Friday, May 17, 2013

School's Out For Summer! Not Quite, But A Staycation At @Fallsavenue @FallsWaterpark is Perfect for Family Fun This Summer! #likenowhereelse {GIVEAWAY}

People used to always tell me "Oh, we hate road trips" or "Road trips are so awful" and "You can't go on a road trip with young kids."

When we were kids, my parents took us on tons of road trips and we had a blast! We'd drive from Montreal to Florida every year. We'd also make shorter road trips from Montreal to Toronto or Montreal to New York to visit our family.  What I loved the most was the adventure! I loved driving to Florida with my family and passing through all the States until we reached our destination.

I always knew that when I had kids of my own, I wanted road trips to be part of their childhood memories.

School's Out For Summer! Not Quite, But A Staycation At @Fallsavenue @FallsWaterpark is Perfect for Family Fun This Summer! 

Before I had my daughter, people told me "It's impossible to travel with kids."  We've had to make long drives from the Island to Toronto every few weeks in Little One's first two years of life because of her appointments at Sick Kids Hospital.  6 hour drives were no problem. Ever.

Plus, when you live on the Island, kids have no choice but to get used to traveling and being in their car seats for a few hours. Everything is so far to get to. Being in a car seat for a while is not an option. 

Since we're too busy on the farm to leave on vacation for an extended period of time and airfare costs are quite pricey, we love the idea of a Staycation.  We want to travel as a family and keep our travels to just Ontario. We love exploring our province. 

I realize traveling may not be easy for everyone, so here are a few things that work for us:

  • Plan your stops.  We stop for pit stops and breaks to stretch our legs every 3 hours. It helps break up the drive and if Little One needs to run around for a bit, she can. We know exactly which rest areas and gas stations we will be stopping at. 
  • Pack lots of snacks and water/beverages! Healthy snacks to nibble on while en route always keeps our 4 year old busy.
  • Play road trip games like "I Spy" or the Alpahbet Game. We also look for unusual license plates or landmarks in towns we pass through.
  • Play some music! Little One can last a 6 hr drive to Toronto just chatting away or singing away. Music always livens up the drive and keeps the driver awake!
  • Favourite toys, books, activities - We pack a little backpack for Little One's items. She often "reads" books to herself or colours in her activity book.
  •  iPod or DVD player.  Little One enjoys playing alphabet and math games on the iPod and she loves watching her Disney DVDs! We bring a bunch of DVDs as a last resort. Normally we bring them out near the end of the drive if she's getting antsy.
  • PLAN LOTS OF FUN THINGS TO DO AS A FAMILY! A trip to Niagara Falls was the best thing that happened to our family recently. When we found out we were going to Niagara, we made sure to sit down and discuss all the things we wanted to see and do. Having a game plan is key for us. This said, a little spontaneity is great too. We don't always follow our plan. For example, on day 2, Little One decided she didn't want to do any sightseeing anymore and wanted to spend the rest of her vacation at the waterpark. Fine by us!
Here are a few things we planned that made our trip amazing!

A family stroll to check out the sites and sounds of Niagara Falls was the perfect way to begin our mini vacation.  The Clifton Hill, the main drag is always packed and bustling with people! I love the energy.  We even stopped and watch a few musical performances and dancers. Little One was in awe!

Since Hubby hadn't been to Niagara in ages and this was Little One's first trip, we had planned to check out as many attractions as we could.  Hubby really enjoyed the Guinness World Records Museum.  Hubby is a facts guy. He likes statistics and is a total trivia nut.

We also went to Ripley's Museum (Ripley's Believe It Or Not!) My husband would have liked to stay longer and read through every single rare and mind boggling display in the collection.  I think we rushed him. The man can spend an entire day reading! He soaks that stuff all up! He loved it!

 I was surprised that with all the oddities, Little One wasn't scared.  She was rather intrigued by it all. I really thought she was going to cry!

We went to Brick City and some other fun places for kids to enjoy.  Little One really enjoyed the LEGO exhibits.

 Of course, we just had to go to the Rainforest Cafe! Little One had never been before, and I worried that the tropical rain storm and the gorillas and elephants would make her scared. I was wrong again! She loved everything about the Rainforest Cafe and just had a blast. She was so amazed by her surroundings.

Here's Little One having a chat with Oprah. Too cute! Edward and Bella from Twilight on the right, and the Star Trek guys and Pope Jean Paul II below.
 Again, I thought Little One would be afraid of the wax museum, but she loved it!

Of course we had to go to the Hershey Store! I think that was one of my favourite spots to visit!  We may or may not have bought $100 worth of chocolate. No, I'm not kidding.

Though Little One thoroughly enjoyed sightseeing and going to all those cool attractions, her absolute favourite part of the trip was...

She loved it so much that she didn't want to do anything else but stay at the water park. She also made us promise to take her back to Niagara for her birthday.  As you can see, Niagara Falls & Fallsview are definitely #likenowhereelse!

This Summer, will you be 'Staycationing'? We really love @Fallsavenue and @FallsWaterpark. The perfect family getaway that is still 'close to home'.

Check out my other post about our stay at Falls Avenue Resort!  You can win the following...

The Prize:
  • Fallsview Family Suite at the Sheraton on the Falls
  • Four Passes to the Fallsview Indoor Waterpark
  • Celebration Dinner at the Rainforest Cafe

How to Enter:
Simply enter for your chance at winning a Niagara Falls getaway at the contest link here. Contest winner will be drawn on June 3, 2013!

Make sure to follow @fallsavenue and @FallsWaterpark, as well as @chancesmommy @inRdream @orangeheromama @Gingermommy and @adomesticmomma and their #likenowhereelse tweets!

For more information, please visit and
Connect with Fallsview Waterpark and Falls Avenue Resort on Faceook. 

Disclosure - I am a Falls Avenue Resort Brand Ambassador. Though affiliated, all the thoughts and opinions expressed on this blog are honest and my own.


Ashley said...

We've traveled with our girls since they were tiny. It can be a huge challenge sometimes but once you get a system figured out, it's really a lot of fun. Well...minus the 83 potty breaks an hour because our 4 year old thinks it's funny to have to pee. :)

Ps. I can't wait for school to be out!

Shannon L said...

My kiddos are pro travellers. Often when getting off a plane people will say "OH WOW!! There were kids sitting behind us??! They were so good, we never heard a thing".
When kiddos were smaller you bet I knew where EVERY available potty was!
The Falls is on our summer road trip list this summer! Can't wait!

Brandi Yee said...

SO fun!! We don't travel FAR with the kids too often, but when we do, they're very well behaved (thankfully!) and for being so young, they really know how to listen and be good during trips. I especially LOVE going to the Falls with the kids, so much to do!

Margarita Ibbott @DownshiftingPRO said...

I use to get to Niagara once a year when my daughter competed in Irish Dance. Now it is just a treat to go every couple of years. Still fun, no matter how many times you go :)

Gingermommy said...

The Falls makes such a great day trip destination. So much to do and so easily driven in a day for us in Ontario. Even a walk and a picnic is fab there

Shayna Murray said...

We grew up taking road trips all the time. We couldn't afford for us all to fly anywhere for vacations so we got in the car and hit the road.

Those are some great road trip tips. Stopping frequently is so important when you have little ones. It can get pretty uncomfortable when you are strapped in a seat for hours at a time without the opportunity to get out and stretch!

I think we are going to try and take the little one to a water park this summer for the first time!

Alyssa K said...

I was just thinking about this topic this morning!! Ah school keeps them busy but so can we :-))

Whispered Inspirations said...

OMG, looks like a blast! I want to go NOW! Great pictures, love them! It's time for water parks for us!

Christine McN said...

Can't wait for school to be out either! So much fun to be had this summer!!

LOL @ the 83 bathroom breaks...only because I know what you mean! :)

Christine McN said...

I hear ya! Same here! I took Little One on a 21+ hr travel journey across the world & when we got off the last plane, people were shocked and said, "I had no idea there was a child sitting behind us!!!"

Nicole said...

Great post!! We're like you, and we like to venture out on road trips with the little ones. It's always important to plan ahead. Niagara has so many great attractions not only for the little ones, but also for adults too!

Jennifer Van Huss said...

Great post! That looks like so much fun! I agree with you! You can take LO on a road trip! You just have to plan! Looks like your LO had a great time!

caninecologne said...

Haha, those "Edward" and "Bella" wax figures look NOTHING like them! Yikes!

Tammy inRdream said...

Road trips are our favorite thing to do! I like to bring some new books for the kids to read well we drive.

Each trip to Niagara falls we all sit on that big chair, LOL LO is so cute!

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City girl moves to the country, falls in love, and marries a farmer. She tries to incorporate her city ways with her new country lifestyle and blogs to keep in touch with friends, family & students who live far, far away :) Can this city girl go country? Watch as she learns all sorts of exciting things about life on the farm and in a small rural community. *UPDATE* We are now parents! Our baby girl was born on Nov. 11, 2008 (at 28 weeks gestation- 12 weeks premature, but she's quite the trooper)!!!
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