The Curated List

7 Epic Ways to Show Your Kids the World Now

By Peter Schlesinger  •    •  June 24, 2019

7 Epic Ways to Show Your Kids the World Now

By Peter Schlesinger  •  June 24, 2019

School’s out, family time is in. These experiential journeys—desert treks, ancient ruins, treasure hunts—will give kids a new perspective on the world around them.

“There are two things we should give our children,” wrote 20th-century American journalist Hodding Carter. “One is roots and the other is wings.” Of course, travel, at any age, is about more than flying to distant lands. It’s about exploring a destination to the fullest: engaging with its food, its culture and its natural heritage. For families, seeking out shared experiences has become a priority for any vacation. This summer, up the holiday ante with a trip that will help imaginations—your children’s and your own—soar.


Exploring the “Empty Quarter” Near Abu Dhabi


Abu Dhabi’s futuristic skyline rises at the northern limit of the world’s largest sand desert, Rub’ al Khali, or “The Empty Quarter.” Emirates Tours & Safari Company‘s day-long desert safari brings your family into the dunes, first off-roading via luxury 4X4, then on the back of a camel. Spend the afternoon enjoying desert activities like sand-boarding, henna painting, and falconry, before watching the sun dip below the sands and dining on traditional Arabic barbecue under the stars.

Where to Stay: Rosewood Abu Dhabi

Walking the “Wild Wall” Near Beijing

The Great Wall of China is one of the world’s great attractions, drawing tens of millions each year. But for a true adventure—without the throngs of tourists—bring your family to the Wild Wall, the collective term for vast, unrestored sections of the structure where tour buses don’t go. Within three hours from Beijing, these rugged stretches of masonry cut through jagged, tree-topped mountains. British-born geographer-turned-tour-operator William Lindesay—who coined the phrase Wild Wall back in the ‘90s—has spent nearly three decades in China, and a staggering 2,500 days at the Wall, becoming a respected preservationist and leading hundreds of expeditions to its less-visited spans. Now joined on tours by his wife and sons, Lindesay shares his expertise on the family-friendly excursions to less-visited wall sections, such as Huairou.

Where to Stay: Rosewood Beijing

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Around the world Rosewood properties are inviting travelers to embrace the ultimate luxury: family time. Discover unique experiences, designed to appeal to families of all interests and ages, allowing you and your loved ones to discover a destination together.

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Saving a Coral Reef in Bermuda

Elegant spotted eagle rays, striped sergeant major, and steely blue angelfish: Bermuda’s coral reefs are home to a colorful world of marine life just offshore from the island’s famous pink sand beaches. Since 2014, the Living Reef Foundation has been working to preserve the fragile ecosystems, building innovative coral “gardens” that support new growth. Families visiting this season can meet up with the Foundation team for a private tour of the gardens, snorkeling and kayaking around the reefs and learning about their vital role. Kids will be able to adopt their own coral garden, giving an empowering sense of responsibility for the biodiverse habitat.

Adopt a Reef with Rosewood Bermuda

Truffle Hunting in Tuscany


Want to raise a young gourmand? Join local truffle hunters—and their highly-trained dogs—on a private search through Tuscany for the elusive and prized Italian delicacy. Traipsing around the pristine Val d’Orcia, a UNESCO-protected district of rolling hills, your family will scope out (and learn about) the subterranean culinary gems, including both white and black varieties. Contrary to popular belief, truffles grow all year—though peak season for the most prized types is November.

Dig for truffles with Rosewood Castiglion del Bosco

Interacting With Art in Santa Fe


Santa Fe’s thriving creative community collaborated en masse to create Meow Wolf, a fanciful, interactive arts center inside a former bowling alley. More than 100 local painters, architects, videographers, and sculptors have built House of Eternal Return, a colorful, topsy-turvy Victorian-style mansion, with fireplaces, refrigerators, and clothes dryers acting as secret portals between rooms. The experience chronicles the fate of an imaginary family that abandoned the house, with parts of the mystery unfolding throughout the 20,000-square-foot installation. The experience, suitable for all ages, feels like a real-life video game, with a dose of Alice in Wonderland and a touch of Sleep No More.

Discover Meow Wolf with Rosewood Inn of the Anasazi

Kayaking and Surfing in Half Moon Bay, California


In picturesque Half Moon Bay, California, less than an hour south of San Francisco and just 30 minutes from Rosewood Sand Hill, Pillar Point Harbor marks the northern edge of the famed Monterey Bay marine sanctuary. Its tranquil waters and stunning wildlife make for an ideal family kayak expedition with Half Moon Bay Kayak Co. As you glide across the water on the private tour, your family will learn about the area’s history while getting a chance to see harbor seals, sea lions, and, if you’re lucky, otters, along with shorebirds such as pelicans, herons and pint-sized plovers and sandpipers. The extra adventurous can try their luck on the board with a surfing lesson at Half Moon Bay’s renowned Mavericks Beach break.

Take to the sea with Rosewood Sand Hill

Wandering Maya Ruins in the Yucatán


The Riviera Maya’s namesake civilization left behind thousands of ruined sites across the Yucatán Peninsula, but three should rise to the top of your Mexico family vacation agenda. The world-famous Chichén Itzá, two hours from the coast, is the region’s most visited site, and for good reason. Its perfectly preserved pyramid rises an impressive 98 feet, guarded by snake sculptures at the base. Nearby, the site’s massive ballcourt arena is larger than an American football field. For a more hands-on experience—crowd control means there’s no clambering allowed at Chichén Itzá—head to Cobá, where you can climb the 170-step pyramid that rises from the jungles. And for a history lesson with the opportunity for a beach break, Tulúm (pictured, top of page, by is a perfect spot for kids, its expansive temple complex opening up to a postcard-ready stretch of sand. Another draw for little ones here: the hundreds of iguanas that now call Tulúm’s ruins home.

Where to Stay: Rosewood Mayakoba


Emirates Tours & Safari Company: +971 2491-2929

Wild Wall Tours: +86 186-1171-6372

Chichén Itzá Ruins:Carretera Costera del Golfo; +52 985-851-0137

Cobá Ruins: Quintana Roo Nuevo Durango – Coba

Tulúm Ruins: Carretera Federal, Cancún – Chetumal, Km 230

Enjoy more family time this year

Discover Rosewood Family Time

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