Teen-friendly resorts in the US
By Michelle Rae Uy
Club Med’s Passworld at Sandpiper Bay Club Med (Courtesy Club Med)
At a loss as to where to escape to with your teen for a family friendly vacation in the USA? The perfect vacation with your teen is possible; you just need to know where to go.
Fear not, we’ve got the lowdown on the top US teen-friendly resorts with the best teen amenities for the ultimate family break that everyone – from the little ones to the pickiest teens – will enjoy.
Vista Verde, Colorado
This all-inclusive luxury ranch is made up of typical log cabins with private decks with hot tubs. As well as horseback riding, there’s an outdoor pool and a great lineup of family friendly activities ranging from biking to fishing, hiking and cross-country skiing. Teens can embrace the cowboy experience, thanks to the teen wranglers who are on hand to show the way! With a schedule tailored to a typical teen’s mindset, this resort offers teen overnight camping to take a break from the wired world. Getting back to nature has never been so fun!
Sandpiper Bay Club Med, Florida
With views over the St. Lucie River on the Atlantic coast, this all inclusive Club Med resort is set just a couple of hours north of Miami. You’ll find bright, modern rooms with all the perks you’d expect from flat screen TVs to coffeemakers and WIFI as well as several pools, a sandy beach, a spa, golf, tennis and even circus trapeze lessons! What’s more, the Club Med’s Passworld® (from 11 to 17) is just the place for teens to hang out with supervised activities ranging from sailing and paddleboarding to creative arts and crafts, make-up, graffiti, as well as hiking, camping, beach movie nights and parties! It’s the perfect teen-friendly resort. And if that all sounds like too much work, you can always tempt your teen with the teen spa pampering treatments.
Smugglers’ Notch Resort, Vermont
Smugglers’ Notch Resort (Courtesy Smugglers’ Notch)
With condos catering especially to families and a great schedule of activities for teens, Smugglers’ Notch is the perfect family friendly vacation hideaway. Whether you want to ski, skate, swim or go tube sliding, there’s plenty to keep the whole family busy. Adventurous teens will love the 310 acres of ski and snowboard trails, air-board slaloming, the night-time snowboarding lessons and snowshoeing hikes, not to mention the Mountain Explorers program that includes zip-lining and climbing. Best of all, teens can escape to Teen Alley (ages 13-18) where they’ll find high-speed Internet access, TV, Xbox 360, DVDs, ping-pong, pool, music, snacks and activities such as ‘Jam Band’ for aspiring rock stars, Dodgeball, Karaoke and the Saturday night DJ Dance Party at FunZone.
Triangle C Dude Ranch, Wyoming
For your teen to channel their inner cowboy, there’s no better place than the Triangle C Dude Ranch near Yellowstone and Teton National Park. Breathe in the great outdoors and stay in beautiful rustic cabins run by several generations of the very welcoming Garnick family. Make the most of the family-friendly activities from hiking to fishing, canoeing, rafting, golf and, of course, the nightly entertainment. As well as a kids’ specific program, the resort has a teen program for those aged 13 to 19 including horseback riding, rafting, hiking, overnight camping trips with breakfast cookouts, rodeos and mountain biking. Dude Disco nights and Teen Cowboy classes are available as well. It’s the perfect teen friendly break in the wilderness.
Breakers Palm Beach, Florida
Teens at Breakers Palm Beach (Courtesy Breakers Palm Beach)
A stunning, Italian Renaissance-style resort set on a private beach just off West Palm Beach, within easy reach of all its attractions, this is a gem of a family-friendly resort. With plenty of teen bespoke activities on offer – from the Teen Murder Mystery Theater and the Teen Catamaran Party Boat to New Year’s Eve Teen Casino, there’s plenty to keep the bigger kids happy throughout the year. The Teen Bungalow lounge is a great social spot reserved for teens, while activities range from bike scavenger hunts, pool parties, night time bowling and late-night, dive-in movies.
Hotel del Coronado, California
Surfing lessons at Hotel del Coronado (Courtesy Hotel del Coronado)
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An iconic family-friendly hotel in San Diego, right on the beach, the Del Coronado is a luxury resort with a host of activities to keep the entire family busy. Whether you choose to rent a bike or take a scenic coastal ride around Coronado Island to Silver Strand, take private surfing lessons or paddleboard lessons, or book watersports at the hotel’s new Watersports desk, it’s all about being teen-friendly. Another treat in store for them? The Spa and Salon with its customized teen packages. For a real treat, the Teen Spa Sundae comes with an Ice Cream Float Bath, Spreckels Sugar Scrub and Frosting massage.
The Tyler Place Family Resort, Vermont
The Tyler Place Family Resort (Courtesy Tyler Place Family Resort)
A stone’s throw away from the Canadian border, this all-inclusive lakeside resort is all about cozy guesthouse suites, cottages and family fun in the great outdoors. Try water skiing, kayaking, canoeing, tennis or even miniature golf. Teens will love the pool table, the two pools, the arts and crafts studio, and having their own bike for the stay. Need a place to hang out? The Waterfront or Fireplace Teen Lounges are reserved for 13 to 15 year olds with great counselors on hand to help as well as activities scheduled all day long including banana boating, tubing, archery, paddle-boarding, camp outs, basketball and volleyball as well as a climbing wall, ropes courses, fishing trips, mountain biking and at night, movie nights or karaoke sessions!
Rowena Carr-Allinson contributed this to MiniTime. Since the arrival of her son in 2011, she has taken him everywhere from Bangkok to NYC, writing family friendly articles en route.