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Sleek YoYo Stroller is Perfect For Family Air Travel

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This week I'm loving the new YoYo stroller by BABYZEN. If you're a frequent flier and usually have the kids in tow, it's the ideal companion: sleek, easily collapsible, and at less than 13 pounds, meets all airlines’ overhead bin requirements. This means no waiting in the freezing jetway for the attendant to find your stroller after you land.

Clara Sedlak


Clara Sedlak is a mother of two and Special Projects Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @csedlak1.

Photo credit: Babyzen

Easy Family Travel Tips for Packing Like a Pro

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Travel is exciting, yes. But, the packing process—especially for families—is stressful.  To do it efficiently takes time and focus. To avoid mass dumpage into the suitcase, I start packing two weeks before we leave. And, I challenge myself to halve what I “think” we need. 

I place a cardboard box next to the table and drop things in as I think of them: books, sunscreen, shampoo, and medicine. First, I pack the kids. I begin laying the clothes out by category on the dining room table: undies, PJs, tops, bottoms, dresses, hats, shoes. Then, I create a small grooming kit for each kid with brush, toothbrush, hair ties, and Band-Aids. A few days later, I revisit the mounds and remove what is not entirely necessary.

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Family-Friendly Vacation Ideas for South Beach, Miami

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Fact: South Beach is a paradise for grown-ups: sun, sea, sand and a super-sexy party scene.

But, here’s a little-known secret: Miami is a spectacular family getaway. This past winter break, I headed down to South Florida with my husband and two daughters to defrost and indulge in some family fab adventures.

HOME AWAY FROM HOME

For this trip, we shacked up at the Fontainebleau. Located on the beach, this iconic hotel offers apartment style suites outfitted with a washer/dryer and kitchen, a major bonus for a travelling family. This allowed me to pack less and be better prepared for the hunger-inspired tantrums that crop up every few hours. Having a leisurely breakfast in our PJs versus having to get dressed and face the crowds (pre-caffeine) for overpriced cereal is a game changer. It is a luxury that adds that extra element of relaxation to the vacation.

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Affordable Family Ski Packages to Book This Season

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It's that time of year again when I spend hours online looking for an affordable place to bring the kids skiing. Trust me, it's not easy. And I've been tempted to give up on the idea altogether, but these deals look seriously promising. 

Start Here

Make sure to check out LIftopia.com first. The discount site partners with more than 250 resorts worldwide. Just this morning I found savings of up to 50% at Magic Mountain, in Vermont, and 35% in Park City, Utah for a four day trip at the end of January. Ski.com is another winner and offers deals on airlines, lodging, and even lift tickets around the globe.

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Explore the Rainforest at Butterfly Wonderland in Scottsdale

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I'm on a business trip in Scottsdale, Arizona and promised my twins I'd stop by the city's new Butterfly Wonderland complex. At 10,000 square feet, it's the largest indoor rainforest in the US, home to Silver Spotted Flambeaus, Peacocks Pansys, Tailed Jays (pictured), and hundreds more. I'm no science-buff (and this would not have been at the top of my to-do list), but once you promise your kids something, there's really no going back. So my mommy-guilt made me go—and I'm glad. I only wish I had the kids with me. The place is incredible (even if insects aren't your thing), with a 3D theater, a live ant colony, an aquatic center with Motoro stingrays you can touch, and my favorite part, a gallery where you can witness the metamorphosis of a Blue Morpho Butterfly. If you're headed to the Southwest with the family, it's definitely worth checking out.

Clara Sedlak


Clara Sedlak is a mother of two and Special Projects Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @csedlak1.

Photo courtesy of Butterfly Wonderland

Family-Friendly Getaway Ideas in Punta Cana

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I'm just back from a much-needed weekend getaway with the family. Our destination: Cap Cana, Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. Total travel time: 7 hours, round-trip. The mission: Do absolutely nothing.

All in all, our trip was a success (minus a couple of meltdowns at the airport and a nearly missed flight on the way back). If you're looking to stay put at a resort, Cap Cana is the perfect family getaway: there are beautiful beaches, countless water activities, and lush, tropical forests to explore.  But it's not a destination for culture-seekers—it's a place for fruity cocktails, sun, and sand. Here, the highlights:

Stay: There are tons of resorts to choose from, but the newest (and where we stayed) is Eden Roc Cap Cana. The hotel's small, coral sand beach looks like something out of the Blue Lagoon, with perfectly placed palm trees and crystal blue water, and there's a great kids club onsite. The boys' favorite part: Every guest has access to a golf cart for getting around.

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Disney Magic Cruise Relaunches With Super Heroes On-Board

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I’m not an experienced cruiser, but when I heard there was a ship that has Iron Man’s armor, Thor’s hammer, and Captain America’s shield, I knew my kids would be the perfect passengers.

With twin 4-year-old boys in the house, superhero talk starts at 6:30 a.m. and ends at bedtime. Disney’s relaunched Disney Magic has a new Marvels Avengers Academy program to give the short-cape set a sneak peek into the Avengers’ world.

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Family-Friendly Thanksgiving Getaways

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Among the many words used to describe the holidays, for me, "exhausting" somehow supercedes all that giving and thanks business. As much as I enjoy the tradition of it all, there’s part of me that wants to run far, far away. This is because a) The hours and hours of shopping and re-shopping and clean up and re-clean up and b) Thanksgiving means I have exactly 28 days left to get my act together for Christmas. This year, I'm going to my husband's parents house...again. But there's no harm in daydreaming, right? Here's where I'd take my kids if I ever get the courage to say no to the family mafia.

Avalon, Catalina Island
Biking. Kayaking. Lying on the sand doing absolutely nothing. Catalina Island, off the coast of California, is a postcard-perfect beach escape for families. Make Avalon your base and rent a cottage or waterfront villa for the long weekend. In town, Seaport Bistro and Villa Portofino restaurants are both serving traditional Thanksgiving meals, but you could always hole up in your house and skip it altogether.

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ZÜCA's New Kid-Friendly Carry-On Lets Tykes Take a Seat

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I've always struggled to find a great carry-on—sturdy but not too heavy, functional but not ugly. But finding one to fit my kids' ever-expanding pile of provisions has proven even harder. It's got to be light enough to catch up with a 4-year-old, somewhat attractive, and seriously stain-water-slobber resistant. The new Mini-Carry All by California-based ZÜCA might be just right. Besides the adorable designs, a washable interior, and snack pouch, it has a cozy, built-in seat. This last tricked-out feature is what sold me. How many times have you begged your kid to get up off the airport floor and ended up with a loudly protesting forty-pound carry-on? I'm hoping this won't be the case on our next trip.

Clara Sedlak


Clara Sedlak is a mother of two and Special Projects Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @csedlak1.

Photo courtesy of ZÜCA

5 Great Learning Vacations

 

Trade in those sandals for a spacesuit on your next vacation. T+L Senior Editor, Jacqui Gifford, shares five of her favorite learning vacations, from astronaut training at the Adult Space Academy in Huntsville, AL to falconry at Ireland’s Ashford Castle.

 

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