Panicking because summer’s halfway through, but you still don’t have a family vacation on the books?
Take a deep breath. We know one big reason you may not have booked anything to date is that vacation can be expensive—especially when you factor in airfare. While there are ways to save on plane tickets for your whole family, an even cheaper way to go is to cut the plane tickets all together.
We’ve put together this list of four fun, family-friendly destinations, all of which are within driving distance for those living in the Northeast. An added bonus? They’re all home to Accor hotels, a chain which happens to have some great deals going on right now.
There’s so much to do in Times Square! From street performers to Broadway shows, it’s a difficult place to get bored. And believe it or not, there are several ways to do things frugally. Buy leftover tickets the day of for shows that have sold out at the red box in the middle of Times Square. (Just don’t promise any particular show to the family until you’ve secured tickets.) Walk to sites like 30 Rock and see the impressive expanse of the Big Apple. Hop on public transport and you can even see the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island—just be sure to book your tickets ahead of time!
We’ve got an entire post for you about all the family fun that can be had in America’s first capital. But don’t forget about the history that is alive and well in this city, too. For just a few dollars, you can visit the resting place of Benjamin Franklin and throw pennies to honor his memory. You can view the Liberty Bell for free from the outside, or pay a fee to go see it up close and personal inside. Located right next to that is Liberty Hall—where everything came together. All of these things within walking distance make for a fun and educational trip with the family.
Unsurprisingly, America’s current capital, Washington, D.C., also has a ton of historical and educational sites. There’s the Smithsonian, the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Monument, the MLK Memorial, the Vietnam War Memorial, Monticello in Charlottesville—the list could go on. The great part? While D.C. may be an expensive city to live in, a lot of these attractions are free or available at a nominal, affordable fee. And while it feels like it’s further away because we often consider it be in the south, it’s actually right at Maryland/Virginia border at a very northern part of Northern Virginia. Google the directions—you may just be surprised at how drivable it actually is!
Boston is a city rich in American history, as well. Beyond the historical sites, you can catch a ball game at Fenway Park, spark your kids’ STEM interests at the MIT Museum, go whale watching, or check out the wildlife at the New England Aquarium or Franklin Park Zoo. If you venture out to Spectacle Island, you’ll be able to spend a day at the beach and find cool treasures that have washed up ashore—most notably sea glass.