(image) Orlando is always a mecca for families, but this is a particularly good summer to go. The city has been going through an enormous expansion period with many new attractions and hotels either newly opened or coming soon. From the wildly anticipated Diagon Alley at Universal Orlando and the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train at Disney World, to a brand new Four Seasons Resort, also at Disney World, there's a lot of new fun to be had.
(image) When it comes to affordable summer destinations, it's hard to beat Scottsdale. When temperatures rise, luxury hotel prices tumble down to the bargain basement in this desert oasis town. Spend the morning at one of the many kid-friendly attractions, then cool off back at your hotel's pool or, more likely, water playground.
(image) This summer there's going to be a lot of brand new fun coming to the City of Brotherly Love. Families will love hanging out at Washington Avenue Pier, a new $2.15 million waterfront park where parents and kids can take in river views from the elevated boardwalk and enjoy live performances. Spruce Street Harbor Park will offer festivals, concerts, and movies on the Great Plaza all summer long. At the Philadelphia Zoo, the world's mightiest felines are roaming through Big Cat Crossing, a first-in-the-world overhead animal trail system. Reaching heights of up to 17 feet, the steel mesh extends from Big Cat Falls above the zoo's main visitor path, allowing the large cats more freedom to roam while giving visitors a safe and unusual perspective at ground level.
Find out what else is new and notable for summer 2014 in Philadelphia:
(image) Looking for a fun and educational getaway for your long summer holiday weekends? There may be no more patriotic place to be for Memorial Day or July 4th weekend than Baltimore, which is celebrating the 200th anniversary of Francis Scott Key's penning of what became our national anthem. All summer long, the city delivers an impressive roster of family-friendly events and activities, from daily cannon firings and flag raisings at Fort McHenry to a 500-foot-long display of sidewalk art that gives a line-by-line interpretation of the Star-Spangled Banner, to a video retrospective at the Babe Ruth Birthplace Museum of the national anthem played at baseball games.
(image) Ready to kick off your summer? Memorial Day weekend offers a terrific opportunity to begin the season with a bang, and we've got some great examples of getaways that will get your season off to an epic start.
Back by popular demand, a 24-hour bi-coastal celebration is planned at Disney World's Magic Kingdom and both parks at the Disneyland Resort in California. Or how about spending the holiday weekend in Vermont at the wonderful Tyler Place Family Resort, home of the best children's program I've ever encountered? You could ring in summer in the Colorado Rockies, where The Broadmoor offers myriad ways for families to enjoy the outdoors together. For more fabulous options, see:
(image) What's your favorite beach getaway in the Golden State? Over the coming months, we'll be highlighting dozens of our favorite kid-friendly beach destinations around the country and beyond.
We're continuing our series with California, whose celebrated coastline offers an abundance of family-friendly beach towns. Here's a starter list of fabulously kid-friendly beach towns--with many more to come, so watch this space:
(image) Got kids? Like family vacations? While you probably don't visit About.com Family Vacations every day, there are easy ways to make sure you never miss a getaway idea, piece of family vacation advice, or a terrific getaway deal:
(image) Will the hurricane season of 2014 be quieter than normal or unusually active? It seems to depend on whom you ask. Experts have started issuing predictions for the coming hurricane season. While some say that 2014 will bring fewer hurricanes than normal, at least one pundit is predicting a busier-than-normal season. The bad news: That pessimistic forecast comes from the only expert to get it right last year.
I'll be keeping you posted on predictions for the 2014 hurricane season, so watch this space. The National Hurricane Center will weigh in next month.
(image) Where does your family love to get your fill of beach time? Over the coming months, we'll be highlighting dozens of our favorite kid-friendly beach destinations around the country and beyond.
We're continuing our series on the glorious Gulf Coast, known for its sugary beaches and sparkling turquoise waters. Here's a starter list of fabulously kid-friendly beach towns--with many more to come, so watch this space:
(image) Does your family have a go-to beach or are you open to some fresh ideas? Over the coming months, we'll be highlighting dozens of our favorite family beach destinations around the country and beyond.
We're kicking off our series in the sunny Southeast, home to a dazzling array of awesome possibilities from the Carolinas to the tip of Florida and up the Gulf Coast. Here's a starter list of wonderfully kid-friendly beach towns--with many more to come, so watch this space: