Friday, July 13, 2012

Frugal Vacations

Yes we are in the midst of summer and everyone is going on vacation.  You would probably think that we would hardly ever go on vacation because of the size of our family, but we try to take a regular vacation a few times a year.  I just think that we only have these children for a few years and I want to make memories with them, so here are a few things that we do:

1. Rent a cabin in the mountains.

The last few years we have rented mountain cabins in North Georgia for spring break.  The last one was $99 a night and the third night was free.  It was a two bedroom with a loft and a pull out sofa and two bathrooms.  It had a full kitchen, living room, and deck with hot tub.  It was in a community where we could fish and canoe.  We took advantage of mountain hiking trails that were free and cooked it.  We did visit an apple orchard and get fried pies.  Everyone had a great time and it was relaxing.
2.  Share a beach house with another family.

We usually use a family beach house when we go to the beach, but I know many families who go in together and get a beach house and share it.  While renting a house is somewhat expensive, we go to the beach most of the day which is free and then we buy local seafood and cook it ourselves.  I found a local guy in Florida that sold shrimp right off of the docks for $5.00 a pound.  For $10.00 the kids were stuffed full of shrimp.  That same meal out would have cost us over $100.00.

3. Go camping.

Now I know that tent camping is not everyone's favorite thing to do.  I don't really enjoy the bugs and sleeping on the ground, but my kids love it and we always make the best memories.  We have no TV and no electronics, so they usually enjoy nature.  If we travel we may take in a local attraction.  Around here if you aren't going to swim all day we camp in the fall or spring.  Summer is too hot unless you stay in the water all day!

4.  Save for the big trip.

 Every few years we take a nice vacation somewhere like Disney.  We just set up a fund and continue to add to it until we have enough money.  We usually rent a condo so we can cook in and take backpacks in with water and lunch and snacks.  We might eat out somewhere cool that we can't get around here, but the rest in eaten in.  Lot of fun and loads cheaper.

I am sure there are some others.  What do you do for cheap vacations with a large family?

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