Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Activities for vacationing

First I should preface this by saying that we like a laid back vacation, not so much running from here to there and everything in between... that's why a beach (or camping) instead of a theme park is the better fit for our family.

When planning out our time in Port A, we were realistic about what we could afford and what was going to fit into the boys schedule of napping and eating. The Port A website was a great tool for us in navigating our choices.

The first year (just the two of us) we went on a dolphin cruise. They take you out into the bay in search of the dolphins, and a tour of the light houses that are out there. It was pretty darn cool. So the first year we took the kids, we did this again. They really had fun, and so did we! But we haven't done it since... we have been lucky enough to see the dolphins out in the gulf when we were at the beach, or when we road the fairy boat. I would definitely say, though, it is worth it to do it once.

On our way to the island we stopped and toured the USS Lexington, and Texas State Aquarium in Corpus Christi. Both are pretty cool. I would caution that on the Lex, there is a tremendous amount of climbing stairs and would be very difficult for small children to manage.

So far those are the only things we've done that cost ticket money! And we've only done them once! I'm sure in a few years we might re-visit those things for the kids to have a new experience with them.

Once we arrive on the island we had to the local grocery store to pick up our food for the week. Buy cooking our own food, this really cuts down on the overall cost of the trip. We plan on cooking all our own meals except for one dinner out. You can't go to the coast and not eat fresh seafood! And by doing it this way you can splurge a little and get something really fancy if you want... also plan to eat out at lunch (especially during the week) and you will find that the resturants aren't busy and you get the lunchtime prices (which those of you with multiple kids knows how quickly that can add up)! Oh, and I usually make sandwiches for our drive down so that our only stops are for potty breaks and fill up the tank!

If you plan on going to the beach... plan on spending most of your time on the beach (it's free :-). We get up every morning, have breakfast... and then walk to the beach! We would stay till lunch time (bring sunscreen with you for reapplication). Go home, eat lunch, nap time (trust me it is exhausting playing in the water for even the grown ups), and then we hit the pool for the time between nap and dinner. After dinner... BACK TO THE BEACH, until it is too dark to play.

**By choosing a place with a washer/dryer, you don't need to bring tons of clothes... just a few sets and wash them! So that saves you lots of space when packing.

**For us, by keeping the cost of food down, and not paying for a lot of activities we could afford to pay a little more to rent a house.

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