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10 Ideas for the Ultimate Fall Road Trip with Kids

road trip with kids

The start of fall is a perfect time to enjoy a family road trip to Great Wolf Lodge, or wherever your travels may take you. Start the fun on your drive with our easy road trip tips to make the most of your time in the car with the kids. If we’re your destination, once you arrive, we’ll handle the rest so you can relax and enjoy.

Before you embark on your family adventure though, we’ve outlined a few different ways to make sure your road trip goes smoothly. We’ll walk you through ways to prepare for a long drive, things to do on the road and special stops to make along the way!

PLANNING FOR THE FAMILY ROAD TRIP

1. Map it Out

Planning ahead is a great way to make the most of the time you have together. Check out maps online as a family to plan out stops along your way. If we’re your destination, make sure you check out our attractions to see the spots you’ve got to hit first when you arrive. Once you’ve got some inspiration, print out our coloring map to let the kids draw it out.

We’ve even added a separate coloring sheet if your travel happens to involve Great Wolf Lodge! Check it out below.

If your bags aren’t already packed and ready to go, watch the video below. We’ll show you how to transform this road trip chore into a fun exercise for the family to do together!

Print out our handy packing list so that you make sure to bring everything you’ll need on your trip.

packing list


2. Road Trip Grab Bags

Put together some goody bags before a road trip with kids and let them open one per hour as you count down to your arrival at your destination!

Only want to make one per child? Let the kids help decorate their bag and simply fill it with it with a snack and surprise they can’t wait to open in the car.

Step 1: Head over to the local dollar store and pick out a few inexpensive items to include into the goody bag prior to travel. There’s a lot to choose from, so we recommend sticking to goodies sure to keep the kids occupied during the majority of your road trip travel. Think wordsearch or coloring books (print out our coloring sheet here), strings and beads to make necklaces, a small notepad to jot thoughts down, dry erase boards, stickers, brain teasers, pipe cleaners, candy necklaces and some snacks!

Step 2: Wrap each travel item separately. You can also use lunch bags for a faster way to package the goodies!

Step 3: Print out these Do Not Open Until tags. Stick them on each goody bag to make sure the kids know exactly when or where they can open them!

Choose from three different goody bag stickers: Version 1, Version 2, Version 3


3. Travel Coloring Case

Keep the kiddos busy and having fun in the car by assembling easy travel coloring cases. All you need is crayons, our printable character cards and travel-sized first-aid kits that you can find in the toiletry section of most drug stores. A travel soap container would work great too!

Print out our character cards to put in the Travel Coloring Kit.


4. Make Your Own Fruit Roll-Ups

Looking for more ways to prepare for a family road trip? Follow this recipe for a fun, easy way to turn fresh fruit into the perfect car snack for your road trip. Keep the recipe so you can make them again on future road trips!

All you need is parchment paper, fruit and some honey to get started! Follow the steps listed below to learn how to make your very own creation for the kids.

Step 1: Choose your flavor! Strawberries tend to be a popular choice for DIY fruit roll-ups but you can also base this on the kids’ favorite fruit or whatever is currently in season (Pro Tip: You can also use frozen fruit! Just make sure you give yourself enough time to let it defrost).

Step 2: Chop up your fruit. Then, puree it in a blender and add a little bit of honey. Remember, you won’t need much honey if you’re using fresh, juicy fruit. It’s sweet enough already!

Step 3: Line your baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread your fruit mixture onto the paper until smooth.

Step 4: Put your sheet into the oven at 150-200 degrees. Bake for six hours.

Step 5: Take your dish out of the oven. By this time, it should be able to easily peel away from the parchment paper. Set it on the counter and let it cool for four hours.

Step 6: Use scissors to cut the parchment paper away from the edges and into strips. Roll it up (paper included) and tadah! Your very own fruit leather awaits.


ON THE ROAD

6 Games and Activities for Road Trips with Kids

While the family’s stuck in the car, have some fun together! Here’s a list of our favorite road trip games. Feeling creative? Make up one of your own. Don’t forget to capture the fun and tag us when you’re posting your pictures on social.

1. Name the Artist: The first person to name the artist or group when a song comes on the radio gets a point. Keep playing until you reach your destination and whoever has the most points at arrival, wins. Need a great playlist? Check out our dance party tracks on Spotify here.

2. Adventure Story: The first player begins the story and leaves off at a crucial point or detail. Then the next player picks up where the last player left off. Bonus: Have each player incorporate places on your road trip itinerary.

3. License Plate Game: The goal is to spot as many license plates from different states as you can. Whoever sees a plate first and calls it gets to color it in on their map. The person with the most states colored in at the end, wins.

4. Road Trip Scavenger Hunt: Print out our Scavenger Hunt game card, one per player. First one to complete their card wins.

5. Car Color Search: A perfect game for younger kids. Print out one game card per child and let them circle the car colors as they spot them.

6. Capture the Moment: Remember those stops you planned out before you got in the car? When you pull over make sure you take a family picture at each one. Upload them to social and be sure to tag us!


That’s it for family travel tips! Feel free to refer back to this list during your next road tripping adventure. Don’t forget to check back in with us soon for more things to do with the whole family. If you are planning on visiting one of our lodges, read out Paw Pledge today! You’ll find detailed information on how Great Wolf Lodge remains dedicated to keeping your family safe while you play.

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