The top kid-friendly tourist destinations around the world
Planning a vacation is no easy task, and deciding where you're going to go and what you're going to see can be even trickier when you're traveling with kids. I've experienced firsthand just how much changes when your travels include toting a toddler around. But one of the most amazing aspects of having a child is seeing the world through his or her eyes. It's cliche, sure, but that's because it's true.
To help families with the trip-planning process, Australian-based Budget Direct Travel Insurance did some digging and put together a comprehensive list (with neat maps, too) of the best tourist attractions for kids around the world according to TripAdvisor reviews.
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Notable spots include Central Park in New York City, the Panama Canal, the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland and the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway in South Africa. There are even a number of theme parks, museums and animal sanctuaries on the list.
In North America, for example, natural attractions including bays and beaches dominated the list. Across the pond in Europe, the map is a more varied mix of parks and gardens; museums and historic old towns; and waterfalls and lakes.
For travelers with their sights set on Australia, there's an extra-detailed map of the Land Down Under that features more than 50 destinations (think: the Koala Hospital in New South Wales and the Hervey Bay Historical Village and Museum in Queensland).
There's really something for every type of traveler. And the information they've provided is a great starting point if you're looking to plan your next family vacation.
I visited Tikal in Guatemala nearly a decade ago, for example, and would love to take my 4-year-old daughter back. It's a stunning archeological playground. And astoundingly, it's estimated that only 15% of the ancient Mayan citadel has been excavated.
I've also been to Jardín Japonés (Buenos Aires Japanese Gardens) in Argentina, and can attest to the fact that it would be a fantastic place to spend an afternoon with a child. Considered one of the largest Japanese gardens outside Japan, little ones will love the whimsical sculptures, water features and, of course, the beautifully manicured gardens.
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Even if you don't find an attraction that fits your upcoming travels, the maps are great for inspiration. You could even sneak in a geography lesson if you decide to peruse them with your kids!
Have you taken your family to any of these spots? I know my list of travel "to-dos" just grew!