5 Best Family Vacations (On a Budget)

By Lindsay Goldenberg

Looking to plan a great but inexpensive family vacation this summer? We found the top 5 family vacation spots that are fun, unique, and won’t break the bank.

1) Disney Cruise Line

This might not be the most “relaxing” cruise you’ve ever taken, but what vacation with your toddler is? You can rest-assured, however, that with Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy on board, your toddler will be thoroughly entertained (which means you might even get to relax.) Discounted rates on 3, 4, and 7 night cruises to the Caribbean and the Bahamas are posted weekly, While the rates listed are “per person,” keep in mind children under 3 travel free, and there are kids rates for 3-12-year olds.

Read these Tips for Family Cruises

2) Camping

You’d be hard-pressed to find a cheaper place to spend the night than a camping ground (and if you did, you MIGHT not want to stay there). From Ontario to Hawaii, what better way to show your kids the wonders of nature than by staying smack, dab in the middle of it!

Read about the Top 10 Camping Sites in North America

Read Camping Tips for Families

3) All-Inclusive Resorts (that are kid-friendly)

Camping not your stlyle? All-inclusive resorts take the guesswork out of a vacation. What’s better than that? We found great deals at Viva Wyndam Resorts , located in the Dominican Republic, Mexico, and the Bahamas. Children under 12 eat, stay, AND play for free! If you and your hubby want to actually be romantic for part of the vacation, they even offer supervised activities for the kiddies. A couple hours alone on vacation equals at least 1 week at home.

For more info click HERE.

4) Farmstays

Not quiet a B&B, and not quite camping…Farmstays are a great way to teach your kids about agriculture and animals. It will also enable you to put down your “crack”berry and appreciate the simpler things in life! A common retreat for vacationers in Italy, Germany, and New Zealand, it’s now becoming a cool and cheap vacation idea stateside. Typically, rooms that can sleep four go for $100/night—and that includes activities and a meal.

For stateside options, go to:
Leapinglambfarm.com (OREGEON)
Theherdsinn.com (VIRGINIA)
workingcowsdairy.com (ALABAMA)


No, this isn’t a vacation for the Village People. The YMCA offers two vacation properties in Colorado—the Snow Mountain Ranch and Estes Park Center—that have spectacular scenery and tons of family activities (think of it as “family camp”). The lodging isn’t luxurious, but for the price you’ll feel like you’re getting a steal. A 5-night stay in a 2-bedroom cabin will cost you under $800 (for a family of 5), and you’ll save even more if you’re a YMCA member. For more info go to ymcarockies.org

VACATION PLANNING TIP: If you’re on the lookout for cheap airfare deals (and who isn’t), check out our two favorite sites: