Whether you’re looking for a quick weekend getaway close to home with the family or planning your once-in-a-lifetime travel bucket list trip, we polled our travel-savvy TravelingMoms and asked them to share their best places to travel in 2016 — and personal been-there-done-that tips to help you make the most of their favorite destinations.

One of the top TravelingMom destinations is Prague. TIP: A great destination for teens and tweens, and easier than you'd think because many people in the touristed area speak English. Photo Credit: Sarah Ricks / Philadelphia TravelingMom

One of the TravelingMom approved destinations is Prague. TIP: Prague is a great destination for teens and tweens, and easier than you’d think because many people in the touristed area speak English. Photo Credit: Sarah Ricks / Philadelphia TravelingMom

Best Places to Travel in 2016

From Prague to Portland, Walt Disney World to Detroit and many places in between, we’ve got 35 TravelingMom approved destinations from all over the world for your next vacation. We’ve been there. We were inspired to pack up the whole family, escape with our girlfriends, or count the days to a romantic vacation with our special someone. Shake your road map out, and read all about these exciting and diverse best places to travel in 2016 (listed in no particular order).

Downtown Napa, California

Culinary, wine and active adventures.

Bike to a Winery Downtown Napa

TIP: Book a few Downtown Napa adventures ahead of time like a bike tour, kayak trip or the famous Wine Train. Photo credit: TravelingMom

Downtown Napa is the perfect getaway for foodies, wine lovers, the active, girlfriends or romance. Downtown Napa has it all plus more.- Dana Zucker, Luxe TravelingMom – Downtown Napa, California

TRAVEL TIP: Book a few Downtown Napa adventures ahead of time like a bike tour, kayak trip or the famous Wine Train.

With so much to do in downtown Portland, the best way to explore is to grab a map, pick a direction and walk. You'll find many brew pubs along the way to reward the thirsty traveler, including Paddy's Bar & Grill, the oldeset Irish pub in downtown Porltand. Photo courtesy: Diana Rowe / Traveling Grandmom

TIP: With so much to do in downtown Portland, the best way to explore is to grab a map, pick a direction and walk. You’ll find many brew pubs along the way to reward the thirsty traveler, including Paddy’s Bar & Grill, the oldest Irish pub in downtown Portland. Photo courtesy: Diana Rowe / Traveling Grandmom

Portland, Oregon

Say yes to tax-free shopping, budget friendly hotels, beer, wine, distilleries, and a walkable downtown.

Taking the kids takes on a a new meaning when your little birdies have long left and made their own nests with their own little ones (=grandkids!). Hip, charming and kitschy, Portland is the perfect meet up for family travel vacaton — sans little kids. Our extended and blended family of 7 adults walked, sipped, dined, shopped, and even bowled our way through downtown Portland, while staying at the Hotel Rose. – Diana Rowe / Traveling Grandmom

TRAVEL TIP: With so much to do in downtown Portland, the best way to explore is to grab a map, pick a direction and walk. You’ll find many brew pubs along the way to reward the thirsty traveler, including Paddy’s Bar & Grill, the oldeset Irish pub in downtown Porltand.

San Juan Island, Washington State

Whales, Sea Lions, Seals, Birds and more!

San Juan Island - Dana Zucker

TIP: Make sure you contact San Juan Outfitters to plan your exploring on and off this Washington State Island, they are the best. Photo credit: Dana Zucker / Luxe TravelingMom

San Juan Islands in Washington are a must for everyone.  There is so much to do or do nothing at all!  Lakedale Resort offers everything from camping to beautiful cabins. – Dana Zucker, Luxe TravelingMom

TRAVEL TIP: Make sure you contact San Juan Outfitters to plan your exploring on and off this Washington State Island, they are the best!

Chicago

Take me to the ballgame! Wrigley Field, museums, bicycling, and pizza.

chicago lakefront trail | Traveling Mom

Staying active in Chicago is easy with the long lakefront trail for running, walking or biking. Photo Courtesy: TravelingMom.com

It’s been more than 100 years since the Chicago Cubs have won the World Series, but many expect 2016 to be “the year” they do! See the team play at historic and fun Wrigley Field (or, if the team’s out of town, take a tour of the ballpark). Downtown Chicago has a developing riverfront area to dine, drink or walk. Plus, there are a bunch of new luxury hotels, culture, world-class museums, deep dish pizza, and so much more! – Jamie Bartosch, Suburban TravelingMom

TRAVEL TIP: Get out and enjoy Chicago by bicycling the new lakefront “606” path.

Detroit 

Doing the locomotion in downtown Detroit with the new downtown railway.

Detroit Photo: Mary Moore/ Retro TravelingMom

TIP: Check out the new places, but don’t forget to see the history of Detroit. Many of the old, vintage buildings have group tours on a daily/weekly basis. This is a must do! Photo credit: Mary Moore / Retro TravelingMom

With the all new downtown railway, new restaurants, hotels and growing economy, Detroit is a fun and eclectic place to travel. – Mary Moore, Retro TravelingMom

TRAVEL TIP: Check out the new places, but don’t forget to see the history of Detroit. Many of the old, vintage buildings have group tours on a daily/weekly basis. This is a must do!

Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri

Boating, golfing, shipping, fishing — so much to do at this picture-perfect, all ages, family destination.

TIP: Wind down and relax at Lake of the Ozarks. Lake wear is a necessity - forget the formal wear and give in to a good time with the famly. Photo Credit: Becky Davenport / Budget Traveling Mom

TIP: Wind down and relax at Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks. Lake wear is a necessity – forget the formal wear and give in to a good time with the famly. Photo Credit: Becky Davenport / Budget Traveling Mom

Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri has something for every member of your family.  Grandpa can enjoy his golf while grandkids can enjoy the indoor waterpark.  Music, outdoor activities, water sports, everything you can imagine. Becky Davenport, Budget TravelingMom 

TRAVEL TIP: Wind down and relax at Lake of the Ozarks. Lake wear is a necessity – forget the formal wear and give in to a good time with the famly.

The Lake of the Ozarks region area is both beautiful and adventurous, with caves, waterparks, and lots of hiking. Lake of the Ozarks is a family playground and a classic choice for a starting a new family tradition getaway. – Amanda Williams, Rural Travelingmom  

TRAVEL TIP: The Lake of the Ozark’s heat and humidity can be oppressive–plan in lots of water fun!

TIP: The Lake of the Ozark's heat and humidity can be oppressive--plan in lots of water fun! Photo credit: Amanda Williams / Rural Travelingmom

TIP: The Lake of the Ozark’s heat and humidity can be oppressive–plan in lots of water fun!
Photo credit: Amanda Williams / Rural Travelingmom

Independence, Missouri

Stand in the jail cell of infamous gun slingin’ outlaws, walk in the footsteps of Harry Truman, or step onto the trails of the Old West.

TIP: If you are going to take a walk through history in Independence, Missouri, you must wear good walking shoes! Photo credit: Becky Davenport, Budget TravelingMom

TIP: If you are going to take a walk through history in Independence, Missouri, you must wear comfortable walking shoes! Photo credit: Becky Davenport / Budget TravelingMom

Learn History the fun way. Who said educational travel has to be boring?  Independence, Missouri brings history to life.  Take a step back in time and learn how the pioneers lived. – Becky Davenport, Budget TravelingMom

TRAVEL TIP: If you are going to take a walk through history in Independence, Missouri, you must wear good walking shoes!

Angel Fire, New Mexico

Angel Fire is a beautiful and tranquil vacation getaway with year-round activities from skiing to mountain biking.

Photo credit: Rebecca Darling / Texas TravelingMom

TIP: Angel Fire, New Mexico is a gorgeous, family-friendly vacation destination for all seasons. Photo credit: Rebecca Darling / Texas TravelingMom

Angel Fire Resort in Northern New Mexico is a quiet, family friendly destination, perfect in all seasons.  Skiing for all levels during the winter months, the resort offers a top-notch ski school, tubing, snowmobiling, and other winter sports.  The summer months are filled with world-class mountain biking, zip-lining, golfing, hiking, and more.  – Rebecca Darling, Texas TMOM

TRAVEL TIP: Angel Fire, New Mexico is a gorgeous, family-friendly vacation destination for all seasons.

Nashville, Tennesse

Music, museums, Jack’s BBQ — and celebrity sightings. Yes, you’re in Nashville.

TIP: Songwriters in the round at the BlueBird Cafe — great music, awesome stories, lots of laughs in an intimate setting.

TIP: Songwriters in the round at Nashville’s BlueBird Cafe — great music, awesome stories, lots of laughs in an intimate setting. Photo credit: Sue Rodman / TravelingMom with Teens

Nashville is called Music City for a reason. Great live music everywhere you go starting at 10 am. There are even boxes on the street that play music as you pass by! Also great museums like RCA Tour of Studio B and the Hatch Show Print shop. And Jack’s BBQ mmmm, I can smell it now! Stay at the Hotel Indigo Printers Alley. Cool back story, walkable to everything. – Sue Rodman, TravelingMom with Teens 

TRAVEL TIP:  Songwriters in the round at Nashville’s BlueBird Cafe — great music, awesome stories, lots of laughs in an intimate setting.

Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

Camping, bicycling, snowshoeing, hiking and wildlife watching are just a few of dozens of things to do with your family year-round in Rocky Mountain National Park.

TIP: Connect both sides of Rocky Mountain National Park with overnight stays on either side of the mountain in Estes Park and Grand Lake. Photo credit: Christine Tibbetss / Blended Family TravelingMom

TIP: Connect both sides of Rocky Mountain National Park with overnight stays in Estes Park and Grand Lake on either side of the park entrances . Photo credit: Christine Tibbetss / Blended Family TravelingMom

Estes Park, Grand County and Fort Collins surround a vacation at Rocky Mountain National Park with art, craft beer, culinary excellence and community engagement. Gateway city charms! – Christine Tibbetts, Blended Family TravelingMom

TRAVEL TIP: Connect both sides of Rocky Mountain National Park with overnight stays on either side of the mountain in Estes Park and Grand Lake.

Want more? Check the TravelingMom list of best places to vacation around the world and this list of more must-see spots for 2016.

Traveling Mom Approved: Best Places to Travel in 2016

Traveling Mom Approved: Best Places to Travel in 2016