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Old 02-26-2018, 06:26 PM
 
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I was also going to recommend Honolulu but you mentioned that you didn't like the heat. There's lots to do in Honolulu besides the obvious. There's Iolani Palace and the Bishop Museum, as well as an observatory. Plenty of history to explore besides all the outdoors stuff and the botanical gardens.

At the other end, how about Vermont? There are a number of luxury resorts and they offer all kinds of activities in the summer. Von Trapp Lodge, Snuggler's Notch, etc. Off grounds visits include Warren G. Harding's home, Ben and Jerry's, Lake swimming. There's a wonderful bike trail in Stowe for beginners, alpine slide for the kids, maple syrup and cider press and Cabot Cheese factory. You can visit Burlington and take a boat ride along Lake Champlain.
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Old 02-26-2018, 06:33 PM
 
Location: Coastal Georgia
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Send the kids to an active camp, and you and hubby go to a resort with spa.
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Old 02-26-2018, 06:50 PM
 
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This year, decide on a place you and your husband have yearned to visit, in this country. Teach the kids what's so great about that place. Have them watch videos and read up on it. Tell them that in 2019 the 12-year old will be 13, and old enough to weigh in on where he wants to go on vacation with the family, and tell the 11-year old that in 2020 she will be 13, and it will be her turn to weigh in. Make them understand that privileges come with advanced age! And I'm suggesting all that without being a parent myself , but I know that I, as a an 11/12-year old, would have accepted that explanation.
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Old 02-26-2018, 09:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hertfordshire View Post
That's how I remember life growing up. Parents were paying, so they got to pick our vacations. We could figure out how to enjoy ourselves or not. If we weren't enjoying ourselves, that was fine, we just had to be silent about it. Our family definitely wasn't a democracy. I survived. LOL
Yep. My mom and dad enjoyed camping so that’s what we did. Primitive camping—there was a girls’ group of shrubs and a boys’ group of shrubs for nature calls.
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Old 02-27-2018, 03:22 AM
 
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Everyone's likes/dislikes even in a family aren't going to be exactly the same. Do you take a yearly vacation? If this is a yearly family thing then perhaps take turns in the sense of one year find something that is more towards your husband's likes, then another year - yours, then another year - your 12 year olds, then another year your 11 year-olds. Or, each family member writes a 1 destination they want to go on a piece of paper (within reason, of course), fold it in half, and stick it in a hat and someone draws from the hat to determine the destination of the vacation. Maybe cut up straws and the one who draws the shortest/longest straw gets to choose or something like that.

Deciding on something I would imagine could be a challenge, but not everything at every destination is going to make everyone 100% happy. Striving for perfect will wear you out.
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Old 02-27-2018, 09:29 AM
 
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I agree with the poster who suggested a cruise. A cruise has a little bit of something for everyone. There's a few different ports so you can figure out your ports of call and go from there.
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Old 02-27-2018, 12:28 PM
 
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You should ditch your husband and travel with someone who is curious about the world. He is your life partner but doesn’t have to be your travel partner.
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Old 02-27-2018, 02:58 PM
 
Location: Omaha, Nebraska
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^^^I don't think the OP is interested in ditching her husband for this trip, as she's looking for a FAMILY vacation.

OP, how set is your son on swimming? An Alaska cruise might meet his desire for wildlife encounters and your desire to stay out of the heat, but the only swimming would be in the ship's pool.

I'd also suggest Colorado mountain towns such as Estes Park, Vail, Aspen, or Durango as a place that would offer a mix of wildlife viewing/outdoor activities, cool temperatures, and luxury. Obviously no ocean, though.
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Old 02-28-2018, 03:35 PM
 
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Thanks for all the replies. Lots to think about.

I am not sure how people jumped to the conclusion that I let my kids choose where we go on vacation. When my older kids were teens, we did vote one year...and I am glad we did. I came up with 3 options and the teens surprised me with their votes (my little ones were in preschool so I didn't give them a vote at all). I just like to try to hit on everyone's interest a little. Like my daughter hates to be cold so I would not plan to drag her to Alaska in winter. I want everyone to have fun. Also...they aren't so little any more and I know the day that they want to go off and do things on their own is coming...so I want to have fun with them.

Cruise is a great idea...except we went on one once and I had terrible sea sickness the entire time. NOTHING worked besides getting off the boat. Now one of my kids is prone to motion sickness...just cant go down that road again.

We take about 3 "family" vacations a year. Usually one to visit extended family, one with just me and the kids (usually while hubby is at a business conference) and then one to a fun destination all together.

Lots to think about here...I am going to google a bit.
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Old 02-28-2018, 03:43 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by botticelli View Post
You should ditch your husband and travel with someone who is curious about the world. He is your life partner but doesn’t have to be your travel partner.
We actually do "ditch" him for one vacation a year, usually. Its more about his work schedule...its hard for him to travel during the summer. But he also tends to go on a lot of (boring) business conferences in the summer. So while he is at a conference, I will usually take the kids on a fun filled trip. He doesn't mind because he gets to enjoy the lux hotel his conference is in, nap, sleep in, have fine dining and fancy wine with colleagues.

But we also like to travel together
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