Where is the whip?! Here is where to find the Dole Pineapple Whip inside of Disney World and outside of the park. I have been going to Disney World in Orlando since I was a kid, and the one thing that I always have to get is the Dole Pineapple Whip!
If you don’t visit the park frequently, finding it can be a headache. There is only one place in the park that serves it, and that is Aloha Isle in Adventureland. The path to Adventureland and Aloha Isle can be found stage left if you are standing right in front of and facing Cinderella’s castle.
A pineapple dole whip cup goes for $4.49 and you can get a float for $5.49.
Not heading to Disney anytime soon? Well here is a list of places where you can get your fix!
Sometimes you just need to getaway and spend some quality time with your mate in a warm beautiful place. Marco Island, Florida is perfect! Marco Island is located in the Gulf of Mexico near Naples, Florida. It gives you the feeling of being in another country and is just over an hour plane ride away.
While in Marco Island, I would recommend staying at the J.W. Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort. The hotel is currently undergoing a $320 Million dollar renovation project, and you can reap some of the benefits now. There are 10 restaurants on the property, a full spa, two golf courses, a fitness center, excursions available and shopping within the resort. There is also a live Fire Dancer show, which begins at sunset nightly at Quinn’s on the beach.
The closest airport for us to fly into from Atlanta was Fort Myers, Florida. The drive from the airport to Marco Island is about 45 minutes to an hour. Even though the resort has everything that you need on site, renting a car is ideal. You can take your time and stop in Naples, enjoy outlet shopping in the area and most important, go to the grocery store. There are hotel packages available that provide a nightly resort credit, but that would be gone after one meal. Having snacks, juice and your own alcohol available in your room, will help your budget tremendously.
The J.W. Marriott at Marco Island is also kid friendly. They have a separate pool area for families and resort activities are available daily. There are also several great restaurants on the island that should be on your list to try. Marek’s Bar & Bistro is a family owned restaurant that has a diverse menu. The sea bas and short ribs are some of the best I have ever tasted. You can also take a cruise around the island on the Marco Island Princess.
Me and my husband enjoyed every minute of our stay in Marco Island and can’t wait to go back with the kids.
Picking shore excursions that will be a good fit for the whole family can be hard, especially when your children are in different age groups. I am giving my recommendations on shore excursions that will make everyone happy while visiting the Bahamas.
During our family cruise, we visited Freeport and Nassau Bahamas. My son has been obsessed with Atlantis Paradise Island since we visited and stayed on the property for a week, a couple of years ago. The Atlantis offers day passes to guests that are traveling to the island on cruise ships or staying at other properties. A day pass is also a great way to experience all of the perks of the property, at a fraction of the cost.
We purchased the Atlantis Aquaventure Day pass at a lower rate, prior to leaving for the cruise through Bahamas Day Pass
Your Atlantis Aquaventure Day Pass is a Full Day Excursion and Includes:
Water Slides – 18 thrilling water slides
River Rides – The Current & The Rapids
Pools – 11 distinctly different pools
Beach – Miles of white sand & crystal water
The Dig Aquarium
Lounge Chairs & Towels
The pass does not include transportation to the Atlantis, but taxis were available and ready to take you as soon as you exit the cruise port. The cab fare is set at $4 per person, each way. The kiddie pool outside of the Royal Tower is my personal favorite. Several lifeguards surround the pool at all times and all water activity is in less than a foot of water. Life jackets are available at no additional charge in every size. Food and adult beverages are available and can be brought right to your chair. This is definitely a place where you can catch a small nap while the kids play.
While in Freeport, we decided to book our excursion through Carnival. Freeport was hit by Hurricane Matthew last Fall, and most of the island still has not been rebuilt. We chose the Family Beach Escape that included a straw market for shopping, free water play, sand castle competitions, ball games, sand darts, face painting, treasure hunts and more safe beach side activities. Our kids didn’t participate in any of the activities provided by the staff onsite, they stayed in the water with us the whole time. The food provided is described as a “light lunch” but it was a full Bahamian buffet that was so good! We enjoyed jerk chicken, rice and peas, fried fish, bbq ribs, pasta, veggies, conch fritters and salad. The fruit punch was amazing. The beach was beautiful, private and secluded. Everyone there was from the ship and we felt very safe.
Each excursion had elements that catered to the kids, but they also allowed the adults to relax and enjoy the water as well.
I am heading to Orlando this week for the 2017 Blog Her conference, and I am taking the family with me! I will be honored on Friday as a 2017 Voices of the year recipient for my blog photography. We will also take Rian to the Magic Kingdom for the first time. She is obsessed with Cinderella and we have so many surprises in store for her!
We love a good cruise, and I have been on about 8 myself, but we had never taken one with the kids! I found a good deal on a cruise for the family for the Memorial Day weekend and decided to go for it. We spent 5 days and 4 nights on a cruise ship with our two kids, my mom, sister and nephew.
The first few hours were a little shaky and made my husband and I think that this may have been a mistake. We drove 5 hours to port in Jacksonville, Florida and the kids were on the verge of a meltdown before we could make it on the ship!
Here is a major key… If you are cruising on Carnival, spend $49 on the “Faster to the Fun” program. It saved our trip at the beginning and the end. We were able to board early, walk into the port with our family and cut the long lines that had formed to check in. We were in our cabin, getting settled in within 20 minutes and we avoided the long buffet lines for lunch. At debarkation, we were held in a comfortable lounge with a light breakfast and escorted off the ship first. No lines, no wait. This is extremely important when traveling with kids. Read more about the program here: Carnival Cruise Faster to the Fun
As parents, our natural instinct is to protect our kids and extensively vet anyone who will be in charge of taking care of them while we are not around. I have heard how great these kids camps are on cruise ships from so many parents, but we have always been skeptical. Camp Carnival saved our vacation! My son is 8 years old and my 6 year old nephew joined us on the cruise. My son tends to be a complainer, Im sure that he is not the only 8 year old that does not find pleasure in doing anything that is not on “his” agenda in his head.
I signed all three kids up for the camp online before we left and crossed my fingers. We dropped the kids off at camp the first night at their dinner time and they were hooked. My husband and I ended up having a quiet night alone until after midnight. The camp offered late night glow parties, theme days, arts and crafts, dance parties and workshops. The boys spent every moment on the ship, in the kids camp. My advice for you is to let them go! It reduced our stress level and gave us time to enjoy the adults only “Serenity Deck” on the ship. I had the best naps there. The best part about Camp Carnival is that the price is already included. Read more about it here: Camp Carnival
On our day at sea, the kids were able to participate in the Green Eggs and Ham breakfast with “Dr. Seuss and Friends”. The dining room was turned into the whimsical world of Dr. Seuss and filled with fun! The menu included green eggs and ham and filet mignon for the adults. You can enjoy this experience for $5 per person. Take a look at the menu here: Green eggs and ham breakfast
The kids had such a great time and we did too. We are already planning for our next cruise with the kids!
Family vacations are meant to be fun, relaxing and memorable. They are for the kids, but parents often leave feeling like they need another getaway. Traveling to beach destinations and hanging out at the hotel pool is fun, but it is also a challenge when your children are involved and your focus is water safety. I have compiled a list of ways to make sure that your kids are safe in the water.
1). Always wear a life jacket and never leave your child unattended.
2). Use the “kiddie pool” when there is one available and hang out in there with your kids.
3). Choose a public beach or pool where a lifeguard is on duty, set your family up for water play right in front of the lifeguard shack.
4). Give your children the gift of swimming lessons. Private lessons start in my area for as little as $30 per session.
5). Don’t become distracted. A child can drown in the short amount of time that it takes for you to answer a phone call or text message. Travel with another adult or teenager that knows how to swim so that you can take breaks and have time to relax.
6). Learn CPR. You never know when an accident may happen, and it can help parents to know they’ll be prepared.
7). Talk to your child about water safety. Teach your children about important water safety rules:
Always have an adult with you when you go swimming. Never go near water alone.
Always ask permission before going in the water.
If a toy falls in the pool, ask a grownup to get it for you.
Don’t have breath-holding contests in the water.
If you see someone in danger or who needs help, don’t go in after them. Throw something for them and go get help.
8). Know the signs of drowning. Recognize when someone is in distress. A drowning person will be upright but will not seem to be using their legs to kick, and they will press their arms outwards and downwards onto the surface of the water. Someone who is drowning will also have their head tilted back, mouth open, and may have their hair covering their forehead and eyes.
9). Be cautious around natural bodies of waterincluding ocean shoreline, rivers and lakes. Cold temperatures, currents and underwater hazards can make a fall into these bodies of water dangerous.
10). Do not enter the ocean for any reason when the tide is high or when the waves are rough.
I hope that these tips lead you to a safe experience with water play for your family. Have a great Summer!