great vacation spot for families, with its exciting, lively range of restaurants that can satisfy a wide range of appetites, preferences and tastes!
Explore the 800 miles worth of hiking ground and beautiful trails at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park; the park also has activities such as fly fishing and horseback riding.
All in all, Gatlinburg offers a great combination of city life and outdoor adventure, making it a really great vacation spot for tweens, teens, parents, and everyone in between!
6. San Antonio, Texas: With a ton of cool attractions like the Natural Bridge Safari Park and SeaWorld, San Antonio is a fun place to be in.
There’s even the Barney Smith’s Toilet Seat Art Museum to satisfy those teens who love all things quirky and Ripley’s Haunted Adventure for those teens who love all things spooky!
Spend some quality time with the whole family, strolling along the San Antonio RiverWalk, which is also a great way to discover the city’s vibrancy at your own leisure.
If your kids are adrenaline junkies, take them to the K1 go-karting arena or the Extreme Escape Live-Action Games for some speed-karting and fun-yet-challenging games!
Fun Vacations with Teenagers
Check out a few more of our favorite family vacations with teens.
7. West Yellowstone, Montana: Tick fighting the rapids off your bucket list by booking a river-rafting adventure on the Yellowstone River or enjoy zip-lining with the Yellowstone Zip-Line Tours.
If that still doesn’t manage to excite you, try spotting bears, watching geysers, soaking in the hot springs or waterfall-hiking; the teens of the family will love Yellowstone if they dig adventure!
Take a trip to the Old Faithful Geyser that shoots water up to at least 180 feet every 35 minutes to an hour, hike the Elephant Back Mountain Trail or visit Hayden Valley to get up close and personal with the local wildlife.
8. Charlotte, North Caroline: Don’t let the balmy weather and delightful blue skies of Charlotte fool you into assuming that it’s low-key; the area’s Carowinds Amusement Park is home to some of the world’s scariest and thrilling roller coasters, such as the Carolina Cyclone, the Intimidator and the Afterburn.
For more high-octane fun, head to the U.S National Whitewater Center with its rope courses and zip-lines. If looking for interactive entertainment, give the NASCAR Hall of Fame a visit.
9. Gettysburg, Pennsylvania: One of the best places to visit if you want to combine education with fun, Gettysburg is a great option if your family comprises teens and younger kids.
Learn all about Gettysburg’s role in the Civil War at the Gettysburg Battlefield, the Shriver House Museum and the National Military Park, or visit all the main sights on a guided bus tour.
Winter Family Vacation Ideas with Teenagers
10. Beaver Creek, Colorado: Beaver Creek is all about “family-friendly”; the resort has a ton of activities that make for some wholesome family fun, such as ski lessons, cross-country snowshoeing, and ice-skating.
The whole family can brush up on their skiing skills with the resort’s fantastic instructors or bond around a rented fire pit!
Haymeadow Park, Red Buffalo Park and Thursday Night Lights make up the main attractions during winter; the lattermost is a spectacular way to end the day with lights and fireworks. No matter how “cool” your teen tries to be, these fireworks are magical enough to impress anyone!
11. Park City, Utah: For some truly excellent mountain-biking, skiing and moose-spotting, head to Park City, a spot that athletic, active families are sure to enjoy!
Try zip-lining and bobsledding at the Utah Olympic Park, or embark on a guided mountain tour.
You could also hit the downtown area to gorge on some super delicious pizza and burgers at the Red Rock Brewery.
12. Huntsville, Alabama: It may not seem like a vacation spot, especially when we’re talking “trips with teens”, but “The Rocket City” is the place to be for tons of super-cool rockets, NASA memorabilia, and the chance to see a space shuttle at the U.S Space and Rocket Center.
If your teen’s interests lie in science that’s closer to the ground, take him or her to the beautiful Huntsville Botanical Garden, where you can also participate in fun activities such as night hikes to hunt down fireflies and roasting s’mores on fires for dinner!
Best Summer Vacations For Families with Teens
13. Puta Cana, Dominican Republic: When planning to visit one of the countries in the Caribbean, including the Dominican Republic at the top of your list.
Pristine shores lined with beautiful palm trees, sun-kissed sparkling waters, and gorgeous weather — Punta Cana has all the trappings of a great beach vacation and is one of the best places to visit with your teenagers in tow!
14. Lake Tahoe, California: Lake Tahoe, east of San Francisco in the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range, offers Olympic snow since it hosted the 1960 Winter Olympics. I love Tahoe for its mellow California vibe that attracts moguls and boarders alike.
During the summer, Lake Tahoe offers a crystal clear lake for water sports, yoga retreats, and an epic hiking trail, the TRT, the Tahoe Rim Trail. It’s also a fun spot for celebrity-spotting!
15. Gen Rose, Texas: Laid-back and definitely one for the families, the beautiful Glen Rose area has it all for the dinosaur buffs — rocky hillsides, hiking and biking trails and even preserved dinosaur prints, all in the 1500-acre Dinosaur Valley State Park.
You can also pay a visit to the nearby Dinosaur World for more dinosaur-related fun, such as a trail with replicas of prehistoric creatures and a ton of information about these mysterious creatures.
17. Plan a family road trip to an accessible destination.
18. Upstate New York – stay at the all inclusive Mohonk Hotel.
19. Do a southern family tour starting in Mobile Alabama and ending in Destin FL. For Civil rights learning + a beautiful beach.
20. Texas from Austin to Dallas to eat BBQ together, go line dancing and sleep outside under the stars at a western style glamping hotel.
International Vacations With Teenagers
21. London to tour the palace, have tea and maybe even meet the Queen.
22. An African safari is top of my list and staying at the Giraffe Manor would be unforgettable.
23. Thailand is doable if you go with a group, I love these National Geographic trips they plan for families of all ages.
24. Iceland to see the glaciers, active volcanos and sleep in an actual lighthouse.
25. St. Pettersburg Russia
26. All teens love a trip to Mexico for the beaches, sun and fun activities. We choose Cabo for its accessibility and tons of activities to enjoy.
27. This is more an idea than a place, but find out where a great concert is playing (something the whole family would enjoy), and go there! We had the best trip doing this one time.
More Fun Travel Ideas with Teens
If you like these family vacations with teens then you love these other fun travel ideas for teenagers.
- Fun Things To Do in Los Angeles – Sticking with our traveling in California with teens theme, check out our favorite things to do in Los Angeles. From fun roller coasters, cool downtown areas, and exciting rides, there is no your teens will be bored of this trip.
- Fun Things To Do in Las Vegas – There are a ton of cool things to do in Las Vegas with teens. Exciting tour options include everything a teenager wants to see and conquer including zip lines, roller coasters, navigating an ATV or dune buggy, and there are even options to take them to a shooting range.
- Fun Things To Do in San Diego for Teens – There are tons of great activities for families visiting San Diego, CA with teenagers to enjoy. From fun outdoor adventures, educational (but still fun) museums, and so much more, your teens will have no problem unplugging for a bit to enjoy all the activities you have planned.