Spring and summer are special times for grandparents and grandchildren. The weather usually allows for outdoor fun. In addition, spring break and summer vacation give grandparents and grandchildren opportunities to travel and play to their heart’s content. No longer will grandparents have to work around school hours and extra-curricular activities to get some grandchild time.
These suggestions for places to visit and things to do will spark your imagination as you plan to make the most of spring and summer.1
Give Grandma Camp a Try
When grandparents host grandchildren for a few days, with special outings and activities, some people call that Grandma Camp. Of course, Grandpa is most likely involved as well. Some grandparents prefer to use the name Cousin Camp, as a major purpose of these events is to bring cousins closer together.
Grandma Camps are organized in different ways, according to the capabilities and interests of the grandparents.
If you’ve never done one before, you’ll want to start with the basics of Grandma Camp. Then you can move on to deciding on activities for your Grandma Camp. There are also several fine books about Grandma Camp.2
Super Spring and Summer Destinations
Spring and summer are not the only times to travel with grandchildren, but they are great times. But where to go?
Theme parks are probably the most popular choice. Disney World in Orlando may be the top pick for most grandparents, but don’t overlook the calmer charms of the original Disneyland in California. Of course, the Harry Potter parks are coming on strong, both the original Wizarding World in Orlando and the newer one at Universal Studios Hollywood.
If you have teen grandchildren, you may be thinking of more urban destinations, like New York, which is fun for everyone except very small grandchildren.
Here are some other destinations that you may not have considered:
- Branson, Missouri
- Yosemite National Park
Grandparent Camps, held in numerous locations, are great, low-stress ways to enjoy time with grandchildren because the camp organizers take care of almost all of the planning. The same is true of companies that specialize in multigenerational travel. Resorts do most of the planning for you, too, but they can be expensive. 3
Terrific Travel Hints
Once you’ve decided on a destination, you may still need some advice. Make getting there half the fun, and plan for some awesome activities once you’ve arrived.
It can be great fun to travel with grandchildren alone, but traveling with grandchildren and their parents has its charms, too. You should know, however, that if you are taking off with grandchildren and leaving the parents behind, you may need travel documents or a letter of permission.
If you’ll be road-tripping with grandchildren, you have to play road trip games. If you will travel by air, you will need air travel tips, including how to ensure that you’ll be seated with your grandchildren.
Kid-friendly lodging is important for a successful trip, although some intrepid grandparents opt for camping with grandchildren. Those who like both luxury and the outdoors may opt for gramping. 4
Get the Grandkids Out-of-Doors
Fresh air, sunshine, cool water – these are the ingredients for outdoor fun with grandchildren. Share some of these old-fashioned activities with them, and they’ll forget all about video games for a while.
Start with old-fashioned outdoor games like kickball and Swing the Statue. Then organize an outdoor treasure hunt. The clues are already made for you!
Many children also enjoy organized sports in the summer, and grandparents make great sports boosters. On a more informal note, grandparents and grandchildren alike will enjoy these outdoor games for all generations. Bocce, anyone? This list of old-fashioned fun and games is mostly geared toward the outdoors, but a few are suitable for rainy days, too.
Never forget, however, that grandchildren also need time for free play. 5
Water Fun and Water Safety
Although summer brings special fun, it brings special hazards, too. Most are connected with the water. Here’s what you need to know to keep the grandkids safe and healthy while letting them get wet.
Splash parks, also known as splash pads or spray grounds, are fun places for grandchildren that are generally safer than other water venues.
When nothing but an actual body of water will do, grandparents need to be well versed in water safety.6
When the Rain Won’t Go Away
Even in the summertime, baby, the rain must fall. On those days when you’re stuck inside, here are some fun things to do with the grandkids.
When you’re stuck inside, try board games or an indoor treasure hunt. If you have a simple deck of cards, you can play these easy card games. Of course, reading is always a hit, especially when you read these books about grandparents and grandchildren.
Rainy days are great for cooking, too. Bake up a classic cookie recipe. Feeling crafty? A newer craft that many grandparents and grandchildren enjoy is painting rocks to hide. If you are feeling verbally creative, help the grandchildren write their own poems.7
Spring and Summer Celebrations
Family celebrations, such as birthdays, come all through the year. Certain holidays do fall in spring and summer. Besides, spring and summer are perfect times for multigenerational celebrations. Plan something special to bring the whole family together.
It may not be as popular as Halloween or Christmas, but Easter is a great occasion for family togetherness. Learn how to fill an Easter basket with tiny toys and which Easter games the grandchildren will enjoy.
May is graduation time. Get ideas for gifts for grandchildren graduating from high school and also for grandchildren graduating from college.
Summer is the most popular time for family reunions. Your gathering is bound to be a hit with these tips for a great reunion.