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Family vacation fun: In-the-hotel activities

Whitney Coy is a freelance writer and editor based in Columbus, OH, where she lives with her husband and two daughters. She writes frequently for SheKnows, as well as several other websites. She writes on topics including parenting, trav...

Making downtime fun

When making family-friendly travel arrangements, it’s all about the destination and the memorable places you’ll explore together.
Family on vacation in hotel room

But often, it’s not the national monuments, the beach or the amusement park that gets all the attention — lots of kids are just as excited to be spending the night in a hotel!

For your next trip, compromise no more and make the destination and the accommodations equally fun. Pick a hotel that will make everyone in the family happy and help you enjoy your stay just as much as the rest of your trip. Here are some fun in-room activities for the whole family to enjoy, whether it’s raining or you want some downtime at the hotel.

Document the day

Bring along notebooks, pens and crayons for the kids to write and draw about their favorite parts of each day’s adventures. It can serve as quiet time for the whole family, while encouraging the children to reflect on what they’ve learned. Years down the road, these little memory books will probably be Mom's favorite vacation mementos — they'll tell a better story than most of your pictures.

Form a fort

With all of the supplies you’ll need right at your fingertips, why not? Use blankets and bedspreads and drape them between beds, over a desk, above two chairs or sofa to make a fort, which can also serve Crayons | Sheknows.comas a napping zone. After all of the day’s activities — and fort building — the whole family will be ready for a late-afternoon snooze.

Break out a board game

Vacations are all about family bonding time, so bring along a board game that doesn’t take up too much luggage space, and get ready to rumble!Popcorn | Sheknows.com

Note: Look out for travel-sized versions of your favorite board games for easy packability

Make it a movie night

Is there a movie you just haven’t had time to watch at home? Bring it along, make some popcorn and cozy up for a family screening before bedtime. Do the kids have a different list of must-see movies than you do? No problem. Try to book a hotel with two-room suites (a standard offering at Embassy Suites Hotels), so you can watch your pick, and they can watch theirs in another room.

Give them gratitude

Hotels always come equipped with notepads and pens, so put them to good use! Feel free to write a nice note from your family to the hospitable staff who worked hard to make sure your hotel experience was a great one (and it’s a great lesson for the kids).

Make it a night "out"

After a long day of sightseeing and travel, you all need to unwind. Embassy Suites Hotels offers a Complimentary Evening Reception* each night. Two hours of free drinks and snacks should be plenty to refuel and relax, right?

*Service of alcohol subject to state and local laws. Must be of legal drinking age.

This post was sponsored by Embassy Suites.

More on family travel

15 Things that would make family vacations better
How to have an awesome family vacation
7 Ideas for a last-minute family getaway

Photo credits: Hilton, Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images, and John E. Kelly/Photodisc/Getty Images
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