Skip to Content

How to create memorable vacations with your kids

How to create memorable vacations with your kids

Last summer I read an article about how to maximize vacation happiness (I think it was this one, but I am not sure). Anyway… several of the points stood out to me as ways we can all ensure that as summer draws to a close, we have stories to tell about the memories we made this summer.

Yes, there are ways to shape your summer, so here’s how to create memorable vacations with your kids instead of… well, National Lampoon… unless, of course, that’s the kind of memories you’re hoping to create!

create memorable vacations

How to create memorable vacations with your kids

The first step is to build anticipation towards an event or outing. We humans derive so much pleasure simply from anticipating a positive event. Don’t think this ship has sailed just because it’s August! There’s still days, weekends, and Labor Day to anticipate! Even if your children started school, anticipating end-of-summer fun when they get off the bus is exciting, don’t you think! So… plan out a few things you can do with your kids this summer – and throughout the year! Involve your children in the planning process!

As you plan, talk it up! Ask questions, research facts and information if needed, create a folder or bulletin board (or Pinterest board) to collect the details.

Read books about your destination – we love to read camping books all year long so we can relive memories and look forward to the next year’s adventures!

You’ll likely have several ideas by now… I encourage you to do something new or unique on your list! Research shows we tend to value unique experiences, so go for it! (Dare I insert a little YOLO here?)

Create Memorable Vacations

Once you’ve enjoyed your trip, event, experience, or whatever you chose to do, guard against comparing when you share it with others. Playing the comparison game only steals the joy of your moment. Honestly? Sometimes for me, this means I have to put down the camera and enjoy the moment. Hence, my dearth of vacation photos in this post! 🙂

Generally, we remember beginnings and endings the most, and tend to muddle up the middle.The end of summer is perfect timing to plan a go-out-with-a-bang activity for your family! Going on a much-anticipated vacation or activity at the end of summer, means it’ll leave a more lasting impression!

Tell your story well. We all have the choice of what story to tell. Now, this isn’t about “faking it” or creating an unrealistically perfect “Insta-world.” It’s about choosing to focus on what matters in the end. Choosing to see opportunity instead of disaster.

Maybe your child did throw up on you in the tent, and maybe you did have to see a chiropractor for back pain midway through your camping trip (more on that in the next post!). Instead of focusing on bumps in the road, choose the best and most exciting parts of your vacation to tell and retell.

Like how your five year old swam with you to the island in the middle of the lake.

And how you stayed up late making monkey bread over the campfire, or canoed through a forest of lilypads.

Selecting which stories to highlight is a great chance to model to our children how to focus on the positive.

All this retelling… be sure to capture it, but from your child’s perspective. Mom and dads, now that you’ve done all that planning and created memorable vacations for your kids, let them share their tales with you! Have your children create their own book about their experiences! We’ve had great times reliving our Washington D. C. trip by reading the book my 5 year old drew and wrote about our trip.

create a memorable vacation

PIN THIS–> to your parenting or vacation Pinterest boards to remind yourself how to create a memorable vacation with kids EVERY time you travel!

So where will your summer take you? What’s your ultimate family adventure!? Share in the comments!

April Yap

Sunday 29th of January 2017

Nice read! I agree that building anticipation builds up the hype for the kids. My Parents used to bring us to some camping trips from time to time and our dad would tell us some scary camping stories and it makes the trip more memorable! One time when were trekking at the Yellowstone park my dad would share us some random memories about the place and it just makes the experience way better!

Sand Casting: Capture Beach Memories with Kids - Melissa & Doug

Friday 29th of July 2016

[…] details. Then, ask the kids to retell their favorite moment of the day. Try these ideas for how to create memorable vacations with your kids through storytelling […]