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5 Family Vacation Destinations That Make Unplugging Easy

Is it really possible to disconnect from technology and reconnect as a family? Yes, if you choose your destination wisely.

By Dana Colecchia Getz on January 11, 2019

In today’s tech-centric world, vacations offer an important (and increasingly rare) opportunity to unplug. For families longing to slow down and reconnect, these 5 destinations prove you don’t have to go completely off-the-grid to create real-life memories with the people who matter most.

1. Truckee, California

With a town slogan of “Base Camp for a Big Life,†Truckee is the perfect escape for an adventuring family. Although its laid back vibe and Lake Tahoe location have earned Truckee a reputation as one of America’s best ski towns, this four-season destination offers more than just epic skiing. When whitewater season comes alive in the spring, even young children can ride the Truckee River rapids. Or take to the granite landscape and pristine waterfalls of Desolation Wilderness for a backpacking adventure. If your family still needs help detaching from their tech, consider an off-the-grid stay at the Lost Trail Lodge where relaxed evenings are spent enjoying shared meals and impromptu music jams.

Little St. Simons Island GA
St. Simons / iStock Photo/mstroz

2. Little St. Simons Island, Georgia

For families wishing to unplug in luxury, Little St. Simons Island may be the answer. This small island off the Georgia coast provides all-inclusive resort amenities including organic meals and naturalist-led excursions. With only 32 guests at a time, this conservation-focused island provides a private escape to quiet beaches where the only sounds you’ll hear are chatting shorebirds and lapping waves. Unplugging families may most appreciate what is not here – televisions and reliable cell reception.

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Mackinac Island MI
Mackinac Island / iStock Photo/csterken

3. Mackinac Island, Michigan

Families looking for a less remote destination will enjoy stepping back in time on Mackinac Island. This popular midwestern spot offers a traditional beach vacation, but with a twist – no cars. Imagine a week in which your only modes of transportation around this charming town are by foot, bicycle or horse and carriage. Spend quality time together kayaking, parasailing and fishing on beautiful Lake Huron. Make memories at Mackinac State Historic Parks where hands-on learning and historic reenactments brings history alive. Kids will fall for Mackinac’s beautiful beaches and quaint candy stores, while parents will appreciate the distraction-free family time.

4. Portland, Maine

For families preferring variety in their vacation, Portland offers a walkable, artistic city within a short drive of outdoor excursions. Explore this New England town’s trendy craft breweries and farm-to-table dining. Then head out on an adventurous whale-watching tour or play at one of the many family-friendly beaches, like Crescent Beach State Park, within only 45 minutes of the city. A few hours north is Acadia National Park, boasting rocky coastlines and pine-scented hikes through lush forests. Or, connect to your inner homesteader at the Koviashuvik Local Living School in Temple while learning carving, composting and food preservation skills during a “family sustainability stay.â€

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5. Sedona, Arizona

Sedona, known for its mystical energy and other-worldly red rock landscape, gives families multiple options for unwinding. Share a memorable day horseback riding and singing cowboy songs at the M Diamond Ranch. Parents may indulge in meditative “forest bathing†at the luxurious L’Auberge de Sedona, or retreat to a local yoga class. Unforgettable adventures abound at Slide Rock State Park where kids will be too busy slipping down the natural water slide and hiking to swimming holes to notice the spotty wi-fi.

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