Summer Travel

25 Great U.S. Spots to Take Your Kids Before They Graduate High School (PHOTOS)

Summer is the prime time to get travelin' with the family. The temperatures are warmer, the kids are out of school, and thankfully -- gas prices aren't absolutely ridiculous this year. The best part of living in the good ol' U S of A? There's a whole lot of terrific terrain just waiting to be explored right here in our own backyard!

More from The Stir50 Places You Must Take the Kids Before They Get Too Old

As kids get older, they become less interested in quality family time and more interested in, you know, the "cooler things." Which is exactly why you gotta squeeze in some of these classic road trips while you still can. Yeah yeah yeah, water parks, those are fun, and so are beach towns. However, there are a whole slew of historic sites monuments, and American landmarks across the country that are a must-see for every kid as they get older.

Check out our list of 25 great places to take your kids to before they graduate high school.




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Katriena Young

More people have a problem with the bison then the bears in yellowstone

suziejax suziejax

I love this and so agree.

My6Rock My6Rock

My older set of four have been to 5, 9, 10, 15, 17, 20, 22, and 24. My new girls have have been to a few, and we are working on more. BTW, we live in Boulder City, NV (The Town the Dam Built) and visiting is a must if you visit Hoover Dam. The small town has great history, and though it is only minutes away, is nothing like Vegas. You should also take the tour of the dam, pass over the new super high O'Callahan bypass bridge, and even take a walk across the bridge. Visit Lake Mead (great for fishing and boating), and check out the many recreational activities like riding the historical train, sky diving, and even riding a zip line. On your way to Vegas, stop by the Clark County Museum in Henderson off Boulder HWY for a fascinating history of Las Vegas. Other places to visit that are kid friendly in the Vegas area are The Springs Preserve, Lied Childrens' Discovery Museum, and the Las Vegas Natural History Museum. The latter two are across the street from each other. None of these are in Casinos (though there are many interesting attractions in casinos).

My6Rock My6Rock

I also wanted to share the activity we have begun with our new set of girls. We are visiting national parks and helping them earn Junior Ranger Badges. This has started a whole new family tradition. It get us out to see the parks and learn more about them than we would otherwise. My six-year-old has already earned six badges. It's an old activity, but one we never thought of for our older children. Our grandchildren are also looking into it. Certainly worthwhile!

Amanda Briggs

I suggest The Red Wood National Forest of North California. The trees are HUGE. There's even one that a small car can drive thru, or there was when I was there. You can easily see how Dinosaurs fit into a world covered in trees of THIS size!

Aslen Aslen

WOOT NIagara Falls!!!! I'm taking my boys home next summer and I can't WAIT!


noneya79 noneya79

I'd love to take my children to every place on that list... So far we've been to the Grand Canyon, one of the Great Lakes (Erie), 3 different state zoos, and the Pacific Ocean. I'm hoping for Disney World next year... and soon the Hoover Dam and Yellow Stone... oh and definitely Mount Rushmore! 

My6Rock My6Rock

oooooh, I agree with the Giant Redwoods of CA and Sequoia National Forest! So cool! 

nonmember avatar MrsSmith

And if you're already at Mt. Rushmore, you should really take a trip to Crazy Horse.

nonmember avatar Jen

Combine a trip to see the redwoods or giant sequoias with a visit to Yosemite National Park. Breathtaking views and awesome hiking!

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