The Ultimate Family Vacation
We're just a few days away from the start of school and to be perfectly honest, I can't believe the summer has come and gone. As I face the dreaded school supplies list that I have yet to tackle, all I keep thinking about is how great it would be if we had one more month to unwind, explore and unplug. For my family, summer is all about making memories and this year, we shared an incredible adventure together in Jamaica.
Since I began traveling with my family when I was my son's age, I've come to appreciate the importance of truly exploring the world around us. From the ruins of Pompeii to the Dead Sea and Masada to Buckingham Palace, I've traversed several countries with my parents leading the way. To this day, I cherish all those summer vacations that my hard working parents saved up for all year to take us on, and want to do the same with my own kids. Now that they've both outgrown those "vacation kid camps," we set out this summer on the ultimate family vacation - exploring the land, sea and culture of Jamaica.
Our travels took us to Treasure Beach in Southern Jamaica where we spent four magical days snorkeling, we spotted nearly 30 wild dolphins, explored a new fishing sanctuary, discovered a slew of conch shells, swung from a vine high atop a waterfall and visited an organic farm where we tasted fruits we had never tried before. If you haven't eaten sweetsop or genips, well you don't know what you're missing. Together, my family and I made memories that will truly last a lifetime.
Take a look...
Before your kids reach an age where they'll want to ditch the parental supervision and explore the world without you, take my advice and set out on a vacation that's adventurous, educational and fun for the entire family. And you don't have to break the bank to do it. In fact, if you travel to places during the off season (Europe in the winter and the Caribbean in the summer), you'll not only save money, but you'll find that you won't be battling all those insane crowds. I also learned two pretty cool technology tricks - if you're in the Caribbean, purchase a phone (Jamaica's wireless service is Digicell or Claro) for 20 dollars and then add another $10 which will give you 1000 minutes of International talk time! Or, if you sign up for Google Voice, you can call home straight from your computer...for free!
If school has already started in your town and you're moving full steam ahead into fall, take a moment and reflect on the special times you shared this summer with your family. In fact, spend these last few weeks making a photo scrapbook or video of your vacation. Trust me, you'll be looking back year after year, treasuring all the incredible memories you've shared with your kids.