“Are We There Yet?” Places To Take Your Children Before They Grow Up!

 yellowstone main

Thank goodness we took our children to Yellowstone National Park when our daughter was about 10 and our son was about 15 years old.  Honestly…they were old enough to like and understand the wonders of Yellowstone. Yet, they were still young enough to like and sort of understand us at the same time! Yellowstone was one of our most favorite family vacations for many reasons such as…


***The morning that we opened our cabin door at Yellowstone…and were greeted by a giant bison staring at us. He was perhaps four feet away. Look…all we wanted to do was go to the lodge for breakfast. Since he obviously did not understand “Excuse me!”, we just stared back. Our daughter sat on the floor in the middle of the cabin and refused to budge until the bison (that we called a buffalo) walked away. Our son wanted to go out and look more closely at him. Neither of the actions seemed particularly a good idea. After 20 minutes or so, he ambled off. That is why…ever since that morning…I have thought that we would open a cabin door in Colorado and be greeted by a bear.

***We sat on the benches in front of Old Faithful three separate times to watch the geyser erupt about 130 feet in the air. To watch the excitement on our children’s faces was worth the long drive to Wyoming!

***My husband and our son walked along the boardwalk trail to tour the Upper Geyser Basin. This area has the largest numbers of geysers to be found in the park. There are also several hot springs and now a recently developed mudpot. Our daughter had announced that she might not need to see another geyser that day and we had fun looking inside the Old Faithful Inn. Building was begun on the Inn in 1903 and even a ten year old was infatuated with the 65 foot ceiling and the huge log fireplace. And the gift shop was a cool place for us to visit without the guys!

***Driving alongside the Grand Tetons on the way to Jackson Hole, Wyoming! They seemed so majestic that they were almost frightening and yet…I probably have seen taller mountains…but none so very beautiful! And…Jackson Hole…fun!!!!!


I remember this particular vacation as if it were yesterday. Yes…it was a long drive, but we wanted to see the countryside beyond Colorado. We wanted our children to see another National Park…I wish that we could have visited even more. We never visited Glacier National Park and we never visited Yosemite National Park. Time is fleeting when you are raising a family.


As the beautiful song from Broadway’s “Fiddler on the Roof” says…

Sunrise, Sunset

Sunrise, Sunset

Swiftly flow the days

Seedlings turn overnight to sunflowers

Blossoming even as we gaze.

Sunrise, Sunset

Sunrise, Sunset



 Before your children are grown up, plan to take them to some of the most interesting and spectacular places imaginable. Save the money, save the time, save the memories! Their growing up time goes by so very quickly and suddenly they are college bound. Enjoy your time together! You may truly see your relationship with your children blossom! Seeing unique places happens to be one of the outstanding and worthwhile learning experiences that you can give your child. You won’t regret these special and sweet moments spent together enjoying the world!


My favorite of the must-see places to take your children before they are grown:


1. Pacific Coast Highway Drive

Highway 1 is a curvy road that runs down beside California’s coast. The road winds past high cliffs with sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean. My most favorite parts…Monterey Bay and Big Sur State Park, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Malibu! And…of course… San Francisco and Los Angeles!




2. The Colorado Rockies

There are plenty of activities for summer and for winter vacations. Bike riding, horseback trail rides, four wheeling, jeep tours in the summer. Renting snow skis in the winter and signing up for classes for everyone. Learning to ride a snowmobile. Ice skating. So much to do!! My favorite towns: Ouray, Telluride, Breckenridge, Vail and Beaver Creek. Colorado Rocky Mountain High will always be my favorite of all favorites for family fun!




3. The French Quarter, New Orleans

Everyday seems like Mardi Gras in New Orleans. You may think of New Orleans as a wild, party city. In all actuality, there are many family friendly things to do and a world of historical facts to learn. Places to see: Jackson Square, Cafe du Monde for delicious beignets, the Mississippi River, Audubon Aquarium, Audubon Butterfly Garden and beautiful St. Charles Avenue. You can ride the streetcar down St. Charles from downtown to the venerable Garden District, home of many historic mansions. Oh…how I love those wonderful houses! And don’t forget the Audubon Zoo…where I spent many fun hours with my nephews and our own children when they were little.


New Oleans Mississippi

New Orleans, Bourbon Street at night, French Quarter


4. San Antonio, Texas River Walk

Your entire family can certainly enjoy walking along the sidewalks that wind beside the San Antonio River. The River Walk has turned downtown San Antonio into a mecca of vacation experiences. You can take a boat tour on the five miles of waterway and stop at nearby museums, restaurants, shops and historical locations along the way. The most famous place of history near the River Walk in San Antonio is the Alamo, a Spanish mission where an 1836 battle was fought in the Texas Revolution. And the Mexican food in San Antonio…the very best!! My favorite restaurant in San Antonio is the popular Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia!


San Antonio River Walk







13 thoughts on ““Are We There Yet?” Places To Take Your Children Before They Grow Up!

    • Have you been to either place? I never went west on any vacation when I was growing up. My grandparents lived in Nashville, so we would go there…and then go on to places east! I really enjoyed going to Yellowstone… it is so historical! And the scenery is beautiful! And it also is very strange with the geysers etc! Colorado (as I say all the time) is where I am really supposed to live! I think that every, single time we go up there! My husband likes it a lot too…but, our land is in Texas. So here we are!! With the hot weather. With the humidity. With the tornado season. With no casinos! I realize that a casino has nothing to do with weather!

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      • Just pretty much from the car for 1 day in Denver so it doesn’t count and never to Yellowstone – I don’t get why we don’t have casinos either! But we do have that tiny one in Livingston 🙂 Yes, Colorado for sure seemed my kind of place!!!!

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      • That one in Livingston doesn’t count since I have never been there, but I have been to Livingston! I just kind of remember reading about all of the questions about a little casino there! Well…you need to go to Colorado!

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      • I believe that you mentioned Estes Park another time…and I was supposed to answer if I had been there! Right? And I never answered. So really dependable. We have not been to Estes Park, but I believe we were near there on one trip. I need to look at a map!! I do have friends who have been there and loved…of course! What is not to like about Colorado?!!

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      • I looked at a Colorado map and…what do you know!…we drove through Estes Park on the way back from Yellowstone…a different route than the way we went up. We just looked around for a while…very pretty. We would have spent the night there, but we already had reservations in Breckenridge…quite a drive! I have heard that the animal sightings in Rocky Mountain National Park are terrific! Estes Park is really the east entrance to the park, I think! We are going to Colorado in August and intend to go over to the park since we really have not explored it! The place where I have personally seen the most wildlife is between Silverton and Ouray then on to Ridgeway and Telluride!


      • So where are you going in August and where are y’all staying? Or what do you recommend that’s not over the top $$ but is safe of course as I will probably be going alone – I mean I want to do other things too but I’d love to be able to see lots of beauty – not just exclusively wildlife if that makes sense and I surely do not ski as I’d break my legs for sure! (Put a cord out anywhere and I’ll trip over it!! I’m a complete klutz!)


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