Vacation Ideas for Toddlers

by Heather Rutherford

According to Dr. Robyn Fivush of the Emory University, most children develop their first memory of detailed events between the ages of two and four. Since vacations are often very memorable events, in general, these vacation ideas for toddlers may develop into your child's first memory. The perfect vacation also doubles as a unique learning experience for the whole family.

Black Hills, South Dakota

The Black Hills of South Dakota are aptly named for their curiously dark appearance on the horizon of an otherwise flat state. Within the Black Hills a family can find ample nature trails, fishing holes, warm lakes and even a few national monuments like Mount Rushmore Memorial Park and the Crazy Horse Monument. Families can also enjoy touring the depths of the Wind Caves, searching for free roaming buffalo or checking out an active archeological mammoth dig and museum.
In the nearest city, Rapid City, toddlers can visit an animatronic dinosaur museum as well as the more traditional fossil museum. Also in Rapid City is a large park full of storybook creatures called Storybook Island. Let your toddlers play in the three little pigs' houses or send them on a slide down a little old lady's large shoe. Afterwards, consider visiting the nearby reptile museum to see, and occasionally touch, a variety of creepy crawlies that any toddler will love. For an all encompassing summer vacation, the Black Hills make for quite the adventure.

Farm Vacations

All across the United States there is a new type of family-friendly vacation popping up everywhere. In nearly every state it is now possible to take your toddler to a genuine working farm for a vacation. While on the farm, each family member will gain an opportunity to milk cows, collect eggs and pet some cute and furry farm animals. Many farms also offer the ability to harvest fruits and vegetables dependent upon the season. Families have the ability to stay on the farm for several days learning new crafts and skills. Toddlers will surely remember the time they milked a cow or rode a horse for years to come.

Big City Adventure

Every big city hosts a plethora of interesting adventures for any toddler year-round. Luckily, big cities often prove exciting for parents as well. Get a hotel room downtown in an interesting city and make the most of what is offered in relation to your child's interests. Catch a concert or sporting event that your child has appreciated on television. Find a kid-friendly, interactive or science museum. Check out some local street music and performances. Visit a nearby zoo or aquarium to peak a toddler's interest in animals. You may even research any local observatories that allow children to peer through the gigantic telescopes at the cosmos. As long as the activity caters to your toddler's interests, he will be thrilled.

Atlantis Resort

The Travel Channel recently revealed their picks for the top ten family-friendly resorts. At number one was Atlantis Resort and Casino in the Bahamas. While a casino does not seem like one of the best vacation ideas for toddlers, for the water-loving tot, Atlantis is king. With a plethora of small kiddy pools, a lazy winding river, and a chance to check out the fish and sharks from within the walls of the resort, few places offer a safer way for toddlers to have fun in the water. If your toddler has hit her third birthday, she can also enjoy feeding some of the fish herself. However, your kids do not need to have an interest in sea life to enjoy Atlantis. There are several kid-friendly events, a movie theater, a large library and even in-room babysitting for mom and dad to catch a private event of their own.

About the Author

Heather Rutherford has enjoyed writing professionally since 2004. Her articles have appeared in ModernMom.com, DailyLife.com, ParentsHut.com, Trails.com and On-the-News. She also works intimately with several small businesses to prepare business plans and other marketing materials. Rutherford is seeking an Associate of Arts in business from North Idaho College.