Poolside with a Warthog for Photo Friday

Every family trip has those truly memorable moments that you talk about forever. Sometimes it’s the travel nightmares that make an entertaining story (producing smiles only in the back end), sometimes it’s an extraordinary experience that sticks in our minds, while on other occasions what we remember is those funny moments that aren’t big bang experiences, but a time when we witness something simple yet utterly foreign.

Like this moment on our family safari in Africa.

Exploring Christmas Markets in Europe: Montreux, Switzerland

This is my first Christmas in Central Europe and I have to admit, I’m excited! We live near all the wonderful European Christmas markets—it doesn’t get more festive than that. We checked out the one closest to our house in Montreux last weekend. I wasn’t sure what to expect … with 146 “chalets” featuring local crafts and food, I knew it was going to be big and busy.

Joie de Vivre at Jardin du Luxembourg

It doesn’t matter how many times I visit Paris, each time I arrive in this glorious city I’m blown away by the sheer beauty and grandeur of everything around me.

Our last experience in Paris was last weekend and the weather was perfect. The best first stop on a gorgeous Sunday morning? The Jardin du Luxembourg (Luxembourg Garden). This meticulously manicured garden is always a top ‘things to do’ in Paris with kids.

Photo Friday: Visiting Costa Rica with Kids

Costa Rica has a lot going for it as a family vacation destination. This tiny Central American country between Nicaragua and Panama is different enough to feel exotic, but safe enough that you won’t worry about bringing your kids there. Since it’s due south of Florida, you won’t have to worry too much about jetlag either.

My husband and I took our kids to Costa Rica for a whirlwind week last March. It was a great trip, but we didn’t relax much.

Photo Friday: Legoland

I was just reading about The Q Family Adventures Legoland experience and it reminded me of our trip to check out the best kid-friendly San Diego hotels last August. For us, the stand out feature at Legoland vs. other amusement parks is that there are so many age-appropriate activities for toddlers and young children.

Although I wasn’t wowed by many of the lego sculptures (I thought this would be the highlight), the lego cities were amazingly intricate replicas of my USA favorites—New York and San Francisco.


Top Things to Do in Tuscany with Kids

A visit to Tuscany is an excellent addition to any Italy travel itinerary with kids. Despite the touristy element, vacations in this region are easy to manage and there are loads of things to see and do for all ages. Family-friendly accommodations are plentiful, and little tummies appreciate all the pasta and gelato.

Although there are endless wonderful cultural and historic attractions, you can’t see everything in the usual week-long trip. Five of my favorite sights …

Photo Friday: Rock Climbing for Kids on Mount Diablo

Last weekend we took a post-Halloween excursion to Mount Diablo State Park in San Francisco’s East Bay. At 3,864 feet (1,178 m), this mountain is one of the area’s main geographic landmarks and can be seen from around the bay.

If you are visiting the Bay Area during the fall or spring months, experiencing the views from the summit is a worthwhile activity. You can see for miles in every direction and get a unique panoramic view of this part of Northern California.