Our family loves to plan and take summer road trips. Picking an amazing destination, planning fun things to do once we get there, and then looking online for places to stay and to eat are all part of the fun. And now that my kids are a bit older, packing for our summer road trips is less of a chore too. I just need to let them know how many outfits to pack, what other gear they will need such as sunglasses and swimsuits- and they can get it all together and into a duffle on their own (so what, if they forget a week's worth of underwear… it's vacation!). But there are still some tips that we follow on all of our road trips- which help to make our family travel so successful.
#1 Pick an Exciting Destination
While I am certainly a sucker for any gimmicky roadside attraction…. the real point of the road trip is the destination! And I love including the kids in the whole decision making process. But instead of trying to think of where to go… have the kids tell you what they would want to do on their summer vacation, and have that lead you to the destination. For example, this year my kids want to visit a theme park and ride roller coasters (they are all finally tall enough to be able to ride the “big kid rides!”). They would love it if we could see some animals, maybe hit a waterpark, and they definitely want to enjoy some yummy food! All of these requests made choosing the destination easy- Hersheypark!
While we love the theme park (with the water park area) and Zoo America- what I am most excited about is seeing the brand new reimagined Chocolate Making Tour at HERSHEY’S CHOCOLATE WORLD!
It’s the first major renovation in 10 years and it’s opening just in time for summer! The reimagined ride provides a look into the magical, modern world of chocolate making, from bean to bar.
New features on the Chocolate Making Tour include:
- Enhanced sets that create a fully immersive and interactive experience
- Additional loveable animals in the barnyard scene, transporting visitors to where Hershey sources most of its milk, fresh from the farms of Pennsylvania
- A refreshed finale scene that brings together sweet memories of families enjoying the Tour with those from other HERSHEY’S CHOCOLATE WORLD Attractions around the world
- New photo features make it easy for families to capture and share the magical memories from their visit
And what's so cool is- I have a giveaway for a lucky MomOf6 reader who would love to take her family to see the new HERSHEY’S CHOCOLATE WORLD Attraction! (scroll to the bottom of the post to learn more)
#2- Leave Early In the Morning
We have found that it works best for our family is to depart in the wee hours of the morning so as to get as many driving hours in before the kids wake up as possible. We try to leave for a long trip by 2am, which means we are up and getting ready by 1:15am. Once we are almost read to leave, we wake up the kids, have them use the bathroom, grab their pillows and stuffed animals and hop into the car and buckle up. Everyone has a thin fleece car blanket to cuddle up in, and the kids typically fall back asleep within the first hour of getting on the road. And since we interrupted their sleep schedule along with the constant hum of the car engine- we can usually get them to sleep in a few hours later than usual too- which helps us to more easily log those road-trip miles!
#3- Provide Some Travel Distractions
We have the kids pack a shared bin with books, paper and pencils, DVDs, their iPads, and a refillable water bottle. We install DVD players on the backs of the headrests, and once they are awake- we allow them to engage in as much “screen time” as they'd like (which is one of the reasons they love road tripping so much!). Once we arrive at our destination, screens need to be put away for the duration of our trip (with the exception of using devices as cameras!).
#4- Be Prepared with Snacks and Drinks
We always pack plenty of water and sports drinks, as well as an array of snacks- both healthy and some that are not so healthy, but are a special treat reserved just for long road trips. And gum. Normally I don’t even have gum in the house and no one thinks to ask for it, but in the car on a road trip- we love to pass around the “gum basket” and let everyone enjoy some!
#5- Have Them Track the Tip with a Map
At the top of our map I outlined for the kids where we’re headed and how many hours it will take to arrive at our destination. I also let them know approximately what time we should arrive. Hopefully that will minimize the constant questions of “How much longer?” and “Are we there yet?”
For You: A Hershey's Chocolate World Giveaway!
I have a Family 4-Pack to give away to HERSHEY’S CHOCOLATE WORLD! These packs include 4 tickets each for:
And a free dessert (yum!)
If you'd like to win, simply leave a comment below, telling me what are you most excited to see on the Chocolate Tour? Winner will be selected at random on Friday June 17th at noon and will be notified via email.
Compensation was provided by HERSHEY’S CHOCOLATE WORLD via MomTrends. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions of HERSHEY’S CHOCOLATE WORLD or Momtrends.
What are you most excited to see on the Chocolate Tour? #ChocolateTour #HersheyPA