What I Love About Beaches Turks & Caicos (VIDEO)

Trying to decide where to go on your next family vacation? Beaches Turks & Caicos is by far our favorite all-inclusive beach resort. Of course the beautiful Caribbean is amazing, but the service, food and fun at Beaches Resorts makes it 100 times better! Here’s why you must go to Beaches Turks & Caicos on your next family vacation.

Why You Must Go to Beaches Turks & Caicos! Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review. Social Media on the Sand. #travel #caribbean

Why You Must Go to Beaches Turks & Caicos

This post is in partnership with Beaches Resorts

I recently attended the 4th Annual Social Media on the Sands event sponsored by Beaches in Turks & Caicos. When I got my invitation, I had to pinch myself because it’s my happy place! I’m a huge advocate of traveling with kids, so was excited that I could bring my daughter along. We definitely enjoyed the beautiful Caribbean water and wonderful event  activities!

The first year I got to attend this event, I fell in love with Turks & Caicos and Beaches Resorts. A few months later cancer took my mom away from us way too early. After caring for her, I was exhausted, depressed and totally lost until I booked a trip again to this resort. I wanted to go back for a work free trip with my family to hopefully find happiness again. I remember being greeted with a big hug from Cookie Monster (Sesame Street is exclusive at Beaches Resorts), and finally got my smile back! So when I gush and brag about Beaches Turks & Caicos, it’s because they seriously helped me heal during a deeply sad time of my life.

Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review.

I have traveled all over the world, believe me when I say it’s worth EVERY penny to go on a family vacation here!  

What I Love About Beaches Turks & Caicos + Event Recap

This is a quick summary of everything I love about the all-inclusive Beaches Resorts Turks & Caicos along with a recap of the 2018 Social Media on the Sand event. I hope you find it helpful for when you plan your next family vacation!

Have Questions? Feel free to ask me any questions in the comment section below.

Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger. LivingLocurto.com

 

What is Beaches Resorts Social Media on the Sand?

Social Media on the Sand is an invitation-only event for social media influencers and their families hosted by Beaches Resorts. It was by far one of the best conferences I have ever attended! We did not get a free trip, but did get an incredible discount and tons of great perks for attending. Ready to go? –> You can save up to 65% at Beaches right now, click here to learn more. 

 

Amazing Speakers

We got to hear from several celebrities, amazing entrepreneurs and learn what is new in our industry.

Our keynote speaker was Adam Stewart, the CEO of Sandals and Beaches Resorts. After hearing him speak, I can safely say some of us might have a crush on him! His dad, Gordon “Butch”, is the founder of Sandals and Beaches Resorts. I wish they had a show, because their family seems like a ton of fun! Adam started working for the company when he was sixteen years old and helped make Sandals and Beaches two of the top resort brands in the world. Did you know they are who invented the swim up pool bar? GENIUS!!

Adam shared some great family stories and news about both Sandals and Beaches Resorts. If you didn’t know, Sandals is a collection of 15 of the most romantic all-inclusive luxury beachfront resorts on earth, created exclusively for couples. After Sandals customers started making babies, the family version (Beaches) was created.

I’m DYING to stay in Sandal’s over the water villas!!! There is a very long waiting list, and I might have offered Adam cash to get me on the list, but I don’t think it worked. I’m still waiting for my invite. LOL!


All NEW Sandals Royal Caribbean Over-The-Water Villas now open!

Other amazing speakers included:

Thanks to the Dry Bar girls for taming my crazy curly hair with this fun braid!

Dry Bar beach hairstyle. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger. LivingLocurto.com

 

Out of This World Events

Social Media on the Sand Pool Party. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger. LivingLocurto.com

Beaches Resorts know how to throw a seriously AWESOME party! We got spoiled with a welcome party on an Island Routes catamaran, a crazy amazing Alice in Wonderland themed party and Floatopia Pool party, sponsored by Spin Master, where the boy band In Real Life (IRL) performed for us!

Social Media on the Sand Pool Party. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

IRL are super cute and talented, so of course my daughter and I had a first row pool spot for their concert!

Social Media on the Sand Party. In Real Life (IRL) boy band concert. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

Social Media on the Sand Party. In Real Life (IRL) boy band photo. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

 

Lovely People and New Connections

The blogging and social media industry has grown so much, it was wonderful to meet new fabulous people! Beaches gave us precious time to get to know each other in the beautiful Caribbean. I will cherish our friend and family time together here forever!

Social Media on the Sand event for Beaches Moms. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

Beaches Pool Volleyball. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

Funny Moment

Lands End was one of my favorite sponsors who gave us the most amazing gifts. One of them being a magical dress that fits any body shape. I met my friend Holly for dinner one night and without planning, we both had on the exact same dress, same handbag and wore our hair with it’s natural curls. We definitely turned heads that night! Ha!!

Exclusive Lands End Discount–> Get 40% off full-price styles on Lands End by using code: BEACHES and pin: 2018 at checkout!  Hurry! This offer expires: 10/31/2018

Beaches Moms Social Media on the Sand event. Holly Homer and Amy Locurto Texas bloggers. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review.

Beaches Friends Forever Getaway

 

What’s New at Beaches Resorts

Beaches spent over 70 million dollars to rebuild after last year’s hurricane. Everything is in tip top shape now! I noticed the Caribbean Village lobby got a beautiful makeover since the last time I was there.

Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

Here are more new things you’ll want to know about! 

  • Barbados –  The newest Beaches Resort is coming to St. Peter, Barbados in a few years. I can’t wait!
  • No More Plastic Straws  – Starting this fall, there will be no more plastic straws to help save the environment. All 19 Sandals and Beaches Resorts across seven Caribbean islands will eliminate the 21,490,800 single-use plastic straws and stirrers by November 1, 2018. Eco-friendly paper straws will be available upon request. Visit the Sandals Foundation to see more ways they help the community and environment.
  • Over the Water Chapels – This isn’t at the Beaches Resort in Turks & Caicos, but it’s definitely worth mentioning. Sandals now has glass bottom chapels over the water! Each chapel seats 40 people. If you are planning a wedding or want to renew your vows, be sure to check them out here.
  • Food Trucks – You’ll not only find 22 incredible restaurants (all included in your price), but don’t miss out on the new food trucks! Our favorite was the Mr. Mac truck. Any flavor of Mac & Cheese you want, they have!

Food Trucks Mac & Cheese. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

Take a Tour of Beaches Turks & Caicos

Watch my video tour below to get a better glimpse of the incredible Beaches Resort in Turks & Caicos!

 


Beaches Resorts: Huge Savings Now!

Beaches is a Kid’s Heaven!

Beaches is my FAVORITE resort for kids! The kids activities and water parks are to die for!!!

Waterslide pool for kids. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

You can see all they offer at their Kids Camp here. How adorable are these mini lounge chairs and umbrellas?

Kid Camp pool. Learn all about Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

I love that Sesame Street Is Exclusive at Beaches Resorts. It’s so fun seeing the characters walking around. Even I get excited because I basically grew up with them!

Beaches is Highly Trained to Work with Special Needs Kids

Beaches Resorts is the first resort in the world to complete the rigorous International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards training and Autism Certification! If you have kids with special needs, this resort will be a heavenly place where you can rest assured your kids are safe and happy!

What about teens?

Beaches makes it tons of fun for pre-teens and teenagers too! From pizza bars to soda bars, to their own nightclub with karaoke, they give teens their own scene all day and places to hang each evening. There are great water sports, pre-teen events, teen only boat cruises, pool olympics, tennis clinics, karaoke, discos, dance parties, talent shows and much more!

Boogie boarding surf simulator for kids at Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

Other Things I love about Beaches Resorts

  • The Restaurants – Their specialized restaurants are like no other all-inclusive resort. It’s so fun to walk into any restaurant and not have to pay or tip! (All food and tips are included in your vacation price) We often ordered two dinners and ALL of the desserts! I love how they require the chefs to have experience working in the country of the restaurant’s theme. All of the food we ate was amazing!
  • Safe Surroundings & Friendly Staff – The people who work at Beaches LOVE their jobs! They not only make your vacation the most fun ever, but also safe. My older kids roam around on their own and I always feel totally at ease with the wonderful service and staff around.
  • Butler Service – If you want luxury and nothing to worry about, the butler service is a must get!
  • Premium liquor brands – There is no generic ANYTHING. If you like Tito’s Vodka or Crown Royal, that’s what you’ll get.

I got a chance to learn how to make some of their delicious specialty drinks in a bartending class. I made a Dirty Banana and can’t wait to share the recipe with you soon!

Making drinks with Social Media on the Sand event at Beaches Resorts in Turks & Caicos to plan your next family trip! All-Inclusive Caribbean vacation travel review by Amy Locurto Food and Travel Blogger.

Leave a Comment about Beaches Turks & Caicos on Living Locurto

Thank you the Beaches Resorts team for the event of a lifetime!! Also a huge thank you to the other amazing sponsors! We were so spoiled by everyone who came. What an amazing time. I hope you get to visit a Sandals or Beaches Resort soon!

Beaches Resorts Social Media on the Sand event partners. Living Locurto

 

The post What I Love About Beaches Turks & Caicos (VIDEO) appeared first on Living Locurto.

6 Vacation Supplies You Shouldn’t Pack

The school year is winding down, and Elsa finally let go of this year’s eternal winter, which can only mean one thing—summer vacation is coming!

Independence Day Summer GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Summer vacation means summer vacationing, but I think we can all agree that packing is the worst part of traveling. Packing for an overnight trip or a week seems to be equally terrible. If you’re a mom, it’s even worse because you’re responsible for packing ALL. THE. PEOPLE.

I recently vacationed with some friends and their kids, and they taught me something that blew my mind. Instead of packing all the nitty gritty vacation supplies that weigh down your suitcase or make it necessary to check (hello, extra baggage fees), they made Amazon do the work for them and shipped stuff directly to their hotel. Genius.

Stacks of Amazon Boxes

The Today’s Mama Editorial Team put their heads together, and came up with six vacation supplies you shouldn’t pack. Instead, you can ship these bad boys directly to your destination. I’ve made it even easier by linking directly to some of our favs. Just click, add to cart, ship directly to your hotel, Airbnb, or relative’s house, and you’re done. At the end of your trip you won’t feel guilty leaving these goods behind. Or you can pack them home if you have room. The choice is yours. The world is your oyster. And I can guarantee this will make your vacation at least 9.7% more enjoyable.

 

Baby Supplies

For being so tiny, babies require a lot of stuff. A lot of stuff that takes up a lot of room. Don’t waste precious cargo space with diapers, wipes, formula, swim diapers, or pull ups. You will use most of that stuff completely up on your trip anyway. Pack only what you need for your travel time, and ship the rest to your destination.

 

Beach, Pool, and Other Gear

I’m just thawing out from winter, so I can’t think of a vacation destination that doesn’t involve a beach, pool, or the blazing sun. Pack these things for a trip where the sun shines: Sunscreen spray, face sunscreen stick, and because there’s a 99% chance I will mis-apply sunscreen on myself…after sun gel. You may also want floaties, goggles, sand toys, and a beach bag. If you’re headed somewhere wet, don’t forget the ponchos.

 

Toiletries and Medicine

This is the stuff I hate packing most of all. It’s all the necessities, and the “just in case” stuff you will inevitably need if it’s not on hand.

Grab a toiletry kit for women or toiletry kit for men to get all of the necessities like shampoo and conditioner, deodorant, toothpaste, etc. Or at the very least, send some disposable razors to your destination.

I heard about pre-pasted toothbrushes awhile ago, and they seem perfect for vacation. Use them once and toss them out. No little tubes or bulky toothbrush holders. Grab a 36 count pack or 144 count pack.

You don’t have to pack your entire medicine cabinet, but it is nice to have Infant Tylenol, Children’s Motrin, Zarbee’s Children’s Cough or Baby Cough medicine, Advil travel packs, allergy medicine for adults and for kids, and a first aid kit on hand, depending on what you think you’ll encounter on your trip.

 

Food and Snacks

Why does everyone want to eat all the time? Don’t they know you’re on vacation too?!?! Sure, it’s great to eat out, but doing that for every meal can get pricey. Stock up on some basic snacks and treats like goldfish crackers, fruit snacks, granola bars, or cracker snack packs, or even bottled water. If you’re gluten free, check out these specialty snacks.

If you have space to cook, order your groceries online from Walmart. They will gather your order and even load it in your car. That means you have more time to enjoy your vacation.

Snack GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

 

Kid’s Entertainment

In a perfect world, kids would stay entertained with the vacation itself, but in reality, you may need some tricks up your sleeve. If you think you’ll need to entertain some kids, ship sidewalk chalk, bubbles, crayon and coloring book sets, or activity books like this one or this one, or this fun kit that’s both a craft and a game.

 

More than Vacation Supplies: Souvenirs, Birthday, and Holiday Gifts

Here’s a pro-tip for you. If you’re headed to Disney, or any other theme park or major attraction, don’t buy your souvenirs at the park. You can save a bundle by getting them on Amazon and having them shipped to you. Things like this Mickey Mouse plush, Minnie Mouse plush, Minnie Mouse headband, Mickey Mouse hat, Disney lanyard, or Disney pins will cost way less when you buy them online instead of at the park.

If you’re vacationing for a child’s birthday, or over Christmas, Easter, or another holiday, Amazon has you covered with toys and games for every age.

That’s our list of ship, don’t pack vacation supplies. Did we miss anything? What would you ship?

(Also, I should probably note that if you’re not already an Amazon Prime member, you should be. There are so many benefits. Sign up today here.)

 

See More on TodaysMama.com!

Vacation Envy: What’s It Really About?

10 Tips for a Stress-Free Family Road Trip

11 Ways To Give Your Kids Experiences, NOT Stuff

 

The post 6 Vacation Supplies You Shouldn’t Pack appeared first on TodaysMama.

Five Family Getaways for the End of Summer

School just started and summer is almost over. But lighter crowds and back-to-school travel specials make summer’s end the perfect time to squeeze in a short family trip.Puerto Rico and Mexico are perfect for families looking for a sunny, beach escape. Tired of the sea and sand? Pay a visit to our friendly neighbor to the north, Canada. San Francisco is a fantastic blend of history, city life and nature. Or breakout of your comfort zone in Cuba. So go ahead, steal some time with the kiddies before they are buried under mounds of homework. It’s easier than you think to find a quick family getaway.

Jam-packed with diverse attractions and unique neighborhoods, San Francisco a whirlwind of family fun waiting to be found. (Flickr: Nicolas Raymond )

Jam-packed with diverse attractions and unique neighborhoods, San Francisco a whirlwind of family fun waiting to be found. (Flickr: Nicolas Raymond)

 

Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico is the perfect Caribbean escape without the hassles of international travel. (Photo: Michelle Rae Uy )

Puerto Rico is the perfect Caribbean escape without the hassles of international travel. (Photo: Michelle Rae Uy )

No time to get passports? No problem! Puerto Rico is the perfect Caribbean summer escape without the hassles of international travel. This US territory uses the American dollar and doesn’t require passports for US citizens. Wander Old San Juan’s cobblestone streets and find handcrafted “treasures.” Discover dungeons, towers and cannons at El Morro, a 16th-century stone fortress built to protect the town from seafaring invaders. Venture into El Yunque Rainforest and hike the only tropical rainforest in North America. Finally, paddle a kayak after dark into the mysterious – and illuminating – Mosquito Bio-Luminescent Bay in Vieques.

Riviera Maya, Mexico

Plan a day trip to Tulum and explore Mayan ruins. (Photo: Michelle Rae Uy )

Plan a day trip to Tulum and explore Mayan ruins. (Photo: Michelle Rae Uy )

Finding a flight to Riviera Maya is a snap, making it an easy choice for last minute summer getaways. Families looking for a jungle adventure will find it at Xcaret. Let the kids play Indiana Jones as they search for secret caves and hidden passageways that lead to a recreated Mayan village. Or swim, snorkel or float your way along an underground river. Plan a day trip to Tulum and explore Mayan ruins. For some serious shopping–and eating–visit the pedestrian friendly la Quinta Avenida (5th Avenue).

Toronto, Canada

Adventures are aplenty in Toronto. (Flickr: Robert )

Adventures are aplenty in Toronto. (Flickr: Robert )

One summer trip to Toronto and Oh, Canada! Trek to the top of CN Tower and gaze down on the city through the Glass Floor. Want more excitement? Take the Edge Walk, an adrenaline pulsing “walk” outside on the roof! Don’t worry, tamer adventures are aplenty too. Set sail for a swashbuckling stint as the kids hunt for treasure aboard a Pirate Ship Adventure cruise. Visit Toronto Zoo, the proud home of Giant Panda Cubs! These little celebrities have their own YouTube channel; have the kids check it out before your visit. Of course, no trip to Canada is complete without a visit to the Hockey Hall of Fame, it boasts the largest collection of hockey memorabilia in the world.

Havana, Cuba

Havana may only be 90 miles from Key West, but once your family steps off the plane, you’ll feel worlds away. (Photo: Sandra Foyt )

Havana may only be 90 miles from Key West, but once your family steps off the plane, you’ll feel worlds away. (Photo: Sandra Foyt )

Lost in time is best way to describe Havana. It may only be 90 miles from Key West, but once your family steps off the plane, you’ll feel worlds away. Wander down the cobblestone streets lined with a rainbow of colorful colonial style homes. Have kids keep count of the retro 1950s cars as they cruise by. Savor a sweet treat at Museo del Chocolate, a tiny, air-conditioned chocolate shop. Stop in one of the many small museums peppered throughout the city and learn about Cuba’s rich culture and history. A “must see” is Fortaleza de San Carlos de la Cabaña, a 18th-century stone fortress overlooking Havana Harbor. Kids will get a bang out of the cannon firing ceremony every night at 9pm. Off the beaten path lies Gran Parque Metropolitano, an urban forest with a river, bridges, walking trails and other family friendly amenities. Good to know: US travel to Cuba is getting easier, but there are still restrictions. Check with the US Department of Treasury for details.

 

San Francisco

Does your family enjoy “get-up-and-go” getaways? If so, San Francisco is the place for you. Jam-packed with diverse attractions and unique neighborhoods, it’s a whirlwind of family fun waiting to be found. Jog across the sprawling Golden Gate Bridge or admire the view from Coit Tower. Take a ferry to target=”_blank”>Angel Island (the Ellis Island of the West) or explore eerie Alcatraz. Street performers, a mirror maze, carousel, boat rides, aquarium, and of course, oceans of sea lions sunning themselves along Pier 39 can easily fill up an entire day. Slow your pace and walk among towering, ancient giants – redwood trees that is – in Muir Woods. Score a seat at AT&T Stadium – home to San Fran’s “other” Giants. If you’re lucky, you may witness a “Splash Hit,” a homerun slammed into McCovey Cove.

 

Maribeth Pjosek-Durkin contributed this to MiniTime.

 

More from MiniTime:

Quick Labor Day Getaways for Families with Kids

Safest Cities in the World to Travel with Kids

Midwest Lake Destinations to Visit this Fall

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4 Simple Tips to Save Money on Travel

Want help with ideas on how to travel cheap? Check out these 4 simple tips to save money on travel. Money saving tips for Disney World, Universal Orlando and other family vacations!

4 simple tips to save money on travel. Money saving tips for Disney World, Universal Orlando and other family vacations! Best ideas for finding cheap flights, travel hacks and more. #travel #disney #savemoney #vacation #livinglocurto #traveltips

Simple Money Saving Tips for Disney, Cheap Flights and More!

We love to travel and have been all over the world! What’s even better is when we can save money on travel, so we can take more trips later. People always ask me for travel tips and ideas for saving money on family vacations, so I am happy to share some ideas with you today. We have used these tips when traveling to beaches, theme parks, national parks, and cities

With so many great online tools to save money these days, travel can always be done on a budget. It just takes a few simple money saving tips and time! I will keep adding helpful websites and tips to save money on travel to this article as discover new ones. For now, here are my favorite tools for traveling cheap along with some time and money saving tips that will make you jump for joy the next time you plan a vacation!

4 simple tips to save money on travel. Money saving tips for Disney World, Universal Orlando and other family vacations! Best ideas for finding cheap flights and more.

1. Be Smarter When Searching for Cheap Flights

Airfare is often the most expensive part of travel, especially if you have a large family. Driving is not an option to many places I like to visit, so flying it is! Here are a few ways I save money on flights:

Plan Ahead

Finding the best deals on travel takes time. I feel like a private detective digging into the internet to find the best deals when I plan our vacations. Now I save a ton of time by using Airfarewatchdog for flights and hotels. It’s super easy to compare airfare prices on various websites all at once with Airfarewatchdog. My favorite feature of this website is you can set a low fare alert to get an email when the prices go down! If you type in your destination and dates, then scroll down the page, you will see suggested dates for the best time to travel.

Money saving tips for Disney World, Universal Orlando and other family vacations! Best ideas for finding cheap flights and more.

 

Airfarewatchdog is awesome and searches for both airfare and hotel sites like Hotels.com, Expedia, Priceline and Orbitz all at once which saves a ton of time. Search for hotel deals and set alerts easily here too!  I also like to search here for the best deal on Disney World Hotels.

Money Saving Tips for Travel. Find Cheap Flights - fly more pay less

 

Be Flexible

Being flexible is a great way to travel cheap! When I feel spontaneous to travel somewhere for a long weekend and not sure where I want to go, I love using Google flights! You can enter your home airport, enter your travel dates, leave the destination blank, then click the map to see what flight prices are for any city on the map! Narrow down your search by stops, price, times, or airline.

When I entered some dates for this summer from Dallas, non-stop under $200 this is what I found. I think the beach is calling me to San Diego or Ft. Lauderdale with these flights!

Google Flights for last minute travel. Money saving tips for Disney World, Universal Orlando and other family vacations! Best ideas for finding cheap flights and more.

 

2. Compare Theme Park Ticket Options

When planning a trip to a theme park, do your research and compare prices for annual passes vs daily tickets. I just got annual passes to Universal Orlando because it saved me money on our 3 day park ticket preferences! We got extra perks such as discounts at stores and restaurants, plus we could be much more flexible on the days we visited the park. It also made sense, because I feel like we are in Orlando several times a year. Now we can pop over to the park anytime we are in town!

 

3. Pack Your Own Drinks and Snacks

I really need to be better at doing this. It’s a no brainer that you will save money at hotels if you have snacks in your room, especially if you travel with teenagers! I have friends who will pack an entire suitcase with food when flying to expensive destinations. Then fill the suitcase with dirty clothes for the trip home! Just remember if you travel to tropical islands or southern states, pack things that won’t melt.

4 simple tips to save money on travel. Pack a suitcase with snacks. Get more money saving tips for Disney World, Universal Orlando and other family vacations!

Another great idea if you can’t get to a grocery store to fill up your mini fridge with drinks and snacks, order online from Amazon Fresh or Instacart. Set the order to be delivered when you arrive.

If you don’t trust your kids to not eat and drink the expensive items in hotel rooms, ask the hotel to remove them before you get there.

Did you know most theme parks let you bring snacks?

Disney Rules say this:

“Guests are allowed to bring food items—such as snacks or foods that do not require heating—into Disney theme parks.” Small ice chests are allowed in Disney Parks, but they have size requirements. Make sure to read the rules before you bring an ice chest with you. I suggest getting a backpack ice chest to easily carry it all.

Don’t buy water at Disney. Both Disneyland and Disney World’s counter service restaurants will give you a free cup of water or a free cup of hot water. Ask for a large cup!

Universal Orlando Rules say this:

Acceptable items: Bottled water (maximum 2 liters), Small snacks, Any food required for special dietary needs, Any food required for medical purposes and medically-indicated nutritional supplements, Baby food/baby formula and Soft-sided insulated bags no larger than 8.5” wide x 6” high x 6” deep.

4. Buy Souvenirs Ahead of Time

We go to theme parks a lot and I save so much money by getting t-shirts, mouse ear hats and trinkets ahead of time online. This way the kids can use their own money however they want when visiting the parks. On our last trip to Universal Orlando, my son used his park money on only food and it saved us arguing about me spending $10 on a cookie!!!

Pack a small bag full of dollar store pencils, stickers, lollipops, light up toys, etc with the park theme to hand out at the hotel when you arrive. Young kids won’t know where you got the gifts and think you bought it for them at the park!

Money saving tips for Disney World and other family vacations!

 

Here is a list of popular parks and their themes to help you shop for souvenir gifts ahead of time…

Universal Orlando

Universal Studios: Minions, Harry Potter, Men in Black, Jimmy Fallon, Shrek, Simpsons, Transformers, Fast & Furious, Revenge of the Mummy, E.T., Sponge Bob, Curious George, Hello Kitty, Scooby Doo

Island of Adventures: Harry Potter, Dr. Seuss, Marvel Comics (Spiderman, Hulk, Captain America, Iron Man, Thor, Black Widow, X-Men, Ant-Man) King Kong, Popeye, Betty Boop

 


Disney Parks

Magic Kingdom: Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Daisy, Goofy, Pluto, Disney Princesses, Finding Nemo, Peter Pan, Dumbo, Pirates of the Caribbean, Aladdin, Winnie the Pooh

Animal Kingdom: Safari Animals, Dinosaurs, Yeti Monster, Avatar

Hollywood Studios: Star Wars, Toy Story, Muppets, Frozen, Little Mermaid, Indiana Jones, Twilight Zone

Epcot: Frozen, Race Cars, Space, Mexico, Norway, China, Germany, Italy, France, Japan, America, Morocco, Canada, United Kingdom

Disneyland: Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Daisy, Goofy, Pluto, Disney Princesses, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Star Wars, Peter Pan, Toy Story, Dumbo, Pirates of the Caribbean, Indiana Jones, Winnie the Pooh, Alice in Wonderland

California Adventure: Cars, Toy Story, Black Panther, It’s a Bug’s Life, Little Mermaid, Finding Nemo, Monsters, Guardians of the Galaxy

 


Other Theme Parks

Six Flags: DC Comics (Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern) and Looney Toons (Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Tweety, Sylvester, Porky Pig, Tasmanian Devil)

Sea World: Shamu, Sesame Street and ocean inspired

Busch Gardens: Sesame Street, Madagascar, safari and jungle animals

Legoland: LEGO toys

Silver Dollar City: Old fashion toys and candy, mining, wild west inspired

Dollywood: Old fashion toys and candy, black bears, Smokey Mountains inspired


 

I hope you enjoyed these money saving tips for traveling.

How do you save money on vacations?

Let me know in the comments below.

 

This post contains affiliate referral links to travel partners and Amazon. All come highly recommended by Living Locurto!

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Family-Friendly Spots in the Cayman Islands That Few Tourists See (But Locals Love)

Little Cayman is one of the Cayman Islands' several spots not many tourists get to see. (Flickr: SF Brit)

Little Cayman is one of the Cayman Islands’ several spots not many tourists get to see. (Flickr: SF Brit)

Without a doubt, Grand Cayman’s Stingray City, Turtle Farm and Seven Mile Beach are exciting family attractions sure to thrill kids. And first-time visitors to the Cayman Islands should definitely check out these popular tourist attractions. But be sure to explore points of interest and attractions off the beaten path as well. It’s worth renting a car for a leisurely drive around Grand Cayman to stop at scenic points and uncrowded beaches away from other tourists. And don’t forget about Grand Cayman’s sister islands, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman, as they’re fantastic day trips—only about a 30-minute flight—where more family adventures await.

 

Cemetery Reef

Just as beautiful but much less crowded than Cayman Islands’ touristy Seven Mile Beach in Grand Cayman, Cemetery Beach has two coral reefs that are a short swim from shore. Bring snorkel gear to see colorful fish, sea turtles and other marine life in the crystal clear water. Relax on the pristine beach and enjoy a family picnic. If possible, visit Cemetery Beach on a day when cruise ships are not in port.

 

Mastic Trail

The Mastic Trail crosses eastern Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands, Caribbean. (Flickr: David Stanley)

The Mastic Trail crosses eastern Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands, Caribbean. (Flickr: David Stanley)

Wear sturdy shoes for a walk on the two-mile, 200 year-old trail in Grand Cayman. The rugged path meanders through a two-million-year-old woodland area with trees, plants and foliage. Along the way look for Mangrove Cuckoo, West Indian woodpecker, Smooth-Billed Ani, Mockingbirds, Caribbean Ground Doves, Bananaquits and Cayman Parrots, which nest in the palms. Beat the heat by making the trek in the early morning or early evening.

 

Bodden Town

Pirates Cave in Bodden Town, Grand Cayman (Flickr: Eoin McNamee)

Pirates Cave in Bodden Town, Grand Cayman (Flickr: Eoin McNamee)

The former capital of Grand Cayman, this sleepy, Cayman Islands town features a museum, art shop and the restored 1840s Mission House. Here you can shop for locally made items, visit an old cemetery (graves with A-frame structures are said to contain the remains of pirates), and see the ruins of a fort and wall built by slaves in the 20th century. Kids will enjoy Pirates Caves, a series of underground tunnels where pirates buried their treasure.

 

Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park

Green Heron at the Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park (Flickr: H. Michael Miley)

Green Heron at the Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park (Flickr: H. Michael Miley)

Soak up some Cayman Islands history and see local wildlife at this heritage site located on the north side of Grand Cayman, about 45-minutes by car from George Town. Named after Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the remote park is home to the Cayman Blue Iguana, freshwater ponds and colorful gardens (including a butterfly garden). Stop by the visitor center for park information and to plan a fun outing for both kids and adults. Park highlights include the Heritage Garden, featuring a restored early 20th-century Caymanian wooden cottage, a two-acre lake home to numerous native birds, and wildlife including turtles, lizards, agoutis and land crabs.

 

Cayman Brac

Beach on Cayman Brac (Flickr: Lee Shoal)

Beach on Cayman Brac (Flickr: Lee Shoal)

 

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The Ultimate Southwest Road Trip

Pictures this: You head out on a road trip around the incomparable American Southwest. In just one week you can see some of the most gorgeous sights the U.S. has to offer. Here are 12 must-see places on your southwest road trip route from TravelPirates. You can easily start this trip from Los Angeles or Las Vegas, and you can also reverse the order of stops.

 

Stop 1: Joshua Tree National Park, CA
Your first stop is Joshua Tree National Park, famous for its eponymous trees and incredible stargazing. The park is about the size of the entire state of Rhode Island.


Stop 2: Grand Canyon National Park (South Rim), AZ
The Grand Canyon is the second-most visited national park in America, and is probably on the most bucket lists. Spend time at the very accessible South Rim, and consider camping overnight.

Stop 3: Antelope Canyon, AZ
There are actually two sections to Antelope Canyon: upper and lower. Famous for its surreal rock striations and sunbeams, this photographer’s dream can only be accessed on a guided tour. The canyon is also just a 15-minute drive from Horseshoe Bend.

Stop 4: Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, UT
This area is loaded with unique rock formations, like arches, hoodoos, and a petrified forest. It also has historical significance, as both dinosaur bones and petroglyphs have been discovered there.

Stop 5: Monument Valley, AZ/UT
If you’ve ever watched an American Western, then you’ve seen Monument Valley on film. Now, it’s time to see these incredible sandstone buttes, some as tall as 1,000 feet, in real life.

Stop 6: Mesa Verde National Park, CO
While Mesa Verde is home to some impressive landscapes, it is even more famous for the hundreds of cliff dwellings that dot the park, like the 900 year-old Cliff Palace.

Stop 7: Arches National Park, UT
The sandstone arches of this national park are some of the most iconic natural features in America. While visiting, tread carefully: the park is trying to preserve the 2,000 arches that dot the landscape.

Stop 8: Canyonlands National Park, UT
Right next door to Arches is the unique and colorful park that is Canyonlands. Filled with great opportunities for hiking, rafting, and photography, it shouldn’t be missed.

Stop 9: Bryce Canyon National Park, UT
Bryce Canyon is famous for its fire-colored hoodoos, or rock formations similar to pillars. Consider taking a horseback ride for a unique way to see the parks wonders.

Stop 10: Zion National Park, UT
Home to the stunning 15-mile long Zion Canyon, this park is a great place to stop for a hike. The park also has a shuttle bus system to transport visitors to various popular spots.

Stop 11: Las Vegas, NV
Why not spend a night of your trip in Las Vegas? Whether you’re traveling solo, with a group of friends, or on a family vacation, this colorful city caters to everyone.

Stop 12: Death Valley National Park, CA
The name “Death Valley” may have some negative connotations, but it’s a fascinating place to visit. It contains Badwater Basin the lowest point in North America, and is officially a dark sky park, meaning the stargazing is unbeatable.

Sample Itinerary

  • Day 1: Los Angeles to Joshua Tree (2 hours); drive to Grand Canyon, South Rim (6 hours)
  • Day 2: Morning at Grand Canyon; drive from Grand Canyon to Antelope Canyon (2.5 hours)
  • Day 3: Morning at Antelope Canyon; optional excursion to Grand Staircase-Escalante; drive to Monument Valley (2.5 hours); drive to Mesa Verde (3 hours)
  • Day 4: Morning at Mesa Verde; drive to Arches National Park (3 hours)
  • Day 5: Morning exploring Arches and Canyonlands National Parks; drive to Bryce Canyon (4.25 hours)
  • Day 6: Morning at Bryce Canyon; drive to Zion National Park (1.75 hours); drive to Las Vegas (2 hours)
  • Day 7: Depart Vegas for Death Valley National Park (2 hours); return to Los Angeles (4.5 hours)

Total Driving Time: 35 hours | Total Distance: 2,000 miles

TravelPirates is a free-to-use travel search website and app with the largest travel Facebook community in the world (9.4 million likes!), powered by a team of expert deal hunters who find the best travel deals and tricks for seeing the world on a budget.

 

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8 NEW Pixar Fest Foods at Disneyland You Can’t Miss!

Disneyland Resort’s first ever Pixar Fest brings the world of Pixar films to life in countless ways. But there’s only way to let your belly join in on the festivities–FOOD!! Sure Disneyland has rides and surreal sights to see, but you need to plan at least one day just to take in all the scrumptious food!  Disneyland Resort Pixar Fest offers fun and delicious eats and treats with a sweet Pixar theme. Pixar Fest arrived at Disneyland Resorts April 13, 2018 and will run for only a limited time. You won’t want to miss these creatively themed food and beverages available only until September 3, 2018.  Here’s our favorites from Pixar Fest (but trust me when I say there’s so much more!)

 

Fried Bologna Sandwich

Inspired by the film “Up”, you can find this yummy fried bologna sandwich on Main Street inside Disneyland, at the Carnation Cafe. (Even the President of Disneyland Resorts was surprised at just how yummy this was!)

 

“Coco” Churro

Inside Disneyland, walk your way over to Frontierland and enjoy a “Coco” inspired chocolate churro! This fried yummy goodness is rolled in rich chocolate powder, vanilla bean and salted cinnamon sugar served with spiced, Mexican chocolate dipping sauce.

 

“Toy Story” Root Beer Boot Float

You can be sure that no snakes are in this boot at the Golden Horseshoe Saloon in Disneyland.  Served in a souvenir Woody boot, you won’t want to miss checking the bottom for a “Toy Story” memory.

 

“Monsters, Inc.” Chilled Noodle Salad

Use the special sauce to activate these monster noodle colors! With mint, thai basil, shredded daikon and tofu you’ll be happy you stopped at the Lucky Fortune Cookery in Disney California Adventure Park for this cool salad.

 

Pixar Fest Celebration Cake

This vibrant Pixar Fest celebration cake can’t help but bring a bright smile to your face. Found in both parks, you can’t miss this gorgeous treat. If in Disneyland, head over to the Plaza Inn. If visiting Disney California Adventure, visit Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta, Paradise Garden Grill and Pacific Wharf Cafe.

 

“Toy Story” Alien Macaron

Need I say more? Your kids (or maybe you?!) will be bouncing these little aliens around the table. I’d pay you $5 if you can get through eating them without someone saying “THE CLAW!!”. These cuties will be found in Disneyland at the Alien Pizza Planet in Tomorrowland (along with quite a few other Pixar inspired food such as the Green Star Pesto Pasta and Cheeseburger Pizza).

 

Pixar Themed Cake Pops

Found throughout Disneyland Resort in any bakery or candy kitchen, you’ll be enamored by these adorable cake pops. You’ll want to be sure to stop in every bakery to find your favorite characters. We couldn’t get enough of Nemo and Lightning McQueen.
Disneyland Pixar Fest Cake Pops Nemo

 

“Cars” Habanero Meatball Cone

Drive over to the Cozy Cone Motel in Disney California Adventure Park for some spicy treats! Try this Habanero Meatball cone with turkey meatballs in a habanero derby sauce with a cheese crisp and spiral pasta “smoke stacks”.

 

While these are just a few of our favorites, both Disneyland Resort theme parks have endless Pixar themed food to help you enjoy this special time at Pixar Fest. For a more complete list of all the Pixar Foods, click here. You’ll definitely want to map out your favorites ahead of time. The food is so good, but you won’t be able to eat it all.  Or will you? Challenge accepted?  Share your favorite Disneyland foods by commenting below. 

 

 

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Kid-Friendly Attractions in Varadero, Cuba To Tempt You Off the Resort

Set amidst lush tropical gardens bordering turquoise ocean, Varadero resorts in Cuba boast some of the most beautiful and extensive pools in the Caribbean. With nonstop activities and entertainment, it’s no wonder that many visitors never leave their hotel and spa complex. That’s a pity as there’s a convenient double-decker hop on/hop off bus running from the bustling downtown markets to the pristine Reserva Ecológica Varahicaco on the eastern tip of the narrow Hicacos Peninsula. Here are six family-friendly attractions in Varadero, Cuba worth leaving idyllic all-inclusives for.

Cuba's Coral Beach is one of the country's most kid-friendly attractions. (Photo: Sandra Foyt)

Varadero Beach

Varadero Beach (Photo: Sandra Foyt)

Varadero Beach (Photo: Sandra Foyt)

Clear as an aquatic pool and stretching for twelve miles along the Atlantic coast, Varadero Beach is the resort town’s ultimate family-friendly attraction. Sand as soft and white as talcum powder is a delight for delicate bare feet, and even during high season, you can find empty stretches between the umbrella-dotted bits at the resorts. Since most of Varadero’s accommodations are either on or near the beach, it’s easy to time your visits before and after the sun is at its fiercest. And do return for Nature’s best show—the magnificently florid sunset.

Coral Beach (Playa Coral)

Families traveling with children who are good swimmers can opt for an excursion to Coral Beach, the only spot near Varadero that is interesting to explore underwater. Because entry requires you to pass through surf conditions in shallow reefs, it is advisable to snorkel with a guide. But the reward is that a short swim brings you to huge coral formations that are home to a colorful assortment of native fish. And if you happen to bring a plastic bottle filled with bread—some guides carry this, as well as underwater cameras—you will be surrounded.

Saturno Cave

Saturno Cave (Photo: Sandra Foyt)

Saturno Cave (Photo: Sandra Foyt)

Most excursions to Coral Beach include a visit to nearby Saturno Cave, site of a paradisiacal blue cenote. Time your visit after swimming in the ocean so that you can rinse off with a dip in the spring-fed fresh water pool. It is deep; however, and best for kiddos who can swim well (tip – bring a snug personal flotation device for youngsters.) A snack bar at the entrance offers refreshments and rest rooms, providing a welcome kid-friendly pit stop before the 30-45-minute drive back to Varadero’s resorts.

Ambrosio Cave

Ambrosio Cave (Photo: Sandra Foyt)

Ambrosio Cave (Photo: Sandra Foyt)

Located on the eastern edge of the Varadero Beach Tour bus circuit, Ambrosio Cave is a great place to cool off with kids during the hottest times of the day. A guide will point out ancient pictographs before sending you off with a flashlight to venture on your own. The entire cave can take 30-45 minutes to explore, especially because you do need to take care walking on the rocky ground. The most thrilling part of the tour, however, is that the ceilings are lined with napping bats. Be aware that pointing a flashlight in their direction will likely awaken them, causing swarms of bats to fly in your direction.

Josone Park

Josone Park (Photo: Sandra Foyt)

Josone Park (Photo: Sandra Foyt)

Take the hop on/hop off bus to downtown Varadero and while away a peaceful afternoon strolling around the lake and gardens in Josone Park. Kids love the playground, mini-golf course, paddleboats, and the train that weaves through the park while parents rave about the delicious piña coladas. The park is next to the Beatles Bar–featuring live music outdoors and a photo opp with a band statue—and it’s situated on the main strip where you can pick up authentic Cuban fedoras and hand-tooled leather belts.

Delfinario

Little compares to the excitement of a dolphin encounter. At Delfinario, even little kids can touch a dolphin. For a small fee, visitors are encouraged to stay after the short, educational daily shows to pet and kiss a dolphin (and get pictures.) Older children and adults may also elect to swim with dolphins. Families like the semi-natural habitat–concrete pool surrounded by the trees and native vegetation of a mangrove lagoon–and that the trainers seem to take excellent care of the dolphins. (Note that the Dolphin Park is near the midpoint on the Beach Tour bus.)

 

Sandra Foyt of Getaway Mavens contributed this to MiniTime.

 

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Unforgettable Adventures for Families in the Sea of Cortez

“The Aquarium of the World,” more popularly known as the Sea of Cortez, is a rich, sparkling habitat inundated with many species of local and migratory marine wildlife. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Sea of Cortez is home to porpoises, turtles, whales, Humboldt squid, sea lions, Giant manta rays and many kinds of fish; and it is the perfect playground for adventurers, animal lovers and travelers. And it’s easily accessible to those exploring Mexico’s Pacific shores and family-friendly destinations like Los Cabos.  Discover the world-famous Vermilion Sea and its many wonders with some of these breathtaking kid-friendly activities.

Whale watching at sunset in the Sea of Cortez (Flickr: Zach Dischner)

Whale watching at sunset in the Sea of Cortez (Flickr: Zach Dischne

Whale Watching

Four to six species of migrating whales visit the Sea of Cortez every year, Humpbacks, Gray, Pilot and Blue, to name some; and it’s a spectacular phenomenon to witness. The fact that whale watching is amazing to experience without having to put a lot of effort—during peak season you can actually see them from the highway—makes the popular activity very kid-friendly. It’s best to see these beautiful giants from up close so make sure to hire one of the local tour guides.

Paddle Boarding (and Swimming) with Sea Lions

Sea lion in Cabo (Flickr: ian)

Sea lion in Cabo (Flickr: ian)

Paddle boarding in the Sea of Cortez is no ordinary experience. Go on a paddle boarding tour with one of the local tour companies, and they’ll guide you to the areas where sea lions feed and play so you can see these friendly creatures swim under and alongside you. If the guides think it’s safe, you might even get to swim with them. Careful not to get too close or pet them, however; they might be friendly, but they’re still wild animals with teeth.

Deep Sea Fishing

The Sea of Cortez has some of the best sport fishing in the world, so set aside an entire day (and maybe a whole lot of patience) for a deep sea fishing adventure during your visit. Many fishing charters, some of them luxurious, in Cabo and the neighboring towns offer 8-hour fishing experiences in the deep. And many of them offer all-inclusive bookings (lunches, drinks, snacks, live bait and a crew) as well as trips designed based on your preferences.

Snorkeling

The beautiful Santa Maria Bay, one of Cabo's many snorkeling spots (Flickr: Tanenhaus)

The beautiful Santa Maria Bay, one of Cabo’s many snorkeling spots (Flickr: Tanenhaus)

What’s the one thing everyone in the family, including the younger kids, can do to see the vibrant and diverse world underwater? Snorkeling, of course. And the Sea of Cortez is the perfect place to do it. You can go on a tour or opt to do it on your own. Some of the best family-friendly beaches for snorkeling include Santa Maria Bay, which is a part of a marine sanctuary; Chileno Bay, which offers over 80 species of marine life; and Lover’s Beach at El Arco.

Swimming with Whale Sharks

Swimming with whale sharks (Flickr: F Mira)

Swimming with whale sharks (Flickr: F Mira)

While they technically belong to the shark group, there’s absolutely no need to fear the magnificent whale sharks that consider the Sea of Cortez their home. These gentle giants are some of the friendliest marine creatures on Earth, and they simply love interacting with humans. Tour companies can take you on a short boat ride to where they feed and mate in the gulf for an unforgettable encounter. And moms, dads and the older kids can even swim alongside them!

 

Michelle Rae Uy contributed this to MiniTime. She is a travel writer based in Los Angeles and MiniTime’s Head of Content, who spends her free time on adventures and film photography.

 

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The post Unforgettable Adventures for Families in the Sea of Cortez appeared first on TodaysMama.

Five Traditional Puerto Rican Dishes at the El Conquistador Resort

A big part of travel is sampling the native cuisine of the location where you are traveling. Authentic food is part of the experience. Yet often when you travel to a resort destination, it’s difficult, if not impossible to experience the local culinary culture within the resort walls. On a trip to El Conquistador Resort and Las Casitas Village, in Fajardo, Puerto Rico, we found lots of local favorites intermingled with more traditional stateside fare. Even the Starbucks had a regional sandwich called the Guavate Special, a pork sandwich on local bread with guava sauce, to go along with the iced coffee. Here is a sampling of more traditional Puerto Rican food available at El Conquistador.

Mofongo is a traditional Puerto Rican dish. (Flickr: Arnold Gatilao)

Mofongo: Monfongo is a Puerto Rican staple. It is similar to a stuffing, but made with plantains that have been mashed and seasoned. This is a very popular dish in Puerto Rico and you’ll find it on the menu pretty much everywhere, as a side dish, or main course paired with seafood, beef, chicken or vegetables. You can’t go wrong with the Mofongo.

Acai: Delicious and good for you, this super food is a breakfast favorite and available at Las Brisas restaurant. The acai berry has many health benefits, but forget about that, it tastes wonderful whipped up to smoothie consistency and served in a bowl with fruit and granola. We sampled shot glasses from the breakfast buffet, but the real deal is ordering it off the menu. In addition to being tasty, it was a beautiful presentation with lots of fresh fruit on top.

Piragua: Piragua is the Spanish word for snow cone. These tasty pyramid shaped treats are served at the Coqui Water Park. It starts with hand shaved ice, then added flavorings like cherry, nutella, pistachio and more. The El Conquistador Resort even has a Piragua Concierge cart to educate guests about the local treat, as it serves up cones.

Coquito: Our trip coincided with the Christmas holidays. Given the time of year, it was only appropriate we sample a bit of Coquito, which is a traditional Puerto Rican holiday drink similar to eggnog. It’s a creamy concoction made with coconut, rum, and cinnamon, and personalized with other ingredients by the person making it. In the states we bring wine to a party, in Puerto Rico, they bring coquito.

Pasteles: During a dinner at Chops, Chef Fabian brought us delicious pasteles from his own kitchen. By own, I don’t mean his kitchen at the Chops restaurant where he works at El Conquistador, but from his home kitchen. Pasteles is a traditional Puerto Rican food, similar to a tamale. It is generally made during the holidays. Everyone has their own recipe, and Chef Fabian makes his with vegetables. Although pasteles aren’t always on the menu at Chops, the resort welcomes food requests and are happy to accommodate your wish for a home cooked meal, with a little warning of course.

Although all of these items are not always on the menu at the resort, it is possible to request any of these or other traditional Puerto Rican dishes during your visit. For those staying at the Las Casistas Villas, chefs are available to prepare a complete traditional Puerto Rican meal (or any meal for that matter) in your Villa.

 

Sue Rodman of Field Trips with Sue contributed this to MiniTime. For more family fun in Puerto Rico, visit Sue’s post on her family travel blog Field Trips with Sue.

 

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