There are a lot of things you have to think about when you pack up the family and go on vacation. You have to think about how you’re going to get there, where you’re going to stay, and what you’re going to do, but you also have to make sure everyone eats!
That’s a big job since everyone has to eat at least two or three times every day! Keep things interesting and make sure the kids always have something tasty to eat by following these culinary tips.
Dinner and a Show
Figuring out what to do every day you’re on vacation, and then figuring out what you’re going to do for dinner can get overwhelming. Hit two birds with one stone by catching a show that happens to serve dinner.
Many major cities offer a variety of live shows that also serve dinner, so instead of making two plans for the evening, you only have to plan one. For example, Nashville is a family-friendly destination that has many different world-class shows for you to choose from. They even have special themed shows during the holiday season that will get everyone in the festive spirit.
Try a Local Favorite
You don’t go on vacation to do more of the same things that you do at home. You want to experience new adventures, and that means experiencing new culinary adventures too.
The best way to experience new foods is to eat like the locals do. Because they live there, they are likely to avoid tourist trap destinations and instead eat at truly delicious, unique places that most travelers don’t notice.
How can you tell if a restaurant is a local favorite? Look for long lines at food stands and take a closer look at the menu before sitting down at the table. Delicious local restaurants will write the menu in the local language, and they will feature meals that are made out of local, in-season ingredients.
Eat at a Familiar Restaurant
It’s fun to try new things and eat at restaurants you won’t find anywhere else, but doing that all day, every day may not be the kids’ idea of fun. After all, many children are picky eaters, and the ones who aren’t, still love comfort food.
As you try new delicacies at your destination, make sure you give the kids something familiar by eating at a restaurant that they already like. Grab a burger at McDonalds or a taco at Taco Johns. Many of your family’s favorite restaurants can be found all over the world, and a quick dinner at a favorite spot may be just what your family needs to relax and recharge for another day on vacation.
Leave the Kids Behind and Go out to Eat
You have to eat and the kids have to eat, and since you’re all on vacation together, you likely go to local restaurants for dinner together. It’s wonderful to spend time with everyone together, but there’s nothing wrong with wanting to get away for a few hours with your partner for a nice date-night dinner.
The trick is finding childcare on vacation. A few ways you can prepare for finding childcare before your trip include:
- Check into a hotel that offers childcare services.
- Take a kid-friendly cruise with supervised activities the kids can do alone.
- Bring a nanny or a babysitter with you.
- Search for a babysitter in the area when you get there.
- Plan a multigenerational vacation and let the kids hang out with grandma.
Visit Fancy Restaurants for Lunch
Whether you and your partner go out to eat alone or you have the whole crew with you, chances are, an upscale restaurant has caught your eye. Unfortunately, they can be very expensive. One of the best ways to save money when eating out is to eat at the fanciest restaurants for lunch instead of dinner.
Nice restaurants still serve delicious food for lunch, but it is often priced more affordably. Plates are also smaller, so you can try more foods.
In addition, nice restaurants aren’t always kid-friendly. However, they are more welcoming to children during the day. You’re less likely to get side-eye from other restaurant patrons at noon than if you brought in the whole family for dinner at 8:00 PM.
Make a Meal in Your Room
Going out is a lot of fun. It’s fun to pack everyone up for lunch and dinner every day and try something new, but after a few days of lugging everyone around a town you are unfamiliar with, you may be ready for a break.
It’s true that you can order dinner in your room, but the kids are sure to have even more fun if you and your family cook a meal in your room!
You can eat more than just peanut butter and jelly sandwiches too. A few meals you can whip up in your room include:
- Boil noodles in the coffee maker and eat some spaghetti.
- Hot dogs and rice can also be cooked in a coffee maker.
- Make grilled cheese sandwiches using the clothing iron in your room.
Snack the Day Away
Sometimes when you’re on vacation, you may get to the end of the day and realize you haven’t had time to eat. Other days, you may be surrounded by food all day long!
If you’re wandering around a local farmer’s market or you’re spending the day surrounded by cotton candy and hot dogs at a theme park, consider not eating lunch or dinner at all. Instead, snack the day away! Eat ice cream, buy a bag of popcorn, and sip on slushies whenever the mood strikes you and you’ll all be full without having to worry about what’s for dinner.
Don’t think dinner has to look the same every day you’re on vacation. Whether you’re feeling adventurous or you’re looking for a family-favorite meal, there are many different ways you can fill everyone’s tummies in a fun and delicious way.