Family and multigenerational holiday travel is on the upswing. The best options and deals are available to those who book early. Here are five to consider:
1. Explore Southern Chile and Argentina. Close out the year with a cruise to the end of the world. The four-night itinerary from Punta Arenas, Chile, to Ushuaia, Argentina, includes passage through the Strait of Magellan and the chance to explore Southern Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego, home to some of the most extraordinary wilderness in the region. Travelers will investigate glaciers in Chilean National Park, travel by Zodiac boat to observe Magellanic penguins and marvel at the majesty of Glacier Alley and Cape Horn National Park. Educational talks on land and at sea enhance the journey. Kids sail free during holiday departures.
Contact: 1-877-678-3772; australis.com
2. Beautiful Belize. A holiday trip to this Central American outpost offers an extraordinary bounty of experiences packed into a short time frame. This trip offers a chance to explore ancient caves, get immersed in Mayan culture and kayak through freshwater lagoons. You can also snorkel above the second largest barrier reef in the world, hang out with spider monkeys, loggerhead turtles, toucans and kingfishers, and watch the sunset. Later, fall fast asleep to the sweet song of the natural world in your safari-style bungalow.
Contact: 1-800-575-1540; austinadventures .com
3. Sea of Cortez adventure. Board a 62-guest Lindblad Expeditions ship at La Paz, in Baja, Calif., and relax into a holiday that will include kayaking to UNESCO World Heritage designated islands and swimming with a variety of marine mammals. There are opportunities to scout for whale spouts and delight at the antics of resident dolphins. On land, expect to hike through forests of giant cacti and explore the missions of historic Loreto with a sacred-art expert. Ask about free air and 50 percent discount options for children.
Contact: 1-800-397-3348; expeditions.com
4. South African family adventure. In a series of grand exploits, your family will move from thrilling game drives in the Grootbos Nature Reserve to visiting an ostrich farm to observing playful penguins on Boulders Beach. Explore historic Cape Town, including Table Mountain, with your own private guide. Hike nature trails, watch for whales and relive the days’ events in kid-friendly luxury accommodations. The most adventuresome family can arrange for shark-cage diving. Ask about family discounts.
Contact: 1-888-903-2001; kensingtontours .com
5. Hawaiian seascapes. Dip into the pristine waters of Kealakekua Bay on the Big Island. Paddleboard, hike, watch for whales, tour local museums, sample fresh produce during local farm tours and enjoy a night swim or snorkel in a protected inlet. From aboard the 39-guest Safari Explorer, you’ll experience Hawaii’s rich traditions and savor sweet sea breezes and the unique beauty of each of four Hawaiian Islands.
Contact: 1-877-620-2875; adventuresmithexplorations.com