Spring Break is almost here! Tired of staring at the same four walls? Us too! And you don’t need deep pockets for some big fun. We’ve rounded up 10 of our favorite budget-friendly destinations across the country so your family can get out and make memories—all without splurging!
#travelhack alert: Not sure where to stay? Marriott has over 30 brands of hotels and resorts for all budgets. Bonus: They’re in close proximity to attractions across the country and Canada. You’ll find family-friendly amenities including connecting rooms, free breakfast, free Wifi, kids clubs and more—not to mention a killer loyalty program.
1. Seattle, Washington
In the heart of the Pacific Northwest, Seattle offers endless opportunities for adventure, wonder and exploration for the entire family. Amaze your kids with views from the Space Needle or hear them squeal in excitement as the fish fly at Pike Place Market. Be sure to check out the Seattle Children’s Museum and the Frank Gehry-designed Museum of Pop Culture—both make learning more fun than ever.
2. Boston, Massachusetts
Even if you’re not a history buff, you'll enjoy this: Boston's iconic 2.5 mile Freedom Trail connects 16 nationally significant historic sites that will leave you in awe. The Freedom Trail is a unique collection of museums, churches, meeting houses, burying grounds, parks, a ship and historic markers that tell the story of the American Revolution and beyond.
And don't miss The New England Aquarium, which houses over 2000 aquatic creatures of all kinds! It's located on Boston’s stunning Waterfront and super close to other attractions like Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market.
3. Langhorne, Pennsylvania
Nestled in beautiful Bucks County, Langhorne has loads to offer families—did you know it’s the home of the iconic, one-and-only Sesame Place?! If you have young kids, a visit there is a must. There’s also plenty of free stuff to do outdoors. Head to Playwicki Park and "monkey around" at the playground, take a hike through the nature trails, play ball at one of the sports fields or try your hand at fishing in the Neshaminy Creek. Take a stroll through Washington Crossing Historic Park, offering more than 500 acres of American history, natural beauty and family fun.
4. Asheville, North Carolina
Asheville’s vibe is both cool and welcoming—a perfect spot for families with tweens and teens. Spend a day hiking in Pisgah National Forest or hit the Pinball Museum and play any of their 70 games all day for just $15 a person. Into history and shopping? Visit American’s first indoor mall, Grove Arcade. Shop for local treasures and grab a bite on “Restaurant Row” where you’ll find lots of variety from casual to upscale.
If you’re in town on a Friday night, don’t miss Asheville’s famous Drum Circle in Pritchard Park. Bring your own drum to join in, or just kick back and enjoy this favorite local tradition.
5. Nashville, Tennessee
Anyone who goes to Nashville knows that hitting Broadway’s honky tonks is a tourist rite of passage. But what you might not know is that kids can hang out, too. All of the honky tonks have live music throughout the day—when it's significantly less crowded—and nearly all of them allow kids before 6 p.m.
The Nashville Zoo at Grassmere is a can't-miss attraction when you're visiting the area with kids. But the real gem is the Nashville Zoo’s HCA Healthcare Veterinary Clinic, a state-of-the-art animal hospital with a very special feature. Guests of the zoo can visit the viewing area where they can watch animal procedures, a view enhanced by in-operating room cameras.
6. Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Do you get excited about treasure hunts? Then don’t miss Bluefoot Pirate Adventure. Join this fun and interactive pirate cruise where families can have fun chasing a pirates’ treasure hunt in the waterway. Enjoy more outdoor adventures at Sawgrass Recreation Park or take an airboat ride through the Florida Everglades for an alligator sighting. You can spot several animals, like wolves, leopards, snakes and even a Florida black panther in the animal park.
Be sure to visit The Flamingo Gardens which are home to not only flamingos but houses more than 3,000 species of plants, trees and wildlife. It's a great place for family fun as you explore the various collections and sanctuaries.
7. Moab, Utah
A natural wonder, Moab is surrounded by some of the most stunning red rock landscapes on Earth. Arches National Park contains the world’s largest concentration of natural sandstone arches. There are easy trails providing opportunities for kids to get out of the car and explore the arches up close. There are also short, kid-friendly trails to hike and explore!
When you've had your fill of adventure, Moab’s perfect climate has made it a magnet for year-round outdoor events and festivals, and the downtown business district boasts a great collection of restaurants, microbreweries, shops and galleries.
8. Houston, Texas
The Museum of Fine Arts in Houston packs in over 6,000 years of history in its 64,000-plus pieces of art from 6 continents. View world-renowned artwork like Monet’s Water Lilies, Glieze’s La Femme and sculptures and paintings from the Roman period. Taking the 45-minute tour is the best way to cover all the highlights.
Old MacDonald’s Farm is an activity center featuring a range of fun things to do, from mini-train rides to pumpkin patches to swimming pools to a petting zoo. Pet a range of animals including cows, sheep, emus and llamas. In addition to playgrounds and pony rides, there are slides for the young ones and a volleyball area for older kids.
9. Portland, Oregon
Portlanders are super proud of the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry—and for good reason! OMSI is one of the largest science museums in the country, and kids love learning through play here.
Washington Park is a highlight in Portland, for sure. With over 145 acres, this green space was designed by the same landscape architects who designed NYC's famed Central Park. Be sure not to miss its International Rose Test Garden. More than 10,000 individual rose bushes bloom yearly, representing over 610 different rose varieties. This garden is truly a delight and smells simply magnificent! Bonus: It's free to visit.
10. Scottsdale, Arizona
This Southwestern city has a lot to offer beyond cute cacti! Butterfly Wonderland delights visitors with its display of living fluttering beauties in America’s largest butterfly conservatory. In addition to butterflies and moths, your family can view other insects plus reptiles, amphibians, honeybees and tropical fish on display.
Saddle up for fun at MacDonald’s Ranch. This horse stable offers guided trail rides and stagecoach tours through the desert. You can even book a desert cookout along with a hayride, stagecoach tour or horseback adventure for a truly memorable experience.
No matter where you choose to vacay, there’s nothing quite as special as family time. Marriott Bonvoy’s resorts and properties offer you a multitude of ways to get together. With so many family-friendly properties across the U.S. and Canada, you’re sure to find the perfect place to spend time together.