The Ultimate Guide to Exploring Yosemite with Kids

A family trip to Yosemite National Park is the quintessential American summer holiday. Exploring Yosemite with kids while camping (or glamping as it is for us!), splashing through rivers, and spying out some of the best natural scenes in the US is one of the best trips you can do with your family.

If you are planning a visit to California’s most iconic park, we have laid out all you need to know in order to have the best trip ever in Yosemite with kids. Below are our top picks for things to do in Yosemite National Park with kids as well as options on where to stay and eat. Trust me, seeing this national treasure through your little one’s eyes is a truly magical experience that you will not want to miss.

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Pinnacles National Park: Everything You Need To Know To Visit

Are you planning a trip to Pinnacles National Park in California? Whether you are interested in seeking out California condors, hiking through talus caves or rock climbing, California’s smallest national park packs a lot in for all types of  visitors. Pinnacles is mainly known as a hiking park, with towering rock formations, an abundance of … Read more

13 Spectacular Things to Do on the Big Island of Hawaii

Are you going to the Big Island of Hawaii? If so, you have come to the correct place! Here we share the most spectacular things to do in Hawaii Big Island. It is amazingly diverse with active volcanoes, tropical rainforests, sandy beaches and snow capped peaks. Hawai’i, aka the Big Island is named as such due to the fact that it is bigger than all the other Hawaiian islands combined. Big means lots to do! If you want a typical beach experience, you can get it here, but if that’s all you do, you will miss out on so much more that the island has to offer. Read on for our top 13 things to do on Hawaii’s Big Island that you cannot miss!

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

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5 Things You Must Know for the Zion Narrows Hike

Zion National Park is known for one of it’s most beautiful and distinctive trails, the Zion Narrows hike. It brings visitors of all ages, shapes and forms. What is the Narrows? It is a “trail” through the middle of the Virgin River leading you through 10+ miles of dramatic cliffs, narrow slot canyons and gorgeous scenery. This hike lets you experience, rather than just view, what makes Zion so special.

For most visitors to Zion, the Narrows hike is a lasting favorite no matter how far up river they managed to go. It is one of the most unique hikes with breathtaking scenery and one that cools you down along the way. What more could you ask for on a hike?

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Kings Canyon Scenic Byway: 10 Surprising Places You Will Love

Kings Canyon Scenic Byway is one of the most beautiful drives in all of California. Located in Kings Canyon National Park, the drive takes visitors through massive canyons, past raging waterfalls, all while following a beautiful roaring river. Visiting the sights along the Kings Canyon Scenic Byway is one of the most best things you … Read more

7 Big Mistakes to Avoid in Planning a Trip to Yellowstone

There is a plethora of information on the web about planning a trip to Yellowstone National Park, but most of it focuses on what you should do and see. But this guide is different. Here I am going to tell you what you should AVOID when planning a trip to Yellowstone.

Yellowstone National Park is the largest national park in the US with 5 entrances. Just this aspect alone makes planning a trip to Yellowstone overwhelming. While it is one of the best national parks to visit, first time visitors are often frustrated planning a Yellowstone vacation. Here we help break it down to what you should not do while planning your first trip to Yellowstone. With that, we provide helpful details on where to stay to erase one more barrier in planning your amazing trip to Yellowstone.

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The Ultimate Guide to Exploring Zion National Park with Kids

Are you thinking of going to Zion National Park with kids? Zion National Park is one of the best kept secrets of the national park system. When visitors discover the beauty and magic of Zion Canyon, they will be hooked! It doesn’t have that one eye catching feature that sells postcards or pressed pennies, but what it does have is a spectacular cliff and canyon landscape, an abundance of wildlife and a gorgeous river running through it all beckoning you to get in and experience it for yourself.

Our recent visit to Zion National Park with kids was a bit of a surprise. After being wow’ed at the Grand Canyon and inspired at Antelope Canyon, we were taken aback by how beautiful and encompassing Zion was. Here we could all really be in nature, experience and feel it. It’s just what we needed.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

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Hawaii Big Island Road Trip: A Family Adventure

Hawaii Big Island Road Trip: A Family Adventure

When most people think of Hawaii, the image that comes to mind is of laying on the beach, relaxing while the sun sets over the ocean. You can do this on the Big Island of Hawaii, but if that’s all you do, you will miss out on so much more that the island has to offer. The largest of the Hawaiian islands has it all, from active volcanoes and lush rain forests to sandy beaches and snow capped peaks. The Big Island offers something for everyone, making it a great destination for families who love to get out and explore.

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10 Magical Things to Do in Joshua Tree (+ 1 Day Itinerary)

Growing up in the 80s and 90s, Joshua Tree for me symbolized music, not a National Park.  But because of the music, the park has always held a certain allure. Once I discovered how close it was to LA, it moved to the top of my local travel list. But, even then, it took me almost a year of living here before I made it out. Now after several trips, it continues to be one of my favorite places in Southern California.

If you are like me and can’t ever find a weekend to go, dump the excuses and head out for a day trip! It is such a magical place that it’s worth the drive even for just the day. It will be a long day for sure, but if you have kids who will nap in the car, then go for it. Even my non-car napper managed to take a quick after lunch snooze and slept the entire way home. You will not regret exploring Joshua Tree with kids – and they will thank you!

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

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A Family Adventure: Channel Islands Kayaking with Kids

Last summer I was offered an opportunity to visit one of the few national parks in California I had yet to visit, the Channel Islands. Upon looking at the itinerary I noticed that an entire day was dedicated to kayaking around the island of Santa Cruz..in the sea! I was terrified to be honest. I had never kayaked, much less in the sea.

The water in California is not warm even in the height of summer and I was super nervous about the possibility of flipping my kayak. Now, add in that I would be doing this with my equally scaredy-cat 6 year old who prefers hot tubbing to actually swimming! And there you have it, the scene is set for our adventure at the Channel Islands kayaking with kids.

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Exploring Lassen Volcanic National Park (with Kids)

Lassen Volcanic National Park is one of California’s least visited parks. It is located about 5 hours north of the Bay Area, 3 hours north of Sacramento and 1.5 hours east of Redding. It’s location is most of the reason it is less visited than other parks and the fact that it is covered in snow for much of the year. With many of its trails only open from July-Oct, it’s tough to get a visit in when the park is fully operating.

Lassen National Park with kidsEven with the difficulties of visiting, what awaits you is California’s version of Yellowstone, a boiling, bubbling volcanic dreamland. A park dedicated to its volcanic history, it has 4 types of volcanos all in one place as well as sulphur steam vents, boiling mud pots and stunning views over the surrounding areas. Furthermore, it provides a vast network of trails through forest landscapes, around lakes and up volcanic peaks with some even connecting to the Pacific Crest Trail.

In short, Lassen Volcanic National Park is mesmerizing and should be on everyone’s California wish list.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

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Guide to Channel Islands National Park (with Kids)

Guide to Channel Islands National ParkCalifornia is home to 28 national parks and sites scattered throughout the state. From the iconic Half Dome in Yosemite, to the desolate in Death Valley and the big trees in the North at the Redwoods, there is no shortage of vast beauty in California’s parks.

One of the last few remaining parks that we had yet to visit in Southern California was the Channel Islands National Park off the Ventura County Coast. Being so remote, accessible only by boat or small plane, it is one of the least visited national parks in the state and country. As such, it has been left largely undisturbed for much of it’s history, showcasing a pristine coastal Mediterranean ecosystem.

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6 Things Not to Miss at the Grand Canyon

Visiting the Grand Canyon is often high on travelers’ bucket lists. Part of the Grand Canyon makes up one of the most famous of all the US’s national parks, while other sections are located on lands still owned by Native Americans. Both sections of this massive UNESCO-listed site offers dramatic scenery, varied flora and fauna, cultural encounters, amazing vistas and an abundance of activities. Stretching for more than 270 miles and reaching up to 18 miles wide, not to mention the wealth of awesome sites found en route, knowing the best places to visit in the Grand Canyon is essential.

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Exploring Saguaro National Park in One Day

Saguaro National Park in One DayOne of our main reasons for our recent visit to Tucson was to explore Saguaro National Park. And to get a other junior ranger badge of course! Reading the name saguaro, you might not know exactly what it is (or even how to say it!), but once you see the iconic cactus often associated with Arizona and specifically the Sonoran Desert it will click. Considering how iconic this cactus is, you might be surprised to learn that this is the only part of the world that these famous catctus grow. The national park itself houses over 2 million saguaros, making it the most dense population of saguaro anywhere.

Researching the park was a bit confusing because the park bookends the city of Tucson with an east and west section. It is the only national park in the US that is not connected fully. Driving between the two districts takes a little more than an hour, so it’s important to know which area you want to visit if you have limited time. While reading about the park in advance of our trip, we couldn’t figure out which section was best, so we decided to explore it all and share the results with you here.

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Hawaii Volcanoes National Park with Kids

One of the main reasons we chose the Big Island over the other Hawaiian Islands was to visit Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. My son had seen a brochure about the park at a friend’s house last summer and has wanted to go ever since. Turns out, this was the highlight for all of us. There is so much to … Read more