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Escape Plan

As much as we love New York, there’s nothing like getting away. Here, some of our favorite resorts and destinations where you can have a great vacation with the kids in tow.

If you don’t want to stray too far…

Whiteface Lodge, Lake Placid, NY

Located in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains, this 85-suite, elegantly rustic luxury lodge-style resort was designed with families in mind. It features an indoor/outdoor swimming pool; a family game room with billiards; a private beach club with canoes, kayaks, badminton, ping pong, and volleyball; a bowling alley, and more. The resort also puts on a nightly family bonfire, complete with s’mores. (thewhitefacelodge.com)

Harbor View Hotel and Spa, Edgartown, MA

Harbor View offers traditional Vineyard fun for kids ages 3-10 in the form of field trip hikes, lawn games, hermit crab searching, sandcastle building, and “kids’ night out” programs. The Harbor offers unique family-friendly activity packages, including Clambakes on the Beach, Night Hikes, and a visit to the Vineyard’s Farm Institute, where guests receive a personal farm tour. (harbor-view.com)

The Sagamore, Bolton Landing, NY

Situated on a private island on Lake George, this historic hotel hosts a championship golf course, a sailing school, a private beach area, a marina, and more. Horseback riding, sailing, and biking are other popular activities that can be arranged easily. From July through Labor Day, kids can partake in Teepee Club activities, including craft making, nature walks, and beach games. (thesagamore.com)

If you want an “education” vacation…

New Orleans

Kids can get a behind-the-scenes look at the colorful props, huge floats, and ornate costumes of Mardi Gras at Mardi Gras World (mardigrasworld.com). In City Park, feed the ducks, enjoy rides at the Carousel Garden’s Amusement Park, and visit Storyland, a fairy tale playground with life-sized storybook exhibits (neworleanscitypark.com).Last, visit the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas to play on Adventure Island, where kids can feed stingrays! (auduboninstitute.org)

Philadelphia

Philadelphia has its roots in good old-fashioned rabble rousing and revolution. Make sure to visit Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence was adopted (nps.gov). And with its curious crack and powerful inscription, the Liberty Bell is a great place to learn about the American ideals of liberty and independence (nps.gov).Plus, replete with amazing exhibits, including the famous Giant Heart, the Franklin Institute Science Museum is a one-of-a-kid museum. (2.fi.edu).


New Zealand Cruise

This winter, forgo the freeze and let the sounds of rushing waterfalls and rainforest wildlife lull you to sleep. On the New Zealand Family Cruise, you’ll embark on daring excursions in national parks, tiptoe around a volcano, and even dine with the residents of Whakarewarewa village. Let the kids splash around with dolphins and see if they can spot a whale. (abercrombiekent.com)

If you’re seeking an eco-friendly getaway…

Hawaii

With volcanoes, rainforests, and local communities in need of preservation, there are plenty of family-friendly tourism trips to take within this island state. Consider traveling with Hawaii Forest and Trail, a touring company that offers affordable family adventures to waterfalls, bird sanctuaries, and farms that allow you to glimpse the natural Hawaiian environment and wildlife. (hawaii-forest.com)


The Adirondacks

The Adirondack region abounds with snowy mountains, northeast woodlands, ponds, rivers and hiking trails. For an environmentally friendly place to stay, try The Stoney Lonesome Bed and Breakfast, a Civil War–era farmhouse converted into a bed and breakfast. The owners of the inn run it completely independently of the power grid and rely on organic materials whenever possible. It’s located just minutes from Lake George, Lake Champlain and Adirondack State Park. (stoneylonesomebb.com)


The Florida Keys 

For a rare opportunity to snorkel in the reef while learning about the ecosystem and how to preserve it, look into one of the Sierra Club’s trips (sierraclub.org). For less than $1000, the entire family can spend a week in Key Largo on this boating and snorkeling adventure, which also includes the opportunity to practice reef fish identification.

If you want to soak up the sun…

Ritz-Carlton, Naples, Florida

Florida’s premier luxury family destination offers an array of incredible amenities, including pristine beaches, a world-class spa, outdoor pool, and great restaurants. But best of all for kids is the Ritz’s new Nature’s Wonders program, which allows families to connect with nature through such eco-conscious activities as nature walks, sailing trips, and excursions to animal hospitals. The on-site sanctuary features nine aquariums, including touch tanks where guests can hold turtles and starfish. (ritzcarlton.com)

Coconut Bay Resort and Spa, St. Lucia

Let loose in St. Lucia at this family-oriented beach resort and spa. The kids can stay cool all day at Cocoland, a fun-filled water park; sports aficionados can choose from basketball, volleyball, tennis, and water aerobics; and the most adventurous can try scuba diving or windsurfing. (cbayresort.com)

Loews Miami Beach Hotel, Florida

Of all the lovely Art Deco hotels in South Beach, Loews is the one that is truly welcoming to families. Located close to the beach, its has an attentive, kid-friendly staff, a kids’ camp, a kids’ menu at the hotel restaurant, and, most importantly, a huge wonderful pool with lots of shallow walk-in inlets. (loewshotels.com)


Arizona Biltmore Resort and Spa, Phoenix

Picture yourself soaring through the summer skies on a hot air balloon, getting a helicopter tour of the Grand Canyon, or maybe on a family expedition through the Sonoran desert. Youngsters ages 5-12 will have a blast swimming, biking, creating artwork or sliding down the windy slide at the Kids Korral. (arizonabiltmore.com)


Half Moon, Montego Bay, Jamaica

A wonderful blend of luxury and family-friendly accommodations and activities, Half Moon features an equestrian center, a dolphin lagoon, many swimming pools, and, most notably for parents and children, its Anacy Children’s Village, where there are swings, sandboxes, and activities for kids all day long. (halfmoon.com).

If you want to soak up the snow…

Squaw Valley, Tahoe, Nevada

Squaw Valley boasts a 12,000-square-foot Children’s Facility offering one-stop shopping for skiing and snowboarding lessons for kids ages 3-12. Winter activities in the upper mountain include ice skating, snow tubing, an Olympic museum and dining. The Base Village offers sleigh rides, cross-country skiing and a luxurious health and fitness spa. (squaw.com and squawcreek.com)


The Canyons Resort, Park City, Utah

Located in the legendary ski town of Park City, The Canyons Resort is one of North America’s largest single ski resorts. With 3 world-class lodging properties and 8 mountains for a total of 152 trails, the activities at The Canyons Resort are endless. (thecanyons.com)

Taos Ski Valley, Taos, New Mexico

Taos’ Ski Valley boasts slopes that are not crowded and an array of restaurants offering a variety of cuisines. There’s also a teen center where your kids can play games, eat pizza and watch extreme ski movies. With an average of 300 inches of snow a year and 300-plus days of sunshine, Taos Ski valley is the perfect winter getaway. (skitaos.org)


Windham Mountain, The Catskills, New York

A local family-friendly mountain only a two-and-a-half-hour drive from the city, Windham has recently added more trails, lifts, an ice-skating rink, and a day care program. The resort is also home to the Gwen Allard Adaptive Sports Center, where children and adults with cognitive or physical disabilities can learn to ski or snowboard. (windhammountain.comadaptivesportsfoundation.org)

Arrabelle at Vail Square

Nestled in Colorado’s magnificent Vail Valley lies this family-friendly, action-packed resort. You can hit the slopes, try snow shoeing and snow tubing, ice-skating, and dog-sledding. Make sure to visit Adventure Ridge, a day-and-night activity center situated high atop Vail Mountain. (arrabelle.rockresorts.com)

If you’re looking for a recession-proof getaway…

Carimar Beach Club, Anguilla

Located right on the water of Mead’s Bay, Carimar Beach Club is a great budget-friendly option. The resort has beachfront and beachview one- and two-bedroom villas. Families with children ages 2-12 can use the facilities of the Children’s Place at the upscale Malliouhana Hotel & Spa next door for $25 per day. This supervised outdoor playground includes a 26-foot pirate ship, and a 60-foot water slide. (carimar.com)


Kalaheo Inn, Kaua’i, Hawaii

With very reasonably priced one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments (all with kitchenettes), the Kalaheo Inn will appeal to families looking to get more value for their money. Shops and restaurants are a short walk away, and the inn is a 12-minute drive from lovely Poipu Beach. The inn also stocks plenty of kids’ games, and guests receive complimentary beach towels and toys. (kalaheoinn.com)


Best Western Castaways Resort & Suites, Grand Bahama Island

This resort is located near sandy beaches, championship tennis and golf courses, a nature center, and dolphin swimming. Kids will enjoy exploring the caves at nearby Lucaya National Park. Children under 12 stay free in a parent’s room, and the in-house lounge presents limbo and fire-eating shows several evenings a month. (bestwestern.com)

—Reported by Stacy H. Small, Jonathan Miller, Ahuva Warburg, Shana Lebowitz, and Meredith McGroarty

Escape Plan

As much as we love New York, there’s nothing like getting away. Here, some of our favorite resorts and destinations where you can have a great vacation with the kids in tow.

If you don’t want to stray too far…

Whiteface Lodge, Lake Placid, NY

Located in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains, this 85-suite, elegantly rustic luxury lodge-style resort was designed with families in mind. It features an indoor/outdoor swimming pool; a family game room with billiards; a private beach club with canoes, kayaks, badminton, ping pong, and volleyball; a bowling alley, and more. The resort also puts on a nightly family bonfire, complete with s’mores. (thewhitefacelodge.com)

Harbor View Hotel and Spa, Edgartown, MA

Harbor View offers traditional Vineyard fun for kids ages 3-10 in the form of field trip hikes, lawn games, hermit crab searching, sandcastle building, and “kids’ night out” programs. The Harbor offers unique family-friendly activity packages, including Clambakes on the Beach, Night Hikes, and a visit to the Vineyard’s Farm Institute, where guests receive a personal farm tour. (harbor-view.com)

The Sagamore, Bolton Landing, NY

Situated on a private island on Lake George, this historic hotel hosts a championship golf course, a sailing school, a private beach area, a marina, and more. Horseback riding, sailing, and biking are other popular activities that can be arranged easily. From July through Labor Day, kids can partake in Teepee Club activities, including craft making, nature walks, and beach games. (thesagamore.com)

If you want an “education” vacation…

New Orleans

Kids can get a behind-the-scenes look at the colorful props, huge floats, and ornate costumes of Mardi Gras at Mardi Gras World (mardigrasworld.com). In City Park, feed the ducks, enjoy rides at the Carousel Garden’s Amusement Park, and visit Storyland, a fairy tale playground with life-sized storybook exhibits (neworleanscitypark.com).Last, visit the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas to play on Adventure Island, where kids can feed stingrays! (auduboninstitute.org)

Philadelphia

Philadelphia has its roots in good old-fashioned rabble rousing and revolution. Make sure to visit Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence was adopted (nps.gov). And with its curious crack and powerful inscription, the Liberty Bell is a great place to learn about the American ideals of liberty and independence (nps.gov).Plus, replete with amazing exhibits, including the famous Giant Heart, the Franklin Institute Science Museum is a one-of-a-kid museum. (2.fi.edu).


New Zealand Cruise

This winter, forgo the freeze and let the sounds of rushing waterfalls and rainforest wildlife lull you to sleep. On the New Zealand Family Cruise, you’ll embark on daring excursions in national parks, tiptoe around a volcano, and even dine with the residents of Whakarewarewa village. Let the kids splash around with dolphins and see if they can spot a whale. (abercrombiekent.com)

If you’re seeking an eco-friendly getaway…

Hawaii

With volcanoes, rainforests, and local communities in need of preservation, there are plenty of family-friendly tourism trips to take within this island state. Consider traveling with Hawaii Forest and Trail, a touring company that offers affordable family adventures to waterfalls, bird sanctuaries, and farms that allow you to glimpse the natural Hawaiian environment and wildlife. (hawaii-forest.com)


The Adirondacks

The Adirondack region abounds with snowy mountains, northeast woodlands, ponds, rivers and hiking trails. For an environmentally friendly place to stay, try The Stoney Lonesome Bed and Breakfast, a Civil War–era farmhouse converted into a bed and breakfast. The owners of the inn run it completely independently of the power grid and rely on organic materials whenever possible. It’s located just minutes from Lake George, Lake Champlain and Adirondack State Park. (stoneylonesomebb.com)


The Florida Keys 

For a rare opportunity to snorkel in the reef while learning about the ecosystem and how to preserve it, look into one of the Sierra Club’s trips (sierraclub.org). For less than $1000, the entire family can spend a week in Key Largo on this boating and snorkeling adventure, which also includes the opportunity to practice reef fish identification.

If you want to soak up the sun…

Ritz-Carlton, Naples, Florida

Florida’s premier luxury family destination offers an array of incredible amenities, including pristine beaches, a world-class spa, outdoor pool, and great restaurants. But best of all for kids is the Ritz’s new Nature’s Wonders program, which allows families to connect with nature through such eco-conscious activities as nature walks, sailing trips, and excursions to animal hospitals. The on-site sanctuary features nine aquariums, including touch tanks where guests can hold turtles and starfish. (ritzcarlton.com)

Coconut Bay Resort and Spa, St. Lucia

Let loose in St. Lucia at this family-oriented beach resort and spa. The kids can stay cool all day at Cocoland, a fun-filled water park; sports aficionados can choose from basketball, volleyball, tennis, and water aerobics; and the most adventurous can try scuba diving or windsurfing. (cbayresort.com)

Loews Miami Beach Hotel, Florida

Of all the lovely Art Deco hotels in South Beach, Loews is the one that is truly welcoming to families. Located close to the beach, its has an attentive, kid-friendly staff, a kids’ camp, a kids’ menu at the hotel restaurant, and, most importantly, a huge wonderful pool with lots of shallow walk-in inlets. (loewshotels.com)


Arizona Biltmore Resort and Spa, Phoenix

Picture yourself soaring through the summer skies on a hot air balloon, getting a helicopter tour of the Grand Canyon, or maybe on a family expedition through the Sonoran desert. Youngsters ages 5-12 will have a blast swimming, biking, creating artwork or sliding down the windy slide at the Kids Korral. (arizonabiltmore.com)


Half Moon, Montego Bay, Jamaica

A wonderful blend of luxury and family-friendly accommodations and activities, Half Moon features an equestrian center, a dolphin lagoon, many swimming pools, and, most notably for parents and children, its Anacy Children’s Village, where there are swings, sandboxes, and activities for kids all day long. (halfmoon.com).

If you want to soak up the snow…

Squaw Valley, Tahoe, Nevada

Squaw Valley boasts a 12,000-square-foot Children’s Facility offering one-stop shopping for skiing and snowboarding lessons for kids ages 3-12. Winter activities in the upper mountain include ice skating, snow tubing, an Olympic museum and dining. The Base Village offers sleigh rides, cross-country skiing and a luxurious health and fitness spa. (squaw.com and squawcreek.com)


The Canyons Resort, Park City, Utah

Located in the legendary ski town of Park City, The Canyons Resort is one of North America’s largest single ski resorts. With 3 world-class lodging properties and 8 mountains for a total of 152 trails, the activities at The Canyons Resort are endless. (thecanyons.com)

Taos Ski Valley, Taos, New Mexico

Taos’ Ski Valley boasts slopes that are not crowded and an array of restaurants offering a variety of cuisines. There’s also a teen center where your kids can play games, eat pizza and watch extreme ski movies. With an average of 300 inches of snow a year and 300-plus days of sunshine, Taos Ski valley is the perfect winter getaway. (skitaos.org)


Windham Mountain, The Catskills, New York

A local family-friendly mountain only a two-and-a-half-hour drive from the city, Windham has recently added more trails, lifts, an ice-skating rink, and a day care program. The resort is also home to the Gwen Allard Adaptive Sports Center, where children and adults with cognitive or physical disabilities can learn to ski or snowboard. (windhammountain.comadaptivesportsfoundation.org)

Arrabelle at Vail Square

Nestled in Colorado’s magnificent Vail Valley lies this family-friendly, action-packed resort. You can hit the slopes, try snow shoeing and snow tubing, ice-skating, and dog-sledding. Make sure to visit Adventure Ridge, a day-and-night activity center situated high atop Vail Mountain. (arrabelle.rockresorts.com)

If you’re looking for a recession-proof getaway…

Carimar Beach Club, Anguilla

Located right on the water of Mead’s Bay, Carimar Beach Club is a great budget-friendly option. The resort has beachfront and beachview one- and two-bedroom villas. Families with children ages 2-12 can use the facilities of the Children’s Place at the upscale Malliouhana Hotel & Spa next door for $25 per day. This supervised outdoor playground includes a 26-foot pirate ship, and a 60-foot water slide. (carimar.com)


Kalaheo Inn, Kaua’i, Hawaii

With very reasonably priced one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments (all with kitchenettes), the Kalaheo Inn will appeal to families looking to get more value for their money. Shops and restaurants are a short walk away, and the inn is a 12-minute drive from lovely Poipu Beach. The inn also stocks plenty of kids’ games, and guests receive complimentary beach towels and toys. (kalaheoinn.com)


Best Western Castaways Resort & Suites, Grand Bahama Island

This resort is located near sandy beaches, championship tennis and golf courses, a nature center, and dolphin swimming. Kids will enjoy exploring the caves at nearby Lucaya National Park. Children under 12 stay free in a parent’s room, and the in-house lounge presents limbo and fire-eating shows several evenings a month. (bestwestern.com)

—Reported by Stacy H. Small, Jonathan Miller, Ahuva Warburg, Shana Lebowitz, and Meredith McGroarty

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