Beach Vacations

5 Destinations to Add to Your Family Bucket List Right Now

Last updated 21st November 2022

If you’re looking for new spots to add to your family’s bucket list, who better to ask than the man who coined the term “bucket list” himself? Justin Zackham, the screenwriter who wrote the international hit film The Bucket List (as well as the new film Second Act, currently in theaters), is a dad who certainly knows a thing or two about traveling the world with kids. In fact, his family’s latest venture is completing their own bucket list goal of making the Guinness Book of World Records for being the first family to visit every country in the world. If your family isn’t quite ready to take on the entire world, here are his top picks for where your family should head on your next bucket list vacation.

1/5 Portugal

Lisbon, Portugal has to be one of the most beautiful cities in all of Europe. The city is welcoming, the architecture is beautiful and the streets (and even some buildings!) are covered in breathtaking mosaics. Family attractions include a modern zoo, an amazing oceanarium, colorful trams (the Number 28 Tram winds through the narrow streets of the Alfama district) and Parque das Nacoes. If time allows, the coast of Portugal offers beautiful beaches – from Cascais to Lagos, you can explore cliffs, beaches, palaces and forts.

The top things to do with kids in Lisbon

2/5 Morocco

Morocco is not your typical family destination, but it’s an interesting, adventurous and singular place to visit full of things to do for kids of all ages. The country is laden with interesting sights, sounds and smells ranging from the ancient medinas of Marrakech and Fez to the beauty of the Atlas Mountains to the shifting sands of the Sahara to the rugged beaches along the Atlantic coast. Make sure to stay in a traditional Moroccan Riad to really have an authentic local experience. Take a cooking class together to fully appreciate their famously tasty tagines.

How to live like royalty in Marrakesh

3/5 Colombia

Medellín is a fabulous place for families with kids – from bicycling in the surrounding mountains to visiting the tremendous zoo and botanical gardens, the options are endless. Although Colombia has a checkered reputation, times have long since changed and family travel is easy and safe in Colombia. In fact, it’s this rich past that brings a lot of interest to the cities like Communa 13, which was once considered the most dangerous neighborhood in the world but is now a symbol of hope well worth visiting with its striking graffiti and street art. Parque Explora is by far one of the best interactive science museums in the world and is guaranteed to provide a fun-filled day.

Family vacation guide to Colombia

4/5 Puerto Rico

Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico in 2017, but the island’s recovery is well underway and it’s a bucket list worthy destination. Old San Juan, with its cobblestone streets and colorful buildings, offers the chance to explore the oldest city in the United States and its impressive fortresses. In a span of one week, you can visit the rainforest, hike to waterfalls, surf the waves in Rincon and see eagle rays and sea turtles while snorkeling. Puerto Rico’s outer islands are also must sees. Head to Culebra for its pristine, white-sand beaches and fabulous snorkeling spots, and don’t miss Vieques for its unforgettable bioluminescent bay.

Where to stay with kids in Puerto Rico

5/5 Ecuador

Ecuador should be on everyone’s list to visit with or without kids. The Galapagos Islands are an unforgettable site. Here giant tortoises roam, underwater lizards make a splash and birds have blue feet! But the Galapagos are far from the only place to visit in Ecuador. Cuenca is a city in the southern part of Ecuador’s Andes mountains and it’s a great place for adventurers. You can enjoy the day together as a family soaking in the thermal spas of Banos, discover ancient Incan ruins and tour the famous “Panama” hats factory, perfect for taking home a fashionable souvenir.

Exploring the Galapagos with Nat Geo