Dear Mom & Dad,

Between school and work, plus afternoons and weekends filled with sports and extracurriculars, it can be hard for us kids to find time to connect as a family. This spring, let’s put our family first, Mom and Dad, with a getaway to Palm Coast and the Flagler Beaches. We will have a blast escaping our busy daily routine with activities the whole family can enjoy together. I’ve done a little online research, looked around on social media and found out what other kids are saying.

So, here are all my reasons why we should take a family trip to Palm Coast and the Flagler Beaches. Will you read it, pretty please?!

Space to Stay and Play

Hey ‘rents, the fun starts the moment we check in to our hotel. Hammock Beach Resort is always a top choice for families like us because of the variety of room types and on-site activities. Multi-bedroom suites offer plenty of space for everyone (even our cousins!), with all the comforts of home including a full-sized kitchen and laundry room. Then we can all put on our bathing suits for the resort’s water rides! Us kids (and kids at heart) will love zooming down the twisting water slide and floating along the lazy river. There are separate upper and lower pools and a zero-entry beach pool with food and drinks available to order nearby. We can all play beach volleyball or build a poolside sandcastle. I also heard guests ages 4 through 12 can get away from mom and dad with the Kids Crew, a drop-off program that includes scavenger hunts, crafts, putt-putt and more. That sounds pretty awesome to me!

 

Trying Something New Together

We’re kind of an adventure-seeking family, right? Well, the outdoors are waiting for us at Palm Coast and the Flagler Beaches. With each new experience, we will create bonds and memories we will treasure forever. We can paddle out on tandem kayaks with Ripple Effect Ecotours and scope out a Florida estuary.

Mom! Are you paying attention? Ok.

As we glide along calm waters and through mangrove tidal creeks, we’ll spot birds, fish, dolphins and maybe even manatees. It’s an outdoor classroom unlike anything else, with our own professional guide explaining the importance of the local ecosystem. Plus, beginner kayakers are welcome, and kids as young as 6 can participate. Or if you’ve ever wanted to try hanging 10, Flagler Beach is the perfect place for us to take a family surfing lesson. Local surf shops Z Wave Surf Shop and Flagler Board Shack offer lessons for all ages and skill levels. We’ll laugh and encourage one another as we learn how to stand up on the board. I can’t wait to watch Dad ride his first wave! Easy beach access and gentle waves make Palm Coast and the Flagler Beaches an ideal spot for my little brother, too.

 

Getting Up Close to Marine Life

A longtime family favorite, Marineland is top rated by kids like me for the chance to get up close to sea turtles, fish, eels and sharks, plus the main attraction—dolphins! Dad, have your camera ready as we get to touch, play and even swim with dolphins. “When I saw them in the tank they were way bigger than I thought,” said one teen, who held on for a belly ride during an immersive program. “It was crazy going so fast. It was a lot of fun!” Marineland offers a variety of dolphin encounters including dockside meet-and-greets and painting with dolphins, so we don’t need to get in the water to enjoy a one-of-a-kind experience.

As the world’s first oceanarium, Marineland is a piece of Palm Coast and the Flagler Beaches’ history. Since opening in 1938, it has been a filming location for movies and leads marine science and conservation efforts—all of which we can learn about during the “Behind the Seas” tour.

 

Bonding at the Beach

I know you’re always talking about how we need to disconnect from videogames and TV and reconnect as a family on the beach. Relaxing on the cinnamon-colored sand and splashing in the surf is just what this busy family needs to recharge! “We talked about things that we never get to talk about if we were just shut away in our rooms,” said another teenager visiting with his sister and parents. We can enjoy a slower pace and catch up with one another. You and Dad can talk to me about the latest books I’ve been reading, or we can listen to some favorite tunes. We can even have a friendly family competition for spotting dolphins and whales.

For another view, we can a take a stroll on the Flagler Beach Pier, which extends 806 feet out into the Atlantic Ocean. While on the pier, let’s rent fishing poles and cast a line for a classic parent-child bonding experience! Whadya say? Teach us kids how to fish, or we can have fun learning how to do it together. “First time catching a fish that big… so that was pretty cool,” said a teen who reeled in a sheepshead with his father.

 

Delicious Desserts

I’ve heard that when you’re on vacation, it’s ok to eat dessert first. In Palm Coast and the Flagler Beaches there is always a sweet treat nearby. “You’re looking out into the ocean and you’re having a good time and relaxing, and then right across the street is just a little ice cream shop that you can go to,” said a teenage visitor who enjoyed a waffle cone at Sally’s Ice Cream. Apparently, we can’t miss the bright pink of the beachside spot that serves scoops of premium ice cream made with real fruit, natural flavors and cream sourced from a Florida dairy. In the mood for doughnuts, Dad? All the other kids say we can head to Swillerbees Craft Donuts for the best in the area. The selection is always changing, with traditional favorites plus creative flavors like Key lime pie, s’mores, Pop Tart and unicorn poop (LOL!).

When we’re hungry for lunch or dinner, Palm Coast and the Flagler Beach’s family-friendly restaurants serve fresh seafood, burgers, sandwiches and more with incredible views. Someone told me the Funky Pelican has a location that can’t be beaten—it’s right on the Flagler Beach Pier and has panoramic views on the outside patio. From fried seafood to fine dining, the variety of dishes on the menu means even the pickiest eater in our family (we all know who that is!) will find something delicious to eat. And best of all, no dishes to clean up!

 

So what do you say? Should we start packing? Click here for a free visitors guide to start planning today.

Love,

Your Awesome Kid

 

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