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10 Most “Family Friendly” Cities For Vacations in the US

10 Most “Family Friendly” Cities For Vacations in the US

Who doesn’t want to take some extra vacation time with the family? Thankfully, here in the US we have a ton of different cities across the country that offer all types of cool activities. If your family likes outdoor sports, you can find places to go boating, hiking, or skiing. If you like theme parks, arts, or fine dining, you will find many wonderful options here in America.

Depending on where you go, getting around your host city without your car can be easy or it can be complicated. Some cities, like NYC, have very efficient and reliable public transportation. Other cities, like Los Angeles, are car-centric, so you will need to hire some wheels to get around. Regardless of where you go, it always pays to hire some experts to recommend to you the best ways of traveling. We personally recommend using a private transportation service.

Here is a list of the 10 most recommended family-friendly destinations around our country. You should consider visiting these places on your next trip.

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1. New York City

This is a place where fun, luxury, and beauty come together. For families, couples, business people, or solo travelers alike, New York promises to be one of the best trips of your life. With all the incredible museums, street life, natural places like Central Park, you will certainly end up fully amazed and satisfied with your decision to visit the Big Apple. New York City offers a wide variety of high-quality ethnic restaurants, trendy bars, fashion stores, and Broadway shows. Kids will love taking the ferry to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty (yes, you’ll need to take that selfie under the statue).

2. San Diego

This is definitely one of the most visited cities in the country. San Diego has it all: beautiful parks, adventure-packed activities, perfect weather, tourist attractions, and perfectly sandy beaches. There is the famous San Diego Zoo near Balboa Park where you can find many green areas for recreation. You can take the kids to educational museums. Not enough? San Diego also has Petco Park (for baseball lovers) and Sea World. So yes, San Diego sounds like the perfect place to go with your kids.

3. Los Angeles

There is much more to see in LA than the HOLLYWOOD sign on the hills. LA is also the epicenter of film production and is perfect for movie lovers. It’s great to take the kids to check out their favorite celebrities’ stars at the Hollywood Walk of Fame, visit Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, and even visit Universal Studios. If you want some closer views and want to take some selfies, visit the Ripley Museum, the Hollywood Waxwork Museum or Madame Tussauds in Hollywood. Los Angeles also has great places to shop and eat for the entire family, and you can visit the boutique art galleries, vintage shops, and many beautiful places to walk.

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4. Anaheim

It seems like California has it all, doesn’t it? Anaheim is another excellent destination to vacation with your family, especially with your kids. People love it and you surely know why: Disneyland! It’s heart of Anaheim and one of the most-visited tourist attractions in the world. If you can, you should spend some time in Anaheim visiting spots like the lovely downtown area, both theme parks (Disney California Adventure and Disneyland Park), local stores, restaurants, and bars. But if you want to try something different, there are also Knott’s Berry Farm and the Angel Stadium in Anaheim.

5. San Francisco

This is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. There are so many incredible places that you need to reserve a number of days to see that city. You will definitely need to take a ride on the famous cable cars and walk around the Fisherman’s Wharf. You can’t miss the bay, and of course, you should walk or drive through Golden Gate Bridge and Golden Gate Park. Parents will love to visit Sausalito and the well-known prison island, Alcatraz. San Francisco also has excellent places to eat, shop, and even drink- don’t miss the famous coffee at Bellini’s. And if you want to feel like you’re visiting another country while you’re still in the US, try going to San Francisco’s historic Chinatown!

6. Orlando

This city is a huge combination of attractions, with both Disney World and Universal Parks. You should know that one of the most visited attractions in Orlando is the incredible Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal – this is a Florida attraction to rival the best in California. Besides the amusement parks, Orlando also has the perfect weather for a full day and night of entertainment. You can definitely plan a perfect itinerary filled with outdoor activities, visits to art galleries, visits to shopping malls, regional cuisine, and exciting cocktails – an overall unforgettable experience!

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7. Riverside

Founded in the early 1870s, Riverside is a city in Riverside County located approximately 60 miles east of Los Angeles. You might wonder, why visit this city? Well, citizens say that they live in relative tranquility with a quality, well-balanced life. That’s why many people are feeling Riverside’s pull. It offers a relaxed stay, and you may even be tempted to buy a house in Riverside and forget about all that big-city-chaos.

8. Washington, DC

Don’t let yourself be intimidated by this city’s reputation as the home of high-profile politicians. Nowadays, DC is transforming itself from a purely politics-centric city into a thriving cultural hub. You can go the traditional route: visit the White House, Capitol Hill, and the monuments to America’s founding fathers. You can follow a more educational route and visit the numerous museums that the capital is home to. The Natural History Museum is highly acclaimed, and importantly, all museums in DC are free of charge for both national and international tourists. If you visit there in April, you cannot miss the National Cherry Blossom Festival — a gift that Japan gave the US back in 1912, this event is now a national festival that attracts people from all over the country. If satisfying your palate is of more importance, try the foodie heaven Eastern Market, where Capitol Hill residents search through the stands to catch the latest clothing trends and find the freshest local produce. Keep your eyes open and you will be able to see a mile-high stack of pancakes from afar.

9. Pennsylvania

This is another place with an endless list of things to do. You and your family can go to an amusement park (like Hersheypark or Dutch Wonderland) or learn something about Gettysburg Battlefield at the Military Park. If you want to visit a different kind of place and also feel a little thrill of fear, you definitely need to go to the Eastern State Penitentiary, one of the most famous prisons in the world.

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10. San Antonio

Theme parks, water parks, outdoor activities and places for family fun are all among San Antonio’s highlights. San Antonio is a city where fun, beauty, and tourism meet to give families an excellent vacation. You can take a tour around San Antonio’s city or maybe get a little contact with nature by visiting the Zoo and the Natural Bridge Caverns. Your family will definitely want to visit the Guinness World Records Museum and feel some adrenaline at Six Flags Fiesta Texas.

You also need to remember that the best fun and enjoyment will always happen wherever the family is – sometimes there is no need to go too far. Spend your free time with your loved ones, and you will always find it memorable. If you have visited some other cool US locales that are not in the article, please mention them in the comments below.

Featured photo credit: www.knok.com/family-travel-guide/articles/tag/kids-food/1000118 via knok.com

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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