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3 Fun and Affordable Summer Vacation Ideas

Summer is finally here, which means its time for long-anticipated summer vacation ideas. Whether the family wants to spend time at a beach soaking up the sun or hiking in the mountains, there are no shortage of things to do and see this season.

What’s even better is that you don’t have to spend a fortune in order to have a great time. To lower the cost of your trip, plan a 3-4 day vacation versus a week-long stay. You can also save money by driving instead of flying. It is always good to stick with the family budget.

Keep reading to learn about three fun and affordable summer vacation ideas that the whole family is sure to enjoy.

 1. Go Camping

Camping is one of the cheapest yet most exciting family vacations. Whether you want to pitch a tent for the whole family to sleep in, or if you want to rent a hut or cabin at a local KOA, there are plenty of options to keep the whole family happy.

Not only is camping an inexpensive vacation, it’s an experience for kids and adults alike. Most campgrounds offer all sorts of activities, including swimming, hiking, and playgrounds. There’s also plenty of time for roasting marshmallows over a fire and making deliciously messy smores.

State and national parks are another great option for an incredible camping experience. These parks offer also sorts of free things to do, including:

  • Bird watching
  • Stargazing
  • Museum experiences
  • Hiking
  • Wildlife watching

Camping may not be as fancy as staying at a beachfront resort or going on a cruise, but the experience is one that the family will remember for years to come. You can also transform your outdoor space as your camping site.

2. Head to a Water Park Resort

There are several water park resorts located throughout the U.S., including the Great Wolf Lodge chain, Kalahari, Camelback Lodge, and many others. What better way to spend a few days than having endless fun at a water park?

A water park resort offers hours of endless fun each day. From water slides to wading pools to arcades, there is all sorts of entertainment and activities to keep everyone happy and busy. The best part of that these resorts are often indoors, so rain or shine, the fun keeps going!

Many water park resorts offer package deals, which include lodging and admission into the park. To save even more money, book ahead and be on the lookout for deals on sites like Groupon.

3. Rent a Vacation House

Renting a vacation house is a much cheaper option than staying at a hotel. Choose a vacation destination that’s affordable, and then find a house or apartment to rent there. Places like Myrtle Beach, the Outer Banks, and Daytona Beach, are very family-friendly and have lots of inexpensive (or free!) activities for the whole family.

You can reduce the cost of renting a vacation home by choosing one that’s slightly farther away from town. You’ll also find that smaller homes are less expensive, so compromising on the number of bedrooms may be worth the savings.

With a vacation home, you can cook meals at home instead of eating out each night. This can save you hundreds of dollars.

Vacationing on a Budget

Going on a family vacation shouldn’t cause financial stress. There are endless affordable summer vacation ideas that everyone is sure to enjoy. Keep these three options in mind for a trip that will be the highlight of your summer.



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