3 Places to take the kids this summer (besides the crowded pool)

By: Jes Ware

When that final school bell signals the end of the year, there's no need to shudder at the thought of dragging your family on a National Lampoon-style road trip. There are better options—like these.


Parents Will Love: Fireplaces, Pratesi linens, wine & port every evening.

Kids Will Love: Scavenger hunts, proximity to Children’s Beach.

 Nantucket has plenty of boat shoes, red pants and lock-jawed accents. What it doesn’t have is a lot of kid-friendly places to stay. But if you want to create family memories of a New England summer, check in to the White Elephant. The iconic harbor-front hotel has special check-in gifts for kids, a "mini-chef" program and a stock of necessities in case you forget the bottle warmer. Remember: The more exhausted they are from building sandcastles or biking to the lighthouse, the longer the nap—and the more time for you at the spa. 


Parents Will Love: Oversize suites, balconies, adults-only pool.

Kids Will Love: Everything else.

 You’ve probably heard of Atlantis, but you may not know that there’s an elegant section of the resort called The Cove. Tucked away from the big towers, it’s quiet and luxurious for parents, but close to all of Atlantis’s kid-friendly action. By which we mean pet dolphins, a massive water park, three beaches, 11 pools (including three just for kiddos) and a 14,000-square-foot kids club with dedicated programs for tots, preteens and teens. 


Parents Will Love: Gorgeous hand-carved furniture, romantic cliffside dinners.

Kids Will Love: Beachfront movies, sand-castle lessons.

If Cabo doesn't spring to mind when you think "family vacation," you're missing out. Rather than just activities intended just for kids or for adults, The Resort at Pedregal makes a point to offer experiences that bring the family together. Jump in a glass-bottomed kayak or don snorkels and flippers—spotting turtles, rays and sea lions is fun for everyone. The more adventurous can try zip-lining or ATVs rides on the dunes. The inventive kids' club, Tortuguitas, will keep the wee ones entertained if the parents want an afternoon to themselves.