5 Elements For an Epic Family Vacation 

Thinking about a family ski vacation? There’s no question that hitting the slopes with your family is a fantastic reason to cash in those vacation days, but if you want to make your family ski trip one to remember, consider these five key elements of your vacation as you begin your planning. This post was written by Erin Oltmanns, managing editor of Today’s Mama.


Do you enjoy a leisurely morning filled with pancakes fresh off the griddle? Or would you rather be first in line when the lift opens so your family can claim first tracks? Do you have a little one who’s going to benefit from an afternoon nap? Considering how your family likes to spend their “down time” during a family vacation is an important factor in planning your trip. A condo with a full kitchen is perfect for family meals—not to mention the added space (doors and bathrooms!) for more people. Ski-in and ski-out lodging options are fantastic if you’re all about maximizing your time on the mountain—especially if that means you have little ones that might tire out and need a break midday. Want to end your day warming your toes by a fire? These are the sort of questions that I ask myself when I’m planning our family vacations—as my kiddos grow and our needs change, considering how we want to spend our “resting” time makes a huge difference!


How will you make your kid’s eyes light up? Vacation magic is all about unexpected surprise and delight. Your little ones will be excited to discover Kidtopia at Keystone, an entire program of activities designed for kids. Here, you can explore the world’s largest snow fort or dance to live music. Or, if you’re interested in skating under the stars, the 9,000 square foot ice skating rink in the center of Northstar Village will add just the right amount of twirl to your family vacation. The more adventurous types will love the zipline and you’ll be hard pressed to find a member of the family who won’t be smiling ear to ear after a turn on the tubes at Vail.

There are scavenger hunts at Keystone, warm cookies at the base of the mountain at Beaver Creek, and an Alpine Coaster at Park City! And this is only a sampling of the kid-friendly activities and events offered at this family of resorts. I’m pretty sure my kids would love to partake in all of these (especially the cookies).


Who needs a lesson? Who wants a lesson? Do you have a little one who is ready to learn to conquer bigger hills? Do YOU want a refresher on the finer points of powder? Ski lessons are the win-win of a family ski vacation. Carving out time for your kids to spend time with a talented and engaging instructor while you hit runs that might be too much for the whole family gives everyone a chance to do something epic!


Do you want to sneak in a date night during your vacation? Will your teenagers appreciate a little time away from the family? Do you have a little one that will want an afternoon off from the slopes? Nearly every resort in this portfolio offers childcare options ranging from kids camps, nursery programs, and an evening program for teens (available at Beaver Creek). At Park City, the childcare location even allows for a gondola ride up the mountain to a snow play hill! Each resort offers care and programs that are grouped by age, are allergy sensitive, and include fun projects and play options each day. I’ve learned that the “child care” options at resorts can be one of the highlights of the trip for my little kids. They view it more like going to camp than being babysat.


What else do you like to do? Do you enjoy live music? Want to sneak in some shopping? Catch a movie on a big screen? With some of the most iconic ski towns and villages in the nation, these resorts promise events, festivals, competitions, and nightlife—the only trick is deciding how many things you can pack in during your stay. On a vacation with my family, I try to always build in time for something we wouldn’t do at home, like grabbing dessert in the village or letting the kids stay up a little later to see the streets light up at night.

Whatever your ideal family time entails, find the right fit for you on a ski vacation in Colorado, Canada, Utah, or Tahoe. All of the resorts in this portfolio of destinations make it easy to plan your trip, and with so many activities designed with families in mind, you don’t need to spend the trip worrying!



Erin is the Managing Editor of the parenting website Today’s Mama and the co-host of Click Retreat. TodaysMama.com brings together an eclectic group of mamas who are hoping to shine an authentic light on modern motherhood. We are dedicated to bringing mothers and families information about parenting, food, family travel, and everything in between. You can connect with TodaysMama here: Facebook | Pinterest | Twitter | Instagram | #clickretreat


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