Upping the adventure level of family activities is a great way to intensify family together time -- especially when the traditional family activities are feeling a little lackluster. You're not going to find these kinds of facilities on every corner, so be ready to go a little farther to create a family experience to remember. You'll also likely pay a fair bit more for the experience, but for the family looking for something different in their family bonding time, that extra cost could be a shrewd investment in togetherness.
Special facilities with tall, reinforced walls and specialty equipment, and plenty of professional support and instruction, rock climbing gyms are a terrific family activity. With helmets and tied-into rope and belay systems, the whole family can find their inner spider and scale the walls, finding routes in the hand holds-- and rappelling back to the ground when sufficient adrenaline has been achieved. Expect sibling cheering to erupt even among the most rivaled of your offspring. And if your kids really like it, there are competitive leagues for kids of all ages.
You can get a zipline for the backyard, but treetop zipline and skill routes are something entirely different. Even those with mild fear of heights can often manage these routes. The safety procedures are thoughtful and the tree canopy help disguise just how far it really is to the ground.
Indoor skydiving isn't an oxymoron anymore. Think of a wind tunnel directed straight up a tube. Now imagine jumping into that wind and moving up and down on the current. Now don't just imagine it -- take your family to do it! Even young kids can experience this kind of "flight," so it really can be fun for the whole family.
If you've recently taken your family to the circus, finding a trapeze school where the family can actually experience flying through the air might be just the thing to do. Swinging on a bar high above the ground -- with nets and safety ropes, of course -- is a step way beyond the swings at the playground.
Your family likely already experiences a little competition among the kids. Why not create a couple of family teams and try your hand at laser tag or paintball? Strategy, excitement and lots of laughing are all in store for an afternoon.
We're not talking county fair level go-karts -- we mean sophisticated little vehicles that can go pretty fast -- if your skill makes that possible. Complex tracks and time trials, and age-appropriate speed controlled remotely, let family members participate and compete in a structured, safe environment. And have a lot of fun in the process.
If you're family wants or needs something different in the family activity realm, try a little more adventure, a little more adrenaline. Take a risk together, and the rush will be that much sweeter.
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