The USA practically invented the concept of family fun in the leisure industry, with Walt Disney pioneering the concept of the amusement park, which cleverly allowed him to feature the beloved characters of his popular animated films, such as Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and Snow White – a stroke of marketing genius. It was in the 1950s that his first park, Disneyland, was created and, since then, the great man’s leisure empire has gone from strength to strength, with vast amusement parks in California and Florida that continue to attract thousands of families to them year after year. If Mickey Mouse (and friends) is not your family’s cup of tea, though, there are a million other things that would keep everyone entertained and amused during a holiday to the USA.
The coast of California is perfect for a family road trip, so why not fly to San Diego and spend a few days visiting the famous zoo, Legoland and the new Children’s Museum, before hiring a car and heading north to Santa Monica, where you’ll find great surfing beaches, the amusements at the iconic pier, bike trails and an aquarium? You’re also close enough to head into Los Angeles if a visit to Universal Studios Hollywood is an opportunity too good to miss. Make your way to northern California and you could be enjoying walks in redwood forests, visiting world-famous landmarks such as the Golden Gate Bridge and the thrillingly cool attractions at California Academy of Sciences, all in and around San Francisco. For families who enjoy eco adventures, though, the west coast of Canada should be your destination of choice, with luxury lodges providing a base for exciting outdoor activities such as whale and bear-watching, guided sea-kayaking, mountain-biking and horse-riding. In the summer, resorts such as child-friendly Whistler have myriad activities for the family to enjoy, including mini-golf, zip-lining and white-water rafting, while in the winter, families have acres of powder snow to play with.