Sponsored by Nature Valley

Best U.S. Outdoor Family Vacations

National Geographic
by National Geographic
Share it:
Best U.S. Outdoor Family Vacations

This article was originally published at National Geographic.

Some families are summer vacation traditionalists, never veering from their two weeks together at a condo at the beach or the cabin on the lake. But for those who like to mix it up, here are some out-of-the-box options.

OUTDOOR ESCAPES

The 15 treehouses at Out ‘n About Treesort in southwestern Oregon’s Siskiyou Mountains range from a gazebo 37 feet aloft and accessible only by a canopy walkway to the “Swiss Family Complex,” with separate units for adults and kids and your choice of exit: sliding down a fire pole or swinging from a rope. Back on terra firma, there’s a swimming pool fed by a nearby river and lessons on design and building your own hideout. From $150, including breakfast.

Stay in a Native American tepee (sleeps up to eight) or in a log cabin in an area of southeastern Ohio known for its spectacular sandstone formations. The resort, At Boulders Edge, is close to Hocking Hills State Park for hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, zip-lining, and tumbling down the hills in a giant inflatable ball. From $65.

BACK TO NATURE

At the College of the Atlantic’s Family Nature Camp in Bar Harbor, Maine, families explore the natural world — birds, tide pools, beaver habitat — on guided field trips along the craggy coast of Mount Desert Island and Acadia National Park. Help assemble a minke whale skeleton and take a spin aboard the Starfish Enterprise with Diver Ed, who brings sea urchins, sea cucumbers, hermit crabs and other critters up from the ocean floor for you to touch. From $625/night.

Learn what causes the aurora borealis phenomenon at a special program led by space expert Neal Brown. It’s one of several nature sessions this summer at Camp Denali, a 17-cabin retreat in Alaska’s Denali National Park. Should the aurora kick up, guests get a wake-up call from Brown via handheld radios. Three-night weekend (all-inclusive) rates from $1,545; $1,159 for kids.

ADVENTURE

Raft Idaho’s Salmon River on ROW Adventures’ five-day Family Magic Rafting Trip. The pace is easy with ample opportunity to loll on beaches, take guided nature hikes, and discover Indian rock art and pioneer homesteads. Your tent and an outdoor living area are set up when you arrive at camp each day. From $1,285; $1,035 for kids.

It’s not out West, but the sprawling Pisgah View Ranch in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina has all the amenities of a classic dude ranch. There’s daily horseback riding, roping, hiking, and fishing, as well as cookouts every Saturday night. Choose from 20 private cabins, including four on a lake. From $125 per person.

Sponsored By

Sponsored by - Nature Valley
About Nature Valley

Nature Valley created the granola bar category in 1975 and is the number 1 granola brand in the U.S. Bringing great taste to active consumers looking for wholesome snacks, Nature Valley offers 10 varieties of great-tasting granola snacks: Crunchy Granola Bars, Breakfast Biscuits, Sweet & Salty Nut Granola Bars, Protein Bars, Protein Granola, Greek Yogurt Protein Bars, Soft-Baked Oatmeal Squares, Granola Thins, Chewy Trail Mix Bars, Roasted Nut Crunch Bars and Yogurt Granola Bars. Nature Valley® is part of the General Mills family of brands. General Mills has been making food people love for more than 150 years. Find out more about our efforts to take care of the earth for the next generation at www.generalmills.com.

About the Author

National Geographic
National Geographic

National Geographic is the world’s leading multimedia destination for the best stories in science, exploration and adventure. Our unrivaled sense of purpose and mission is best evidenced by the fact that nearly 30% of our profits go to funding real scientists, explorers and conservationists. Learn more at https://www.nationalgeographic.com/.

Shop Under Armour

chevron_left chevron_right

Related

Never Miss a Post!

Turn on MyFitnessPal desktop notifications and stay up to date on the latest health and fitness advice.

Great!

Click the 'Allow' Button Above

Awesome!

You're all set.