destinations for 13 year olds


Feb 8th, 2009, 09:41 AM
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destinations for 13 year olds

We have told our grandkids we would take to any destination in the world when they reach 13.From those that have experienced travel with this age, are there particular areas to steer them towards? The eldest wants Paris and her cousin thinks she does also. I love Paris, but would like to broaden the scope.
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Feb 8th, 2009, 01:39 PM
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My granddaughter is 13, and we are going to Belize in March. I took her to Cabo San Lucas two years ago. She picked the latter, based on the Toby Keith song. I picked Belize. The point is, 13 is young to have to make that kind of choice. What I'm doing for next trip is talking to her about what she's learning about in school, and trying to hang a trip around that, with plenty of options for her to choose from. Of course, should she have her heart set on a particular destination or activity, that'd be great. Maybe it's growing up in rural Kansas, but both my kids and grandkids have (or had) a pretty limited world view. Guidance!
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Feb 12th, 2009, 01:16 PM
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My mom promised my daughter the same kind of trip when she graduates from high school; as of now, my daughter is debating between Spain and Greece. Is there a particular reason your grandkids want to see Paris? Find out why they want to go~is it because they enjoy history? because they have friends who recommended it? because it just sounds good? Broaden from there; perhaps you could visit other European countries based on their interests. You sound like an awesome grandma.......
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Feb 12th, 2009, 02:16 PM
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You might think about broadening their scope this way.

Not long after our marriage, about 10 years ago, I took my wife to Europe. It was her first trip there.

We flew into Brussels, took the fast train down to Paris, spent a week there, and then took the Chunnel train to London. The TGV is wonderful. She loved this trip!

You might want to think of flying
in to Paris and out from London. That would broaden any person's scope. London's a great town for a few days, and a great walking city.
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Feb 12th, 2009, 02:20 PM
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My daughter enjoyed London more than she did Paris....
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Feb 12th, 2009, 04:53 PM
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I think you should ask your granddaughter to do a little research and provide you with a comparison of several different places (either in an essay or a spreadsheet). Ask her to pick a place in each continent and write up something about:

- its history - what makes it interesting?
- its culture and what interests her (high culture and/or pop culture)
- what she'd like to do there
- what she'd like to eat there
- what she hopes to learn by going there
- why she thinks you would like to go there
- how you'd get there (never to early to start comparison-shopping for airfare)
- how she would rank the destinations she has chosen
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Feb 13th, 2009, 06:26 AM
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We took our girls last summer to Europe for their first european vacation. They were 14 and 15 at the time.
They both enjoyed Paris, Munich and we toured all around Austria which they liked as well. I think they just enjoyed being there and all the different languages and foods and shopping available. We also visited family which they thought was the most fun.
They would like to go to London, Spain and Italy. Those are the three places they would like to see next.
A little younger, they enjoyed San Francisco. Their favorite city is New York. Not sure where you are coming from.
I think a Paris-London trip would be a very nice introduction to the european world and easy to do in one trip.
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Feb 13th, 2009, 05:00 PM
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I offered this to my nieces. They have come up with:

The Ice Festival in China
New Jersey
Niagara Falls

The trip was going to be when they turned 16, but their Mom has said no, so it will be after they are 18 and on their own.

To get them thinking, I gave them each an empty notebook and told them to write down any thought that popped into their heads about travel. When they watch a movie and think "that'd be neat to see", when someone tells them about a trip they took, when they see a photo of someplace - whatever makes them think "maybe" gets written in the book.

I found this helps them branch out. Of the above suggestions, Thailand came from a teacher who did a sabbatical there, the Ice Festival came from showing them photos of it online, New Jersey because a friend had moved there, and on and on.
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Feb 15th, 2009, 10:54 AM
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I agree about London - it's less 'alien' than Paris and a thirteen year old can be more independent in a foreign land - imagine what happened if they got lost on the tube (fine, they could ask for help) compared to the metro (they'd have no idea). It's got amazing culture too and the pound is on the floor at the moment against the dollar. I do really like Paris too but maybe not for that age.
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Feb 19th, 2009, 11:15 AM
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Thank you all. I think I may incorporate that research idea into my own trip planning!
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Feb 20th, 2009, 05:10 PM
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What's wrong with Paris? That's a perfect first trip abroad (imho)! Why do you need to "broaden" the scope?
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Mar 6th, 2009, 06:29 PM
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What an offer!

I've run into several families in various parts of Africa where wildlife safaris are popular who were there because it was what the kid (or more often grandkid) picked. From age 8 to 18, they all loved it.

My comment is similar to Suze's. With your travel experience, you may wish to broaden the scope, but for them, Paris may ideal.

Or just go to Africa!
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Mar 23rd, 2009, 06:24 PM
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I was wondering what was wrong with Paris as well? What a fabulous trip to experience with them! We took our girls to Europe for the first time at 10 and 13 and then again at 11 and 15 - First time to Paris, Montruex, Florence and Rome.

They loved was both their favorites. I think because they "knew" so much about it before they went.

This last time we spent 10 nights in Paris. Younger one got pretty sick so it put a damper on it for her but what a city...
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