You always hear about people taking last-minute vacations – well Saturday my husband and I went into a travel agency with the muppets in tow, and asked to book whatever was leaving the next morning.
I will definitely try that again, because it worked out so well. There was no anticipation with the kids. there was no build-up. There was just 4 plane tickets to Cancun, Mexico with an all-inclusive 4.5 star resort at the other end.
My husband often works 16-18 hour days and my 9-to-5 grind starts at 6.30 am and ends after the kids are in bed, the clothes are put away and the dishes are done. The days merge into weeks and into months. Spending time in an all-inclusive resort where the biggest decision is “beach or pool” was absolutely heavenly! Good food and bottomless tropical drinks were just a bonus, time with the family was all I wanted.
Time with the family and a swim-up bar.
We stayed at The Grand Oasis Palm. As far as luxury resort chains go, it was nice. Numerous restaurants, a few different pools, a decent beach and spotlessly clean. I couldn’t believe how we’d lucked out.
On day 3 we decided to check out Kids Club.
I never knew that such a thing existed, but when it comes to all-inclusive resorts, you HAVE TO check out the Kids Club. It was definitely the most spectacular surprise.
Now maybe this shows how little we travel. We go to Great Wolf Lodge a lot, and we stay in nice hotels around the city for staycations, but we’ve never been to a resort as a family, and we had no clue!
Kids Club at The Grand Oasis Palm was a child’s dream come true. A big pool with two waterslides, a room complete with a dozen gaming systems – Wii, PlayStation, XBOX – and beanbag chairs for the kids to veg out on, an arts and crafts room, games room, theatre, a playground with climbers and a trampoline with harness, movie nights, a nap room and a huge staff of childcare providers to watch over the ensuing madness.
The boys couldn’t wait to go to Kids Club and hang out with their friends. They thought they’d found the best place on earth! And while we wanted to spend time with them, it was nice to take a quiet break by the pool and have a little bit of adult time. We even did a romantic dinner one evening at the fine dining restaurant on site. The boys went a few times over the rest of the week and have been telling endless stories about friends they made.
And to whomever invented Kids Club, thank you, you’re a genius.
Cancun is nice because the flight to Mexico from Toronto is about 4 hours. The hotels are under 25 minutes from the airport and, surprisingly, the boys handled the travel quite well. I think it has something to do with the in-seat personal screen with movies, shows and games for entertainment. They certainly didn’t have those when I was a kid!
We were even able to rent a car for the day and drive to Tulum to see the ancient Mayan ruins and go to the market. And because the Oasis is a chain, with a location in Tulum, we were able to visit the Grand Oasis Tulum and enjoy the facilities and our all-inclusive privileges there for the day instead of wasting the sunshine on the 2 hour drive back to Cancun.
Sunkissed and relaxed, a week away was just what we needed. We’re already dreaming about the next destination. What’s your dream vacation?