• At the beach in Tofino with kids.

    Tofino with Kids: Advice from a dad insider

    Tofino is where wilderness and luxury meet. It’s a wave-washed destination where even the public campgrounds are never far from million-dollar views. John Platenius is the parent of two children (ages 5 and 7) and a resident of Tofino, a top summer vacation spot along Vancouver Island’s western shore. Platenius has just put out a fine new book on the region, Tofino Guide, retailing for $19.95. Read more at his Tofino-focused website or leave questions below in the comments. Here are Platenius’ tips on things to do with kids in Tofino, his recommendations for great hotels and campgrounds, and even the best hiking trail with a preschooler. (Photo at right, Platenius’s son playing on a Tofino beach)…

  • Travel Tips

    Tips and Hints: Finding a family-friendly hotel

    Kid friendly hotels – whether in Portland (Oregon) or Portland (Maine) — are blessedly similar. Sure, the landscape changes, but a great hotel offers both respite and recreation to vacationing families. Here are questions we ask before we go, we or read over hotel websites to find the answers. Any of these points are equally valid if you’re looking for family friendly New York City hotels or kid friendly Las Vegas accommodations. And of course, you’ll want to take into account customer reviews or guidebook recommendations (I recommend dozens of kid-friendly Vancouver, Victoria, Seattle and Portland hotels in my book Northwest Kid Trips). However, it’s rare to find a hotel…

  • Mystic Vale: A great hike for kids near Victoria BC
    Get Outdoors! Camping & Hiking Trips,  Victoria

    Kid-Friendly Hikes Near Victoria, BC

    To find out more about family-friendly hiking and camping near Victoria, BC I interviewed Kari Jones, a mom to one son and the author of the book “Hiking Adventures with Children: Southern Vancouver Island and the Olympic Peninsula” which you can order from Kari’s blog or from Amazon.com. Q: Is there a kid-friendly hike within Victoria’s city limits that you recommend? What do you like about it? There are so many walks within Victoria; it’s hard to choose just one. But if I have to, I’d say Mystic Vale is my favourite. The walk starts at the University of Victoria, which is easily accessible by car or bus, but once…

  • Royal BC Museum: A fun thing to do with kids in Victoria BC

    Victoria with Kids: 5 Things to Do with Toddlers in Victoria, BC

    A reader writes in: We are planning a family vacation to Victoria in June with our 2 year old.  Do you have any recommendations for kid-friendly hotels and activities?  Thank you so much for your help! — Jessica I’m so excited for you. Victoria is one of my favorite destinations, particularly with toddlers. My first suggestion — buy my book! In Northwest Kid Trips: Portland, Seattle, Victoria, Vancouver, I lay out Victoria activities picks by age, and you’ll find more hotel and dining options than I have here. But here are additional suggestions: Kid-friendly Victoria BC Hotels: I like staying at the Royal Scot Hotel & Suites, because I like the kitchen-equipped rooms, particularly when…

  • Get Outdoors! Camping & Hiking Trips,  Seattle

    Hikes for Kids Near Downtown Seattle

    When visiting Seattle, don’t miss the chance to scramble up a fewhiking  trails with the kids. The city limits yield plenty of hiking treasures, and if you’re in town for a few days and you’ve rented a car, spectacular scenery is within a 45-minute drive of the Seattle. This week, hiking expert Joan Burton tells visitors and locals where to hike in and around Seattle with kids.  Burton is the author of Urban Walks, 23 Walks through Seattle’s Parks and Neighborhoods, published by Thistle Press and Best Hikes With Kids: Western Washington & the Cascades, published by Mountaineers Books. Burton offers great information on kid-friendly hikes in our area. For even more tree-lined…