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Travel with children under the age of 3

NJ
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Travel with children under the age of 3

Can anyone suggest options for a family traveling with children under the age of 3? Ideally, the location would include activities suitable for preschool aged children and restaurants that are child-friendly. Looking forward to some feedback!

Newbury Park...
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1. Re: Travel with children under the age of 3

How far are you willing to travel by plane or by car? Do you want to leave the country or stay stateside?

NJ
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2. Re: Travel with children under the age of 3

Preferably, we would like a plane trip of 4 or less hours or maybe a road trip with decent places to stop. I just cringed while thinking of a long road trip with 2 kids under 3!! But I suppose it's a possibility. We had a scary experience with our daughter getting very sick while we were in the Bahamas, so I'm a bit wary of traveling anywhere with less than optimal health care availability. Thank you for responding.

Newbury Park...
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3. Re: Travel with children under the age of 3

It's a bit longer of a flight but I love San Diego. They have plenty of family friendly hotels in the area - many with family suites, pools, beaches, the zoo, and many restaurants.

Scottsdale, AZ also has a lot of hotels choices as well with water park like pools areas, kid clubs and again plenty of restaurant choices.

We have found trick to traveling with our kids is to give yourself extra time on everything and hotels like the Embassy Suites are a life saver at bedtimes with the two rooms. Also have a fridge in the room and a microwave really help out.

Charleston, South...
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4. Re: Travel with children under the age of 3

DISNEYWORLD?

Charleston (my hometown) is nice in the Spring and Fall. Myrtle Beach? Some of the All-inclusives in the Islands are very kid friendly.

NJ
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5. Re: Travel with children under the age of 3

I love San Diego and agree that it would be an excellent destination, but I don't think we're up to that flight yet. I don't know much at all about Scotsdale yet. I'll look into flight lengths to see if it is manageable for us. We are considering Disney, but have some concerns that most of the attractionos are too mature/difficult for children under 3. We may do it anyway. Any suggestions for Disney travel with a preschooler & toddler? Any ideas about where to go in Charleston or Myrtle Beach? Thank you so much for your input.

Minneapolis
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6. Re: Travel with children under the age of 3

We stayed at the Hyatt Coconut Plantation in Bonita Springs Florida last Feb. with my daughter who was 2-1/2 at the time. You fly into Ft. Myers. They have several pools - specific to kids one is zero entry and the other is just a toddler pool. The also have a lazy river. There is also a big playset too. There are all one and two bedroom suites and have a kitchen. It is really the most ideal spot. The only downside it the weather. It was cool when we were there as Florida isn't that predictable in FEB/March we have found. Not ON the water - just a little ferry ride (they provide) to the water. Prices are pretty spendy - $400-$600 a night but really worth it and not only is it kid friendly but also very nice resort. You can also use facilities at the Hyatt hotel next door because the Coconut Plantation doesn't have resturants yet because it is new. There is also a huge outdoor mall just outside the property too with lots of eating options (CA Pizza kitchen, etc.) - easy with kids) and also good shopping incase the weather is bad.

We are just trying to decide if we should book again this year or try something a little more tropical so I am also open to more options like this one in the Caribbean or anywhere else....

NJ
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7. Re: Travel with children under the age of 3

We actually loved The Atlantis in the Bahamas except that when our preschooler became quite ill, we were not comforted by the available medical assistance. We went there once with our older child, and were just there in Oct with both kids and my parents-in-law. Very child friendly, tons of pools, lazy river and water slides, indoor and outdoor aquarium viewing that is amazing... Also a little pricey but you can join their email list for specials, which can be quite good. Even considering our recent experience with a sick child, we loved it there and will likely return in the future- with or without the kids in tow! Good luck and thanks for the feedback, I'll check it out.

Minneapolis
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8. Re: Travel with children under the age of 3

Were you able to get a suite, 1 bedroom or at least separate sleeping area at Atlantis?

We have thought a lot about Atlantis too. We stayed at Sandals a few years ago(it was horrible)! We checked out Atlantis while we were there and were so sad we didn't stay there instead. I am concerned about being out of the country with kids and getting sick, etc. - that is why Florida was more appealing and why Mexico is out of the question for us now.

I have been to Phoenix a couple times a year most of my life and that is typically climate wise a good option and Scottsdale is a really fun area with lots to do and has many resorts... that is on our list too.

Apple Valley, CA
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9. Re: Travel with children under the age of 3

I will chime in here since we have a 4 and 1 year old and enjoy vacationing with them.

We have only flown once with our kids and that was when our oldest was 15 months (hence, we only had him!) and that was to the east coast, but we HAD to go for a wedding. Other than that, we prefer to vacation to destinations within only a few hours drive by car. Being in SoCal, that's not hard to do, but in NJ you are in a great location too! I know young parents are so anxious to go about life as they want, but when the kids are very young like this it really is just easier to stick closer to home.

That being said, wherever you go, I'd encourage you to try to stay at timeshare type accomodations. Why? Room, room and more room. We are sooooo spoiled by the 2 master suite timeshares we have stayed at, it is just so very comfortable. The kids have their own bedroom, we have ours and the kids have a family room and whole condo to run around!! We have only stayed at Marriott timeshares and they are very nice. The amenities are abundant and rooms nicely appointed. There are some fabulous ones in Williamsburg area, Hilton Head and tons in Florida.

(I'm thinking locations not terribly far from you).

There's even a great one in downtown Boston, although they are just 1 bedroom units.

We own a single week at a Marriott property and I must tell you we are getting spoiled by this vacation lifestyle. No, I don't work for Marriott timeshare sales, we just really enjoy ours.

I would encourage you to look at websites like redweek.com, tug2.net and myresortnetwork.com for timeshare rentals. The prices they are listed for are almost always well below what you'd pay if you were renting straight from Marriott or Wyndham or whatever the property is. We eat most of our meals in our condo because we just think it's not worth the effort and cost to go to restaurants when our daughter stays in her high chair all of 15 minutes (if we are lucky). Even if you don't plan on cooking, it's awfully nice to have a full kitchen for breakfast and sometimes lunch.

A young family, when they can afford it, is an ideal candidate for timesharing because of the room these properties offer families.

To give you an idea of how much space I'm talking about, the Marriott timeshare we most frequent is 1450 sq. ft. for the two bedroom we always get. It feels like our vacation home it's so big and we now know the property so well.

Just my thoughts!

-Janna

Apple Valley, CA
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10. Re: Travel with children under the age of 3

BTW, don't worry about a location having tons to do for small children. In my experience, kids are just thrilled to be somewhere different that has a pool!

Kids really are less maintenance on vacation that we give them credit for. That's my experience anyway.

-Janna