If you’re a mother looking to do something more exciting for Mother’s Day, or you just need to do some female bonding, read on fellow travelers. Those of us who have experienced traveling with children can confirm that no matter how your plans work out, you will never regret it. Sure, we know that traveling with your kids isn’t always all that easy.
But trips like these are not about the ease. They’re about making memories and bonding in a unique environment. These trips are about discovering how you all experience life out of your usual comfort zone. So, without further ado, here are the 25 best mother-daughter trips in the world.
The 25 Best Mother and Daughter Trips in the World
1. Monteverde & Playa Tamarindo, Costa Rica
Do you like adventure in a beautiful environment? Then this is where you want to be! Monteverde is found in the Puntarenas province nestled in the striking Cordillera de Tilarán mountain range. It’s one of the nation’s biggest ecotourism travel destinations.
Playa Tamarindo is the popular beach in the tiny town of Tamarindo. After hitting the beach, go ziplining in the cloud forest. For 5,000 feet you’ll fairly fly through the clouds unable to even see the other side but hoping you will reach it. Tour the wildlife refuge too!
2. Sedona, USA
Experience the ruddy red rock peaks of the great American Southwest in Sedona, Arizona. Famous for its vortexes, this is also where you can reportedly pick up on the planet’s vibrations. Take some easy vortex hikes to Cathedral Rock and Boynton Canyon. In order to reach the trailheads you can either drive in from town or spend the night at Enchantment Resort within the canyon. If your daughter is at least 16, you can wind down at the Mii Amo spa thus adding a bit of self-care to your trip.
3. Puerto Rico, USA
Travel to the US Territory of Puerto Rico and enjoy the ambiance of this Caribbean island. On this Mother and Daughter trip, you can take tropical strolls in El Yunque National Forest, complete with wild animals, verdant vegetation, and waterfalls. You can even take a cool dip in a swimming hole, or spike your adrenaline by taking a zip-line tour through the lush forest canopy. Visit one of the three fun bioluminescent bays– Fajardo, Lajas, or Vieques. Here you can experience an “illuminating” kayak trip thanks to glowing dinoflagellates. Don’t miss Old San Juan either!
4. Lake Tahoe, USA
How about a mother and daughter trip in California? Visit Lake Tahoe. Discover the noteworthy namesake alpine lake, and shores that feature casinos, forests, hiking trails, and ski slopes.
You can ski, snowboard, and ice skate here in the winter. After a couple of hours on the mountain, enjoy an après-ski drink as well–be it an adult beverage or hot chocolate. If you visit in the summer you can go tubing down the nearby Truckee River.
Go for nature walks in the woods. Visit Emerald Bay State Park. Picnic and play at popular Pope Beach or Kings Beach. You can slo go kayaking and paddleboarding.
5. Mendocino County, USA
Check out California’s incredible redwood trees, and take in the rugged beauty of the state’s coastline. Search for sea glass at Glass Beach, take in stunning views of the ocean and colorful wildflowers too in Mendocino Headlands State Park, and head to Montgomery Woods State Natural Reserve where you can hike a great three-mile loop trail. Finally, rest your feet as you ride the historic Skunk Train through the woods here. Pay attention to the scenery as many movies have been filmed in and around this place as well!
6. The North Shore, USA
Travel to your roving writer’s birthplace: Oahu, Hawaii. More specifically, spend some time on Oahu’s noteworthy North Shore, the section of coast between Kahuku and Ka’ena Point. Much of this area is protected and therefore features no modern complexes or ultra-modern shopping malls.
Nestled near the pristine sands of Kawela Bay, the Turtle Bay Resort is the only large commercial hotel here. It is a mecca for surfers due to the magnificent waves here. There are other things to do here too. Optional activities include hiking, swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving.
7. The Mighty Five, USA
Take a Mother and daughter road trip in the state of Utah. Take a great road trip and visit these five, favored national parks — Arches, Bryce, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, and Zion. Lace up your hiking boots and take the Broken Arch and Sand Dune Arch hikes in Arches. See the hoodoo formations along the Queen’s Garden trail in Bryce. Visit the massive Mesa Arch in Canyonlands. Seek out the petroglyphs and see the sun set in Capitol Reef and take the Emerald Pools or Watchman Trail in Zion as well.
8. Banff, Canada
If you prefer Canada, Banff comes complete with accessible glaciers, blue-green alpine lakes, and welcoming geothermal springs. Some veteran visitors suggest booking your room at the nigh-majestic, castle-like Fairmont Banff Springs. They praise both the beds and the on-site eateries.
Here you can enjoy the scenic hike to the old Plain of Six Glaciers Teahouse and sample their biscuits and soup. Then enjoy a soothing soak in the Banff Upper Hot Springs. Go kayaking on Emerald or Moraine Lake and browse the numerous boutiques in Banff and Lake Louise Village too.
9. Machu Picchu, Peru
Yes, hiking the trail to the famous Incan ruins of Machu Picchu is a real adventure. Nevertheless, if you want to make it a mother and daughter trip, you’d best be prepared. You will have to hike 26 miles and the trail can be steep in places.
(Yes, some of us can and have done 20 miles in a day, but it’s challenging!) Spend a few days on the hike and cover less ground. If you’re in shape and experienced, it’s still a good idea to sign up for an expedition with a professional outfitter.
10. Mayakoba, Mexico
Mayakoba is a well-known tropical eco-resort destination. It is highlighted by clear blue water, lush jungle, mangroves, pristine lagoons, and wonderful white-sand beaches. When it comes to accommodations, you can choose between four different luxury resorts.
You can go bird-watching, take a boat ride to one of the neighboring hotels, or even have your concierge book you on a trip to see a cenote. Need more? Set aside a day to go to Tulum to explore the well-known ancient Mayan ruins.
11. Sun Valley, USA
The state of Idaho might not immediately come to mind when you think of mother and daughter trips, but Sun Valley is actually a mountain resort that is known for its wonderful winter activities. The fresh powder here draws all levels of snowboarders and ski bums. You can also go cross-country skiing and even take a fun horse-drawn sleigh ride.
If you prefer the summer, you can go biking, hiking, rafting, and even fishing at nearby Redfish Lake. Visit in August and enjoy a free outdoor symphony. Grab a burger at Grumpy’s too!
12. Nairobi, Kenya
One of the most popular draws in all of Nairobi is arguably the famous Giraffe Manor. For those not yet in the know, Giraffe Manor is a 12-room boutique hotel and a Rothschild giraffe sanctuary as well. It is nestled in a Nairobi suburb where giraffes are famous for poking their heads into the windows of your room seeking a snack. Another recommended activity is the multi-day safari experience deep within the popular Masai Mara National Reserve. Here the various game drives often include sightings of buffalo, elephants, and wildebeest too.
13. Cruise East to West, Ireland
You begin this mother and daughter driving tour in Dublin. See a genuine Irish dance and music show, then take the Ha’penny Bridge across the River Liffey, and head into the striking Irish countryside. Check out the Rock of Cashel, buy souvenirs in Kilkenny, stop at popular Dromoland Castle located in County Clare, and stroll along the well-known Cliffs of Moher and look for puffins. Make biscuits from scratch at Rathbaun Farm, feed baby sheep, and enjoy a real home-cooked Irish dinner and enjoy live music while you dine.
14. Tokyo, Kyoto, and Nara, Japan
Japan has an exceptional rail system. Use it as often as possible. Kids enjoy train rides and you don’t have to deal with traffic.
Visit Tokyo and experience Shibuya Crossing. Grab a bite to eat in the underground food halls and if you’re fans of the artists Hayao Miyazaki and Yayoi Kusama definitely visit both the Ghibli Museum and the Yayoi Kusama Museum. In Kyoto, you can shop at “Teapot Lane” a.k.a. Chawan-zaka, and see the historic Kiyomizu-dera and Kinkaku-ji temples. Visit Nara Park and feed the sacred deer too.
15. Portland, Oregon
Fuel up at Pine State Biscuits then browse Powell’s City of Books. After seeing enough of the city, go back to nature by hiking the 2.6-mile-out-and-back Multnomah Falls trail to the eponymous attraction.
How about a 4+-mile hike to Dry Creek Falls in the beautiful Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area? If you need to rest, cruise the popular 35-mile Hood River Fruit Loop. It’ll take you past vineyards, and various farm stands and includes super views of Mount Hood. If everyone is of age, try a wine tasting in Willamette Valley.
16. London, United Kingdom
See all the iconic tourist sites! Walk on Tower Bridge, hear Big Ben chime, check out Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square, and ride the London Eye. Take the London Underground too. Into theatre?
Catch a play at Shakespeare’s Globe, and stroll along the famous Thames. Catch your breath at the teahouse known as Sketch and visit its egg-shaped restroom pods. Is anyone into Harry Potter? Take some pictures at the now-famous Platform 9 ¾ at King’s Cross Station. If you like the Beatles, head out to legendary Liverpool, the band’s birthplace, before heading home too!
17. Paris, France
Veteran visitors confirm that you simply must see the iconic Eiffel Tower, the world-famous Louvre, and Musée d’Orsay, so you can appreciate the art of Van Gogh, Renoir, and Monet. Feeling peckish? Take a food tour in Montmartre and sample cheeses, chocolates, pastries, and, age allowing, even wine as you stroll the cobbled streets here.
Take a boat cruise on the Seine. You’ll see Paris from another point of view. Interested in day trips? Stroll around the palace in Versailles. Enjoy Monet’s garden in Giverny, and explore the castles in the Loire Valley.
18. Beijing, China
Yes, despite what you might have heard, China is open for business again. If you and your daughter are foodies, you will undoubtedly enjoy just watching the cooks doing their thing through windows and glass walls. After enjoying some dumplings, Between your meals, be sure to take in some history here by visiting the famous Forbidden City, the Summer Palace, and the prerequisite Great Wall. Mind you, the best place to explore the Great Wall is a good hour from the city of Mutianyu.
19. Mexico City, Mexico
Mexico City offers visitors an interesting urban landscape and is perfect for art lovers too. You can tour Frida Kahlo’s home, see Diego Rivera’s impressive murals in the National Palace, and see additional exhibits in the Palace of Fine Arts. Additional artistic attractions include Museo Jumex and the Museum of Modern Art.
Ah but don’t forget the tacos! Enjoy a tasty taco tour by Club Tengo Hambre and churros at the well-known Churreria El Moro. Take a trip to the ancient city of Teotihuacan to see the Aztec ruins too.
20. New York City, USA
There’s no better place in the US to see a show than in New York City, New York. Stretch your legs and enjoy some nature in the High Line and world-famous Central Park. Ride on the Staten Island Ferry, climb to the top of the Statue of Liberty, people-watch in Washington Square Park, and see Times Square and the Empire State Building. Explore the Strand Book Store, take a yummy pizza tour, and be sure to grab a giant cookie at the Levain Bakery before leaving.
21. Vancouver, Canada
Mix with both the locals and other travelers at beautiful Stanley Park. Here you will find much to do with your kids. Younger kids will like riding the popular miniature train at Stanley Park Railway.
You can also visit the Vancouver Aquarium, let your kids go wild in the numerous splash areas and playgrounds, and go swimming in the big public pool. It comes complete with waterslides. Stretch your legs by crossing the suspension bridges at Lynn Canyon and Capilano Suspension Bridge Parks and take the ferry to Granville Island’s food hall.
22. Venice, Italy
Who doesn’t love gelato, pasta, and pizza? Board a gondola and see the city from its famous canals. Explore the narrow, colorful roads in Burano. Study the impressive architecture of Doge’s Palace, Rialto Bridge, St. Mark’s Basilica, and Teatro La Fenice (a.k.a. Theatre of the Phoenix).
Tour the Jewish Ghetto and Academy Gallery and Correr Civic Museum as well. You can even take a genuine family-friendly Italian cooking class here as well! Pay attention and soon every night at your house will be like a foodie tour of Italy.
23. Copenhagen, Denmark
The best way to explore this cool coastal city is via pedal power. Bicycling is a favorite form of conveyance here. Tour the entire harbor on an 11+-kilometer bike hike. Visit the noteworthy Nyhavn canal district.
If you’re still not tired, consider completing the almost 31-kilometer Six Forgotten Giants route. Here you search for unmistakable wooden sculptures by Copenhagen’s own sculptor Thomas Dambo. Set aside a day to have fun at the unique amusement park called Tivoli Gardens. It’s beautiful, fun for, and even has historic value too since it’s been open since 1843.
24. Seattle and Whidbey Island, USA
This Pacific Northwest pair in Washington State offers mothers and daughters both natural attractions and urban action. See Seattle from the Space Needle’s observation deck, and snack your way through the popular Pike Place Market. Those in the know suggest sampling handheld pies at Piroshky Piroshky, cheese at Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, and Greek yogurt at Ellenos.
Visit in the summer and you can get wet and wild in Jefferson Park’s splash area or perhaps in the popular Seattle Center International Fountain. Spend a weekend on Whidbey Island, where you hike, pick berries, watch whales, hit the beach, and enjoy super seafood too.
25. Austin, USA
Take a trip to the state of Texas. See the pink granite state capitol building. Plan your visit right and you can attend the Austin City Limits Music Festival in Zilker Metropolitan Park.
Cool off in Barton Springs Pool, ride the little electric train, and wander around the attractive Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum. Visit Mayfield Park and search for peacocks. Stop at lovely Lady Bird Lake where you can go canoeing, kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, or even take a little river cruise. Dine on Tex-Mex cuisine too!