There’s nothing better than spending some quality time with your grandchildren, except maybe spending some quality vacation time with your grandchildren in a warm location that the whole family can enjoy.
If the thought of choosing the best family resort for your Sunshine State getaway has you feeling overwhelmed, never fear! We have compiled a list of the top 10 Florida resorts that are completely family-friendly, but that will also give you some space to relax on your own.
And don’t worry, we’ve expanded our search beyond the Orlando and Miami Beach areas to include some quite Florida family resorts that you may never even have thought of. We’ve done all the legwork, so you don’t have to!
Why Should You Vacation With Your Grandkids?
If you are reading this, you are probably an involved grandparent who loves spending time with your grandchildren. You may be wondering, though, is it worth it to take the time and money to go on vacation with the little cherubs? Our answer: absolutely it is!
There’s no doubt about it; it is difficult to take children, especially small children, on trips. However, these memory-making vacations are impossible to substitute with regular hang-around-the-house time with Grammy.
You want to be a part of the times that your grandchildren will remember forever, and if you play your cards right, you can plan an unforgettable Florida vacation that they will never forget.
What Should You Look for in a Family-Friendly Resort?
Okay, so maybe you have no idea where to start. It has probably been a very long time since you have planned a vacation that includes kids and adults. Here are some things you should look for when you are considering a resort that will appeal to both:
Swimming Pools and Waterslides
There’s a reason why we are listing this first! It should be a major consideration. Depending on the ages of your grandkids, they may want to spend some serious time in the pool playing water sports or exploring other water adventures, such as giant waterslides.
Make sure it has the right space for the kids’ ages, as well as some private space (and hot tubs) for the adults.
You definitely want to look for a resort that offers some kind of entertainment for the children — more than just free wi-fi and kid-friendly dining options. Some of the resorts we’ve chosen have educational activities, music, or even cooking classes!
It’s easy to forget this one. There should be activities that will be fun for both the adults and the children to do together. Does the resort’s spa offer mommy and me pedicures? Is there water volleyball that the whole family can play together?
Think about whether or not the resort offers fun for everyone, or at least whether there are family activities nearby.
Kid and Baby-friendly Rooms
When you are booking, think about the room configuration and the perks you’ll find in each room. If the whole family is staying in one space, a suite layout with a pull-out couch and separate guest rooms for the adults works best. Does the resort offer cribs for babies? Is the resort willing to childproof the room?
Making children feel special and welcome is something that many resorts take the time to do.
This one is not 100% necessary, but if the adults want to take some time to themselves sans kids, it’s nice to have a place they can go with skilled childcare and fun activities to do. The adults get some chill time, and the children usually have an absolute blast, so it’s a win-win!
Our Top 10 Picks for Family Friendly Florida Resorts
With all that in mind, we have curated a list of amazing resorts in Florida that the whole family will love. Here are our favorites!
1. Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort, Destin
While a luxury resort with a focus on golfing might not sound like an ideal vacation locale for kids, believe it or not, this one is! You will find fun for the whole family (especially the golfer in your life) at this beautiful Destin resort with its own private beach.
If you’ve never been to Destin, you are in for a treat! Set apart from the hustle and bustle of larger cities like Miami or Clearwater, Destin feels like your own little personal island beach escape, so make sure to pack a tiered tankini and your favorite cover-up. The resort’s KidZone program provides supervision and entertainment for the little ones, while the older members of the family can enjoy some time on the fairway.
The resort offers four championship golf courses, 50 shops, and more than 20 on-site restaurants. You will not want for anything while on this vacation!
2. The Resort on Cocoa Beach, Cocoa Beach
If you are interested in a suite experience, this is the resort for you. Every single room in this resort has two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a fully equipped kitchen, and in-room laundry facilities. What more could you ask for?
What about entertainment, you ask? Well, there is a short boardwalk that leads right down to the beach, and if you prefer to stay at the resort, there is an outdoor bar, a volleyball area, and a splash pad. You’ll have plenty to do and plenty of opportunities to show off that gorgeous princess seam swim dress you just bought.
3. Club Wyndham Bonnet Creek, Orlando
This oceanfront resort truly has something for everyone. Located close to all the action and right next to the Walt Disney World resorts, this place has all the amenities needed for an unforgettable retreat.
The room offerings include one, two, three, or four-bedroom suites that can sleep anywhere from four to twelve guests. This is what really sets this resort apart from others: you can fit the whole family, grandparents included!
If that isn’t enough, there is also a pool that features a faux beach pirate ship and a lazy river to boot. Grab your spa swimsuit, float along the lazy river with your grandkids, and remember why you decided to take this vacation in the first place.
4. Great Wolf Lodge, Naples
We had to throw this one in here since it is probably the most popular hotel destination for kids in — well, ever! Technically this new Naples hotel will not open until 2024, but if you are just in the beginning stages of planning your vacation, you’ll want to keep this one in mind.
Not only will the resort be brand spanking new, but it will have all the attractions that Great Wolf Lodge is known for. You will get a kick out of watching your grandkids’ faces light up as they walk around the hotel with their magic wands, completing kid-friendly quests.
The real draw to Great Wolf Lodge is the indoor water park, a perfect place to show off your new bandeau bathing suit.
This spot is a wonderful choice for rainy afternoons, which are common in Florida. Spend the nicer weather by the beach, and when the rain hits, take the kids to the water park. Either way, make sure you remember to pack your resort swimsuit for this location!
5. Ponte Vedra Inn and Club, Ponte Vedra Beach
If you are looking to truly splurge on a family vacation, this is the right resort for you. This beautiful resort boasts an immaculate beach with walk-out access from many of its ground floor rooms and over 300 acres of beautifully manicured property.
A major draw is the four swimming pools for you to tan in your favorite spa wear, plus access to the sister resort, The Lodge & Club Ponte Vedra Beach. This resort is just down the street and offers even more swimming pools and recreational activities.
We would recommend this resort for families with older kids, as the very young ones would not have quite as much in the way of a kids’ club or childcare.
6. Coco Key Hotel and Water Resort, Orlando
This one is really for the kids, but we promise that there is fun for everyone in the family! This all-inclusive resort features a 54,000 square foot outdoor, canopy-covered waterpark facility that the grandkids will never forget.
Convenience and fun are the keywords when it comes to this beachfront resort, as it is within 10 miles of Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, Seaworld, the downtown area, and the airport.
7. Tradewinds Island Grand, St. Pete Beach
Set on a barrier island west of St. Petersburg, this wonderful little beach town will become a favorite in your vacation memory book. You won’t believe the amenities you find at the Tradewinds Island Grand, from movies by the pool to a 33,500 gallon aquarium. You can even kick back in a floating cabana!
Located right on the beach, this resort offers a number of different room options that will satisfy your every need, regardless of the size of your family. Your options range from a traditional hotel room, a studio suite, a two-bedroom villa, and more!
8. Sunset Key Cottages, Key West
Looking to sample a little island living? You definitely want to check out the Sunset Key Cottages in Key West along the Gulf of Mexico. This four-star resort features 40 luxury cottages just minutes away from Key West’s Mallory Square.
For kids, there are myriad activities, from kayak and paddleboard rentals and snorkeling adventures to a game room and much more! Adults will appreciate the luxurious feel of the property, plus the full-service spa, tennis courts, and fitness center.
Every cottage has full kitchens, so the kids will not go hungry here! They also have blackout curtains that will let the babies sleep (as much as they are willing to, anyway).
There are multiple outdoor pools with ocean views on the property for the whole family to explore, but you may want to spend all of your time on the white sand beach adjacent to the property. There, you’ll find tiki torches, comfy hammocks, and shady umbrellas for your entire family to enjoy. You can even make s’mores while hanging out around a fire pit on the beach in your favorite resort wear.
9. Best Western Plus Beach Resort, Fort Myers Beach
Looking for a Florida family vacation on a budget? This just might be the resort for you! It has an optimal location near the Fort Myers Beach Pier and Times Square, which is a popular spot for fishing, shopping, and finding a place to grab a bite.
All of the rooms have private balconies and kitchenettes, and the hotel features a free full breakfast each morning. There is a tropical courtyard with shuffleboard, courts, a heated pool, first come, first served gas grills, and a picnic area. This is a wonderful location for a budget-friendly, low-key family vacation with the grandkids.
10. Disney’s Boardwalk Villas, Orlando
Last but not least, we had to pay homage to the mouse and his famous Florida family resort. Disney’s Boardwalk Villas in the Walt Disney World theme park are the perfect combination of convenience, family fun, and luxury. The villas are steps away from the boardwalk, where the grandkids can grab an ice cream, rent a surrey bike, and pretend they are in Atlantic City in the 1940s.
Even the humble studio suites can sleep up to five adults plus one child under three, making them perfect for families. A huge bonus is that you can quite literally walk into Epcot Center from the boardwalk, making it a great spot if you plan to visit the parks. Enjoy nightly fireworks from your private balcony, and give your grandchildren an extra big hug.
No matter what Floridian resort you choose, know that the most important thing is spending quality time with your family. Your grandchildren will never forget the amazing vacation, and neither will you. From Orlando to Cocoa Beach to Key West, there is something out there that’s just right for you and your family. Bon voyage!