When my newborn son turned one month old, I got him a passport. By 10 weeks, he was approved for Global Entry. To say Julian comes from a travel-loving family is an understatement. Pre-pandemic, I was on the road about half the year for work and pleasure. Fantasizing about where I would take him first helped me power through late-night feeding sessions—until it occurred to me, Oh right, traveling with kids is hard. All that gear to schlep! All those dirty looks on planes! And how on earth was I supposed to soundproof a hotel room when he inevitably throws a temper tantrum at 2 a.m.?
Instead of allowing myself to be overwhelmed with real and manufactured anxieties, I decided to do my research. Many hotels that claim to be “family-friendly” focus on the five-and-up set, trumpeting their edutainment programming and kids’ clubs for kindergarteners to tweens. But what about families with younger children? There had to be resorts for families out there that could make traveling with an infant or toddler (slightly) less exhausting. Ones that minimize how much junk parents have to pack, and always make babies feel welcome—even when they’re having a meltdown. Surely they didn’t all have Disney, Beaches, or Great Wolf Lodge in the name, right?
What follows are 15 truly infant- and toddler-friendly picks across the U.S., Mexico, and the Caribbean. These properties go above and beyond for their littlest guests, while simultaneously offering plenty of vacation-worthy draws for weary parents.
Eden Roc Cap Cana in the Dominican Republic
For parents seeking a more home-like environment, the multi-bedroom villas at this secluded Relais & Chateaux property offer spacious living rooms, full kitchens, and private pools. Staff arrange scavenger hunts and arts and crafts hours; for an additional $325, parents can reserve the VIBabies package. This comes with two hours of complimentary babysitting plus a host of handy gear—including a portable crib (with turndown service!), changing table, diapers, bottle warmer, baby monitor, infant tub, pool alarms, Baby Einstein play table, 4moms MamaRoo baby swing, and a basket of kid-approved snacks and juices. For fun in the sun, Eden Roc will throw in a pop-up beach playpen, swim nappies, and sun protection gear (bucket hat, colored sunglasses, Nivea sun lotion, and aloe vera gel) for use at the sandy beach and artificial lagoon. From $850 per night
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