Published January 2022
Of the many lessons we learned over these past couple of years, there are two things we know not to take for granted: family and travel. Based on our 2021 Holiday Forecast & Winter Travel Trends survey, roughly 65% of parents with children under age 5 plan to travel, and of those traveling, 51% plan to visit family or friends—highlighting that more families are reuniting and reigniting their sense of wanderlust.
But then comes the tricky part: juggling the needs and interests of young kids, tweens, or teenagers against the vacation wish lists of the parents and adults in the group. After reviewing end-of-year data for Vacasa reservation creations that include at least one child alongside searches for homes with three or more bedrooms, we've compiled a list of best places for multigenerational family vacations we expect to trend this year.
Here are five destinations to consider for a trip that’s fun for all ages—whenever your family is ready to travel again. Plus, a selection of vacation homes that make for perfect family vacation and family reunion destinations (with the space and amenities to accommodate!).
Featured Park City vacation rental: Last Run of the Day
A perennial favorite for all ages and seasons, Park City lies just east of Salt Lake City, Utah, and consistently comes up as one of the top ski resorts for families in North America. Here, a lowkey group may enjoy a stroll through the preserved mining town to soak up some history with a side of scenery, while the adventure-seeking lot can take it straight to the slopes for an afternoon of shredding.
No matter your athletic ability, don’t miss Olympic Park, the site of the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. The multi-use compound offers activities that are sure to entertain, thrill, or educate everyone from ages 1 to 100. After a day in the snow, head back to your cozy chalet (preferably one with a fireplace or hot tub) to game plan the next day’s adventures as a family.
Featured Kissimmee vacation rental: Mystic Manor
In Kissimmee, only 30 minutes away from “The Happiest Place on Earth,” you’ll be close enough to feel the magic, but still have easy access to the area’s many non-theme park attractions. Disney World, Universal Studios, or LEGOLAND are surefire hits to create memories that each generation can file away. Grown-ups will particularly appreciate the array of ways to spend an afternoon, whether that’s a stop at the premium outlet malls or a tranquil fishing spot.
For a family-oriented getaway under endless sunshine with as much or as little roller coaster adrenaline as you desire, this Central Florida hotspot is the place to be. Pro tip: Filter your search for a rental that features ping pong or pool tables and you may discover lots of listings with game rooms that everyone will enjoy while hanging at the house.
Featured Steamboat Springs vacation rental: Foxy Lady, A Mountain Vista Retreat
Tucked into northern Colorado’s Yampa Valley and just three hours from Denver, Steamboat Springs prides itself on being one of the more affordable, yet premier family ski destinations in the country. Respecting a rich history while forging ahead to the future, the area has recently undergone a $135 million investment that aims to enrich the Steamboat experience for visitors of all age groups. With big plans for an après ski plaza, new restaurants and bars, a ski beach, and an ice-skating rink, this Colorado locale is cementing its status as the most approachable winter destination with multigenerational appeal.
Steamboat Springs is highly favored by families outside of ski season, too; don’t miss summertime’s annual Main Street Steamboat Farmers Market, where you can load up on local goods and whip up a home-cooked meal to fuel your group’s trail hiking, horseback riding, or fly fishing adventure.
Featured Gatlinburg vacation rental: Triple Mountain View
Bordered by the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Gatlinburg offers families a stunning setting to gather in the great outdoors of Tennessee. Welcoming over 12 million visitors annually, this popular destination keeps making its way into our Top 25 Best Places to Buy a Vacation Home reports for good reason. You’ll never be far from Gatlinburg’s natural wonders in one of the area’s many cabin rentals where you can step out for a family nature walk or simply enjoy the views from the comfort of your own front porch.
In town, there is fun to be had for adventurers of all ages and interests whether it’s enjoying Gatlinburg’s mountainous scenery, spending a day at Dollywood, exploring the Art & Crafts Loop, or bopping along on the Music Trail.
Featured Maui vacation rental: The Residences at Napili Bay
Romance may first come to mind when considering a trip to Hawaii, but this island oasis has an appeal that spans beyond canoodling couples. The entire American archipelago has plenty to offer multigenerational travelers, but Maui often tops the list as an all-ages sweet spot with a host of homes boasting everything from bunk beds to balconies with jaw dropping views, making it a great place to look for family reunion vacation rentals.
Around the island, Boomers might enjoy a scenic road trip on the Road to Hana, Millennials will love lounging on the Instagrammable beaches (protected from strong currents by lava rock headlands), and the youngest generations may be equally mesmerized by the warm waters and vibrant sea life. At the end of the day, the entire family can come together and enjoy the festivities of a traditional Hawaiian luau, a vibrant and culturally rich experience you won’t soon forget.