They say it’s mentally challenging to go on a vacation with teens, but boy, are they wrong. Many parents who have found the right combination of letting their young adolescent children experience fun, freedom, and fulfillment realize that traveling with teens is some of the best experiences families could have. Teens, as they explore and have a better sense of things around them, have the capacity to reflect and have wise realizations about themselves and the world they live in. To make the most of teen energy and wisdom, here are some vacation planning tips when traveling with them and some destinations and activities to consider for the best summer vacations with teens.
Vacation Planning Tips When Traveling With Teens
Teens have a mind of their own, so it’s best to involve them early on in planning your vacation. They would truly appreciate that an adult care to honor their freedom and opinions.
1. Ask them about what activities they want to do on their vacation.
Teens will have a lot to say and so many brilliant discoveries to suggest. After all, they are digital natives who know the odds and ends of Google and are always on the lookout for interesting travel updates available on social media.
2. Let them pack their own bags.
Guide your teens with a few basic principles, like what clothes to bring to suit the weather and what customs and norms to respect. But give them the leeway to express their creativity and develop their own personal style through their outfits. This is one of the most exciting things about being a teenager.
3. Include some volunteering in your itinerary.
Volunteering opportunities while you are on vacation will mark your young explorer forever and even affect his life choices in his adulthood. Travel is a great teachable moment that you wouldn’t want to let slip.
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4. Give them a budget to stick to.
Another way of respecting their autonomy and making them learn life skills and resourcefulness is by giving them a budget that they can freely spend on whatever they want. If they exhaust this, then you wouldn’t hand them anything more, so it is essential that they learn to make wise choices.
Five Summer Vacation For Teens
Here are some destinations for the best summer vacations with teens.
1. Adrenaline and Sugar Rush in Las Vegas
What do you mean, Las Vegas? Well, Las Vegas isn’t just about the adult and sleazy. It also has some seriously fun and wholesome activities for all ages, making it possibly one of the best summer vacations with teens. The Las Vegas Strip has heart-pounding rides and roller coasters that your fun-loving teenagers will definitely root for. One of the craziest of these rides is the X-Scream that dangles you at a stratospheric height of more than 900 feet above the Las Vegas Strip. The Stratosphere Hotel, where you can find the X-Scream, is named that way for nothing. The X-Scream is a great way to teach your teenagers to conquer their fear.
Another exciting adventure in Las Vegas is the Richard Petty Driving Experience on the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. After this, you will surely be the coolest parents ever.
Finally, after the adrenaline rush comes the sugar rush. Have rich, creamy milkshakes at the Sugar Factory found at the Miracle Mile Shops in the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino. These are not the usual milkshakes served in a tall glass with a straw. The Sugar Factory treats are humongous, laced with sprinkles and candy, and even birthday candles.
2. Party responsibly on the MSC Meraviglia Cruise
One of the best cruises for teenagers is the MSC Meraviglia which traverses the Caribbean, including Ocho Rios in Jamaica, Georgetown in the Cayman Islands, and Cozumel in Mexico. Sailing from Miami, the seven-night cruise will thrill your teens with action-packed activities and great music to dance to.
The ship has a waterpark with a body slide, a bowling alley, a 4D cinema, two Formula 1 virtual-reality race cars, and a Cirque du Soleil show. It’s truly a feast for the teenage senses. But that’s not all: teens get to meet other young spirited travelers in two teen clubs that segment them into two age groups. One teen club is for 12 to 14-year-olds, while the other is for 15 to 17-year-olds. The latter features air hockey, board games, foosball, table tennis, and more. There’s also a teens-only disco and alcohol-free cocktails!
Hopefully, this cruise teaches your teens to have fun and party responsibly. Head on to Expedia for deals, with the cheapest at $379 per person for October to November.
3. The Algarve, Portugal
The Algarve is best for all ages, with its scenic beach views, natural landscape, abundant dolphin population, and countless things to do. TripAdvisor user reviews list the Villalara Thalassa Resort as particularly teen and family-friendly, with six outdoor pools of fresh and seawater. It also is home to the pioneering Thalassotherapy Spa and Center. Body-conscious teens will love the beach resort’s restaurant offerings of gourmet and low-calorie Portuguese cuisine.
4. Volunteer in Bhutan
The best summer vacations with teens are not only about fun activities but are also about lessons that they will keep in their hearts for life. One of the most fulfilling ways to experience this is through volunteering in local communities while traveling. Get in touch with G Adventures in Bhutan for more about these volunteering activities, which include nature conservation and more, depending on your teenagers’ preference and talents. Everything about Bhutan, from Mount Everest to its street fashion to its people’s Gross Domestic Happiness indicator of national success, is a whole new world.
5. Meet interesting people in Cape Town, South Africa.
The vibrant culture and rhythm of Cape Town, South Africa, and the diversity among its people will be an eye-opening experience for your teenagers. This is one of the best places to meet new people, converse with them about their lives, and dance to their soulful music against a backdrop of rugged cliffs, strikingly colorful villages, and glimmering seas.
These are just a handful out of thousands of suggestions to have the best summer vacations with teens. More than the classroom, travel is a great teacher, and it’s highly recommended that you expose your teens to this beautiful experience early on. But as a parent, it also pays to be deliberate (yet subtle!) in infusing some life lessons while you are on an unforgettable adventure with your precious teens.