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Where Should You Travel With Children?

So you've made up your mind that you are going on a family vacation. And the next question is ~ where to? There are many places for a family vacation but not all of them will have what you need for an enjoyable trip. Since you are going together with your children, they will need to be the key point to consider if you are all to have a great vacation.

A frequent choice for family vacations with children is Las Vegas or Reno in Nevada. In my view, these are less than ideal -- these cities are not family destinations, no matter what efforts the tourism industries in both cities (Las Vegas especially) make.

Neither Las Vegas, nor Reno offer something exceptional for children that cannot be seen anywhere else. Besides, going to Las Vegas, suggests that you would like to spend at least some time gambling. Gambling is an activity that you~d better keep for adults-only vacations.

Where traveling with children is concerned, some of the perennial favorites are the Disney theme parks. These parks are ideal for children between the ages of five and twelve - though they are still fun for older children! However, it's recommended that you wait until your children are old enough to walk. If you bring a child who is younger than three years old, the chances are that he or she will not remember the trip at all.

You should keep in mind, however, that Disney parks are an energetic vacation destination. These are not good places to go for a relaxing time, since they tend to be crowded, and there is always something new to go and see. With younger children, expect cranky afternoons.

For a more relaxed family vacation, you should think about a destination like Hawaii. While Hawaii is not geared specifically toward children, there are still plenty of things for you to do depending on which island you're staying


on.

Hawaii is a good choice for slightly older children -- let~s say over ten -- because many of its attractions are geared to individuals over that age. For instance Pearl Harbor ~ younger children will have no way to understand what is so special about that place.

Another nice idea for family vacations with children is cruise ships. Again, there are several things one should know in advance. First, while on a cruise ship with your family, it is to be expected that you will have to share a room and there will be not enough space for everybody. If you spend most of the time outside and visit your cabin only to have some sleep, things might be not so bad.

You should also consider that cruise ship vacations may not be the best choice for teenagers. This is due to the fact that most of the children's programs are designed for children 12 and under, and teenagers are not quite old enough to participate in the entertainment designed for adults (for instance, lounges and casinos). The benefit of a cruise is that you'll get to see breathtaking ocean views and visit several different ports. Keep your eyes open for whales!

In the end, however, where you go for your family vacation is up to you. Nobody knows what your children will be interested in better than you do. So, consider your children's interest, and to what extent they will be catered for, combined with your preferences for where you would like to go, and the type of vacation that you are most interested in.

Andrew Westforth is the webmaster and operator of FHT Travel -- a large and comprehensive collection of information on travel, including resources, articles and a free newsletter. For more information, go to: http://www.fhttravel.com
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