Ah, vacations sure do change when you’re traveling with teens. Entertainment and activities need to be entirely geared toward their age, and certainly cannot seem too immature or require them to spend too much time with their folks. Finding a destination resort that makes teens happy, while also offering things mom and dad and younger siblings will enjoy, can get tricky. We’ve found 10 great resorts that should bring smiles and friendships to your teens, whether it’s spinning records in the DJ booth, dancing the night away in a no-adult-zone nightclub, or zip-lining through the air.

Written by Lissa Poirot and Morgan Agesen

Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas

Unique to a few Ritz-Carlton beach destinations, including the Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas, is its Ambassadors of the Environment Program, created in conjunction with Jean-Michel Cousteau. The program, while teaching guests about the aquatic world around them, also provides exciting adventures teens will enjoy. Teens can go on snorkeling trips during the day or night to coral reefs, as well as ocean kayaking trips. Those artsy types will certainly want to participate in an underwater photography class, too. The Ritz-Carlton Kapalua location in Maui also features seasonal whale watching trips.

Breakers Palm Beach

This Palm Beach resort works hard to please teens with a number of special events designed specifically for them. During peak seasons at The Breakers Palm Beach (spring break, summer and holidays), teens will often find an array of events, such as Teen Murder Mystery Theater, Teen Catamaran Party Boat, and New Year’s Eve Teen Casino. The teen Bungalow is a lounge where teens can meet and mingle before teen-only activities such as the bike scavenger hunt, pool party, night bowling, and late-night, dive-in movies.

Big Cedar Lodge

There is certainly no shortage of camp-like environments for teens to enjoy in the Midwest, but Big Cedar Lodge is one of our favorites. They can escape to nearby Dogwood Canyon Nature Park, where private Jeep and segway tours are offered, as well as guided horseback riding trail rides. The Lodge itself boasts its own stables and offers trail rides, too, if you don't want to leave the property, as well as campfire wagon tours and horseshoeing. They can also enjoy the marina, where boat rentals are available for guests, in addition to kayak rentals.

Norwegian Breakaway

This may not be a hotel, but it still made our list because the teen programs onboard this cruise ship are just that awesome! Entourage, the club where teens ages 13 through 17 can hang out, features video games, movies, arts and crafts, music, and a rippin' dance floor at night. And even better yet -- it's all complimentary and chaperoned.

The Late Night Fun Zone is also a sweet space for them to chill while parents enjoy a romantic dinner. It is open 10:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. We recommend you sign your kids up by 8 p.m. the day before. Note: If no children are registered or dropped off by 11:30 p.m., the center will close for the evening.

Atlantis Resort

Those teens ages 13 to 17 vacationing at Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas should definitely check out CRUSH nightclub at least once during their trip. This 14,000 square-foot space boasts an Internet lounge, a gaming room that features favorites such as Kinect for Xbox 360, Playstation 3 and Wii, and a VIP section, as well as a live DJ. Quench your thirst from all that dancing by stopping by the Concession Stand and Bar, which serves up every drink imaginable for the night’s entirety.

Open for teens only from 8:30 p.m. to midnight, Friday and Saturday.

Skytop Lodge

The new Adventure Center at the Pocono's Skytop Lodge is enough to entertain energetic, adventure-seeking teens for the entire stay. A challenging treetop zip-line course is the highlight of the fun, but the Center also features a 33-foot rock climbing wall, three different paintball course fields (including one that is designed to look like the Old West), laser tag and a geocaching course. The Center also provides kayaks, canoes and stand-up paddleboards for use on Skytop Lake; bike rentals for mountain biking – lessons available; and will set up four-hour whitewater rafting excursions at the Lehigh River Gorge in the Poconos.

Hotel del Coronado

There is certainly no shortage of fun things for teens to do while vacationing at Hotel del Coronado in San Diego. They can pay a visit to the Spa and Salon at The Del, where they can receive the “Teen Treats” package which features 25-minute services, including Swedish massages, express facials, back facials and salt scrubs. Those teens obsessed with sweets can indulge in the “Teen Spa Sundae” which features Ice Cream float baths and 25-minute Frosting massages. Bike rentals, surfing lessons and paddleboard lessons are also available.

Dreams, Dominican Republic

Many Dreams Resorts & Spas provide teen activities, but the Core Zone Teens Club is a favorite for teens visiting Dreams La Romana Resort and Spa, Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana and Dreams Punta Cana. Kids 13 to 17 can enjoy daily activities planned by the Dreams Entertainment Team, as well as a number of sports and games across the resort. The club offers Xbox, PlayStation, Wii, pool and foosball. Every night, from 8:30 to midnight, the Core Zone hosts special teen socials, such as Disco mixers and bonfires.

Beaches Turks & Caicos

Beaches Turks & Caicos and its sister properties are known for their kid-friendly activities and programming, and that includes activities and programming for teens. Various areas of the resort are dedicated to teens, including the Trench Town Lounge, the Xbox 360 Game Garage, Scratch DJ Academy, and the nighttime dance club, Club Liquid. Teens may also enjoy treatments at the spa, including manicures and pedicures. Of course, teens can also enjoy water sports like water skiing, windsurfing and sailing, as well as the surfing simulator, SurfStream.

Migis Lodge

While the Migis Lodge at Point Sebago Lake near Portland, Maine doesn’t offer a club specifically for teens, the resort itself is a family camp-like environment that will provide teens a chance to enjoy a vacation without their parents lurking too closely behind. The lodge provides cabins for families, with plenty of room to spread out, and then a daily schedule of activities and fun that family members can do together or separately. Teens can connect with other teens over fun activities such as water skiing, wake boarding, sailing, fishing, canoeing and kayaking, then regroup with their parents afterwards for tasty meals. The lodge also offers hiking, tennis and Ping Pong, as well as a main lodge with Internet, piano, chess and board games to enjoy. And best yet? It’s all included!

1 of 12

10 Best Resorts for Teens
Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas Reviews
MelissaK - May 12th, 2011

We spent Christmas at the Ritz Carlton St. Thomas Residence Club, which is a building within the resort that only has vacation rentals run by the Ritz. It was better than staying at the hotel - we had a kitchen, living room, dining room, ... read more
Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas reviews
The Breakers Palm Beach Reviews
cardbucfan - Sep 30th, 2009

Overall: We go to the Breakers in Palm Beach every summer and it gets better each year! The staff is excellent and I feel they go out of their way to make certain we are having a good time. My kids are too old for the organized kids program but we ... read more
The Breakers Palm Beach reviews
Big Cedar Lodge Reviews
lizakitty - Jul 5th, 2013

Stayed for three days with my nephews and niece and friends. Beautiful over the top location very disappointed in dining and pricing. Food was so expensive compared to the quality and the time it took to receive. Had to send food back twice in ... read more
Debwags - Jun 5th, 2013

Our vacation at Big Cedar Lodge was a well needed summer vacation It was a great experience for our whole family. We traveled from St. Louis and was able to enjoyed many stops along the way. Upon our arrival we were were greeted by an ... read more
Big Cedar Lodge reviews
 
Atlantis, Paradise Island Resort in the Bahamas Reviews
Sun Bum - Mar 3rd, 2015

This place is awful and way overpriced. Any resort in Florida blows it away. The rooms are damp and smelly -- if you have allergies to mold -- be prepared to suffer. A gratuity of 15% is added to everything so the staff just doesn't care about ... read more
trentorley - Mar 31st, 2014

This was my fourth visit to Atlantis and the resport service has gone down considerably over the last two years. Basic things such as clean towels and face cloths not being refreshed were an every day occurence. The prompt response team did not ... read more
Atlantis, Paradise Island Resort in the Bahamas reviews
Skytop Lodge Reviews
Ray82517 - Nov 10th, 2014

I recently had an unexpectedly bad experience for an event I planned at Skytop for November 6th. For the cost of a stay each night $428, one would expect a standard and cleanliness of the room to be superior and gleaming with pride. Upon my ... read more
Caitlin's Mom - Jan 1st, 2014

We've been regulars at Skytop for the past 17 years and it is a favorite family tradition to come up for a few days between Christmas and New Years for a few days of relaxation and skiing for the kids. While we still love Skytop, I have to say ... read more
Skytop Lodge reviews
Hotel del Coronado Reviews
So Cal Mom - Nov 26th, 2012

To get in a festive holiday mood, we take an annual trip down to Coronado Island. It's a magical time of year next to the Pacific Ocean. Our kid's smile while walking into the historic Hotel del Coronado's lobby admiring the tallest Christmas tree ... read more
dab0709 - Sep 18th, 2011

For the price we paid for our suite, we were grossly disappointed. Due to a mechanical issue with the elevator, we changed rooms after the first night. The second room wasn't much better. The rooms are in need of being updated. Everything about the ... read more
Hotel del Coronado reviews
Dreams Punta Cana Reviews
jlkocourek - Oct 12th, 2011

I have to admit that I was worried after reading all of the negative reviews. My worries quickly disappeared after our arrival. The resort is amazing. Everything was wonderful. We traveled as a family with 2 children under the age of 3. The staff ... read more
Dreams Punta Cana reviews
Beaches Turks & Caicos Reviews
banout - Feb 1st, 2015

Amazing, the resort is the best place on earth I have personally been there 5 times my self. Let me tell you a little bit about the place, well let's say that you are in the pool and are very thirsty there is a swim-up bar with any drink you can ... read more
shybar - Jan 10th, 2015

Location: about a 15 minute ride from the airport. Beaches will have a van at the airport to pick you up for free! That may not sound that great, but in our case where we had one of our wedding party guest arrive a day later than the rest of our ... read more
Beaches Turks & Caicos reviews
Migis Lodge Reviews
Be the first to write a Migis Lodge review!


  •  
    FREE Family Travel Newsletter + BONUS
  • Family Travel Tips   (1 New)

    Family Planning and Tips

    • Disney Wonder Alaskan Cruise
      Join us onboard Disney Wonder's first exploration into Alaskan waters and ports as Family Vacation Critic Editor Lissa Poirot and her two tots take you on a tour. Be the first to see a sample of Disney's Alaskan Port Adventures, as well as glimpse the Disney Wonder's onboard fun, in our first-ever d...
  • Twitter
  • Facebook