Why It’s Awesome: This rustic destination boasts the perfect balance between the coziness of a winter cabin and the relaxation of a mountain resort getaway. With no shortage of outdoor and indoor activities like swimming, bowling and a movie theater, Whiteface Lodge will keep everyone entertained. Cast-iron fireplaces in most rooms make for an extra cozy getaway.
What to do: Skiers and snowboarders can hit the East Coast’s highest vertical drop (3,430 ft.!) at Whiteface Mountain. Explore the snowy terrain while cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Lace up complimentary ice skates to try some figure eights at the rink. While mom and dad hit the slopes on their own, the lil’ ones take part in on-site adventure camps like Kamp Kanu, where they’ll spend the day doing arts and crafts, science experiments and obstacle courses.
Afterward, shake off the cold during a friendly game of bowling or catch a film at the 3-D movie theater. Warm up by the bonfire and munch on some s’mores. Make a splash at the heated pool, shoot hoops at the on-site basketball court or challenge the kids to air hockey in the game room.
More to explore: There’s plenty of off-site family fun like sleigh riding and recently renovated Lake Placid Toboggan Chute opening in February, and your teens can try bobsledding and nature walks on their own.
Keep the holiday spirit alive all year round on a magical Christmas adventure to Santa’s workshop at the North Pole. Santa’s workshop is located on the side of Whiteface Mountain and is open during the summer and winter months. Enjoy caroling, roasting marshmallows, feeding reindeer and talking to Santa himself.
Details: Rates start at $353 per night, which includes a daily breakfast.
Why it’s awesome: This all-inclusive resort features entertainment from magicians to concerts, and of course, outdoor activities like snow tubing, skiing and snowshoeing. It was also voted the top family resort in the country in 2019 by USA Today.
What to Do: Don’t worry about the kids complaining of boredom: They’ll be too busy ice skating, tubing, riding bumper cars and playing at the indoor waterpark. Once they’re tired out, watch a live show or wow them with a balloon artist. Woodloch has plenty of add-on experiences, like escape rooms, art classes, mini bowling and even forest bathing.
More to explore: The local town boasts seasonal events like Hawley Winterfest, which features a sculpted ice bar, beer tour, live music, horse and carriage rides, food and more. Hawley is ripe with events like a comedy night, chili and wing cookoff and a Dueling Pianos show.
Nearby outings include the Dorflinger Glass Museum, Eagle Institute, Zane Grey Home & Museum, Steamtown National Historic Site, Lander’s River Trips, Angler’s Roost (for fly fishing), Bushkill Falls, Promised Land State Park, Lake Wallenpaupack Air Tours, the Pocono Environmental Education Center, Dorflinger-Suydam Wildlife Sanctuary, plus antique shops and The Crossings Premium Outlets.
Details: Rates start at $659 per night. There are motel-style lodges for smaller families and houses for large groups.
Why it’s Awesome: There are so many unique highlights the kids will love, like glow-in-the-dark tubing, the arcade and scheduled events like the Winter Carnival (Thursdays through the first week of April). Smugglers’ also has programs that give kids of all abilities an opportunity to experience skiing. The resort also has five themed communities, woodland and mountain views, a children’s splash playground, lots of nearby eats and beautiful sunset views of Noch Valley.
What to Do: Hit the slopes on a snowshoe adventure, zip line canopy tour or tube ride. Choose downhill skiing or hit the cross-country trails. If you don’t know how to ski, lessons are available for all ages. Children as young as 2 ½ can learn to snowboard at the child care center.
Hit the FunZone 2.0 arcade, a 26,000-square-foot indoor playground that has games, laser tag, rock climbing and more. Inside Fun Zone is Little’s Loft, a play area for ages 8 and under where kids can work on arts and crafts, play with big blue blocks or use their imaginations on the 22-foot-tall pirate ship with new friends.
Other kids approved activities are Cider Walks, a snowshoe lesson trek ending in a special warm treat, and the Zip Line Canopy Tours, take in the beautiful Green Mountain scenery as you soar down more than 4,500 feet of zip lines.
More to Explore: Go on A Taste of Vermont Tour to explore towns like Jeffersonville, where you can pick up maple products from local farms, and other local attractions like The Vermont Teddy Bear Factory, Ben & Jerry’s ice cream factory, The Cabot Vistor’s Center (where you can sample countless types of cheeses) and Dog Sledding Adventures.
Details: Rates start at $309 per night. The FamilyFest Package includes skiing and riding lessons for preschoolers, daily two-hour lessons for ages 5-17, plus discounts for other kids’ programs and more.
Why It’s Awesome: This Virginia gem features 24 slopes and trails that accommodate beginners and pro skiers. The resort also has ski classes for kids ages 3-12.
What to Do: Take The Plunge at Virginia’s largest tubing park. Dare to soar downhill at 30 mph at this ten-story attraction. Snowboarding fanatic? Practice your freestyling skills at the Terrain Park. The resort has a wide range of skiing and snowboarding programs for kids of varied ages and abilities.
More to Explore: Visit a local winery like Flying Fox Vineyard to taste local Northern Virginia wine. Bring the kids to Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library and Museum, where they can learn about the 28th President (he was also the 34th governor of New Jersey). Take a tour of Woodrow Wilson’s birthplace and transported your family back to 1856.
Details: Rates start at $210 per night/day. Choose from old school lodges, condos or homes. Choose to register children for Kids in Action Childcare and Snowplay, or choose a babysitter from Wintergreen’s approved list.
Why it’s Awesome: If you’re interested in skiing and snowboarding but also want to try some other outdoor activities like ice fishing and dog sledding, you’ll find lots to do here.
What to do: Keep the holiday spirit alive on a sleigh ride along Westbranch River. If ice skating on an actual pond is on their bucket list, they’ll be able to check it off at Stoweflake. Be sure to take a nature walk with your four-legged-friend on more than 60 acres of land.
More to explore: Enjoy the beautiful winter scenery in Stowe via a snowmobile tour—experienced snowmobilers can explore trails on their own. It’s no secret that Vermont is the top in the nation for breweries per capita. Craft beer enthusiasts should make a trip to The Alchemist (try the famous Heady Topper) or von Trapp Brewery (yes, like from the Sound of Music).
Have a sweet tooth? Take a short trip to Waterbury to taste your favorite ice cream flavors straight from the source at Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream. Tour the factory and learn about this creamery’s inception as you savor free samples. Don’t forget to stroll around the Flavor Graveyard to “pay your respects to the dearly de-pinted flavors of years past.”
Details: Nightly rates start at $238 per night. This dog-friendly resort has both standard rooms and townhouses available.
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