Find a family-friendly active vacation.
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Vacations are supposed to be relaxing and rejuvenating...but that doesn't mean you have to spend the entire time in a beach chair. Sure, you'll probably want to plan things like a massage, shopping outings and some good meals, but Bob Greene says you can also leave room for activity—and he's not talking about shutting yourself in the hotel gym.

Instead, you can get a workout and enjoy all the sights by taking a hike or bike tour or by planning an active family vacation. Take Bob's Best Life advice to make sure your vacation is healthy and happy!
Take a Hike

If you want to hike on your trip—or even try a full hiking vacation—you're going to have to do a little work before you leave. First, stop into your local outdoor outfitter; they can help you plan your hike and set you up with all the equipment you'll need. Also, you'll want to learn as much as you can about the area where you plan to hike. Go online to research a specific trail or location, or get general hiking information from sites like Finally, it's always great to go with someone who has already hiked the trail, if at all possible.

If you're considering planning an entire hiking trip, you may want to look into these spots, some of my favorite places to hike.
  • The Grand Canyon, Arizona: This is best in the fall or spring, and both the north and south rim are great.
  • Yosemite National Park, California: I enjoy all hikes in all seasons.
  • Zion National Park, Arizona: The "Narrows" hike is my favorite.
  • Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah: You'll enjoy all the beautiful red rocks and dirt.
  • The Appalachian Trail, Maine to Georgia: You can hike for months or just do a section.
  • Telluride, Colorado: It's hard to recommend one trail; they're all amazing.
Spin Your Wheels

Prefer to pedal your way through the sights? It's amazing how much you can see on two wheels: the wine country, quaint Vermont bed-and-breakfasts, romantic tours of the European countryside and so much more. No matter what your experience level, you can find a tour that's right for you.

If you've never gone on a bicycle tour, you should use a quality outfitter, such as Backroads, Vermont Bicycle Touring or Abercrombie & Kent. You can also check out the nonprofit organization Adventure Cycling Association. They have incredible maps that are bicycle-specific and bike-friendly.

Check out some of my favorite bicycle tours below:
  • Napa Valley Wine Tours, California: This is great any time of year.
  • Vermont bed-and-breakfast tours: It's the perfect summer outing.
  • Tour of the San Juans, Colorado: Enjoy the ride and the stunning views of the San Juan Mountains.
  • Tour of the Canadian Rockies: Plan a trip during the summer or early fall.
Active Family Vacations

If you're traveling with the whole family—whether you have little ones or older kids—a great way to keep everyone busy is to plan an active family vacation. There are lots of options. You can do a land-based adventure like exploring or horseback riding, a water-based outing like snorkeling or white water rafting or a bit of everything at an all-inclusive family resort. Below are some ideas to get you started.

  • Family-Friendly Resorts
    These destinations offer so many different activities, both for adults (inline skating, golf, tennis, flying trapeze and the latest gym classes) and kids (camps, beach Olympics, water parks, land and water sports), that you're sure to find something that appeals to everyone. Check out Beaches or ClubMed for some ideas on locations and pricing.
  • Horse Ranch
    You can go to simply ride the horses and enjoy the picturesque scenery or actually work on the ranch—roping, riding and cattle driving. Check out the Dude Rancher's Association to learn about dude ranches in the United States.
  • Adventure Vacations
    Depending on the age of your children and their interests, you could build a vacation around activities in the water like kayaking, white-water rafting, snorkeling or scuba diving; on land, such as camping, hiking or exploring; or even in the air, including ziplining. Check out Thompson Family Adventures or Austin-Lehman Adventures for some great national and international vacation ideas.
For more fun ways to stay active, check out

How do you plan to stay fit with your family this summer? Share your comment below.

Keep Reading:
10 tips to stay healthy all summer long!
Skip the beach! Make a difference with a volunteer vacation
Plan the ultimate family-friendly summer day trip
As a reminder, always consult your doctor for medical advice and treatment before starting any program.


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