Top West Coast Destinations for Summer Family Travel

Top West Coast Destinations for Summer Family Travel

Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa, San Diego, CA (pictured)

Spanning 45 lush acres of gardens, trails, olive groves, casitas and more, Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa is a Mediterranean inspired, all-suite property that offers the finest accommodations, service and programming that San Diego has to offer. In fall 2012, Rancho Valencia—Southern California’s only Relais & Châteaux property— reopened to guests after a 10-month, $30 million property-wide renovation. Rancho Valencia is located 90 miles south of Los Angeles, 30 minutes north of downtown San Diego and a short drive from the warm and sunny beaches of Del Mar and La Jolla. With its prime location in sunny San Diego, Rancho Valencia is the perfect destination for the whole family to enjoy.

Stay & Play Spa Package includes:

  • $175 spa credit per person, to use as you please

  • Fresh orange juice, milk and morning paper delivered to your suite daily

  • Complimentary use of the tennis courts, fitness center, yoga pavilion and all fitness classes

In addition, amenities and fun for Rancho Valencia’s children's offerings include:

  • Kids welcome gift at check in - (Burlap backpack, RV Activity Book with crayons, Chukker the Horse)

  • Kids welcome amenity upon arrival - (Chocolate Chip Cookies and Milk with kids name written in chocolate syrup on plate)

  • Tennis Clinics and a variety of fitness classes can be set up for families to enjoy. Rancho Valencia just launched their new Five Star Junior Tennis program, a brand new offering created for young, bright tennis stars at Rancho Valencia! Combining their award-winning tennis facilities, a staff of experienced USPTA & USPTR certified professionals and plenty of fun, it's the perfect place for stars both big and small to learn and grow. Developed by Tennis Director Robin White, Five Star Junior Tennis offers specialized programming for Little Twinklers (ages 4-6) all the way up to Competitive Players over age 12.

  • In addition, children at Rancho Valencia can enjoy horseback riding, hiking, surfing lessons, and more.

Scripps Inn, La Jolla, CA

Scripps Inn La Jolla nestled along the beautiful La Jolla shores, one of San Diego's best kept secrets, offers unparalleled ocean views and sounds of the rolling surf. Perfect for families, the charming 14 room boutique bed and breakfast provides a relaxed atmosphere with an upscale resort experience with spacious rooms, fully equipped state-of-the-art personal kitchenette's, custom furnishings and more. Perched on Whale Watch Point, families staying at at Scripps Inn can enjoy watching the gray whales migrate right past their window, while dolphins, seals and sea lions can be seen year round. Meanwhile, the Children’s Pool (now home to more sunning seals than kids), as well as La Jolla Cove’s snorkeling and tide pools are just a short walk away, providing plenty of water activities for children. Scripps Inn is also one of the few pet-friendly hotels located in right in La Jolla, accommodating all, if you're traveling with your family and furry friend!

Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara

Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara -- Carlsbad, CA

This April, The Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara will unveil a newly redesigned lobby and introduce Driftwood Spa and Seasons Restaurant. Situated in shimmering southern California along the coastal city of Carlsbad, the Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara welcomes families for a luxury experience offering all the comforts of a vacation home, coupled with the intuitive service and amenities of a Four Seasons resort. Programming ideal for any age is offered daily including activities like Movie Mondays that begin at sundown at the Meadows Pool, complete with popcorn and a special "dive in" menu, s'mores kits for fireside sweets, and fitness and art classes throughout the stay. The Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara is also located minutes away from family attractions including Legoland, the Safari Park and Sea World. With year-round perfect weather and fun beach town charm, owners at the residence club enjoy the freedom of fractional ownership while the villa rental program beckons guests for a night, a week, or as long as they wish to stay.

Manchester Grand Hyatt | San Diego, CA

Experience the largest urban waterfront resort on the West Coast when you visit Grand Hyatt San Diego. This SoCal favorite has a number of amenities that make family travel fun and easy such as:

  • Camp Hyatt – their summer children’s program. Camp Hyatt hosts super fun activities like dive-in movies at the pool, watermelon eating contests and craft making for special San Diego keepsakes and mementos.

  • Rooftop S'mores – Grand Hyatt San Diego has fire pits located on the pool deck and offer s’mores kits for rooftop s’more roasting after a long day of adventuring around San Diego. Enjoy warm nights under the stars with amazing views of the city's twinkling cityscapes and bay views.

  • Diego and the Lion – Best of all, for kids they have an interactive program for kids when they check-in that sends them on a hotel scavenger hunt led by Diego the Lion. The kids are given a booklet and clues – their mission is to collect all the stamps from the various places along the way in the booklet using the clues to solve the questions and in the end, once all stamps are collected – they revisit the front desk to get a pair of Grand Hyatt sunglasses. And who knows – they may even get a visit from Diego the Lion as well (a stuffed animal placed in their room by Housekeeping).

  • In the Heart of the City – The hotel is centrally located in the heart of downtown, which makes visiting top attractions like the Children’s Museum (within walking distance), the San Diego Zoo and Balboa Park a breeze.

Rancho Bernardo Inn (San Diego, CA) - Kids Rule! Package

A nationwide travel favorite to celebrate the magic of being a kid in the summer is Rancho Bernardo Inn's Kids Rule! Package. The family-friendly resort will host a summer of fun with programming created exclusively with kids in mind. Each year, the property reinvents itself with a different kid-friendly theme, creating a magical environment for the whole family to explore. Rancho Bernardo Inn tailors the entire summer devoted to celebrating kids with the Kids Rule! Package, which includes a variety of FREE activities for kids such as unlimited access to Golf Range + Bucket of Balls & Bag of Sticks, Pool Fun water basketball, ping-pong and pool toys, access to the Kids Rule Lounge featuring games and crafts, In-Room Pizza Party & Family Night, S’mores & Snores features in-room camping in their very own tent, sleeping bag and teddy bear after enjoying their s’mores kit fireside at Santiago Pool and Treasure Hunt and Fountains Walking Adventure.

Other events include Slope Sledding on the driving range, movies and snacks every evening at the AMPED lounge, kid-approved waffle stations at breakfast, Pajama Parade & Contest at Santiago Pool, and Girl Time & Spa Treats pampering day at The Spa.


The Wigwam, Litchfield Park, AZ

Families have been creating memories at The Wigwam for decades and the fun continues with interactive family friendly activities for kids of all ages. Children enjoy barreling down dual 25-foot water slides and have a splashing good time with seasonal water activities like underwater treasure hunts, frozen duck races, Pirate & Princess PJ Party, “winter fun” in the summer with ice cube floating races to keep cool and much more. In addition, kids are able to enjoy their own *new* in-room teepees for sleeping and entertainment for $25 per night. Adults can unwind with live entertainment, happy hour, golf, spa and a variety of dining options. Families enjoy testing their skills with games of cornhole, Bocce, ping-pong and volleyball.

Tanque Verde Ranch | Tucson, AZ

Located on 60,000 desert acres within the Saguaro National Park of Tucson, Ariz., Tanque Verde Ranch offers a dude ranch experience with a resort-like feel that both adults and children can enjoy. With no TVs in the spacious, Southwestern-styled guest rooms, the Ranch is the perfect setting for families to unplug and reconnect with one another while also reconnecting with the great outdoors. Tanque Verde Ranch offers a highly regarded supervised kids program for children ages 4-12, that allows parents to join in an array of fun-filled kids activities with their children or go enjoy adult-time knowing their kids are having an amazing time in a safe environment. Meanwhile, adults can chose to participate in daily scheduled activities that are part of all-inclusive rates, including horseback riding lessons and activities, trail rides, guided mountain bike and hiking tours, nature walks, educational seminars at the ranch's Nature Center, fishing, tennis and more. The Ranch also has an on-property spa, which offers several rejuvenating treatments or in-room massages.

Perhaps the best part of the ranch experience is the value included in each stay. The ranch is all-inclusive so each guest receives accommodations, three daily meals and free access to all of the ranch activities listed above, including the kids program. Special activities the whole family can enjoy together that are also part of all-inclusive rates include Cowboy Cookouts under the stars and Breakfast Rides to score the Ranch's famous Blueberry Pancakes.

Four Seasons Lana'i at Manele Bay


Cross the Pacific for an authentic Hawaiian kid's camp:

Children visiting the Four Seasons Lana'i at Manele Bay can enjoy Pilialoha Keiki Camp - the property's version of the complimentary Kids For All Seasons program. Pilialoha means "close friendship and beloved companionship" in Hawaiian. The program offers a full range of organized indoor and outdoor activities for children ages 5-12 years, intended to encourage appreciation of Lanai's unique environment. Children learn about petroglyphs, the spirit of aloha and how the Hawaiian islands were formed. They can even build their own erupting volcano, go hunting for lizards or watch a keiki (child) hula show. Beach and pool nannies are available at an additional cost.

Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa | Ko'Olina, HI

From energizing, fun adventures to soothing relaxation at Laniwai, there's something for the entire ‘ohana (family) at Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa in Ko Olina. While visiting Aulani, guests can surf in crystalline waters, ride horseback through lush valleys or kayak through protected offshore islets. Each excursion is entertaining, educational and fun, so the entire family can take home a greater appreciation and understanding of the Aloha State—along with unforgettable vacation memories. Families make magical memories together—or apart—with experiences designed for every age and interest.


This high-tech scavenger hunt leads you through Aulani as you solve riddles, search for hidden statues and discover surprises left by the Menehune—mischievous little people with magical powers. Interactive elements— with special effects involving fire, water, light and animation—offer fun for all ages.


The Hawaiian word laniwai (lah-nee-vai) means "freshwater heaven," and the spa lives up to its name with more than 150 treatments, including the only outdoor hydrotherapy garden on the island of Oahu. Also exclusive to Aulani is the Painted Sky youth spa, featuring relaxing treatments created especially for teens.


Located between the 2 towers of Aulani, Waikolohe Valley is brimming with fun. With its crystalline waters, winding streams, interactive play features and private snorkeling lagoon Rainbow Reef, this imaginative pool area offers something to delight every age and interest. Rainbow Reef offers an up-close look at aquatic life. Snorkel amongst hundreds of fish or view the beautiful aquaculture through glass.


Guests of all ages enjoy an in-depth look at the stars. Learn how the ancient Hawaiians navigated through the Polynesian Islands using only the stars to guide them to Hawai‘i.


A lifelong resident of O‘ahu, Aunty is considered by locals to be a true expert on Hawaiian history and cultural traditions. Aunty invites you to become a part of her extended ‘ohana and make yourself at home at Aunty's Beach House. This 5,200-square-foot, state-of-the-art features enhanced storytelling and special souvenirs, a movie room showing Disney favorites, Wii™ and Sony PlayStation® video games, game tables, Hawaiian arts and crafts, and you can even play dress-up with fun finds from the costumes closet.

Westin Lake Las Vegas Resort


Westin Lake Las Vegas Resort & Spa | Henderson, NV

Plan your next family getaway to The Westin Lake Las Vegas Resort & Spa for a kid-friendly vacation full of lakeside exploration and quality time with your loved ones. Located 20 minutes from The Strip, the resort is situated on Lake Las Vegas and is the perfect place to launch a desert adventure. On the lake, families can kayak, standup paddle board, take gondola rides, and pedal boat, and off the lake, the resort boasts a pool with a water slide and cabanas. During the summer, the pool side will offer Dive In movies, where families can gather around the pool and enjoy what’s playing. For those seeking adrenaline rush, the resort can arrange soft-adventure sports, including kayaking, hiking and biking around Henderson, Nevada. Family members with a love of the links can head off to the newly restored signature Reflection Bay Golf Course to hit a few rounds. While those looking for a little pampering can rejuvenate at Spa Moulay. In the summer, the Westin Lake Las Vegas offers a kids camp with an array of activities to choose from. Families can sit outside by the fire and make delicious s’mores. The resort is also in close proximity to area attractions such as Red Rock Canyon, The Neon Museum, and the Pinball Hall of Fame. Book the Love Your Family Package and kids 12 and under eat free with connecting rooms when you book two or more rooms. Room rates from $190 per night.

The Resort at Pedregal


The iconic five-star property, The Resort at Pedregal offers a variety of unique and exciting family friendly activities including an action-packed Teen Guide program and a Tortuguitas ("Little Turtles") Kids Club, both of which cater to providing younger guests with endless opportunities for fun while vacationing with their families in Cabo.

RAP's Teen Guide consults and creates a personalized adventure itinerary for each teenager who participates in the program and offers packages within the categories of Ocean Adventure, Desert Adventure, Extreme Desert Adventure, Ocean, Desert & Mountain Adventure and Customized Adventure. Teens can choose from an a la carte menu of activities ranging from zip lining, bungee jumping, sling-swinging, surfing, standup paddle boarding, horseback riding and more. Prices vary based on itineraries, ranging between $120 - $830.

The Tortuguitas Kids Club is perfect for those guests who are not quite old enough to enjoy the teen adventures and encourages children to interact with the unique cultural qualities of Los Cabos through activities that are both fun and educational in nature such as piñata making, outdoor games and story-telling, movie nights complete with snacks, tons of arts and crafts projects and interactive Scavenger Hunts. A half day program is priced at $25 and a full day program is priced at $50.


The Garland | Los Angeles, CA

The Garland, a boutique hotel in North Hollywood in Los Angeles, CA, recently underwent a $20 million renovation to debut brand new rooms, event spaces, outdoor Beverly Park and restaurant The Front Yard - leaving the entire property a truly remarkable experience. This retro-cool property draws on its’ 30 plus years of history in the community to offer guests unique offerings, including everything needed for an urban, entertaining summer vacation. With a gorgeous new park giving plenty of shade and a turquoise pool to catch some rays, there's nothing like Los Angeles for summer fun:

  • Located just minutes from Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal CityWalk, The Garland offers guests complimentary trolley rides to and from the surrounding attractions.

  • A weekly neighborhood walking tour showcases the nearby Brady Bunch house and other neighborhood highlights

  • The gorgeous outdoor park offers tai chi yoga for guests on Sunday mornings

  • Families can book the “Kids Room" option which offers a partitioned kids’ area, including bunk beds, kept separate from the parents’ queen bed

The Orlando Hotel | Los Angeles, California

The Orlando Hotel is truly an iconic hidden gem. This comfortable boutique hotel is surrounded by some of the absolute best things to do and see in town. Step right outside the lobby doors and enjoy the ease and comfort of walking blocks filled with designer and vintage boutiques as well as delicious staple eateries. Guests will feel right at home as they enjoy one of 95 newly renovated, stylish rooms, a rooftop saltwater swimming pool, a 24-hour fitness center and individual room patios.The Orlando Hotel offers the American Girl Package for parents and their children to enjoy a personalized experience for any American Girl lover. The day begins with fueling up at the onsite restaurant, The Churchill, before meeting with a personal shopper at the nearby American Girl store to pick out clothing accessories and books for their favorite doll, commemorating the experience with a complimentary photo and frame. Back at the hotel, the dolls will be right at home with their own bed, robe and slippers for a cozy slumber party to end the day.

Package includes: Complimentary American Girl Doll Bed, Complimentary American Girl Doll Robe and Slippers, Complimentary Photo on an American Girl frame, Complimentary Breakfast for 1 adult and 1 child,Complimentary Personal Shopper at the American Girl Store

Teton Mountain Lodge


Teton Mountain Lodge & Spa | Jackson Hole, Wyoming
The AAA Four Diamond family-friendly Teton Mountain Lodge & Spa, situated in the heart of Teton Village, combines quiet luxury and elegance with the warmth and rustic details of a quintessential Jackson Hole lodge. Located slope-side to Jackson Hole Mountain Resort and at the gateway to Grand Teton National Park, Teton Mountain Lodge & Spa is a haven for families and the ideal basecamp for those looking for their next Rocky Mountain family adventure. From family size suites with in-room kitchens, to family friendly dining options and play areas for kids, to the many outdoor activities fit for the entire family such as biking, wildlife safari tours, snowshoeing, skiing, and tubing, Teton Mountain Lodge understands and caters to families of all ages and sizes. Mogul the Moose, the property’s stuffed animal moose, is left on each bed for kids to enjoy during their stay. Hotel guests can snuggle with Mogul in their room or even have one wrapped up to take home. Teton Mountain Lodge & Spa includes the 12,000-foot, three-story award-winning Solitude Spa, complete with indoor and outdoor swimming pools, an oversized rooftop hot tub, a Motion Studio for Yoga and Zumba and a complete fitness center with weights and aerobic machines. Their signature restaurant, Spur Restaurant & Bar, offers locally sourced, elevated mountain cuisine with shared plates and is the perfect destination for families looking to unwind after a long day out on the slopes or enjoying the outdoor fun.