Mothers and daughters have a certain bond, which can either strengthen when they travel together or become horribly unglued. I love my mom. I love to travel. Put those two together and they can fall into the 'unglued' category. But if you plan treks that include what you both love, then it can be more like smooth sailing. So, before you start stressing about creating that perfect "mom and daughter" vacation, check out these tips -- and trips -- that are bound to have you bonding. Remember, Mother's Day will be here sooner than you know so start planning to ensure you remain her favorite.
1. This Pampered Life
Moms and daughters love to be pampered, but not always the same way. The key to finding the perfect balance is having a lot of options. The Lake Austin Spa Resort in Austin, Texas boasts over 100 body treatments and massage therapies that can be done alone or together. And when you want to get active, there are up to 20 gut busting activities to select from. So while you are in your African-Brazilian dance class, mom can get her Pilates on and everyone stays happy.
Rates at the Lake Austin Spa Resort for double occupancy begin at more than $1,700 per person including all meals, fitness activities and more. For more information go to www.lakeaustin.com or call tel. 800/847-5637.
2. The Buddy System
For those pairs that like a good adventurous trek, but fear being left alone together, consider joining forces with a group. You'll meet new people -- and be on your best behavior -- while embarking on a new journey. The Vermont based Country Walkers tour company believes you need to get off the tour bus and see the world on foot and has specific adventures geared just for women. Upcoming walking tours will take you to Greece, Italy, Morocco, Peru, and Bhutan among other varied locales. Not only do you get some great low (or high) impact exercise, but more importantly you get to experience it with mom.
To request a catalog and learn more about Country Walkers go to www.countrywalkers.com or dial tel. 800/464-9255.
3. The Hobby Hunter
If you and mom have a hobby you both love try making it the focal point of your next trip. If you dig antiquing, then head to the quaint town of Hudson, New York where it's more of a sport than hobby. Located just two hours north of New York City you can take a long weekend to explore the myriad of antique shops on the main strip, Warren Street, plus check out art galleries and amazing restaurants all surrounded by the Catskill Mountains. After a long day of treasure hunting you can keep cozy, B&B style, at the Inn at Hudson starting at just $100 a night. And with rooms outfitted with antiques from the local merchants you can sleep and shop at the same time.
For more information on the Inn at Hudson and activities in the town of Hudson call tel. 518/822.9322 or go to www.theinnathudson.com.
4. Cocktail Hour
Sometimes having a special "elixir" can take your vacation to the next festive level. And let's be honest, a glass -- or ten -- of wine with mom can make bonding even smoother. Consider then heading to California's wine country to take in the beautiful landscapes and partake in some oenophilia. For those on a budget, head to the quaint Old Crocker Inn -- located in Sonoma County -- where their charming rooms start at $145 a night. If you are feeling a little more high-end, venture to The Duchamp. This hip and artsy hotel in Healdsburg has villas starting at $350 a night and offers private tours of their Duchamp Estate Winery.
5. The Giver
Your mother has always taught you to give to the less fortunate, right? Well doing a volunteer vacation is a great way to put your money where her mouth is. With Globe Aware you can choose from 10 countries (ranging from Brazil to Laos) to spend a week in communities learning about their culture and contributing to their self-sustainability. You don't even have to speak the language, have a skill, or be a "professional" volunteer. Depending on the country, rates begin at $1,090 not including airfare. Accommodations tend to be rustic, but hey, it's worth it when you are giving back.
To inquire about Globe Aware and their vacation options visit www.globeaware.org or call tel. 877/588-4562.
6. Luck Be a Lady
Traveling with mom doesn't need to be a gamble ... but you might as well gamble with her. Sometimes taking mom for a "sinful" weekend trip in Las Vegas really solidifies that you are no longer her little girl. But remember, you don't have to be a gambler to enjoy this desert town. Besides being a high rollers Mecca, this is a huge shopping destination and a premier spot for first class entertainment. There are excellent day trips to the Hoover Dam (trust me, it's fascinating) the vibrant red rocks of the Valley of Fire State Park, not to mention the mother of all journeys, the awe-inspiring Grand Canyon. After all that, hitting the slots might seem anti-climatic.
For more information on Las Vegas, hotels, tours and much more go to Frommer's Las Vegas destination page.
7. The Call of the Wild
For those mother and daughter teams that love beautiful vistas and excellent bird watching opportunities, head to Central America to the Lodge at the Pico Bonita in La Ceiba, Honduras. This breathtaking eco-resort, tucked within the rainforests of the Pico Bonito National Park, is a little bit of paradise on Earth. Surrounding the property are over 325 species of birds to spot, spider monkeys galore and, if you're lucky, you might come face to face with a jaguar. Well, maybe not so lucky.
Rates begin at $180 a night. To learn more about the Lodge at Pico Bonita and Honduras visit www.picobonito.com or call tel. 888/428-0221.
8. Food for Thought
Learning something new is a great way to connect, so what's better than taking authentic Italian cooking classes in Tuscany with the Italian Cookery Course? Starting in April, you can immerse yourself in Tuscan cuisine while residing at the gorgeous "Casa Ombuto" villa. Not only will you be cooking up a storm but you have the opportunity to explore neighboring villages, shop, and bask in all that is Italian.
Double occupancy rates began at $2,750 per person and include all meals. For more information about Italian Cookery Course, and their Italian Mediterranean cooking option visit www.italiancookerycourse.com.
9. A Little Inner Peace
Taking time to decompress and to work on the mind, body, and spirit is a great way to reconnect with mom. At the Maya Tulum Wellness Resort & Spa you get that plus much more. Located on the Yucatan Pennisula of Mexico, the seaside Maya Tulum draws yoga enthusiasts from around the world -- and all levels -- to tune out from society while being surrounded by pristine white beaches. Each eco-friendly cabana, starting at $105 a night, is designed for relaxation in mind and has spectacular sights -- and sounds -- that will ensure you will both find your Zen.
For more information on what Maya Tulum Resort has to offer go to www.mayatulum.com or call tel. 888/515-4580.
10. Home Sweet Home
At times some of the best vacations, and most economical, are right in your backyard. Consider having mom visit you in your city or going back home to check out some of the sights and sounds that you have never taken advantage of. If you live in NYC, take mom to Ellis Island: you know you've never been there before. What about all the times you said you were going to Colonial Williamsburg when you were growing up in Virginia? Well time to do it now. Check in with friends, families, local publications and the Chambers of Commerce to customize your "Home Package. And remember, mom just wants to spend time with you, so anything you do will be perfect.