Best Places to Travel in the US with a Baby or Toddler
Being from Canada, we love to visit our neighbors to the south. We’ve traveled to the US with a baby, with a baby and a toddler and with toddlers. We’ve done road trips with babies and toddlers in the US and visited some incredible cities. We always love our family vacations to the USA with a baby or toddler.
We’ve also been fortunate to have some other parents share some of their favorite places in the US with a baby or toddler. Here is a list of the best places to travel in the US with toddlers and babies. For each one, we share a link where you can get more information.
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Best Places in to Travel in the US with Toddlers and Babies
Looking for a place that’s perfect for travel with a baby or toddler? Look no further than San Diego. With plenty of both indoor and outdoor activities, you’ll have no trouble coming up with the best things to do in San Diego with toddler or babies.
Traveling to Sedona with a baby and toddler was the first true “hiking vacation” we had taken with our little ones. If you love hiking, then Sedona is one of the best places to travel in the US with toddlers. The scenery is incredible and it was easy to find short hikes in Sedona to do with toddlers. We also loved doing more difficult hikes by carrying our daughter in a backpack carrier for hiking with toddlers.
With easy access to Disneyland, Legoland and Joshua Tree National Park, plus being a great place to escape cooler months, Palm Springs should be on your list. Expect it to be a fun and easy family vacation. There are plenty of good hikes in Palm Springs for kids, tons of good restaurants to choose from and resorts and hotels to please any budget.
You can do a day trip to Joshua Tree National Park then spend the next day frolicking in the hotel pool. Take a day or two to visit Legoland and Disneyland, then return to Palm Springs to decompress. You’ll love every minute of your time in Palm Springs.
For slightly older kids, we recommend reading this post on Palm Springs with Kids on our Family Can Travel site.
Escape cooler winter months by traveling to Phoenix with a baby or toddler. There’s plenty to do for families and especially if you team it up with nearby Sedona. Between fantastic playgrounds, parks, and a miniature railroad, you’ll find plenty of baby and toddler friendly activities in Phoenix.
Just make sure to book a family friendly hotel with a pool! It’s the perfect way to cool off during the hottest part of the day.
Part of our SE USA road trip with toddlers included visiting the charming cities of Savannah and Charleston. Of course, one of the must-see places in Savannah is the Wormsloe Historic Site.
With a little extra time, make sure to visit some of the Wormsloe hiking paths. One of the fun hikes with toddlers in this area is to the Colonial Life Area, where kids can explore a replica house from the plantation era.
After a day walking through the charming streets of Savannah, stopping at Ellis Square to let toddlers play in the fountain and grabbing some sweets along River Street, you might be ready to get out of the city. Skidaway State Park has some shorter trails that are perfect for hiking with a baby or toddler. If you’re lucky, you’ll spot some dolphins in the Skidaway Narrows River.
Besides walking the beautiful streets and parks of Charleston with a baby or toddler, you’ll love strolling the Historic Town Center. Make sure to leave time for the City Market and some delicious Southern eats!
Take a walk down Waterfront Park to let toddlers burn off some energy. The South Carolina Aquarium, the Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry and Magnolia Plantation are also great spots when visiting Charleston with a toddler.
If you are up for a little more adventure, go to the coastal islands south of town for a kayak. Who will be the first one to spot dolphins?
While Manhattan may not be the first place that comes to mind when thinking about the best places to travel with a baby in the US, it really is incredibly baby friendly. Traveling to New York City with a baby or toddler can be an incredible family holiday. With a baby carrier and a lightweight travel stroller, you can get virtually anywhere without having to worry about traveling with car seats.
There’s plenty to do that the whole family will enjoy and if you need to give your baby or toddler time to play, you’ll have no trouble find parks to stop at.
Just be aware that with so much going on it can be very stimulating for a baby or toddler, so getting your baby or toddler to nap on-the-go might prove to be a little difficult.
San Francisco is one of the best US cities to visit with a baby. What makes it so great? Similar to NYC, there’s so much to see and do. If you are traveling with a baby, you can get virtually everywhere by walking or short rides on the cable car. Make sure to bring a baby carrier for the outings where you’ll need to be on the cable car.
Our contributor NJS Kaye gives plenty of good tips for San Francisco with a baby.
One more great place in California with toddlers: Huntington Beach. With family friendly beach resorts, playgrounds and fun day trips, our contributor Trisha Simone shares all the best things to do with toddlers in Huntington Beach.
If you have a daughter obsessed with Disney Princesses, then you’ll likely find yourself planning a trip to Disney World like we did. We really wanted to capture that moment when she was in awe of all the Disney Princesses and a trip to Disney World is just the ticket.
Of course, it goes without saying that Disney World is fun for the whole family. Disney World with a toddler is a fun, easy thing to do (though expensive). There are a few things to know before going to Disney, especially for parents with a baby or toddler who might have limited time.
While in Orlando, take a day off Disney to give everyone a break. We loved the airboat ride just an hour drive away from Orlando.
Is Disneyland with a baby worth it? Unless you absolutely love Disney, it’s probably not worth it to visit with just a baby. But if you are traveling with a toddler and a baby, then there’s plenty of fun to be had at Disneyland!
Before you go, make sure to read these best tips for visiting Disneyland with a baby and all of these tips for Disneyland with toddlers.
Now Legoland truly is a place for toddlers and one of the best places to visit with toddlers in the USA. With plenty of small rides and places to play, you’ll have no trouble spending the entire day (or a few days) at Legoland with a toddler.
Even if your toddler isn’t quite into Lego yet, it’s a smaller version of the Disney parks which makes it great for toddlers. While your toddler may not be able to go on all the rides, there will be enough to keep your toddler happy. Parents will enjoy less time in line and the smaller crowds.
To be perfectly honest, we knew very little about Wilmington before deciding to use it as a stop over to break up a long drive. After a full day in Wilmington with toddlers, we really wished we had planned more time there.
We were pleasantly surprised with the outdoor fun we had in Wilmington. We looked for Venus Flytraps in the Carolina Beach State Park, we played on the beach in the Fort Fischer Recreational Area and did an Eco Tour on Masonboro Island. Nevermind the ease of finding delicious food in Wilmington.
While our visit was too short, we definitely would consider this one of the best vacation spots for toddlers in the USA and wouldn’t hesitate to return!
Sanibel Island, Florida very family friendly destination and a great place to travel with a toddler! You'll find families with kids of all ages there and you are bound to spark up conversations with fellow travelers, learning what the highlights of their trip was.
There are bike paths all over the island, so with a bike and bike trail you can get around easily. A rental car isn’t necessary to have on the island but definitely allows you to explore a bit more.
Find yourself a top Sanibel Island family resort, like the Sundial Resort, where you can spend countless hours in the pool and have easy beach access. Other fun activities on Sanibel Island with a toddler include collecting seashells on the beach, Ding Darling National Park, and Captiva Island.
We loved visiting all of the Mighty 5 National Parks on our Utah road trip. Each one had something different to offer. For those traveling to Utah with a toddler or baby, we’d recommend Zion National Park or Arches National Park with small children.
The views alone are incredible while driving through Arches National park, but there’s many good spots to make a stop. We found plenty of toddler friendly hikes in Arches National Park. A short hike to Landscape Arch or Sand Dune Arch is the perfect way to get your toddler hiking while giving some time to stop and play in the sand. Don’t forget a fun stop to Double Arch and Windows Arch too.
If you’re just starting hiking with a toddler or traveling with a baby, Zion National Park is a great national park to visit. While there are plenty of opportunities to explore nature and try more difficult hikes, your toddler will also enjoy some of the flat, paved trails. These trails also make it easy to use a stroller in Zion National Park.
If you are looking for stroller friendly trails in Zion National Park, try the Pa’rus trail and the Riverside Walk. The Pa’rus trail has some incredible views on a long, paved trail. The Riverside Walk is also mostly flat and takes you into the canyon where the popular Narrows hike starts.
If ever there was a national park made for toddlers and kids, it’s Joshua Tree National Park. If you have a toddler that loves to run and climb then this is one of the best places to travel in the US with toddlers for you. Joshua Tree NP has plenty of short hikes and even more opportunities to climb on rocks. Take your toddler to see Skull Rock then continue on the trail towards the campground. Even better, stay in one of the campgrounds that are typically surrounded with fun rocks to climb.
Previously known as White Sands National Monument in New Mexico, White Sands National Park is a must visit! While visiting family in New Mexico, we visited White Sands National Park with a baby and had the best day. The expansive white sand dunes are unlike anything you’ve seen. Don’t forget to stop at a pistachio farm after! They have some of the best pistachio flavours.
Be prepared when you visit! It’s fun to slide down the sand dunes. You also want to make sure you are prepared for the sun and heat. Bring plenty of water too.
While the highlight of our visit to New Mexico was White Sands National Park, we also made stops in Roswell, Ruidoso and Santa Fe. New Mexico has plenty of places to fill a road trip with a baby or toddler.
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited national park in the USA. With nearby Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, there are plenty of activities for the entire family. Given that there’s so much to do, we had to include it as one of the best places to travel with a baby or toddler in the US.
With baby and toddler friendly hikes like Clingmans Dome, a chair lift ride up to Anakeesta or an afternoon at the Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, you’ll run out of time before you run out of things to do.
Have we missed one of the best places to travel in the us with a baby or toddler? Send us your thoughts on the best family vacation spots in the USA with a baby or toddler to info[at]babycantravel[dot]com.