At this point, my kids are more interested in Jell-O than Jell-O shots. Still, spring break isn’t just for co-eds. My boys, who are 4 and 7, have already begun asking where we’re going this year.
If you have young children and are starting to eyeball your school calendar and think about a spring break trip, here are some thoughts, based on weather, affordability and accessibility to kid-friendly activities.
- Carlsbad, California
This beach town is 30 minutes from San Diego and home of Legoland, kid mecca and brick-filled amusement park. That alone makes this a worthy destination for kids 3-12. What’s more, there’s this giant, totally free water park called THE OCEAN and it’s open all day. Grab lunch at kid-friendly Pizza Port or eat picnic style at one of the many parks with an ocean view.
- Washington, D.C.
You know the drill. Cherry blossoms. Monuments. Museums. But if you haven’t been to our nation’s capital with kids, you’d be surprised how much fun it is. And by the way, many of the attractions are FREE. That’s right, home of the brave, land of the free stuff to do, including the National Air and Space Museum, the Tidal Basin and the Washington National Cathedral.
- Sedona, Arizona
If you’ve ever thought of your kids as an “energy vortex,” it might be fitting to show them an actual energy vortex. Yes, that’s a thing, at least if you’re in Sedona. These spots are believed to be spiritual locations, energy centers that increase self-awareness and enhance any prayers or meditations. I don’t know about all that, but Sedona’s famous red rocks are ferociously beautiful. What’s more, there are so many kid-friendly activities, from cowboy dinners and pretend shoot-outs to hikes and adorable candy shops and general stores, that your kids won’t suck you into a boredom vortex. If you’re feeling adventurous, the Pink Jeep tours are worth a try, offering terrifying but dazzling views.
- Orange County, California
That’s right. The O.C. turns out to be quite the location for a family spring fling. This wide swath encompasses the towns between Los Angeles and San Diego, so the options are beyond plentiful, ranging anywhere from the kitschy boardwalk Balboa Fun Zone, to the Ocean Park Institute in Dana Point, to the International Museum of Surfing in Huntington Beach. Oh, and there’s this little mom and pop amusement park you’ve probably never heard of called Disneyland. I’m pretty sure it’s going to catch on one day.