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Finding family-friendly cities for vacation is easier said than done. It can be difficult to find locations that suit adults and kids of varying ages. After all, the point of a family trip is to ensure everyone enjoys themselves. Theme parks, cruises and all-inclusive resorts, while great choices, aren’t your only option for family fun.

Buffalo, NY

The Queen City is in the middle of a resurgence, making it a must-stop destination even if only for one day. Despite being the second largest city in NY, Buffalo has a medium-sized population and is far more residential than most people realize. Its bustling waterfront and outdoor spaces are great additions to the city’s downtown region.

Catch a Bisons Game

Despite being home to its share of major league sports teams, Buffalonians eagerly await spring for more than just a reprieve from the snow. Spring sees the start of the Buffalo Bisons minor league baseball season. Besides great baseball, Sahlen Field also has some of Buffalo’s best classic dishes to enjoy before or during the game.

Visit Canalside

This downtown destination is a must-see in any season. Canalside offers ice skating and curling during the winter months and a sandy play area, watersports rentals and numerous festivals during the warmer seasons. Kids will enjoy hands-on fun and learning at the Explore and More Children’s Museum, which opened a brand-new facility at Canalside in 2019.

Enjoy the Outdoors at the Outer Harbor

Just a five-minute drive from downtown is Outer Harbor, one of the areas that has seen significant redevelopment in recent years. Here, families can enjoy the beautiful sights of Lake Erie at Wilkeson Pointe, take a walk at Tift Nature Preserve and rent bikes at Lakeside Bike Park.

Islamorada, Florida

For families looking for relaxation and adventure near the water, Islamorada is the ultimate paradise. Located between Key West and Miami, this quant Florida Keys village is chock full of experiences visitors of all ages won’t want to miss.

Hit the Beach at Founder’s Park

Founder’s Park is a local favorite that welcomes tourists. For a small entrance fee, out-of-towners can enjoy prime beachfront access to the Cotton Key Basin. The park also offers several amenities onsite, including tiki huts, picnic tables, grills, a pavilion, a beach volleyball court, playgrounds, and restroom and shower facilities. Visitors can also use the Olympic-size pool and splash pad for an additional fee.

Dive Into Watersports

Being in the Keys, Islamorada is a haven for watersports enthusiasts and eager adventure-seekers of all ages. Tour operators in Islamorada take guests snorkeling, parasailing, cruising and fishing around nearby reefs. Even kids can partake in many of these activities!

Meet Aquatic Animals at Theater of the Sea

For a more laid-back activity, families should plan a day to visit Theater of the Sea, one of the oldest marine mammal facilities in the world. The lagoons and tropical gardens are home to all kinds of rescue animals, including dolphins, sharks, alligators, sea lions and macaws. Guests can walk through the park, watch live shows and interact with many of the animals.

Taste Florida Keys Cuisine

The Florida Keys has a unique culinary scene inspired by the region’s unique history and local waters. Families can enjoy options both kids and adults will love at The Green Turtle Inn, The Nest Sports Bar & Grill and Kaiyo Grill & Sushi.

Morgantown, West Virginia

Morgantown sits on the outskirts of the Appalachian Mountains along the Monongahela River. Known as the home of West Virginia University, Morgantown offers families an escape from the hustle and bustle of a big city. Its rolling hills and mountain ranges are perfect for families looking for an outdoor getaway.

Watch the West Virginia Black Bears In Action

The baseball team, that is. The West Virginia Black Bears are back-to-back 2022 and 2023 MLB Draft League champions. Come summer, Kendrick Family Ballpark is filled with families ready to see these prospects defend the team’s title.

Explore Natural Wonders at WVU Core Arboretum

WVU Core Arboretum is a free-to-visit public greenspace with a botanical garden. It’s a popular spot with locals for hiking and nature walks with over three miles of paths. Families can explore on their own or join an educational tour to learn more about the region’s flora and fauna.

Camp Out at Coopers Rock State Forest

About 20 minutes east of Morgantown is one of the best parks in West Virginia. Coopers Rock State Forest boasts jaw-dropping views of the Appalachian Mountains and unforgettable white water rafting out of the Cheat River. The park has two campgrounds—one for tents and the other for RVs.

Springdale, Arkansas

Deep in the Ozarks is Springdale, Arkansas, one of the fastest-growing cities in the country. This small town is on the rise and provides many opportunities for families to enjoy the great outdoors together.

See the Northwest Arkansas Naturals

The Northwest Arkansas Naturals MiLB baseball team plays at Arvest Ballpark. Between innings, little ones can enjoy the Kids Zone, Little Arvest Ballpark, which has a mini-golf course, train and inflatables. A free kids’ playground is also available behind the batter’s eye in center field.

Take a Ride on the Arkansas & Missouri Railroad

See the beauty of the Ozarks in a whole new way on the Arkansas & Missouri Railroad. This freight train takes passengers over trestle bridges and through tunnels. The passenger excursions run throughout spring and summer, with special rides available in the fall and around Christmas time.

Kick Back at Lake Fayetteville Park

Nearby Lake Fayetteville offers a day of fun for all ages. Kids and adults will love casting a line in the lake to fish for local bass, taking a paddle in a kayak rental or floating in a pontoon. There are also miles of stroller-friendly paved trails around the lake for walkers and bikers, as well as picnic and pavilion spaces to rest at.

Las Vegas, NV

Las Vegas may not be the first city that comes to mind when you think of kid-friendly vacation spots. But as one of the world’s premier entertainment epicenters, the city has an endless array of activities for everyone in the family, no matter their age or interests.

Customize Your Own Candy

Las Vegas just so happens to have several major candy brand attractions on the Strip, including Hershey’s Chocolate World and M&M’s World. Both sweet spots allow guests to customize their candy with names, messages and even colors.

Learn Through Play at the Discovery Children’s Museum

Discovery Children’s Museum has nine different themed zones, each with a specific focus. From learning about the power of water and energy to making unique 3D creations in the tech lab, there are endless opportunities for educational fun.

Catch an Iconic Show

There are plenty of kid-friendly shows in Las Vegas. World-class entertainers put on unforgettable productions for guests of all ages. The high-flying trapeze Cirque du Soleil and medieval jousts at Excalibur’s Tournament of Kings are a guaranteed blast for all audiences.

Asheville, NC

Nestled among the Appalachian Mountains, Asheville offers ample outdoor fun. It’s the perfect place to stay while your family enjoys day trips to the neighboring Blue Ridge Mountains and historic Biltmore Estate.

Experience the Biltmore Estate

Often seen as an adult-oriented destination, the famous Biltmore Estate actually has a lot of kid-friendly activities. The country home of George Vanderbilt was constructed in the late 1800s and the beautiful estate offers sprawling lawns and gardens to explore, as well as guided tours.

Take the Plunge Down Sliding Rock

A short, scenic drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway will lead you to Sliding Rock. Located in Pisgah National Forest, this 60-foot natural water slide sends adventure-seekers plunging down the waterfall like a waterslide into an eight-foot-deep section below.

Pan for Gold at Emerald Village

While you’re on Blue Ridge Parkway, head over to Emerald Village in nearby Little Switzerland, NC. This historic mining museum allows families to explore real mines on guided tours, learn the history of mining in the region and even pan for gold.

New Orleans, LA

Much more than a Mardi Gras destination, New Orleans is a great family vacation spot. Music, history, art, culture and cuisine collide in a temperate climate that offers year-round fun for the whole family.

Meet Animals at the Audubon Nature Institute

The Audubon Nature Institute oversees the zoo, insectarium and newly opened aquarium located throughout the city. These world-class institutions encourage children to learn and explore through animal encounters and educational tours.

Party On at Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World

Go behind the scenes of the annual pre-Lenten festival to experience a kid-friendly version of Mardi Gras in the Lower Garden District. See the ornate floats, animated characters and costumes that fill the streets every February.

Play With Beloved Characters at Storyland

Captain Hook, Pinocchio and more than a dozen other beloved characters come to life in City Park’s Storyland. The charming storybook-themed playground is every child’s dream and a heartwarming walk down memory lane for the adults in your group.