Family travel: Sunshine in paradise

Warm up with a sun-drenched family getaway in paradise. Here are five ideas to consider.


1. Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo  

Seamlessly integrating the Peninsula’s vibrant landscape with the amenities of a contemporary eco-luxury hotel, this Forbes five-star luxury 182-room resort has recently reopened, revealing the results of an imaginative $35 million renovation. Tap into the “pura vida” lifestyle and choose from a long list of adventure, spa, fitness and wellness opportunities served up in a relaxed and welcoming indoor-outdoor environment. Access kayaks, paddleboards and jet skis from the beach or relax by one of several pools that overlook the volcanic sand beach areas. For a family-friendly introduction to the exotic fauna and flora of Costa Rica take a guided tour of the Trail of the Giants, a scenic adventure that showcases the region’s birds, monkeys, iguanas, butterflies and giant trees while providing jaw-dropping views of the resort’s Arnold Palmer golf course and the Pacific Ocean. The Kids For All Seasons club features a kid-sized pool and junior lounge chairs as well as a range of immersive programs to entice the youngest guests.  


2. Hotel del Coronado, San Diego, Calif.  

This iconic Victorian gem is the crown jewel of Coronado Island, one of the most popular beach vacation spots in the United States. The long, wide stretch of sand provides easy access to the water and thus the perfect home base for your family’s seaside activities. Get out the boogie boards, issue a beach volleyball challenge, take surfing lessons, learn the secrets of mermaid fitness or join a clambake. Top-notch children’s and teen programs and spa options are also available. You’ll create your own family history in this legendary beach destination.  


3. Set sail with Royal Caribbean  

You’ll find plenty of family adventure onboard the megaships headed for the sun-drenched Caribbean waters. Snap a selfie with your favorite Dreamworks characters or test your skills on the rock-climbing wall. Go ashore and enjoy water sports and cultural outings. Push your limits on the longest zip line over water, test your skills on the Flow Rider surf simulator and take in high diving and acrobatic performances at an outdoor AquaTheatre. There is entertainment for every age group, an array of dining options to suit every taste and the option to relax by the pool with your favorite book. Check for special savings on last-minute departures.  


4. Del Mar, Calif.  

Immerse your family in Old World, Mediterranean-inspired luxury when you check into the family-friendly, 249-room Fairmont Grand Del Mar. Lounge aside one of four heated pools, check out the equestrian center, sign up for a guided hike into the adjacent canyon preserve, or consider a mother-daughter spa treatment. Get in the swing of things on the Tom Fazio-designed golf course or pile into the free shuttle for a day at the beach. For an extraordinary dining experience, indulge in an adults-only evening at Chef William Bradley’s Addison, Southern California’s only five-star, five-diamond restaurant.  


5. Hawk’s Cay Resort, Duck Key, Fla.  

While some parts of this popular family resort continue to recover from hurricane damage, guests eager to return to this sunny stretch in the Florida Keys can take advantage of up to 30 percent discounts for stays in resort villas. The Can’t Wait Rate includes access to Coral Cay, the kid’s activities center, where a putting course, the wet and wild Pirate Ship pool and a long list of other activities will be available. The spa, boat ramp and Angler & Ale waterfront restaurant will also be open. Families can also check out the dolphin research facility, learn to stand up paddleboard, go fishing or explore the underwater world with a snorkel.  



(Lynn O’Rourke Hayes ( is an author, family travel expert and enthusiastic explorer. Gather more travel intel on Twitter @lohayes, Facebook, or via

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Travel

Storms, possible tornado ravage parts of metro Atlanta
Storms, possible tornado ravage parts of metro Atlanta

A powerful storm system swept through north Georgia overnight, sending trees into roads, damaging homes and businesses, knocking out power to thousands and leaving south Fulton County a disaster zone. More than 130 severe weather reports of large hail, damaging wind and possible tornadoes came in Monday, according to WSB-TV in Atlanta...
What Alexa Chung can’t travel without

Alexa Chung, the British TV host, model and fashion designer, has made a career out of her dynamic sense of style. She’s the creative director of her eponymous fashion label, alexachung.  Chung lived in New York for seven years before moving back to England in 2016 to start her business. She’s a frequent traveler and Paris is one of...
Family travel five: Inspiration for the road

May what matters most inspire your family’s future travel plans. Here are five ideas to consider:  1. Joy   Small feet splashing in the surf. First tracks through powder. A really big tug on the fishing line. Climbing to the top of the hill through personal pedal power. Those are the moments that bring joy to parents as they watch...
Planning an overnight cycling trip? You have a wealth of resources to choose from.

You've seen them on the streets and bicycle trails, those cyclists with panniers (saddle bags, to the uninitiated) loaded with gear out for a grand adventure. You think: I like riding my bike, but I could never do that!  The nonprofit Adventure Cycling Association, among others, and a host of enthusiastic cyclists who share trip reports online...
A shaken Mexico City repairs, returns to normal

MEXICO CITY — Six months after this capital’s last major earthquake, its most popular tourist attractions are busy again.  If you’re headed here, remember that the metropolitan area is built on an ancient lake bed. For generations, as the growing city has drawn down the aquifer beneath the lake bed, the ground has been sinking...
More Stories