Senior Vacation – Crafting Cherished Memories

two senior look at flight details in airport for vacation

Senior Vacation - Crafting Cherished Memories

Embarking on a senior vacation opens the door to a world of well-deserved relaxation and unforgettable adventures. America’s senior population is booming, with more people reaching 100 years old than ever before. There are a lot of reasons why Americans are enjoying longer lifespans in recent decades including significant medical advancements, population growth, and lifestyle changes. Perhaps one of the biggest shifts of all in recent years has been the trend toward thriving rather than simply surviving. Thanks to modern technology and advancements, we can truly enjoy our lives more than in the past.

Are you interested in giving your elderly parents a getaway that will help re-spark their joy and excitement for life? Don’t let your loved one’s limited mobility or health concerns stop them from thriving through their senior years. Below, we’ve compiled a comprehensive guide to help you plan the holidays with elderly parents. We’ve also provided some great ideas and locations that you can use to plan the best vacations for seniors in your life.

How to Plan Your Vacation: Top Things to Consider

The best vacations for seniors are well planned out in advance. The more you consider the front end of your vacation, the better your overall experience will be. Before you start planning your vacation, you need to keep the following factors in mind:

  • Does your elderly loved one have limited mobility? If so, then how accessible is the area?
  • Does your senior loved one need to be close to a hospital just in case?
  • Does your loved one need to bring specific medications?
  • Does your loved one need certain medical help (machines, assistance from a nurse, etc)?
  • Will transportation be senior-friendly?
  • Is your loved one able to fly or travel for an extended time?
  • Will the location have the amenities necessary to accommodate your loved one?

Knowing these issues beforehand can help you plan an experience that everyone will enjoy. Go ahead and eliminate any activities that don’t match up to your elderly loved one’s needs. If you need to, then be sure to contact different hotels, attractions, or areas to see how accessible or senior-friendly the area is before getting your heart set on a specific location or activity. Also, if you contact any venues in advance, then also ask about any senior discounts. This can help give you a better idea of the financial benefits of certain locations.

What is the Best Senior Vacation for Parents?

the senior parents sit on the baech

Some types of vacations will inevitably be better suited for seniors than others. For instance, you don’t want to book a vacation that includes activities like horseback riding in the jungle, hiking to waterfalls, or riding rollercoasters. All of those vacations sound thrilling and exciting, but your loved one likely won’t be having a good time. Even worse, they could put themselves in danger by attempting to participate. With that in mind, we have compiled a list of some of the best activity-based vacation ideas for you if you’re planning on traveling with your senior loved ones.

Bus Tours

Does your elderly loved one struggle with mobility issues but they still want to travel the world, see new sights, meet new people, and have new experiences? If so, then bus tours might be a great option! Bus tours offer convenience, comfort, excitement, educational opportunities, and more all at an affordable price. Even better, they’re sure to be accommodating with any special needs your senior may have. You can stay with your loved one the entire time, and they won’t have to exert themselves physically. You can ask for bathroom breaks if needed, and you can even bring your senior’s favorite foods, drinks, and any necessary medication. If you worry about your loved one being alone without you, then know that these tours are typically escorted, so you can rely on your tourmates or tour guides to watch out for your loved one if you have to leave your loved one alone for a few minutes to go to the restroom or attend to another need.medium-shot-smiley-women-vacation-scaled.jpg


If your loved one has limited mobility but they really want to explore the world, then an ocean or river cruise is a great way to do so! You and your loved one can enjoy all the beautiful worldly scenery, cuisine, and culture from the convenience of a ship. Even better, cruise lines are usually happy to make accommodations for special needs your loved one may have, like having a room closer to the dining areas or having a more limited mobility-friendly bathroom. Cruise ships are also a great option because you’ll be able to eat, shop, attend shows, and meet all kinds of people from around the world while on board. You won’t have to go far unless you want to. River cruises are also an option if your loved one doesn’t want to go on an extended trip.

All Inclusive Resorts For Senior Vacation

All-inclusive resorts are fantastic options for seniors because these types of vacations provide everything your family might need while on vacation all on property. These accommodations include meals, snacks, entertainment, activities, amenities, and more. You and your family won’t need to extensively plan out your day-to-day activities since most of your vacation can be enjoyed on-site. Even better, any time your senior needs a break or rest, they can take refuge in their room for as long as needed. All-inclusive resorts are very accommodating. You can ask for senior-friendly rooms, have housekeeping clean on a daily basis, and keep a close eye on your loved one throughout the day.


Have you ever heard of a dementia-friendly tour? Believe it or not, museum tours can actually help seniors struggling with Alzheimer’s. These tours can help trigger memories that have an impact for weeks and even months after the experience. Dementia-friendly tours are interactive and engaging. Tour guides really try to get seniors to think back on their own experiences and share social memories that connect them with certain art, eras, or historical events. Museums that don’t offer these specific types of tours can still have similar impacts on your senior, even if they don’t struggle with memory loss. That’s because museums provide everyone with a look back on history. Even better, most museums do offer accessibility accommodations for seniors with limited mobility.

Botanical Gardens

The great outdoors provides way more health benefits than we give it credit for. Unfortunately, as we age, we tend to spend less and less time outside. That means we aren’t getting as much sun or soaking up all the benefits that nature has to offer. One great way to inject some sunlight and nature into your senior loved one’s life is to take a vacation to a nearby senior-friendly botanical garden. Botanical gardens are beautiful constructed areas with plants and wildlife. Typically, these gardens are built for research, conservation, or strictly for display purposes. Walking through these gardens can provide your loved one with mild physical activity, or you can easily visit a wheelchair-accessible garden. Either way, being in nature will help improve your loved one’s health by helping them sleep better, reducing their blood pressure, and increasing their vitamin D levels.

Amusement Parks

Are you trying to think of a senior-friendly vacation that will also accommodate the younger generation, too? It might surprise you to learn that most of the bigger theme parks these days provide wheelchair accessibility, break areas, special needs bathrooms, and more to make senior vacations much more pleasant. Even better, if you pick an amusement park with a nearby resort, then your senior can easily take amusement park-provided transportation back to their hotel room to rest. Keep your senior at the forefront of your mind, though. You don’t want your loved one to overexert themselves or get too hot. Always make sure to bring extra water, and snacks, and be aware of where air-conditioned break areas are in the theme park.

National Parks

If you’re trying to accommodate family members of all ages who are ready to explore and see more of the greatest parts of this country, then it might be a great time to visit the country’s national parks. Seniors can purchase an annual senior pass, which gives them discounts and access to all national parks and federal recreation sites. Before visiting a park, do some research to check out where the most senior-accommodation places are in each park. You and your family are sure to see some of the best sights America has to offer, and everyone will have a good time.senior-man-holding-woman-by-shoulder-with-his-hand-in-vacation1-scaled.jpg

What are the Best Senior Vacation Destinations for Elderly Parents?

Just as certain activities are better suited for seniors, some destinations are also more senior-friendly than others. Taking your beloved grandma to Miami during spring break, for instance, probably isn’t going to be the best time for her, but you could plan out an equally exciting, beach-themed vacation for you and your grandma in a more laid-back location like the Caribbean. Below, we’ll go over some of the best vacation destinations for you and your elderly parents.


The Sunshine State is routinely mentioned as one of the top destination spots for seniors whether they’re looking to retire or simply to enjoy a vacation. For one, seniors won’t have to worry about cold weather, snow, or other hassles. The weather is generally consistent and predictable. The laid-back, tourist-atmosphere present in most Floridian cities is also very attractive. Seniors can enjoy the highest quality dining and entertainment and the most beautiful scenery. Even better, Florida’s attractions, beaches, and more provide entertainment for individuals of all ages, so you can plan a Floridian vacation and be sure that everyone will enjoy themselves.

Las Vegas

Las Vegas is often touted as a younger person’s scene, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth! Las Vegas is a very popular destination for seniors because of all the entertainment, dining, performances, shows, and gambling! Casinos are often very entertaining for seniors who like slot machines, card games, or general gambling. They’re also a great place for seniors to socialize and make friends. If your senior is really adventurous, then you can go on a laid-back ride through the Red Rock Canyon.


If your elderly loved one can manage a lengthy airplane ride and they love the beach scene, then you should consider bringing them to Hawaii. Hawaii is a top destination spot for island lovers of all ages. You and your family can plan to go on bus tours on the big island, enjoy laid-back days on the beach, and visit local shops in the area without having to travel too far. Your senior can enjoy totally unique experiences, like witnessing a luau or watching a Hula dance show.

The Caribbean

Another top senior-friendly beach destination is the Caribbean. This type of vacation is great for relaxation, and your seniors won’t have to over-exert themselves physically. The weather is almost always great in the Caribbean, and the tourist-centric cities are sure to cater to seniors.

Washington D.C.

If your senior parents are patriotic or just love history, then they’ll love visiting Washington D.C. In the city, you can visit several senior-friendly museums, art galleries, historical monuments, and more. Even better, most popular museums, memorials, and government buildings are free, making Washington D.C. a very affordable vacation spot for seniors on a budget!

Salem, Massachusetts

If your senior is a history buff, then they might love the historical nature of Salem, Massachusetts. Most well-known for the infamous witch trials that took place in the city, this area remains one of the most historically intriguing cities in the nation. Salem is one of the oldest Settlements in New England. Seniors can enjoy the history-rich architecture and culture. If your senior really wants to feel connected to history, then your family can even participate in an interactive mock witch trial!

Stockholm, Sweden

Is your senior loved one looking for a more exotic vacation spot? If so, then Stockholm might be one of the best places to go. Stockholm is a top destination for seniors because the area is known to be super accommodating. It’s often touted as the most accessible city in Europe due to significant investments in public transportation, sidewalks, and overall accessible facilities.

Niagara Falls

If your loved one hasn’t yet seen Niagara Falls or they want to add traveling to another country to their bucket list, then this is an ideal destination for seniors. Since Niagara Falls is such a popular destination spot, it’s very accommodation and senior-friendly. You can witness this natural majesty from either the U.S. side or the Canadian side. Both areas are very tourist-centric and accommodating.

Are You Ready to Give Your Elderly Parents the Senior Vacation They Deserve?

As we age, we start to appreciate the small things in life. If you have senior parents, then now might be the perfect time to provide give them the vacation experience they deserve. Holidays with elderly parents are often very fulfilling for everyone involved. Use this guide to help make accommodations for your loved one if they have limited mobility, health concerns, or other age-related issues. Even better, use our list to pick a suitable destination for your whole tribe! If you want to read our other blogs, please click here.

Happy and safe travels!