Channel Islands, Santa Barbara/Ventura Counties Five of the eight Channel Islands in the Santa Barbara Channel comprise the Channel Islands National Park, www.channel.islands.national-park.com. These islands are a unique destination for families. You may camp, kayak, snorkel, hike, scuba dive, birdwatch, explore Native American history, study the wildlife, or just RELAX! It is the most amazingly undeveloped place in an awesome setting. You can book a few days on one of the dive boats and take your kayak or SUP...you can CAMP on Santa Cruz Island, but you have to be self-contained. Check it out, and be amazed!
Glacier National Park, Montana This is best in a two-week trip if you are driving. There are so many great things to visit along the way....Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming, City of the Rocks in Idaho, Salt Lake City... The glaciers are disappearing, so if you want to see them, you might want to go this decade! Lots of dinosaur bones in the museums, osprey near the Yellowstone River...and tons of history about Lewis and Clark! They spent a LOT of time in Montana, and you can hear about their journeys in many of the museums in the area.
Prescott, Arizona The easiest and fastest way to get to northern Arizona is by flying into Phoenix, but if you have time, by all means drive and see the beautiful countryside! This town has more hiking trails than we have seen in a long time! They are incredibly well-marked, and family-friendly. You can even take your mountain bike on some of them! And from Prescott, it's only two hours to the Grand Canyon, an hour to Sedona, and the fun little town of Jerome. Not far away is Williams, where the famous Route 66 has been preserved and boasts many unique shopping opportunities.
Zion National Park, Utah The easiest and fastest way to get to Zion is to fly to Las Vegas, and drive to Zion, which is about three hours away. There are so many beautiful and awe-inspiring places near Zion. There is Cedar Breaks National Monument, Bryce Canyon, Coral Pink Sand Dunes (below), and so many other national treasures in the area. The wide-open spaces create a restful view to fully relax your mind and body! There are many ways to travel, like camping, taking your trailer, lodges in the parks, or B and B's. You will most likely appreciate the drives with the gorgeous scenery. Have your kids make journals, including photos and mementos along the way. Have them play the alphabet game, or count telephone poles or out of state license plates! The journals will be treasured for years to come!