Planning a family vacation regardless of the season is a task that becomes more difficult as kids get older. They both want to do different things and you need to find something that will please young and old. I always break down the vacation in 3 areas. Price, activities, lodging are the areas I focus on. Not in any order but really you have to decide how much you are going to spend on a vacation without breaking the bank.
We are looking into Marineland for the girls because they want to go see the whales and the rides. I was okay with the idea but finding a hotel that is close to the falls and cheap is a task in itself. I would like it close to the falls so we can walk and avoid paying for pricey parking fees since this is the high season for the tourists. It makes it alot easier to walk around to see everything and not having to waste too much gas. I looked at the prices for Marineland and the good news is that Hailey is free! Bad news the rest of us will cost about $120 for admission which doesn't include the arctic cove which is an extra charge. So if I can find a hotel or motel close to the falls for $100/night we are looking at $230 + $120 + $200 in food and other activities. $550 for a weekend in the falls was not something I would like to spend!
I was hoping to maybe swap them towards something a whole lot cheaper. Nicole's Uncle has a cottage which used to be her Nan's house before she passed away but it is on the river and near Stoney Lake and another smaller lake. So we could stay for free or at least pay a super low price for any hydro used. We could have access to a boat for fishing and a place to swim. Close to a town for food or other things and her uncle built a playground for his kids or whoever stays. My brother just works up the road and could stop in to say hi or crash for a night. I love the outdoors and this could be a cheap vacation with bonfires, fishing, nature walks and swimming. If all we had to buy was groceries for a weekend it would cost $50 and a week would be about $120.
I am all for the cottage stay and family activities. I hope we can make it happen in the next couple of weeks and have a week vacation for a lot less and more peaceful than trying to figure out lodging. I know the girls had fun last year when we went for a weekend so a little longer would be nice. I only have to sell it now!!