Top 10 Family Trips for the 2013 New Year's Resolution List

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Family travel experts Ciao Bambino and Hip Travel Mama’s top destinations for families resolving to explore more as a family in 2013

Photo by Amie O'Shaughnessy

“It’s easy to take the same trip each year out of convenience, but in doing so, we miss a big opportunity to expose our kids and ourselves to new, enriching experiences"

With the New Year upon us, the family travel experts at Ciao Bambino and Hip Travel Mama are encouraging families to resolve to travel more as a family in 2013. To help families explore new family-friendly destinations, the two award-winning family travel blogs issued their list of Top 10 Family Trips for the 2013 Travel List.

“We are seeing a growing trend of families willing and interested to travel further afield from the tried-and-tested family travel destinations,” said Amie O’Shaughnessy, founder and executive editor of Ciao

More families are discovering incredible travel experiences both abroad and in U.S. and want to engage in a variety of adventures together such as Dude Ranch vacations, National Park getaways, family ski vacations, and city trips focused on museums and culture. Social media is making it easy for families to effortlessly share experiences and is motivating parents to get out and explore more of the world with their kids.

“It’s easy to take the same trip each year out of convenience, but in doing so, we miss a big opportunity to expose our kids and ourselves to new, enriching experiences,” Anne Taylor Hartzell, founder and executive editor, Hip Travel “As a family in 2013, we are resolving to try at least one new destination this year and put more stamps on our passports.”

Top 10 Family Trips For the 2013 New Year’s Resolution List:

1. Puglia | Italy

Italy has been a family travel favorite for years; Rome, Tuscany, and Venice continue to be top destinations for travel with kids. Families who have been to Italy before are seeking new, authentic experiences. Puglia fits the bill as it’s less traveled with fascinating cultural treasures like UNESCO-protected Alberobello, with its remarkable cone-shaped trulli dwellings, plus 800 km of coastline for beach time. Family-friendly accommodations are plentiful, from five-star gems like Masseria Torre Coccaro, with a full service beach club and activities, to the fast-growing home rental market offering an excellent inventory of apartments and villas.

2. Marrakech | Morocco

As much of the North Africa remains in turmoil, Morocco is continues to be safe, stable, and offers extensive infrastructure for tourists. Marrakech offers a long list of incredible places to stay and now more hotels in town are catering to families. The Four Seasons Marrakech has an exquisitely designed children’s club, an expansive family pool, and spacious suites for families, while the more intimate Beldi Country Club offers acres of gardens and an on-site pottery workshop with afternoon classes for kids. Marrakech is an excellent base to launch a trip into the Atlas Mountains and beyond. Amie designed a Morocco Family Adventure just for families with the award-winning Tour Operator Kensington Tours.

3. Luxury Lodges of Australia | Australia

Australia is long haul with kids, but it’s magnificent natural and urban treasures make the journey worthwhile. Luxury Lodges of Australia offers a variety of top-notch experiences around the country that cater to families. At Emirates Wolgan Valley activities include 4WD guided drives, horseback riding, and mountain biking in the company of rare albino wallaroos and wombats. Meanwhile, the Southern Ocean Lodge on Kangaroo Island – Australia’s Galapagos – is filled with kangaroos, koalas, seals, dolphins and penguins in this ‘zoo without fences’.

4. Punta Cana | Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic has made its way onto several prominent travel lists for 2013 and is on our wish list for beach vacations in 2013. More airlines are flying to the Dominican Republic and hotels such as the Paradisus Dominican Republic are rolling out the red carpet for families, with a family concierge program, and up to $1,000 in resort credits. In late 2013, Starwood Hotels is also expected opening The Westin Puntacana Resort, a luxury beachfront resort with family amenities.

5. Machu Picchu | Peru

One of the trips on the family travel bucket list for 2013 is Macchu Picchu, Peru. Experts who have done this trip with their own children recommend waiting until children are eight and older. Two luxury properties worth exploring are Starwood Hotels and Resort’s Tamba Del Inca, based in the Sacred Valley, and Hotel Monasterio in Cusco, Peru.

For those that want to stick closer to home, consider these five family-friendly ski and sun destinations in 2013:

6. Park City, Utah | United States

Park City is only 45 minutes from the Salt Lake City airport, making this destination one of the most easily accessible ski areas in the country. All three of Park City’s ski resorts are on Ski Magazine’s Top 10 list, not to mention that these mountains support epic summer activities including world-class hiking, biking, and fishing. Accommodations are plentiful and suit every taste and budget, from the spectacular Montage Deer Valley with award-winning kids’ programming, to a massive selection of multi-room residences and condominiums.

7. Central California Road Trip | United States

The iconic stretch of California running from the Monterey Peninsula to Santa Barbara is some of the prettiest land in the entire United States. What many travelers don’t realize is that there are fabulous activities inland as well. Paso Robles is home to 200 wineries producing world-class wine and warmly welcomes families with everything from an incredible zip-line tour on the historic Margarita Ranch, to horsemanship classes for kids at Harris Ranch. A year-round destination, some of the best weather can be in shoulder seasons when other California destinations are cost-prohibitive.

8. Victoria, BC | Canada

Victoria BC is just a few hours from Seattle, Washington by the Victoria Clipper ferry and less than an hour via Seaplane on Kenmore Air. Families visiting Victoria will enjoy the walkable harbor area, kids aquarium and endless fun family experiences. Stay at the Fairmont Empress, or the new Oak Bay Beach Hotel.

9. Maui, Hawaii | United States

A popular favorite destination for many families, Maui offers visitors an easy tropical respite from the cold days of winter. Even if this is your first or fifth trip to the island, there is always something new to explore on Maui. Whether you love to hike, surf, or just lay around the beach, family-friendly activities and properties abound for families on a variety of budgets.

10. Experience What’s New, Disney Style

In 2012, Disneyland and Walt Disney World completed major expansions, including a five-year expansion of Disneyland Resort’s Disney California Adventure Park new Cars Land and Buena Vista Street, and a two-year renovation of the historic Disneyland Hotel. Walt Disney World opened the first phase of The New Fantasyland at The Magic Kingdom and the new Art of Animation Hotel with more new additions to come to both Disney Parks in 2013. Also in 2013, Disney Cruise Line is rolling out new itineraries and ports, including a return the Mediterranean, giving families an opportunity to explore Europe and the magic of Disney. Adventures by Disney is also offering a growing number of guided, bucket list tours for families both in the U.S. and around the world.

About Ciao Bambino
Ciao Bambino! Inc. is a leading family travel brand and publisher of a global travel planning resource for families. Their award-winning guide features best-in-class hotel reviews and a comprehensive family travel blog offering tips, news, and narratives related to traveling with kids of all ages. is the only dedicated family travel resource offering an online booking service for readers who are able to make requests directly from the site to over 300 parent-approved hotels, resorts, and villas for best available pricing. Ciao Bambino specializes in reviewing kid-friendly luxury hotels. Follow Ciao Bambino on Twitter @CiaoBambino and on Facebook at

About Hip Travel Mama
Anne Taylor Hartzell, a.k.a. Hip Travel Mama, is a nationally recognized family travel expert, inspiring families to share travel experiences and explore the world together. Hip Travel Mama is a frequent broadcast media travel expert, has appeared on the TODAY Show, USA Today,, Conde’ Nast Traveler, and more than 30 broadcast TV outlets across the country. With more than 16 years experience as a brand ambassador for companies such as Starwood Hotels and Resorts, Expedia, Disney, Kimpton Hotels, Bing, Farecast, and others, Hip Travel Mama helps brands inspire and engage influential travelers via broadcast media, social media and the blogosphere. Her blog,, provides inspiration, travel tips, hotel and destination reviews for families. Connect with Hip Travel Mama’s video log, Hip Travel Mama on Facebook and on Twitter at @HipTravelMama.

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