advice on where to go with a 2 year old

Jan 17th, 2006, 05:01 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 4
advice on where to go with a 2 year old

hello! my hub and i have hit the wall trying to decide on a place to go for our first vacation in 4 years & the first "real" vacation with our toddler. we've been thinking turks & caicos, puerto rico, the dominican republic, and we've also been looking at family-type all inclusives (beaches, franklyn d. resort, club med - punta cana) and just family-friendly hotels (ritz). but some of the reviews we've read are really off-putting and pretty scary. can you experienced travelers help us?

here are our loose "requirements":

1) minimal flying time from boston, manchester, or providence airports (direct preferred or a short layover in miami)

2) clean, nice rooms that are cleaned daily
3) activities for kids (pools, play areas, zoos, wildlife reserves, music, whatever. just something neat to look at for a while that isn't in the water)
4) a slim chance that we or our room will be robbed
5) no theme parks (like disneyworld, sesame street, etc.).

if it were just me and my DH, we'd have no problem with flight times or condition on the country as we are hearty travelers ourselves. but throw a little girl into the mix and we want to err on the conservative side.

thanks for any and all input and advice you post. i really appreciate it!
georgiex is offline  
Jan 18th, 2006, 07:06 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 338
I'm not sure how many zoos and wildlife reserves you're going to find in the Caribbean but there are a number of hotels that have nice pools and/or children's programs. When will you be going and how much do you plan to spend (including airfare)?
Laby is offline  
Jan 18th, 2006, 07:16 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 40
Georgiex:

Haven't done T&C and PR in awhile, but they are good islands and fine for kids. Crime can vary from island to island and even depending from place to place within an island. Can't help you much on flights as I'm a naturalized Texan, but you may have to take connecting flights to your ultimate destination. Okay, now for some help: My wife, 3 girls and I just returned from the Oualie Beach Hotel in Nevis (see my "Nevis trip report" for details). While the hotel does not have a pool, the sea is very calm and shallow. We also had a good experience at the Buccaneer in St. Croix, which also has a nice, "easy" beach as well as a pool and limited kids' club. St. Croix may give you more of the diversions you're looking for. Both beaches at OBH and Buccaneer are reasonably quiet and not too wide, which was good for child-watching. Many other Fodorites are high on the Westin on St. John, which you should look into (We've done St. John without kids, but it's a great island.). All that said, having taken the kids down to the Caribbean and to other beaches with frequency since they were toddlers, sometimes there's nothing better than a sandy beach, shovels and buckets! Hope this helps and good luck!
Sweege is offline  
Jan 27th, 2006, 01:42 PM
  #4  
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 4
thanks so much for your posts -- and sorry for the delay in my following-up! i'll check out st. croix & st. john!

we're hoping to go at the end of february & will be using airline frequent flier miles to get us there, so our hotel can be on the nicer side w/out breaking the bank.

thanks again for your replies! i really appreciate the info!
georgiex is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2006, 07:48 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 148
Our Family had a great time in St. Croix. So many things to do. We rented a villa which overlooked Buck Island,it was beautiful and the same price as a hotel.
Much to keep kids busy. You must rent a car to see it all.
There is a great place in the Rain forrest where they have these huge turtles. The kids loved it.
Whim plantation has lots to see. Don't miss the local shack for a taste of the sugar cane and other island treats.
You must do Buck Island, Capt. Heinz was great with the kids. You can get a viewing raft so your little one has a safe viewing place and is easily pulled while you snorkel. (life jacket still need).
The Villa was Fjell House if you are interested.
You can not go wrong with St. Croix we loved it..
barginhunter is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2006, 04:16 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 238
hi georgiex - just curious what you came up with for a destination. we are planning a trip with very similar needs. we will be travelling with a 18 month old and 5 year old (am planning this now for next spring as we will also be using airline miles). We are also travelling from Boston.

i haven't decided yet on non-stop vs. one stop flight destinations. for non-stop, the closest in puerto rico, however, my husband isn't that thrilled about going there.

i have been considering a villa, but don't want to log too much time cleaning up and cooking for everyone... i just think it wouldn't be as much of a vacation. However, from a feeding the kids standpoint it would be easier to have a villa.

I recently came across this place called The Palms in Turks and Caicos. It is a condo-resort, so you have a kitchen / living room / bedrooms etc., but it is on a beachfront resort (Grace Bay Beach which is a nice and gentle beach and perfect for little kids).

The problem with this, however, is that we wouldn't be able to afford to go in March when my daughter has her preschool vacation, we'd have to wait until late April / Early May when the rates drop.

Sorry to ramble, just thought it was interesting to find someone also from Boston with a small child who is also using airline miles, and also is concerned with safety..

if you have a chance, let me know what you have come up with
mamadadapaige is offline  

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