This is Why Taking Short Trips with Kids is Totally Worth It

Thanks to Julie for this awesome guest post about the advantages that even short trips can bring to a family!

We travel a lot to visit family.  So my kids have experience with driving trips, and with staying away from home.  But it’s more of home away from home than a vacation. My kids haven’t yet been on a “real” vacation.

We took a really great short trip this summer, though, that reminded me why those short trips are totally worth it for our whole family.  We drove to stay with family for a holiday weekend, which is pretty usual.  But we decided to spend an entire day at the amusement park Cedar Point, which is unusual.  We do a lot of family outings, but not bigger full day trips very often.

Why short trips are worth it

The first reason our trip was so worth it was that, just like with bigger trips and vacations, it was an opportunity for my children to experience new and different things and people.  My 7-year old rode his first rides by himself, which was a huge challenge.  He also rode his first roller coaster. (I got to ride my first roller coaster ride in years!)  He and I got to connect while we waited in line, and to talk through his worries and his determination.

Cedar Point helicopter

My kids riding together on the kiddie helicopters. My 7-year old was finally willing to ride these, which an adult can’t go on.  Next year, he’ll be too tall.

Another reason the trip was worthwhile was my kids got to experience different and hard things in an enjoyable environment.  I grew up with a Cedar Point pass every summer, and have wonderful memories of the park.  My husband didn’t do very many similar outings as a child.  While some of it may just be personality and temperament, he has a much harder time with travel and new places.  I want my kids to know they can do hard things, and that often they will be well worth it and even fun.



Cedar Point is so loud it’s almost an assault on the senses.  Walking out in the parking lot to leave, it was startling just how much quieter it got as we walked away from the park.  My 7-year old in particular, really doesn’t enjoy loud places usually.  But in this case, he was fine.  He enjoyed the rides and what we were doing enough that the noise was bearable.  Having the experience of travel, even shorter, smaller trips, as a kid, will help him be comfortable choosing to do his own travelling in the future.  Because he has his previous experiences to look back on.

Cedar Point bumper cars

My kids were excited to ride the bumper cars. Our whole family rode!

The biggest and best reason this trip was worth it, even though it made for a rather expensive day, was that it truly felt like a vacation.  It was a day to enjoy life and each other away from every day worries and responsibilities.  We were all able to live in the moment and enjoy where we were, together.

ABOUT JULIE

Julie writes about respectful parenting, learning with kids, and waiting for readiness at the blog Waiting for Fireflies

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2 thoughts on “This is Why Taking Short Trips with Kids is Totally Worth It

    • Julie says:

      Tickets and parking are usually cheaper if you buy online ahead of time. Next summer, they are doing a free pass for children ages 3-5, but you have to sign up ahead of time. Details are on the Cedar Point website. We have found that May and June are great, less busy times to go, as are the last day of holiday weekends. We’ve been twice this year, and only once did the ride and refresh package deal for drinks. We all loved having it and I’d do it again. My children enjoy both Camp Snoopy areas and the old kiddie rides, but also like a lot of the mid-level rides such as Tiki Twirl and Scrambler. You can check out the park map online as well as height requirements ahead of time to help plan. This was the first year my kids were willing to ride anything alone, but there are a lot of rides parents can ride with young kids in the Camp Snoopy areas especially. Hope these tips help!

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