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The Best and Worst Family Vacation Destinations in the US

Ranking America’s Best Family Vacation Destinations

For many travelers, 2022 will signal a return to normal as COVID-19 restrictions are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Travel insurance comparison site InsureMyTrip has ranked 10 of the most popular cities in the U.S. for family vacations to determine the best for travelers right now. Researchers looked at a range of factors, including the quality of family hotels and nearby beaches and quantity of family attractions as well as area safety, sea temperature, lowest wave height and weakest ocean current strength. Scores ranged from 3.54 (10th) to 5.5 (first). All 10 destinations are undoubtedly worthwhile trips for vacationing families but these survey results could help break a tie for those still undecided on their next group getaway. 

10. Miami, Florida

Earning an overall score of just 3.54, Miami surprisingly ranks among the worst of the top U.S. cities for a family getaway. Miami is known for its beautiful beaches and epic nightlife but is hurt by its low scores for area safety and the quality of family hotels.

9. Ocean City, Maryland

Despite ranking best in the U.S. for area safety with a score of 7.03 and scoring an equally solid 7.39 for quality of nearby beaches, Maryland’s Ocean City earned an overall score of just 4.29, getting dinged for low wave height and sea temperature, which many travelers are likely to look past. 

8. Los Angeles, California

On the West Coast, Los Angeles offers lots to do outside of its sun-drenched beaches but InsureMyTrip’s research turned up a less than impressive assortment of attractions suited to visiting families, with L.A. scoring just 0.19 in the all-important category. 

T6. Florida Keys, Florida

Tying for sixth overall with a score of 4.48, the Florida Keys is elevated by its quality of family hotels. The destination’s score of 4.15 in this category is significantly higher than any of the other nine destinations as L.A. is second at 2.64.

T6. Coney Island, New York

An iconic summertime vacation destination for families on the East Coast, Coney Island ties the Florida Keys thanks to impressive scores for both quality of family hotels and area safety. Like Ocean City, travelers will have to wait a bit for the ocean to warm up in this Northeast neighborhood.

5. San Francisco, California

Rounding out the list of the five best family vacation destinations domestically this year, San Francisco ranks inside of the top three for both its quality of family hotels and quantity of family attractions. In addition to shoreline, travelers can look forward to parks, museums and more.

4. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Myrtle Beach earned the top score for the number of family attractions at 2.29 and finished with an overall score of 4.74, good enough for fourth-best overall. The South Carolina resort city is lauded for its dozens of miles of beaches and kid-friendly attractions that include boardwalk classics like arcade games and Ferris wheels and pulse-pounding thrill rides. 

3. Galveston, Texas

Galveston’s overall score is buoyed by its phenomenal score for low wave height at 9.33, which helps it overcome two of the worst scores for the number of family attractions (ninth) and area safety (10th). 

2. Honolulu, Hawaii

Hawaii is becoming easier to access as the state loosens COVID-19 restrictions and the addition of low-cost carrier Southwest Airlines makes getting to places like Honolulu even more affordable. Families will love the capital city’s beaches and balmy sea temperature but can also rest assured knowing Honolulu earns high marks for the number of family attractions. 

1. San Diego, California

With 70 miles of coastline and plenty of iconic family-friendly attractions to choose from such as the renowned San Diego Zoo and Legoland California, San Diego is easily the country’s top destination for a family vacation in 2022, earning an overall score of 5.5.

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