Road trips have to be one of the greatest travel concepts of all time – an opportunity to explore numerous destinations, and undertake a variety of activities, during a single, epic vacation across the country or continent. The family road trip is perhaps the most revered of all vacations, enabling parents and their children to create memories, share stories, and, most importantly of all, bond. Road trips can inspire, enlighten, and entertain, and introduce parents to a side of their children that they’ve perhaps never seen before – and vice versa. Are you feeling inspired? Take a look at the amazing road trips we’ve gathered together below.
Packing for a bearable road trip
Before we get down to the business of choosing the right road trip for your family, let’s take a moment to talk about packing. Sure, you’ll have packed for no end of family vacations before, but have you ever prepared your family for life on the road? If the thought of packing for such a journey has got you daunted, allow us to alleviate your worries; packing for a road trip is much like packing for any other trip, aside from a few extra car accessories that you’ll need in order to make driving bearable.
Alongside your clothes, travel documents, toiletries, and essential toddler items, you’re going to need a cooler to keep a whole range of snacks and drinks fresh and edible, backseat organizers to ensure that your little ones have everything they need to hand on the back of your chair, gadget holders or activity trays to keep young family members entertained, and plenty of car storage solutions so that you never feel overwhelmed by the amount of things you’ve packed. You’ll also need a playlist of music that will always remind you of your vacation.
Here are just five of the best family road trip destinations…
Of all the road trips across Europe, the journey around Ireland has to be one of the most spectacular; it’s not called the Emerald Isle for nothing. Ireland is a land of rolling hills, green pastures, dramatic mountains, and rocky coastlines, not to mention an abundance of incredible castles, historic monuments, and deep-blue lakes. If your family enjoys exploring the great outdoors, then you’ll fall in love with Ireland. Start in Dublin and travel clockwise, taking in the sights as you go; you won’t believe a land could be so beautiful.
Route 66 is perhaps the most iconic road trip of all time, a vacation so famous that it’s had songs, movies, and literature written about it. The first highway of its kind, Route 66 crosses eight states and three time zones, and connects many parts of the country that otherwise have nothing in common. Offering families the chance to experience the heart, soul, and spirit of America, it’s the kind of road trip that will always throw up something new and exciting – regardless of how many times you’ve driven it.
New Zealand’s South Island
New Zealand is a country of unspeakable beauty and majesty – a place occupied by snow-capped mountains, icy rivers and lakes, and mountainous regions crying out to be explored. Another road trip for the outdoorsy among you, a vacation on the South Island can cover as little or as much ground as you want. Indeed, you may find yourself unwilling to leave some of New Zealand’s treasures behind you. What you see and do is up to you, but families should see this as an opportunity to teach their children about the wonders of the natural world.
The Florida Keys
Stretching for some 120 miles off the southern tip of Florida, the Florida Keys is an archipelago of islands that your family will adore exploring, particularly if you have younger children to occupy. The entire archipelago could be driven in a matter of hours, making this one road trip that needn’t take all the time in the world. Spend as little or as much time as you’d like exploring the sights and sounds of this tropical paradise, with plenty of beaches along the way.
Back to Europe, Croatia is the perfect destination for a family road trip. Its temperate climate, incredible architecture, outstanding beaches and national parks, rolling landscapes, and numerous historic towns and villages will appeal to families with children of all ages, while its roads are accessible and enjoyable to drive. What’s more, you’ll leave this stunning country feeling refreshed and educated – two sensations that don’t usually occur following a family vacation.
If you’re gearing up for a great family adventure this summer, then the family road trip could be for you; regardless of how far you’re able to travel, or how much you can afford to see and do, make this year’s vacation about the adventure of getting there.
Forget for a moment the stress associated with planning and packing for a road trip, and instead think of all of the amazing sights and experiences that you could be introducing your children to this year. Suddenly, the hassle of preparing a route, packing your bags, and setting off doesn’t seem so bad, does it?