If you are looking for an unusual, fun and educational destination for a family vacation, one of these just might fit the bill.
Hyatt Regency Tamaya (Santa Ana Pueblo, New Mexico):
One of over a dozen Hyatt Regency Spa and Camp resorts across the U.S., this site stretches across nearly 500 acres of the Santa Ana Pueblo’s reservation. It is designed to reflect Native American heritage, with adobe style buildings and southwestern décor. On-site restaurants offer mouth-watering, innovative cuisine from natural, local and sustainable sources.
Families can share in a variety of fun activities, including guided nature walks, horseback riding, golf lessons, movies on the inflatable, outdoor screen, and hot air ballooning with breathtaking views of the Sandia Mountains and the Rio Grande Valley. (There are minimum age requirements for some activities; others, such as sand painting, straw weaving, pony rides, and hay wagon rides are structured for children aged 3 – 12.) Take traditional arts and crafts classes with your kids and make your own adobe brick, pueblo pottery, or stamped copper bracelet to take home as a unique souvenir. An additional attraction is the Geo Tour, an interactive treasure hunt-style game where participants use GPS to locate a cache hidden at a specific coordinate. Relax at the end of the day with a cozy evening around a campfire under a starry sky, while a Santa Ana tribe member shares the Pueblo’s tale of creation. For an especially memorable event, celebrate Feast Day on July 26 with a corn dance in honor of the Pueblo’s patron saint, Saint Ann.
Dinosaur World (Plant City, Florida; Cave City, Kentucky; Glen Rose, Texas):
Conveniently located in three different regions of the U.S., Dinosaur World offers visitors the world’s largest collections of life-sized dinosaur sculptures. You will encounter a wide variety of dinosaurs – including the plant-munching Brachiosaurus, the spiky Stegosaurus, and the fearsome T-Rex – and a herd of ice-age woolly mammoths (in the Florida and Kentucky locations only), all in lush garden settings. Children’s admission includes a 15-minute guided Fossil Dig, where youngsters can find and keep their three favorite fossils. Another fun activity is the Dino Gem Excavation, where visitors pan for real minerals, gems, and arrowheads. Further attractions include playgrounds, covered picnic areas, tours through the Skeleton Garden, which includes a paleontological work site, and the Exploration Cave. Should the day be rainy and less than agreeable for outdoor activities, Dinosaur World has indoor museums filled with genuine and cast prehistoric fossils, an animatronics dinosaur display, a movie cave, and an extensive gift shop.
Unlike many vacation destinations, Dinosaur World welcomes your well-behaved canine family members – on a leash, of course – and even provides water stations for them
For traveling ease, pack everyone’s belongings in quality carry-on luggage like ecbc’s Sparrow Wheeled Garment Bag or Falcon Wheeled Duffle Bag, both of which feature the FastPass® system, allowing you to go through TSA without unpacking your laptop, tablet, camera, or cell phone.
Everyone will want to bring their own device to record their most memorable family vacation ever!