Looking to plan incredible adventures with kids? This list of 100 adventures is the perfect way to set yourself up for a lifetime of family adventures and memories. We created this list as a family and are slowly checking off items as we explore each year. Of course, life isn’t a series of things to check off your list, but a collection of experiences, and this list is our perfect guide to always prioritizing adventure time together as a family.
Swim with whales, admire the cherry blossoms, or set sail for a week. From simple to elaborate, these adventures are sure to get you excited.
Make sure to sign up for our newsletter and get your free copy of Find Your Adventure – an 11-page workbook to help you plan a lifetime of adventure. You can also see our article on where to travel with your kids at every age to help you with your planning.
Below you can see our list of 100 adventures to have with kids, as well as information on how to make this adventure a reality, and a link if we’ve already completed the adventure.
100 Adventure With Kids
- Hike on a Glacier
- Visit the Amazon
- Swim in Bioluminescence
- See Puffins in the Wild
- Do a Homestay
- Visit the Ruins in Rome
- Camp by an Alpine Lake
- Rock Climb
- Visit an Active Volcano
- Do a Bike Packing Trip
- Hike to Machu Pichu
- See the Taj Mahal
- Take a Long Distance Train Ride
- Chase Waterfalls in Iceland
- Walk Through a Rice Field
- Go Gorilla Trekking
- Wonder at Stonehenge
- Bike Through Amsterdam
- Walk on the Great Wall of China
- Check out the Vintage Cars in Cuba
- Check out the Animals of the Galapagos Islands
- Have Tea in London
- Take a Cooking Class
- Eat at a cafe in Paris
- Swim in the 5 Named Oceans
- Explore Angkor Wat Temple
- Ride in a Helicopter
- Swim with Sting Rays
- Go Canyoneering
- Hike to Christ the Redeemer
- Sail on Ha Long Bay
- Stand in both Hemispheres
- Visit Glow Worm Caves
- Complete a Hiking Challenge
- See Penguins in the Wild
- Go on a Safari
- Do an Overnight Kayak Trip
- Hike in the Alps
- Scuba Dive
- Take a Bath in Pamukkale
- Swim with Whale Sharks
- Spend the Night at a Mountain Hut
- Check out Mont Saint-Michel
- Go Surfing
- Hike to Trolltunga
- See Mount Fiji
- Take a Ski Vacation
- Visit the Grand Canyon
- Listen to Music in Ireland
- See an Animal Migration
- Visit Every US National Park
- Sleep in an Overwater Bungalow
- Volunteer with an Environmental Organization
- Visit an Ice Hotel
- Explore Petra
- See the Great Barrier Reef
- Ride a Camel in the Desert
- See the Cherry Blossoms in Bloom
- Spend a Week Sailing
- Go Spelunking
- Try Parasailing
- See the Statues on Easter Island
- Take a Boat Ride in Venice
- Walk Across the Salt Flats
- Visit the Grand Palace, Bangkok
- See the Mountains of Patagonia
- Sleep on a Boat
- Visit all 7 Continents
- Go Snorkeling
- See the Mayan Ruins
- Do a multi-Day Trek
- Swim in a Cenote
- Visit the Pyramids
- Horseback Ride on the Beach at Sunset
- Make it to the North Pole
- Take a Hot Air Balloon
- Visit Alaska
- Visit Antarctica
- See the Northern Lights
- Go Zip Lining
- Take in the Fall Foliage
- Go to a Cloud Forest
- Visit the Summer Palace
- Swim in Jellyfish Lake
- Visit the Ruins in Greece
- Check out the Tidal Bore in Nova Scotia
- Trek in the Himalayas
- Volunteer in an Animal Sanctuary
- Check out the Burj Khalifa
- Be Amazed at Iguazu Falls
- Walk the Streets of Pompeii
- Do a Multi-day Backpack
- Explore the Azores
- Visit Lapland
- Go Dog Sledding
- Soak in a Hot Spring
- See Icebergs from the Deck of a Boat
- See Saint Basil’s Cathedral & the Red Square
- Hike on Rainbow Mountain
- See the Temples of Bagan
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Details on 100 Adventures with Kids that Will Change Your Life
Hike on a Glacier
Take a tour to hike on a glacier. Glaciers are amazing natural features, and exploring one of these glaciers on foot is an adventure your kids will never forget. Head north or south to find the most amazing glaciers like Alaska, Iceland, or Chile. You will want to choose a reputable tour company that can supply you with all the gear you need.
See more about our adventure exploring Vatnajokull Glacier in Iceland.
Visit the Amazon
The incredible Amazon rainforest in South America is home to 10% of the world’s wildlife and around 30 million people. Explore this lush forest by canoe and search for caymans or pink dolphins. While most of the rainforest is within the country of Brazil, you can also visit the Amazon in Ecuador, Bolivia, Peru, and Columbia. Do your research and make sure to stay in a reputable, local, eco-resort.
See more about our visit to the Amazon.
Swim in Bioluminescence
Around the world, microscopic plankton light up the waters on dark nights. Like a million tiny stars, these bursts of light increase when they are disturbed, creating an amazing bioluminescent effect. In a few places around the globe, there are high concentrations of bioluminescent plankton and you can kayak or swim through the water surrounded by these bursts of light. One of the easiest places to swim in bioluminescence is right in Puerto Rico at Parguera Bay.
Learn more about swimming in a bioluminescent Bay in Puerto Rico.
See Puffins in the Wild
Seeing puffins in the wild has been on my bucketlist for as long as I can remember. These amazing birds spend most of their life at sea, but come ashore during the summer to mate and lay their eggs in small burrows along the cliff edge. There are many places to see puffins including Maine, Canada, and Iceland. We visited several sites in Iceland to visit puffins and highly recommend Borgarfjörður Eystri.
Learn more about seeing puffins at Borgarfjörður Eystri.
Do a Homestay
One of the best ways to immerse yourself in a new destination is through a homestay. Staying with a family in another country gives you the chance to see exactly how a family lives in another part of the world. We’ve done a few homestays, usually as part of a language school. This also gives you the chance to practice your language skills. We spent 1 week with a family in Boquete, Panama and the kids loved playing with the family’s dog and the kids and still talk about the experience.
Learn more about our visit to Boquete, Panama.
Visit the Ruins in Rome
I love Rome and after visiting without my kids, I couldn’t wait to bring them back to explore the city together. There is so much to see and do in Rome, but we especially loved touring the ancient ruins and taking a tour of the Colosseum and the Roman Forum. Rome is a great city to visit with kids at every age.
See more about visiting Colosseum.
Camp by an Alpine Lake
Waking up next to an alpine lake is magical. I love a morning cup of tea next to a tent with an epic view of an alpine lake and mountains in the distance. There are so many places around the globe to backpack and stay right at an alpine lake, and if camping isn’t your thing, you can often find a hut or cabin on an alpine lake that you can hike into for the night. Since this is one of our favorite things to do on vacation, you can see lots of alpine lake destinations on this site.
Learn how to backpack and camp at Alpine and Sawtooth Lake in Idaho.
Rock climbing is something our family has done together since our kids were young, but you don’t need to be an expert to rock climb with your kids. We’ve loved climbing with our kids around the world and many places offer tours for a half-day or full-day climbing experience. Rocks are everywhere, so chances are there is rock climbing near to where you live, or you can plan a trip around rock climbing in an amazing foreign destination.
Visit an Active Volcano
Visiting an active volcano has long been on our bucket list. There are many places around the world where you can safely get close enough to an active volcano to see the lava in the cone of the volcano. We are currently in the process of planning a trip to Guatemala to spend the night on a volcano in Pacaya. This tour looks amazing!
Do a Bike Packing Trip
We love to bike and backpack, so what could be more fun than putting these two adventures together? Bike packing can be done in several different ways. You can pack everything you need onto your back and stop at night to camp. You can also bikepack by carrying a smaller pack and staying at a hotel or lodge for the night. Bikepacking is an incredible adventure and can be done almost anywhere around the world.
Hike to Machu Pichu
Machu Pichu is on most people’s adventure list and for good reason. Located in the hills of Peru, this Incan religious site is made for adventure. You can visit Machu Pichu on a day trip from Cuzco, but for the ultimate adventure, spend a few days hiking the Sacred Valley to Machu Pichu: stay at a rustic camp for the night, and wander past llamas.
See the Taj Mahal
The majestic Taj Mahal is famous for its ivory-white marble mausoleum. Located on the shores of the Yamuna River by the city of Agra in Northern India, The Taj Mahal is one of the 7 wonders of the world. This masterpiece of architecture was built in the 1600s and is visited by millions of people every year. To reach the Taj Mahal, take the 2-hour train from New Delhi.
Take a Long Distance Train Ride
There are many places around the world to experience a long-distance, overnight train ride. Exploring a country, or even a continent by rail feels like a step back in time to a period before air travel, when railway travel was the best way to get around. See some of the best long-distance train rides around the world.
Chase Waterfalls in Iceland
We love to see waterfalls everywhere we go, but there is something truly magical about waterfalls in Iceland. If you aren’t wowed by each waterfall, you will be wowed by the sheer number of waterfalls. It seems everywhere you look there is a massive waterfall, a thin streak of glacial water winding down a cliff, or a cascading fall over massive boulders. Iceland is the perfect place to explore waterfalls!
See more about visiting Iceland and chasing waterfalls!
Walk Through a Rice Field
While walking through a rice field is a common thing to do for many people in many parts of the world, living in the United States, the idea of a rice field is very exotic. In order to enjoy a serene walk through a rice field, we will need to travel around the world to a totally amazing destination.
If you are looking to experience walking through a rice field, check out this tour in Bali and visit Tegalalang Rice Terrace among other sites.
Go Gorilla Trekking
Gorilla trekking is one of the activities on this list that is best done with older kids and we’re saving this until all our kids can participate. Gorilla trekking usually involves hours of strenuous hiking through the jungles of Africa in the hope of finding gorillas in the wild. To see these amazing animals, you will need to travel to Uganda, Rwanda, or the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Wonder at Stonehenge
This pre-historic stone circle located in England still offers mysteries today. Made up of about 100 stones ranging in size from massive to relatively small, Stonehenge was a major undertaking in engineering that makes little sense to the millions of people who visit every year. Take a tour from London, or visit on your own and marvel at this simple but striking stone circle.
We visited Stonehenge in the summer of 2019 as part of our 10-day trip around England and Wales.
Bike Through Amsterdam
The best way to explore Amsterdam is by bike – in fact, there are more bikes in Amsterdam than people! In addition, the city is designed for biking and is probably the most bike-friendly city in the entire world. Biking through Amsterdam is a great activity to do with kids. Rent bikes for the day and see the city on your own, or join a bike tour around Amsterdam.
Walk on the Great Wall of China
Snaking along the border of China for over 5,500 miles, this incredible engineering project includes walls as well as natural barriers. Built over many years starting in the 7th century BCE, today the Great Wall of China is partially preserved and partially in ruins. Visiting the Great Wall of China is on most people’s bucket list and you can spend a day or even an overnight exploring this amazing and historic site.
Check out the Vintage Cars in Cuba
Cuba is a country with its own distinctive vibe. The food, music, and dancing of Cuba offer a glimpse into the amazing culture of this island just off the coast of Florida. Most adventures in Cuba start in Havana, and one of the best things to do in Havana is to check out vintage cars. Take a ride in one of the cars, or just walk around the city to see these fun automobiles!
Check out the Animals of the Galapagos Islands
The Galapagos islands, 1000 miles off the coast of Ecuador, are the perfect destination for nature lovers. With animals that are found nowhere else in the world, these islands are best visited from the deck of a ship so you can hop from island to island. Go on a search for the marine iguana, penguins, giant tortoises, and boobies and see the islands the way Darwin did on his famous sea voyage.
Have Tea in London
High tea is a must if you’re visiting London. Luckily there is a range of tea from luxury to simple. Besides tea, you can expect simple baked goods, jelly, scones, and clotted cream. Some of the best high teas can be found in fancy hotels and restaurants around the city. For something unique, try having high tea on a bus!
Take a Cooking Class
Around the world, food is a snapshot into the local culture and people take pride in what they eat and serve. One of the best ways to immerse yourself in the local culture is by taking a cooking class. Learn to make local food from a local and you will be able to share the culture when you return home. Almost every destination around the world has cooking classes or food tours: learn to make pad thai in Thailand, tortillas in Guatemala, or croissants in France.
Eat at a Cafe in Paris
Paris is known for many things, the Eiffel Tower, famous art museums, gorgeous bridges and so much more. But one of the best things to do in Paris is to stop at one of the cafes you can find on every corner around the city. No matter what time of day you are strolling the streets, there will be a cafe nearby where you can stop for a drink or a snack.
We loved wandering around Paris for a few days and it is now Hadley’s favorite city!
Swim in the 5 Named Oceans
While there is really just one giant ocean on earth, this one ocean is divided up into 5 named oceans: Atlantic, Pacific, Antarctic, Indian, and Arctic. Swimming in each of these oceans is an adventure. Since we live near the Atlantic, we’ve got that covered. We’ve also swum in the Pacific and the Indian, so we are on a mission to swim in our last two named oceans. The next two will be COLD!
Explore Angkor Wat Temple
Located in Siam Reep, Cambodia, Angkor Wat Temple is the largest religious monument in the world. Every inch of this incredible building complex is intricately crafted. Built around 1110-1150 as a representation of Mount Meru, the home of the ancient gods, Angkor Wat can be visited all year – plan at least 3 hours for your visit.
Ride in a Helicopter
This is the single thing on this list that makes me the most nervous! There are many places around the world that are best viewed from inside a helicopter. Some of the best helicopter tours we’ve seen are in Hawaii and Alaska, where you get incredible views of otherwise inaccessible places.
Swim with Sting Rays
The best place to swim with sting rays is in String Ray City in the Cayman Islands. Swimming with these incredible animals in their natural habitat is magical. I first did this when I was a child and can’t wait to take my own kids back to experience swimming with sting rays.
Go Canyoneering in a Slot Canyon
Carved in the layers of stones by years of running water, slot canyons are narrow canyons, often only a few feet wide. You can explore these amazing canyons during a hike, or get more technical and try canyoneering into a slot canyon with a harness and rope. One of the best places to explore slot canyons are in the Southwest of the United States. You can also find canyoneering opportunities in many places around the globe.
For a fun slot canyon check out Willis Creek Slot Canyon in Utah.
Hike to Christ the Redeemer
This famous statue of Jesus Christ stands over the city of Rio de Janiero, Brazil. Completed in 1931, the statue stands as a symbol of Christianity and is considered one of the 7 wonders of the world. To visit Christ the Redeemer, most people take the Cog Railroad up the mountain. You can also walk or take a bus.
Sail on Ha Long Bay
The gorgeous Ha Long Bay in Vietnam is made up of over 1,600 islands. The stunning limestone karsts are mostly uninhabited and are the perfect place to explore on one of the many boats that sail around the bay. The tours vary from one-night excursions to longer sails.
Stand in Both Hemispheres
There are many places around the world where you can stand on both hemispheres at the same time. The equator passes directly through 13 countries. To stand on the equator, choose one of these countries and plan a trip. When you stand on the equator, not only are you in both the north and the south, but you are technically in summer and winter at the same time (or spring and fall).
Visit Glow Worm Caves
The incredible glowworm caves in New Zealand are a one-of-a-kind attraction. The best way to see the Waitomo Glowworm cave is on a boat tour. This underground cave is illuminated with the bioluminescence of thousands of glow worms. You can also see glow worms in several other places including Australia.
Complete a Hiking Challenge
Many places around the world offer hiking challenges, or you can choose a more universal hiking challenge. Choosing a hiking challenge encourages you to get out and explore. Consider looking at your closest mountain range for a list of hikes, or consider one of the hiking challenges below:
- 52 Hike Challenge: Hike every week of the year
- Hike the Pacific Crest Trail
- Hike the Appalachian Trail
- Hike ____ miles in a year
We live in New Hampshire near the White Mountains and are working on hiking at 48 – 4,000 footers in the NH.
See Penguins in the Wild
Penguins are mostly found in the Antarctic, but there are several other places in the southern hemisphere to find penguins. These adorable animals are so fun to watch, and seeing them in the wild is incredible. Consider destinations like Patagonia, the Faulkland Islands, and the Galapagos.
Go on a Safari
Going on a safari is on almost every traveler’s bucket list. A typical safari gives you the chance to see animals in their natural habitat. While you can find safaris in other parts of the world, an African safari is a perfect place to see some of the world’s most amazing animals. Go out in search for giraffes, lions, wildebeests, tigers, and more.
Do an Overnight Kayak Trip
Setting off for the night by kayak or canoe and camping on an island is the perfect adventure to have with kids. There are so many places where you can rent kayaks for an overnight, or use your own. We love exploring the Maine Coast and the Maine Island Coast Trail is a series of campsites and day-use areas that are fun to explore by boat.
See more about our overnight boating adventure on the Maine Coast.
Hike in the Alps
The Alps stretch across Europe with jagged Mountain peaks, gorgeous alpine lakes, culturally significant cuisine, and small towns perched on the mountainsides. There are many places to enjoy the Alps – consider Switzerland, Austria, Italy, or Slovenia. You can stay in a mountain town, or consider doing a hut-to-hut trip and spending the night in a backcountry hut.
Learning to scuba dive opens up a whole new world to explore. We’ve always loved to snorkel, but learning to scuba dive is something you can all learn together as a family. There are many places around the world where you can learn to scuba dive – consider a diving vacation where you can learn to dive and become certified all while enjoying the incredible world underwater.
Take a Bath in Pamukkale
Located in western Turkey, Pamukkale is an incredible natural pool surrounded by ancient ruins. A 200 meter cliffside full of terraced basins, the Greeks built the thermal spa of Hierapolis at this site. These calcium coated cliffs and hot springs are known as a place of healing and it is possible to take a swim in these amazing pools. It’s also worth exploring the ruins here, especially the Theatre of Hierapolis.
Swim with Whale Sharks
Swimming with whale sharks has always been one of our bucket list activities. These amazing and gentle animals might be called sharks, but are plankton eaters and it is possible to swim with them in many places around the world. A few of the best places to swim with whale sharks include: the Galapagos, Mexico, the Sea of Cortez, and the Philippines. As with an animal encounter, always look for a reputable company.
Spend the Night at a Mountain Hut
There are many places around the world where you can spend the night eating and sleeping in a mountain hut. These huts range from self catering buildings and lean-tos to luxury mountain villas. The fun part of staying in these huts is carrying your basic gear on your back and hiking, skiing or even biking into one of these huts.
We’ve done several backcountry hut trips and especially loved exploring the huts in Europe – check out our overnight in a hut in the Slovenian Mountains.
Check out Mont Saint-Michel
A magical island completely covered in a castle in France, this is an UNESCO World Heritage Site. The island is located in a bay between Normandy and Brittany. From the car park you can walk the 1.5 miles, take a shuttle, or even hitch a ride on a horse drawn carriage.
Like Scuba Diving, surfing opens up a whole new way to enjoy and connect with the ocean. There are so many places to surf around the world and more places are offering learn to surf lessons and even surfing camps. We’ve dabbled in surfing, but are looking forward to putting in some more time in the waves and really learning this fun sport.
Our most recent day surfing was in Puerto Rico in 2022.
Hike to Trolltunga
This epic rock formation in Norway is perched 1180 meters above sea level. The hike to Trolltunga is long and challenging, but the final destination is a gorgeous view and this amazing rock feature. This is a popular hike and can be done all year long, although in the winter months you will need to join a guided tour.
See Mount Fiji
This majestic mountain is revered in Japan and is considered a stairway to the heavens. An important religious symbol, Mount Fuji is almost perfectly symmetrical and is still an active volcano. Visible from both Tokyo and Yokohama, you can also visit Mount Fiji from the northern side in the Fuji Five Lake Region. It is also possible to hike Mount Fuji during the summer months.
Take a Ski Vacation
Taking a ski vacation is a wonderful family trip – even if you don’t ski. Around the world, ski resorts offer an incredible experience from outdoor adventures and hot tubs to winter events and delicious food. We love to ski as a family and have visited many resorts across the United States.
See some of the best ski resorts.
Visit the Grand Canyon
This incredibly deep gorge in the southwestern United States completely lives up to its reputation. The Grand Canyon is awe inspiring and offers multiple exciting opportunities to explore. Do a day hike along the rim or down into the canyon, spend the night camping inside the canyon, or just take in the views from the scenic viewpoints.
Listen to Music in Ireland
Ireland is known for its rolling hills with a pub on every corner and live music spilling out into the street. Traveling around this magical country and listening to music is a tremendous adventure. As a family who loves fiddle tunes, Ireland is the perfect place to soak it all in.
See an Animal Migration
In every corner of the world, animals migrate every year, often far distances. Witnessing an animal migration is a wonderful adventure with kids. Some of the most famous animal migrations that you can witness around the world include the Great African migration, the monarch migration, the flamingo migration, or the penguin migration.
Visit Every US National Park
The United States is an amazing country and many of the best places to visit are within the US National Parks. Visiting all the US National Parks is a huge undertaking that will likely take years to accomplish, but is completely worth the effort. From deserts and canyons, to incredible mountains and coastal habitats the US National Parks are an adventure-lovers dream come true.
We are working on visiting all the National Parks and you can see our Guide to Visiting the US National Parks.
Sleep in an Overwater Bungalow
Imagine sleeping with the water just a few feet below you and waking up and jumping right in for a swim. There are many places around the world where you can sleep in an overwater bungalow. Some of the most famous places are in the Maldives, Bali, Fiji and Central America, but you can also find over the water bungalows in lakes like the amazing Cheow Lan Lake in Khao Sok National Park in Thailand. Overwater bungalows can range from luxury to basic!
Volunteer with an Environmental Organization
Volunteering can be a great way to explore a new place with purpose. You can find many volunteer opportunities around the world that cater to people looking for an authentic travel experience. Some of these organization offer single day opportunities while some offer week-long experiences.
While volunteering is an admirable thing to do, be aware that many volunteer opportunities benefit the volunteer more than the local community. Be selective in the volunteer activities choose.
Read more about being a responsible traveler.
Visit an Ice Hotel or Restaurant
Staying in a unique hotel or lodge is a fun experience for everyone. When we travel, we seek out memorable places to stay, and what is more memorable that staying in an ice hotel. Found in a few select northern countries, you won’t freeze in some of these fancy ice hotels. See this ice hotel in Sweden.
Located in the southwestern desert of Jordon, the ancient ruins of Petra are hidden in a narrow canyon and full of tombs and temples. The most famous temple called the treasury has an ornate exterior. Visiting Petra is best in the spring and fall months before temperatures get too hot and is a one of a kind destination.
See the Great Barrier Reef
The world’s largest reef, this incredible natural wonder is made up of over 3,000 individual reef systems. Located in Australia, there are many ways to enjoy this magical underwater world: snorkel, scuba dive, take a helicopter of glass bottom boat. Unfortunately, the health of the world’s reefs continue to decline, so the sooner you see this reef the better. If you’re planning a visit to the Great Barrier Reef, check out GreatBarrierReef.org to help with planning.
Ride a Camel in the Desert
Camels are amazing animals and taking a camel ride in the desert is a fun adventure for kids and adults. There are many tours that offer camel rides for either a short walk, or as part of a desert trek. There are many places around the world where you can take a camel ride through a desert. We did a short ride during our visit to Dubai but can’t wait to do another camel ride soon!
See the Cherry Blossoms in Bloom
If you’ve never seen a cherry tree in bloom, you don’t know what you’re missing. Each year, the cherry trees put on a show with branches draped in pink blossoms. Put a bunch of these trees together and you have quite a spectacle. Some of the best places to see the cherry blossoms in bloom are in Japan, but you can also see these trees in Washington DC, New York City, and Paris.
Spend a Week Sailing
If you’re looking for amazing adventures with kids, consider setting sail for the week. If you aren’t a sailor, there are many boats that come with a Captain, or you can book a cabin on a tall ship for a few nights. If you aren’t too keen about spending a week on a boat, you can also plan a trip that involves day sails from island to island. Consider the Caribbean, Maine, Croatia, or any destination dotted with Islands.
Hidden under the surface of the earth, caves are a fun place to explore. Plan an underground adventure and travel deep into the ground. We’ve done several cave explorations – some involve simply walking into the cave, while other include swimming and crawling through tight spots. This is definitely one of the activities that is best done with a guide, but you can find caves all around the world.
On the list of adventure activities, parasailing requires no specific skill and is fun without jumping off a cliff. This activity is high on our kid’s bucket list and is something they’ve wanted to try for a long time. You can find parasailing tours in many warm destinations.
See the Statues on Easter Island
This remote Chilean Island off the coast of South America is home to over 1,000 statues called Moai. Easter Island has a fascinating history, and today you can visit this remote destination to see the statues, although like many popular places around the world, environmental degradation continues to the a concern. This adventure take a bit more planning than many of the other activities.
Take a Boat Ride in Venice
Venice is a singular destination, and while many people think it’s overrated, it is still worth exploring. Taking a boat ride is the best way to see Venice. While a gondola is the classic way to see Venice, you can also take a ferry or simply stroll along the canals and across the many bridges.
Walk Across the Salt Flats
Several places around the world are home to salt flats created when a salty body of water evaporates leaving behind long expanses of crystallized salt. Walking across a salt flat is a great adventure with kids and hearing the salt crack underfoot and the light change color is incredible. Some of the best salt flats can be found in Bolivia, Utah, Chile, and Botswana.
Visit the Great Salt Lake at Antelope Island, Utah.
Visit the Grand Palace, Bangkok
Built starting in the 1700s, this incredible palace in the heart of Bangkok is expansive and eclectic. Part of the palace is open to the public while the other part remains a working palace. Wandering through the Grand Palace takes a few hours and is just one of the many amazing sites in Bangkok.
See more about our visit to Bangkok.
See the Mountains of Patagonia
Running down the western side of South America, the impressive Andes are a majestic mountain range. The region of Patagonia is one of the best places to see and explore these mountains. With snow capped mountains, glaciers, and epic lakes, these mountains are at the top of our list of places to explore.
Sleep on a Boat
Letting the water rock you to sleep when you spend the night on a boat is awesome. The smaller the boat, the more you can feel the rocking and the water lapping just a few inches away. If you’ve never had this experience, this is something you need to experience for yourself.
Visit all 7 Continents
This is a classic adventure travel experience. We are working to cross all the continents off our list and experience all the major land masses around the world. The hardest place to visit is obviously Antarctica, so we will likely save this for our final continent, although Dave has already visited this continent.
You can see a great post of visiting Antarctica with kids at Travel Babbo.
See the Mayan Ruins
The Mayan empire dominated mesoamerica and peaked around 600 AD. This advanced civilization was centered in modern day Guatemala and parts of Mexico and today you can see the Mayan ruins spread across these countries as well as Belize, Honduras, and El Salvador. Visiting Mayan ruins set amid the jungles of Central America feels like stepping right out of an Indiana Jones movie.
See more about visiting Mayan Ruins.
Just like diving, snorkeling opens up an entire new world. We love to snorkel and prioritize getting under the water anytime we visit a warm place. We’ve snorkeled as a family in Thailand, Panama, Puerto Rico, Costa Rica and Mexico.
Do a multi-Day Trek
Turning your next hike into a multi day trek is an amazing adventure. There are treks all over the world from hiking to Everest Base camp to trekking to Macchu Pichu and many more. Many of these trek are well established and you can find guides and accommodations that make planning easy. You can find basic treks that involve carrying your own gear, or more luxury options that will have you staying in incredible hotels and provide transfer options for your luggage.
Swim in a Cenote
Created from collapsing limestone, these sinkholes and tunnels fill with water and make amazing places to explore and swim. Most of the best cenotes in the world are located in the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, and our favorite cenotes are set amid the jungle or can be found underground.
See more about exploring cenotes in the Yucatan.
Visit the Pyramids
The pyramids of Egypt are the definition of a bucket list item. Giza is home to the most famous pyramids in the world, and these are considered some of the largest structures ever built. A perfect symbol of the strength of the Pharaoh. You will need at least a half day to see the pyramids and more if you want to see more or join a tour.
Horseback Ride on the Beach at Sunset
Horseback riding on the beach is so fun, but doing it at sunset is magical. There are many places around the world that offer this experience and you can often book either a group or private guided tour. We’ve done a sunset horseback ride in both Costa Rica and Panama and this was one of the highlights of our visit.
Make it to the North Pole
Reaching the north pole is a mighty goal, but as the ice continues to melt, it is possible to reach the north pole via boat during a few months in the summer. You can also reach the north pole by helicopter and dog sled. No matter how you reach the north pole, this is an expensive undertaking, so it may be worth planning far ahead and setting aside some money.
Take a Hot Air Balloon
Imagine coasting above the ground in a hot air balloon! There are several places around the world known for their hot air balloon displays, and still more where you can plan a balloon ride. The best known destinations is in Cappadocia, Turkey. Take a ride in a hot air balloon, or just enjoy the view at these colorful balloons fill the sky.
Alaska has always held the wild appeal of mountains, rugged coastlines, a landscape covered in snow and wild animals. Visiting Alaska and experiencing the remoteness and beauty of this American state with its numerous National Parks is high on our bucket list. Alaska is massive so you will need to choose what part you want to see: cruise up the waterway by boat, fly to a remote National Park, or plan an epic road trip.
This is a major bucket list item for our family, and one that takes a bit more planning. The best and really only way to visit Antarctica is on a cruise. Visit this Southern continent for the massive ice sheets, penguins and pure remoteness.
See the Northern Lights
Watching the northern lights dance across a cold wintery night is a magical experience and one we can’t wait to share with our kids. The best places to see the northern lights are in the northern latitudes when the nights are long and dark. Great places include Scandinavia, Iceland, Canada, and Alaska.
Go Zip Lining
Zip lining has become a popular activity over the years and you can go zip lining in many popular tourist destinations around the world. Soar over treetops, through mountains, over alligator infested ponds or across a Mexican cenote. We’ve loved zip lining in Costa Rica and Idaho.
Take in the Fall Foliage
Growing up in New England, we often overlook the amazing fall foliage we get to experience every fall. Planning a visit or a hike to enjoy the changing leaves in the fall is something we do every year. New England is just one place to see the changing fall colors, but you can also see them across Canada, Colorado, and many other mountain regions in the United States.
See our complete guide to enjoying the fall foliage in New Hampshire.
Go to a Cloud Forest
Shrouded in fog and dancing with rainbows, a cloud forest is a magical place with incredible biodiversity. Typically found between 1,000 and 2,500 meters elevation, cloud forests are home to moss, lichen, air plants, and a unique ecosystem.
Visit the Summer Palace
About 10 km outside Beijing, the Summer Palace is home to incredible buildings and one of the most amazing and beautiful Royal Gardens in the world. Built on the edge of the lovely Kumning Lake, one of the best things to do when you visit is take a boat ride and enjoy the views.
Swim in Jellyfish Lake
Swim with jellyfish as they migrate across this famous lake in Eil Malk Island in Palau. It’s estimated that there are 30 million jellyfish in the lake and since they have adapted to eat algae, you won’t get stung when you swim with these amazing creatures. You will need to book a tour to visit Jellyfish Lake.
Visit the Ruins in Greece
Ancient Greece has always held our imaginations as the home to Greek life, architecture, and mythology. Visiting some of the many Greek ruins has always been high on our list of adventures to have with our kids. These ruins in Greece bring the mythological world of the ancient Greeks to life.
Check out the Tidal Bore in Nova Scotia
Each day around the world the tides ebb and blow, but in certain places, the extreme changes in tide cause the tidal current to create standing waves and an exciting tidal bore. One of the best places to see this extreme tidal change is in Bay of Fundy in Nova Scotia. This unique landscape and the regional culture is heavily in influenced by these tides. Spend the day or a few days exploring this phenomena in Canada.
Trek in the Himalaya
The Himalayas are an epic mountain range with the tallest mountains in the world. Many parts of the Himalayas are best reached on foot and there are many incredible trekking opportunities that don’t involved mountaineering skills. The trek to Everest Base camp is the most famous trek, but you can find many smaller treks and operations offering trekking tours.
Volunteer in an Animal Sanctuary
Volunteering has always been high on our list of things to do with our kids and work into our travels. Many animal sanctuaries around the world offer opportunities to volunteer either for an afternoon or for longer. Always do your research as not all volunteer opportunities are ethical. We visited an animal sanctuary during our trip to Costa Rica.
Check out the Burj Khalifa
Built specifically to have the title as the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai stands at 2,717 feet. You can visit the base of this building and look up at the incredible height, or book a visit up to one of the floors and observation decks.
Be Amazed at Iguazu Falls
Located on the border of Brazil and Argentina, Iguaza Falls is a massive and impressive waterfall. Over 80 meters in height, the waterfall cascades over multiple falls as it falls through the rainforest. The horseshoe shaped falls are shrouded in the mist and spray from the powerful water.
Walk the Streets of Pompeii
The ancient city of Pompeii was preserved when mount Vesuvius erupted and covered the town in volcanic ash in 79 AD. The town was partially preserved under in this eruption, and today after years of preservation, you can wander the streets of Pompeii and learn about this Roman city.
We visited Pompeii during the summer of 2022 and while it is a popular and crowded tourist destination, it’s worth taking a tour and learning more about the history and culture of the Romans.
Do a Multi-day Backpack
Packing everything you need on your back for a few days is the perfect way to escape the world. We love to backpack with our kids and are looking to doing a few days next summer. If you aren’t up for an overnight in a tent, consider backpacking in Europe and staying in one of the huts.
See our backpacking trip to Sawtooth and Alpine Lake in Idaho.
Explore the Azores
The Azores have always been high on my list of amazing destinations to explore. Part of Portugal, these islands are located out in the North Atlantic Ocean and have rugged mountains and coastlines with opportunities for hiking and biking.
In the far north of Finland, Lapland is cold, remote, and the perfect winter destination. We’ve often considered a trip to Lapland in the hopes of experiencing the cold north complete with reindeer, dog sleds, northern lights and snowy expanses of arctic tundra.
Go Dog Sledding
Another cold weather activity, dog sledding is a fun activity with kids. I got to dog sled in high school and can’t wait to share this experience with my kids. Many northern destinations offer half day or full day dog sled experiences.
Soak in a Hot Spring
Natural hot springs fed from water passing over geothermally active areas are found throughout the world where there is geothermal activity. Soaking in warm water, especially in a natural setting is the perfect way to relax and is fun to do with kids. We’ve visited hot springs in Costa Rica and Iceland.
See more about visiting this natural hot spring in Fosslaug Iceland.
See Icebergs from the Deck of a Boat
Icebergs are impressive formations of ice floating out at sea. Seeing icebergs from a boat – whether that’s a large cruise ship or the deck of a kayak is the best way to experience floating ice. Remember that what you see above the surface is just a small amount of the total ice!
See Saint Basil’s Cathedral & the Red Square
Located in Moscow, the unique looking Orthodox church looks like something out of a magical kingdom. Built in the mid 1500’s Saint Basil’s Cathedral is one of the most popular destinations in Russia.
Hike on Rainbow Mountain
This incredible mountain in the Andes of Peru is covered in colorful layers of rock and sand. Originally known as Vinicunca, this is a relatively newly discovered destination and is a very popular place to visit. You will need to hike to enjoy the beauty of this place.
See the Temples of Bagan
There are over 2200 Buddhist temples and pagodas on the plains of Bagan in Myanmar. Combined, these temples form an incredible archaeological site and an amazing place to visit. There are many ways to explore the Temples of Bagan: rent a bike, walk, take a hot air balloon ride or even take a horse and cart.
We are on a mission to explore as many adventures with kids as we can and we will continue to update this post as we find more adventures and explore more of the amazing places and activities around the world!