A Bucket List for Traveling With Grandkids

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Updated 01.10.2020:  Are you a boomer grandparent? Do you have a bucket list of destinations for traveling with grandkids? Why not?

Travel is one of the best ways to bond with grandchildren that I know of. And the firsthand experience that you provide teaches them an appreciation of the environment as well as other cultures. Plus hanging out with the grandkids on a trip is just plain fun.

Traveling with grandkids on a bucket list trip

Any trip you take with the grandkids has the potential for a bucket list experience. The simple act of traveling with the grandchildren creates memories that your family will always cherish. To get you started, here are four multigenerational travel ideas for your boomer wish list.

Hiking in a national park is a great way to bond with the grandkids on a trip.
Hiking in a national park is a great way to bond with the grandkids.

Traveling with grandkids on a national park adventure

Want a special bonding experience with the grandkids? Share a national park adventure with them. Go wildlife watching in Yellowstone. Hike to a glacier-fed lake in Glacier National Park. Or ride an airboat in the Everglades.

From ranger-led programs to overnight hikes, you’ll find an age appropriate activity for every child in the family on a national park adventure. Seeing nature’s beauty first-hand is one of the best ways to instill an appreciation of the environment in your grandchildren.

My boomer travel advice: Avoid popular parks during the busiest summer season, choosing a less popular park instead. Do you know how many beautiful places are included in the National Parks system? The National Parks Conversation Association publishes a clickable map to help you find them.

Showing grandchildren U.S. history in Washington D.C.

Taking the grandkids to Washington D.C. offers an intense immersion in U.S. history that’s only available in our nation’s capital city. Tour government buildings like the U.S. Capitol Building or the White House to see our government in action.

The grandkids will feel the power of America’s past standing in front of monuments like the Lincoln Memorial. And there are museums to fill up as much time as you care to spend in them. At the National Air and Space Museum, share your memories of watching the moon landing as you both touch a rock that once lived on the moon.

My boomer travel advice: On a visit to Washington, D.C., don’t try to see everything. Pick and choose the museums and monuments that are most appealing to your grandchild. And avoid a sultry, hot summer visit if you can. USA Today provides more tips for Traveling With Children to Washington D.C.

Mustard-colored building in Lucca, Italy
Explore family history together on a trip to Italy.

Introducing grandchildren to their roots

Teach your grandchildren about family history by exploring their ancestral roots. I can’t think of a better reason to travel internationally.

Learning about other cultures is more meaningful when there’s a family tie to the region. Forbes offers seven tips that you’ll find useful.

My boomer travel advice: Give each grandchild an inexpensive digital camera, and then create an online book from the pictures that they take on the trip. It’s a great way to keep kids engaged with family history while traveling.

Close up of a giraffe
Does your grandchild dream of seeing a giraffe in the wild? Take a safari together!

Inviting your grandchild to create the bucket list

Are you feeling adventurous? Invite your grandchild to pick out a destination that he or she would like to visit. Spend time researching the trip together. Then take them there. It will be an adventure that you’ll always cherish.

Have you seen our Travel Gift Guide for Grandkids? It’s another great way to instill the love of travel.

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