Family vacation on Thanksgiving as always been a tradition in our house, going all the way back to when I was five years old. It all started on year, when I was growing up in the Midwest, when my mom realized there wasn’t much to do for Thanksgiving in our hometown. Before we knew it, we had booked a flight to Florida and were enjoying quality time together as a family — something we don’t have much of due to the nature of our job. Vacationing with a family in search of Thanksgiving vacation can be a great idea. There are many ways to go about this activity and choosing the right one can ensure everyone has a fun-filled holiday getaway. People will find it easy to book their holiday vacations on Thanksgiving by searching for vacation packages.
Family vacations and holidays can be among the most fun your family has together. It’s a time to catch up with far flung relatives and share stories, meals, memories and of course some fun!”Ahhh,” you may think “This is going to be amazing!” When it comes to family vacations, no two families are alike. But everyone wants to come back home with sweet photos of the trip and happy family memories. We’ve asked Jeff Edwards, an experienced travel photographer and author of “Family Vacations Made Simple”, to conduct a little experiment: skipping the classic Thanksgiving feast and instead celebrating it with a photography trip that would, hopefully, wind up in some awesome pictures.
Family Vacation On Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving is a time for families and feeling thankful but that doesn’t mean you can’t be thankful while exploring a new destination or relaxing by the beach. In fact, it will probably take away a lot of the stress and give you a lot more to be thankful for!
With a little help from our blogger friends we’ve rounded up the best thanksgiving getaways for families this year! If you want to just kick back and relax at an all inclusive, feel free to check out our roundup of the best all inclusive hotels for families around the world.
If you have a favorite thanksgiving destination that we’ve missed, be sure to leave us a comment and tell us why it’s the best.
Where to Go For Thanksgiving?
If you are wondering where to go for the best thanksgiving family vacations that will keep you in the spirit of the holiday weekend but with the added thrill of adventure, we’ve got you covered.
All these thanksgiving weekend getaways have plenty going on to make it a special holiday, from Thanksgiving craft shows to holiday parades and much more.
Gatlinburg, Tennessee & Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Contributed by Wandering Wheatleys.
One of the most popular Thanksgiving vacations in the southeast is Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Set at the edge of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Gatlinburg provides tons of Thanksgiving activities for families to enjoy over the holidays.
You can take the aerial tram to Ober Gatlinburg for a bit of ice skating or head to The Great Smoky Thanksgiving Arts & Crafts Show to pick up local crafts and antiques.
Dollywood will also be kicking off their Smoky Mountain Christmas festival which features millions of Christmas light and Christmas themed shows if you’re really want to get yourself in the holiday mood.
The best activity for families, however, is a hike in the mountains. Visiting the Great Smoky Mountains over Thanksgiving means you’ll get to witness the beautiful fall foliage – a brilliant mix of yellow, orange, and red leaves.
There are lots of great day hikes in the Smokies that are easy enough for the whole family. You can hike to Laurel Falls, one of the most popular hikes in the park. Or head up to the lookout tower at Clingman’s Dome which is the highest point in the state of Tennessee. It is just one of the best things to visit in Tennessee.
If you don’t want to cook Thanksgiving dinner at home then head to The Old Mill in nearby Pigeon Forge. This lovely little restaurant is housed inside a historic grist mill that was built in 1830.
It’s one of the oldest continually operating grist mills in the country. And after dinner head to the Smoky Mountain Brewery for a festive pint of their Winter Warmer Ale. Cheers!
Thanksgiving Getaways in Florida
Sanibel Island – Thanksgiving Beach Vacations
Contributed by Travelin Mad.
Sanibel Island, Florida is just a mile off the coast of Ft. Myers in southwest Florida, but it feels like a million miles away. With just one road on and off the island, the limited access means less car traffic and more bicycles and golf carts along bike paths which stretch the length of the entire island.
It’s a different way of life on Sanibel, where kids can explore freely, families can enjoy simple things like beach combing, watching for wildlife, paddling the J. N. “Ding” Darling Wildlife Preserve, going for ice cream, or hunting for beautiful seashells that wash up on the beach by the thousands.
The beaches of Sanibel are perfect for shelling — in fact, Sanibel Island is known as the Shelling Capital of the US.
The beautiful and soft white sand beaches are one of the biggest reasons to visit, and there’s no better time than as a vacation during Thanksgiving, when the holiday boat parades begin and nearby Ft. Myers Beach hosts the annual National Sand Sculpting Championships during Thanksgiving week.
Families can stroll the beach and check out the always fun and creative large-scale sand sculptures, enjoy sand-sculpting demonstrations, and vote for their favorite to win. Each sculpture is more fabulous than the next.
It could also be combined with a trip to the Everglades.
If your family is looking for a unique and warm weather holiday getaway, you can’t get much better than the barrier islands of Sanibel and Captiva islands — a laid-back island paradise the whole family will love!
Disney World Thanksgiving
Contributed by Wander Her Way.
Disney World is a great place to spend Thanksgiving family vacations. The weather in Orlando finally starts to cool off in November, and you’ll get to enjoy the Christmas decorations too (they go up at the beginning of November!) And while crowd levels can be high around Thanksgiving trips, it’s still milder compared to other holidays like Christmas or Easter.
Many of the table service restaurants in the parks and resorts serve some version of Thanksgiving dinner. Just be sure to make an Advanced Dining Reservation as soon as you can, because restaurants tend to book up quickly on Thanksgiving Day.
My favorite option is Liberty Tree Tavern in Magic Kingdom. And if you can’t score a dining reservation, you can always grab a giant turkey leg from one of the food carts instead!