How to Plan a Healthy Family Vacation

Use creative ideas to stay fit when you travel with the kids

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Looking for healthy family vacation ideas? Whether you are on summer break or hitting the road for the holidays, there are easy ways to set up fun, budget-friendly adventures to keep you and your family fit and healthy while traveling. So pack your bags, load up the car and grab the kids. These boredom-busting ideas will help you burn calories and stay fit.

4 Healthy Family Vacation Ideas

  1. Break up a long car trip with golf. Believe it or not, this is a great option for non-golfers. If you have a long car trip, find a public par 3 golf course midway through your excursion. These laid back courses often have rental clubs available and the pace of play is easy. You won't feel intimidated if you are new to the sport.

    Carry your clubs and walk the nine holes as you play. It will take an hour or two to make it through the course, but it is a fantastic way to stretch your legs in the middle of road trip and offers a great opportunity get some fresh air and see the sites.
  1. Bike through the city. If your trip involves a visit to a metropolitan area, skip the tour bus and rent bikes instead. Many cities, including Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York City and Washington D.C now offer bike share programs. The innovative and inexpensive rental systems allow you to use durable cycles for a few minutes or a few days.

    Find bike maps online or through the concierge at your hotel. You may not burn as many calories as you would doing a cycling workout at home, but it sure beats sitting in the back of a crowded tour bus.

  2. Grocery store scavenger hunt. A single visit to the drive-thru lane of a fast food restaurant could easily provide more than a day's worth of calories. Why not skip the junk food and make a game out of finding healthy food?

    If you are on the road, let your kids use the GPS on their phones to find a grocery store along the way. Give each kid a list of 3-5 healthy items to find in the store, and then let them race to find them. No prize necessary for the winner. They'll be happy to just get out of the car and run around.

  1. Outdoor games and gifts. If your vacation destination is a family member's house, don't show up empty handed. Bring a badminton set, a Frisbee, or a few hula-hoops. These are fun calorie-burning activities, even for adults!

    If you are traveling during the winter holidays, do your homework in advance. Find a local community pool for a few daily swims, or an indoor rock-climbing wall for a team building activity.

    Regardless of your family's size (or even if you are traveling solo), with a little creativity, it's easy to come up with active ways to break up a trip. Each activity session builds camaraderie, burns calories and improves your health. Now get packing!

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