Parent, travel writer, and seasoned traveler, Colleen Kelly grew up traveling all over the world.
New Orleans - Beignets, Beads, and Bugs!
Family travel expert, Colleen Kelly, shows us how to let the good times roll in New Orleans, Louisiana. Accompanied by local parents, Colleen uncovers the city's gems starting in the heart of the French Quarter to sample Beignets at the iconic French Market. We then take a tour of Mardi Gras World where artists design more than 80% of all parade floats; Colleen meets with a float designer to get the inside scoop on how these decorative floats are created. We then get a chance to make our own creations during a Bug Cooking Class at the Insectarium, the largest museum in the United States dedicated to bugs! It's always important to learn when you travel to new places with your family. The National World War II Museum is a treasure chest of information for visitors of all ages. Colleen meets a multigenerational family with personal ties to the war and learns how parents can pass down family history while seeing the different exhibits. But our trip to New Orleans wouldn't be complete without a swamp tour in the bayou, followed by heart racing laps around the tracks at NOLA Motorsports for Kart racing. To round out our family vacation we learn the difference between cajun and creole cuisine and we dance the night away at Mulate's Family Restaurant.
San Antonio - Family Fun Is Bigger In Texas
Everything's bigger in Texas including the family fun! San Antonio is the second largest city in Texas and it's home to the Alamo, where Colleen Kelly starts our family vacation. After our tour, Colleen meets the curator who gives us insider information that you can teach to your children during your family's vacation. We'll follow her on a spooky ghost tour of the city's downtown area before strolling along the winding riverwalk. You can't visit San Antonio without sampling Tex Mex, a popular Texan cuisine that blends American food with Mexican culinary style. Colleen shares tips about souvenir shopping with kids during a visit to El Mercado, the largest Mexican market in the United States. Then she joins a local mom and her daughter at the Pearl's Farmer's Market to sample organic produce from the region. Animal lovers will enjoy a visit to SeaWorld while another theme park, Morgan's Wonderland, offers fun for family members of all abilities. The vacation in San Antonio is topped off with a must see event, a true Texas rodeo!
Monterey - Wharf, Whales, and Surf
The Monterey Bay Aquarium is a must see attraction in Monterey County and leads the way for this episode's family vacation along the California coast, just south of San Francisco. Colleen Kelly takes us on a behind the scenes tour of the aquarium to learn more about otters and jellyfish. To get your fill of marine life outdoors a whale watching tour is sure to please. Whale watching is very popular in this part of California especially when the whales migrate north from Baja, Mexico. If you want to feel like a sea creature yourself, take a surfing lesson. Everyone in the family can learn how to pop up on the board and ride the waves. Social Media sites lead Colleen to a favorite local spot, Dennis the Menace Park. It's a great place to allow your little ones to run around to their heart's content. Hungry? Monterey County is also known as the artichoke capital of the world! Join us on an agricultural tour at Pezzini Farms where we sample steamed and fried artichoke. She also joins family friends at Fisherman's Wharf where Colleen and a local family sample Monterey clam chowder. Finish off the family vacation with a relaxing horseback ride on the beach.
Baltimore - Flags, Forts, and Sports
Baltimore offers so much for families who love to travel! Colleen Kelly takes us on a tour around the Inner Harbor starting with a walk above the shark tanks at the National Aquarium, so watch your step! If you want to eat like a shark, join Colleen and a local family as they learn how to crack blue crabs for a feast at Phillips Seafood. Baltimore is also known as one of the most patriotic cities in the United States. We take a tour of Fort McHenry to learn about its ties to our country's national anthem and the flag that inspired the musical score. Colleen also learns about the connection between the anthem and major league baseball at the Babe Ruth Birthplace and Sports Legends Museum. A Charm City food tour and an afternoon art class at the American Visionary Art Museum rounds out our vacation and we end our Baltimore adventure with a swashbuckling sail with the Urban Pirates.
Los Angeles - Hollywood & The Beach (Lights...Camera...Vacation!)
Join Colleen Kelly as she explores Los Angeles, California from outdoor adventures to the Hollywood glitz and glam. We start off this vacation with a visit to Griffith Park, one of the largest urban parks in North America and Colleen joins a local family to hike the paths near the Griffith Observatory. Chug along the tracks at Travel Town Train Museum and pan for gold at the Autry Museum, dedicated to the adventures of the wild, wild, west. Colleen continues the family adventure at the Santa Monica beach to enjoy lunch and a relaxing bike tour before heading to TCL Chinese Theatre to see the stars' prints along the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She then pumps up the star factor with a private tour of the Hollywood Museum, located in the original Max Factor building. And to top off the Hollywood tour, Colleen joins two families on a VIP experience of Universal Studios' backlot to see how movie magic is made.
Ireland - Emerald Isle from the City to the Countryside
Colleen Kelly will guide us from coast to coast across the Emerald Isle, the home of her ancestors. She meets up with several of her relatives and friends throughout the country starting with the hustle and bustle of Dublin. We begin on Grafton Street for some shopping and lunch with an American mom who is now living full time in Ireland. Colleen teaches us about the Gaelic sport of hurling, a combination of lacrosse and field hockey. She learns from her cousin who is a well-known hurler from Tipperary, Ireland. Now that's family travel! Like any girl, Colleen has always dreamed of living in a castle. She takes us with her to fulfill her dream! At the castle, she joins her cousins from Galway to try their hand at falconry and even go on a fairy hunt on the castle grounds. The trip to Ireland continues in Westport, County Mayo where the majority of her relatives still live. They take her on an extensive tour of the Westport area where they climb to the top of Rockfleet Castle and bike on the Great Western Greenway trail. The fun continues with zip lining and closes with a musical performance while gathered in a family pub...only in Ireland!
Chicago - Windy City Whimsy
What better way to start a tour of Chicago than at the top of one of the tallest buildings in the world, the Willis Tower. Colleen Kelly meets family friends on the glass enclosed ledge overlooking the Windy City from 103 stories high. A short water taxi ride takes visitors from the Willis Tower to the Children's Museum at Navy Pier where Colleen splashes with kids at the Water Ways exhibit. The next stop is Lincoln Park where Colleen explores the oldest free zoo in the United States before heading to a musical theater where all of the shows are based on kids' books and involve audience participation. Shopping on Michigan Avenue is a must in Chicago! Colleen joins two fashion forward moms to get the 411 on the shopping scene. You can't visit Chicago without feasting on deep dish pizza! Colleen joins a family in pizza making 101 at Gino's East, one of the original pizza parlors in the city. Next, Colleen pets the belugas at the Shedd Aquarium, tours historic Wrigley Field, and sails away on a beautiful boat ride along the Chicago River.
Montreal - Real City with French Flair
We head north of the United States border for some family fun in Montreal, Canada. In this episode, Colleen Kelly and her two daughters enjoy all Montreal has to offer with a French twist! Known for their rich history and culture we start off our vacation underground at the Pointe-a-Calliere Museum of Archaeology and History to see where Montreal first became a city back in 1642. Speaking of firsts, we learn about the interesting history of Montreal style bagels and make our own version of a classic Quebecian dish, Poutine. Now it's time to turn up the fun and go for a heart-pounding, clothes-soaking jet boat ride up and down the St. Lawrence Seaway before heading to the Space for Life to interact with nature like never before, visiting the four individual exhibits. To round out our vacation we tour the Canadian Hall of Fame where Colleen and the girls can interact with displays and see rare hockey artifacts. A fun surprise in the middle of the city was a musical art piece called the 21 Swings. With each sway, we made a musical note and together we made a melody. We end our vacation with a game of I-Spy at the Montreal Tower where we get a spectacular, birds-eye view of the city.
Cruise The Caribbean
Set sail with Colleen Kelly on a family friendly cruise to the Caribbean. Colleen is joined by her extended family on this floating holiday as they discover what cruising has to offer to every generation of traveler. They will talk with crew members and learn about the vessel itself and what it takes to make a big ship ready every day for its guests. The family will also highlight family friendly activities including sports and leisure events to suit a variety of interests. Food is an activity in itself on a cruise! Colleen and her family will learn about the on board prep work it takes to feed all of the passengers at once. Of course sampling will be involved as they try kid friendly and palate tempting foods. They will also stop off at a port of call and try an excursion. The kids love the water activities! Back on board, the whole family will celebrate their time together with a festive evening complete with dancing. Bon Voyage!
Los Angeles - Culture, History and Art
Los Angeles is the city of endless entertainment with hundreds of museums and cultural centers throughout the area. The city of angels is known for Hollywood and its beaches, but it is way more than that. Colleen Kelly shows us another side of Los Angeles starting with The Original Farmers Market and The Grove, two totally different shopping experiences connected via a trolley ride. We also explore The Getty Museum where children are encouraged to learn about the visual arts from a very young age. Programs and activities are available to help the whole family build their love of art. Colleen joins car enthusiasts for an up close and personal view of a wide variety of cars at the Petersen Automotive Museum and there is a lot of hands on activities for the little ones to get them hooked on being motorheads. Colleen gets a lesson on frosting the perfect cupcake at Sprinkles, the original cupcake shop, before heading off to the La Brea Tarpits to learn how scientists are making new discoveries every day. The best part is that you can watch them while they work. Speaking of science, Colleen takes us to view the Space Shuttle Endeavor, a magnificent site to see at the California Science Center, which is free for visitors. Last but not least, a visit to Olvera Street, the oldest part of downtown Los Angeles. Known for its Mexican roots, Olvera Street offers visitors culture, shopping and authentic cuisine.
Camp - for the Entire Family
Sleepaway Camp isn't just for the kids, now it is available for the entire family to enjoy together. Colleen Kelly and her daughters join other families at Camp Brosius, a family camp run by Indiana University. Adults and children get to create their own camp experience and can choose from a long list of activities including swimming, water sports, crafts, hiking...you name it! Trained college students from IU lead the kids on daily adventures while Colleen and the other adults can choose to relax with a good book, take a class, or try their hand at activities like sailing. Of course like every good family camp, Camp Brosius has talent shows and sing-a-longs around the campfire. Time to grab the marshmallows.
Wyoming - Frontier Days, Bison, and a Dude Ranch
Since 1897, Cheyenne has celebrated its Old West roots with a festival known as Frontier Days. Colleen Kelly will take us to a rodeo, the cornerstone of this celebration, an old west town called "Wild Horse Gulch", and to the Native American Village. Lasting a week long, Frontier Days could easily fill up your entire family vacation, Colleen however, leads us on a journey visiting other attractions in Cheyenne as well as excursions to nearby Vedauwoo for hiking and Laramie for the Legends of Laramie Tour. Wyoming is one of the few remaining areas of the United States where you can get a personal view of the true American West. Nowhere else could you look bison right in the eye and feel so connected to nature! She joins a family on an ATV tour to see the beautiful sites on an untraditional mode of transportation. Her vacation ends with a stay at the Vee Bar Guest Ranch where she and the girls horseback ride and enjoy meeting other families over group meals and campfire activities.
Michigan - Family Vacation by the Lake
With over 3,200 miles of shoreline and 11,000 inland lakes, the sandy beaches in Michigan offer a relaxing respite for the whole family. Colleen Kelly shows us that a vacation by the lake is effortless. It has never been so easy to play in the sand, swim in the water, or find a fishing hole with your name on it...and there is still so much left to explore! Colleen enjoys a simple board game with her children, which reminds us all it is the time we spend together that create family memories to last a lifetime. She shows us how to prepare easy recipes that taste great, but don't break the bank and points out a sweet spot for some cool treats. Every family vacation should be this relaxing.
Michigan Family Vacation by the Lake
With over 3,200 miles of shoreline and 11,000 inland lakes, the sandy beaches in Michigan offer a relaxing respite for the whole family. Colleen Kelly shows us that a vacation by the lake is effortless. It has never been so easy to play in the sand, swim in the water, or find a fishing hole with your name on it...and there is still so much left to explore! Colleen enjoys a simple board game with her children, which reminds us all it is the time we spend together that create family memories to last a lifetime. She shows us how to prepare easy recipes that taste great, but don’t break the bank and points out a sweet spot for some cool treats. Every family vacation should be this relaxing.