8 Best Family Vacation Trips For Outdoor Adventure

best family vacation spots

Families who enjoy outdoor sabbatical sometimes find it difficult to single out the best vacation spots with kids in tow.

Nevertheless, there are some amazing destinations that are perfect for families, offering a mix of adventure, and adrenalin pumping experiences.

When it comes to planning a family adventure vacation, finding the best travel spot that caters to everyone’s interests and needs can be a pretty challenging task.

There are plenty destinations worth noting on your rousing lists. Perhaps, you would consider these top vacation places for a fun and spine-tingling family adventure.

best family vacation spots for outdoor adventure

1. Monteverde, Costa Rica

tree top adventure

If you like zip lining as an adventure, Original Canopy Tour located in Costa Rica is a great option for you. The location is host to Costa Rica’s native cloud forest and offer visitors the chance to get up and personal with them.

The firm meets the strictest safety standards, so you can be pretty much assured (safety) while being strapped into your harnesses and zipping along from tree to tree.

It’s labeled a tour (approx 2hrs 30mins) because it feels like you’re going over stages as you fly through the forest canopy and valley. Keep a lookout for monkeys, sloths and local birds as you go.

The stages (tour) consist of a succession of platforms set among the cloud forest’s towering trees. There are 12 platforms, 14 horizontal traverses (ziplines), one vertical fall (repel), and one Tarzan Swing on this course.

The Superman flight (my favorite stunt) gives you that plunging sensation before you jump off the edge and glide like an Eagle with your back harness securely hooked to the cable.

When you reach the platform, hop on a rope ladder and repel down to the ground, followed by climbing up inside a giant hollow fig tree toward another platform.

This is the part where you start your zip lining tour connecting 7 lines, each becoming longer as you breeze past tons of trees. The final cable is pretty long, extending half a mile back to where the starting point.

As you glide across the terrain, you feel as if all your worries, anxieties and fears have vanished into the treetop adventure park’s cloud forest and its ecosystem.

Things to do at Canopy Tour:
  • Monteverde Cloud Forest
  • Gravity Fall in Lost Canyon, Arenal
  • Arenal Oasis Eco Lodge and Wildlife Refuge
  • Rainforest Tour, Jaco

The Original Canopy Tree Tour is set up in dense cloud forest and you’ll get the jungle feel while zip lining through it. The firm also provide free hotel pick-up around Montverde.  

2. North-Western Italy

When you’re geared up for a family adventure, the geology and wilderness of Italy holds the key if you opt to plunge into a memorable outdoor experience.

There are a ton of vacation spots in Northwestern Italy, close to the French border, where you can select sensational outdoor activities for the whole family. 

I would suggest canyoning, which is probably a great idea for an ultimate family travel adventure. You can explore spectacular gorges close to Arco, located at the northern end of Lake Garda in Lombardy.

Things to do in Arco:

  • Via Ferratas for beginners
  • Rock Climbing at Lake Garda
  • Hiking at Piedmont

3. Ouray, Colorado

family vacation spots

The newly-formed Via Ferrata route (2020) was added in Ouray, adjacent to the Uncompahgre Gorge in Colorado with outdoor family adventure trips in mind.

Via Ferrata, which means “Iron Road” in Italian, is a pretty awesome approach to climbing over rocks and with this astonishing new attraction, the fun lasts from winter to summer in Ouray.

The trail is expected to be the first free public Via Ferrata in the US, built to strict safety standards and is meant to meet all current ASTM and CEN (European) safety requirements.

Things to do in Ouray:

  • Ouray Hot Springs Swimming Pool
  • Hiking to San Juan mountains
  • Free 13mins Gondola ride to Telluride town station
  • Whitewater Rafting at Gunnison River

4. Chiang Mai, Thailand

family vacation spots

If you are traveling to Bangkok and fancy an outdoor family vacations at the same time, glide over to the northern province of Chiang Mai. The city is my favorite playground with tons of activities and attractions for the whole family.

With so many ziplining variations on the tree tops in Chiang Mai, you’re bound to find one that appeals to your sense of adventure for the whole family.

These zipline adventure parks have well-trained staffs to assist toddlers to elderly and offer access to native cloud forests and natural parks. 

Things to do in Chiang Mai:

  • Eagle Track Zipline In Maerim
  • Skyline Adventure in Doi Saket mountain
  • Jungle Flight near Chiang Mai city

Tips: Ziplining requires signature guidelines such as footwear. To find out more about the stuff you need to bring, slide over to my tree top adventure post for a super safe trip.

5. Soca Valley, Slovenia

White Water rafting on the Soca River in Slovenia is arguably one of the best in Europe. Perfect for a thrilling family adventure.

You can choose to experience more or less adrenaline rush by tackling II, III as well as extreme III+ rapids.

The scenic Soca Valley may stake a claim to being Slovenia’s outdoor adventure capital, and river rafting exploration in the Soca River’s mesmerizingly blue waters is pretty sensational.

Things to do in Soca Valley:

  • Canyoning In Grmecica Canyon
  • Exploring Cross Cave In Lož Valley
  • Hiking In Lake Bohinj

6. UK, Scotland

Go ape treetop adventure can be found in 34 beautiful urban forests and woodlands in the UK and Scotland including rugged moors and Robin Hood’s iconic Major Oak stronghold in Sherwood Forest.

If you’re on the lookout for exhilarating outdoor adventure and bucket loads of children activities, Go Ape is the ideal choice for family fun. Its Tree Top Adventure Plus is specially catered for kids over 6 years old. 

The thing is that this adrenalin park operator is becoming a magnet for teens and parents with kids eager for an amazing experience near urban locale to National Parks.

There must be a ton of outdoor things to do such as Forest Segways, Nets Adventure and The Plummet, in addition to ziplining. Most of the locations are easily accessible by road. 

The exhilarating tree trek Treetop Challenge is actually pretty cool, offering adults and teens a tree adventure consisting of wobbly bridges, Tarzan swings and speedy zip lining.

This tour is pretty higher up (ground level) with more wobbling and difficult crossings before zip lining. It’s one of those moments that makes you wanting for more tree top adventures in a tranquil forest setting.

Things to do at Go Ape Adventure Park:
  • Axe Throwing 
  • Off Road Forest Segway in Tilgate Park 
  • Tree top bouncy Nets Adventure at Alice Holt
  • The Plummet

7. Banff National Park, Canada

family activity holidays

Some of Canada’s most beautiful mountain bike trails can be found in Banff National Park. You might want to take the family for a lakeside ride or just enjoy rows of panoramic tree-line bicycle path.

For bikers of all ages and skill levels, there are numerous off-road alternatives. The normal season for road and mountain biking is from May to October but some of them are open as early as March.

When the trails and roads are covered in snow, fat biking is a pretty nice alternative for both adults and children. Typical mountain bike tires would slump in the snow but fat tires will keep the bike a float.

Banff free bike valet service is situated on Banff Avenue in front of the Banff Visitor Center and is open from 10am to 6pm. (224 Banff Ave.) Head over to the Park’s website for biking matters. More top outdoor activities to do, I would suggest in Banff National Park.

  • Paddling at glacier fed lakes
  • Gondola ride up to the alpine
  • Backcountry hiking at lakes and mountain pass

8. Wailuku, Hawaii

family vacation spots

The Tropical Plantation’s stunning scenery located in Wailuku is home to Maui Zipline Company, Hawaii newest adventure course that is super family-oriented and short distance from some eco-retreat cabin rentals in Maui.

This unique 5 parallel lines (300 to 900 feet long) zipline adventure features a full guided tour starting with a short trek in the tropical plantation overlooking Haleakala volcano and the West Maui mountains.

The cool thing about Maui zipline tours is that on each zipline, you’ll be accompanied by expert guides who will provide knowledge about Maui’s distinctive flora, biodiversity and customs of Hawaii.

Maui Zipline Company is more like Disneyland adventure park, where you can glide over beautiful landscape tropical gardens, lagoon with spectacular mountain and volcano views. 

The zipline tour is pretty safe and appropriate for the entire family, with kids as young as five years old can participate. The garden also provides a relaxing retreat if you’re not keen on zip lining.

Things to do in Maui:
  • The Country Market
  • Local-Fruit Crack Seed Candies
  • MĀLAMA Studio
  • Cafe O’Lei At The Mill House

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