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11 Hot Places to Visit in December that Families Will Love

Little boy sits on a rock in front of the beach in Maui, one of the best hot places to visit in December with kids!
Photo Courtesy: Anonymous
Maui, Hawaii

Travelers looking to escape the cold will love these warm places to visit in December with kids. Whether you’re traveling abroad or domestic, many families look forward to booking a warm-weather getaway during the December school break, especially those of us already dealing with snow! Soak up the sun on Caribbean islands such as Aruba, Turks & Caicos, or Puerto Rico, where warmth, good food, and family fun are abundant. Or, enjoy a mix of history, culture, and beach days on your December vacation when you visit spots like Cartagena or Costa Rica. Stay within the United States in places like Maui or Key West; or, travel off-the-beaten-path to destinations such as Dubai. We’ve rounded up 11 Hot Places to Visit in December that Families Will Love to give you some ideas, including the average temperature in each. Keep in mind that temperatures may vary a bit. Here are our suggestions!

Best Warm Places to Visit in December with Kids in the United States

If you’re searching for the best warm places to visit in December with kids in the United States, you’ve come to the right place! Check out these winter vacation ideas, including the best beach vacations in December!

RELATED ARTICLE: Best Places To Travel In December With Your Family

Maui, Hawaii

A family of five stands on the Road to Hana in Maui.
Photo Courtesy: Emily Kapic

For a tropical family vacation in the United States, head to Maui. Reaching around 70 to 80 degrees in December, families can enjoy warm weather, slow island life, and many things to do! Adventurous kids will love unique experiences such as helicopter rides, biking down a volcano, or parasailing. Whale watching is also popular, though it usually peaks around mid-January. You may still be able to catch a glimpse in December, though! Or, cool down in the water by snorkeling, surfing, or paddleboarding. Families can even explore Maui on foot with a gorgeous hike. Try the Kapalua Coastal Trail, the Waikamoi Trail, or any hike in Haleakalā National Park! Then, consider booking a guided bus tour to experience the Road To Hana, a famous stretch of highway. Alternatively, families love exploring PāʻiaMaui’s coolest little town. Originally founded as a sugarcane enclave, it is now world-famous for windsurfing!

RELATED ARTICLE: 15 Best Family Adventures on Maui, Hawaii

Research family-friendly Maui tours through Viator here!

Where to Stay in Maui with Kids

Need somewhere to stay in Maui with kids? Try the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa, which has six on-site pools and even a mermaid experience for kids. Or, try the Grand Wailea Maui, a Waldorf Astoria Resort, the Fairmont Lea Kani, or The Westin Maui Resort & Spa, Ka’anapali. Regardless of where you stay, you’ll find Maui to be one of the best hot places to visit in December with kids!

RELATED ARTICLE: Best Family Hotels in Maui for an Enchanting Vacation

Key West, Florida

A young boy crouches to pick something up on the beach at Fort Zachary Taylor, while a his dad stand in the background admiring the ocean.
Photo Courtesy: Christina Farhy

Key West is one of the best warm places to visit during December in the United States. Enjoy Florida Keys scenery with temperatures in the low to high 70s, perfect for families who can’t stand the heat or humidity. Of course, take advantage of Key West’s many shorelines, such as Fort Zachary Taylor State Beach Park or Dry Tortugas National Park. Water sports like jet skiing, kayaking, and snorkeling are abundant! In December, Key West also puts a twist on typical tourist attractions like the Old Town Trolley. Starting December 6th, guests can enjoy a Holiday Lights Tour, showcasing some of the best, biggest, and brightest Christmas decorations! Keep an eye out for Santa at the Shops at Mallory Square, since he’ll be visiting throughout the month. Families can also hop on the Conch Tour Train, visit the Key West Shipwreck Treasure Museum, or see the Key West Lighthouse.

RELATED ARTICLE: Fun Things To Do In Key West With Kids

Getyourguide.com has many tours and things to do in Key West! Book your tours here!

Where to Stay in Key West with Kids

If you’re searching for somewhere to stay in Key West with kids, we suggest The Key West Marriott Beachside. It offers families an outdoor pool, weekly activities, and access to a variety of water sports. Or, enjoy four pools, a nearby beach, and discounted tours available to guests at The Parrot Key Hotel & Villas, another great option for families. Families also like the Hyatt Centric Resort & Spa, among other options. No matter which option you choose, your family is sure to love making memories in one of the best places to visit in December with kids!

RELATED ARTICLE: Best Family Hotels in Key West and the Florida Keys

Best Hot Places to Visit in December with Kids in Central America

If you live in a cold destination, your first thought may be: where is it warm in December? To escape the United States or the typical tourist path in the Caribbean, we suggest you visit Central America. Keep reading to find out the best places to go in December with kids!

Cartagena, Colombia

A dad proudly holds his two kids, one in each arm, during a family photo shoot in Cartagena, one of the best hot places to visit in December with kids!
Photo Courtesy: Gunjan Prakash

Cartagena is definitely one of the best December hot weather vacations for families! Famous for its vibrant dining scene, interesting culture, and colonial-era architecture, this family-friendly city reaches the mid to high 80s in December. This is ideal for families who want to experience summer weather at local beaches such as Boca Grande or Playa de La Boquilla slightly north of the city. Afterward, learn more about Cartagena’s history at the Castillo San Felipe Fortress. Explore the Old City by foot, bike, or horse-drawn carriage; pass street performers in Plaza Bolivar or souvenir stores at Las Bovedas. Satisfy your sweet tooth with a chocolate-making class at the Choco Museo or a cooking class with a local chef. Visit the Colombia Aviary to see local wildlife or feed the pigeons in front of San Pedro Claver Church. Don’t forget to catch the sunset from Cafe Del Mar restaurant!

RELATED ARTICLE: Cartagena With Kids – 17 Amazing Things To Do

Take a Sunset Cruise or a Bike Tour in Cartagena! Book your tours through Viator here!

Where to Stay in Cartagena with Kids

Families will find plenty of hotel options in Cartagena while enjoying one of the best hot places to visit in December with kids. If kids love a pool, the Hotel Charleston Saint Teresa has a rooftop one for them to splash in. Meanwhile, the Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Cartagena is located in a converted 17th-century convent and has a pool too. Other family-friendly options include Casa San Augustin and the Casa Claver Boutique Hotel. For a different kind of Cartagena vacation, book a stay at Hotel Punta Faro outside of the city. 

Top 20 family-friendly vacation rentals in Cartagena | Vrbo

Costa Rica

Two kids walk along a path with lush foliage surrounding the trail.
Photo Courtesy: Lisa Lossie

Prepare for an action-packed family vacation in Costa Rica! From adventure parks to National Parks, gorgeous beaches, and incredible cuisine, active families will love this rugged Central American country. Temperatures also reach around the high 70s to low 80s in December, making it perfect for a hot weather vacation for families! Surfing, fishing, and swimming at the beach are a few water activities families can enjoy. For an amazing view, soar through the treetops at Arenal Ecoglide Park. Or, walk across the signature suspension bridge at Mistico Hanging Bridges Park! Costa Rica has lots of waterfalls too, like La Paz Waterfall Gardens or the La Fortuna Waterfall. Hike through Manuel Antonio National Park or Tortuguero National Park to spot turtles. Wildlife enthusiasts can also visit the Butterfly Conservatory or make friends with the cuddly creatures at the Sloth Sanctuary. Kids will definitely be in awe of the Arenal Volcano!

RELATED ARTICLE: 15 Amazing Things to Do in Costa Rica with Kids

Look here for Tours and Things to Do in Costa Rica through Getyourguide.com!

Where to Stay in Costa Rica with Kids

If you’re looking for somewhere to stay in Costa Rica with kids, try these family-friendly hotels. We suggest The Westin Reserva Conchal, an All-Inclusive Golf Resort & Spa if you want an all-inclusive option with lots of amenities. W Hotel Reserva Conchal is close to the airport, plus it has a pool and Kids’ Club. Other great Costa Rica resorts for families include the Rafiki Safari Lodge, Tortuga Lodge & Gardens, and Peace Lodge, La Paz Waterfall Gardens.

RELATED ARTICLE: Best Costa Rica Resorts & Lodges For A Family Vacation (All-Inclusive Included)

Best Hot Places to Visit in December with Kids in the Caribbean

If your idea of a winter family vacation looks a lot like relaxing by the pool, on the beach, or enjoying hotel amenities, you’ll love the Caribbean. Certainly, the Caribbean offers a variety of options for the best hot places to visit in December with kids. Keep reading for our suggestions of the best places to travel in December for warm weather in the Caribbean!

Puerto Rico

Mom and son kayak along a river in Puerto Rico, one of the best hot places to visit in December with kids!
Photo Courtesy: Swati Sinha

Enjoy a mix of fun beach days and historical attractions when you visit Puerto Rico. Since it doesn’t require a passport (and reaches around the mid to high 80s in December,) it’s a popular hot weather vacation for families in the United States. Sprawl out on beaches like Pinones (for street food), Rincon (perfect for surfers), or Isla Verde. Puerto Rico also has outlying islands accessible by boat, like Cayo Icacos, ideal for snorkeling. Of course, families can’t miss one of Puerto Rico’s famous Bioluminescent Bays. Options for families include La Parguera on the main island, Laguna Grande off Fajardo, or another on Vieques. Adventurous families will love hiking through the El Yunque Rainforest, zip-lining, tubing, or fishing. Visit the Carolina Children’s Museum to keep kids entertained or stroll the cobblestone streets of Old San Juan. If you visit near Christmas time, they may even be illuminated with beautiful decorations!

RELATED ARTICLE: Best Things To Do In Puerto Rico With Kids

Getyourguide.com has many Tours and Things to Do in Puerto Rico. Reserve here!

Where to Stay in Puerto Rico with Kids

Puerto Rico has lots of accommodations for families. If you have young babies or toddlers, stay at the Caribe Hilton, set on a beach with very calm waters. Active families who want to stay close to El Yunque could stay at the Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Puerto Rico Golf & Beach Resort. The Hyatt Regency Grand Reserve Puerto Rico has a pool that kids will love. Other luxury accommodations include Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, El Conquistador, and the St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort.

RELATED ARTICLE: The Best Family Resorts in Puerto Rico (Including All-Inclusive Options)

Mexico

A young boy snorkets in Mexico on a sunny, clear day.
Photo Courtesy: Edith Arteaga-Medina

Escape the cold during a family vacation in Mexico! With beautiful seaside towns, East Coast families will love the easy-to-reach Riviera Maya. Of course, you can visit Cancun to relax on the beach, since temperatures reach into the 80s during December. Stunning shorelines such as Playa Tortugas, Playa Delfines, and Playa Chacmool await! Or, see the Croco Cun Zoo, take a pirate dinner cruise, and shop at La Isla Mall. In nearby Playa Del Carmen, adventurous families can also explore Xel-Ha, Xcaret, and Xplor. Swim in a cenote, descend underground in an Atlantis Submarine, and see the Rio Secreto Caves.  You’re in a great position to take day trips around the Riviera Maya too. See turtles in their natural habitat in Akumal, aka the “place of the turtles” in Maya. From Playa Del Carmen, book a ferry to Cozumel to snorkel. Kids will love all the colorful marine life!

RELATED ARTICLE: Visiting Cancun As A Family: Important Information You Need To Know

Look for your Cenote, Rio Secreto Cave, or many other tours near Cancun and Playa Del Carmen through Viator here!

Where to Stay in Mexico with Kids

Looking for somewhere to stay in Mexico with kids? You have lots of options! Families searching for accommodations in Cancun will love The Grand at Moon Palace, Hyatt Ziva Cancun, or the Nizuc Resort and Spa. In Playa del Carmen, try the Grand Hyatt Playa Del Carmen, the Grand Velas Riviera Maya, or Hotel Xcaret Mexico. Then, in Los Cabos, consider family-friendly options like Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos, Grand Velas Los Cabos, or Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos at Costa Palmas. Families will surely be impressed no matter where they stay while enjoying one of the best hot places to visit in December with kids!

RELATED ARTICLE: Best Resorts in Mexico for Families (All-Inclusive included!)

Turks & Caicos 

A dad and his infant son play int he sand on a sunny day at The Shore Club in Turks & Caicos, one of the best hot places to visit in December with kids!
Photo Courtesy: Kelli Wein

Looking for one of the best warm places to visit in December? Try Turks & Caicos, home to white-sand beaches, amazing water sports, plus all-inclusive, luxury resorts. It reaches around the mid-70s to low 80s during December, ideal for a hot weather vacation for families! Kitesurf or relax on the beach – the island has enough to keep everyone entertained. Visit Grace Bay Beach for snorkeling or collecting seashells. Or, head to Sapodilla Bay for the opportunity to spot turtles or enjoy the local cuisine. Both are fairly crowded, so if you want to escape tourists, visit Taylor Bay Beach near Chalk Sound on the island’s south coast. Animal lovers will also appreciate the local wildlife, like at the Flamingo Pond Overlook. Experience the charm and grace of West Indian Flamingos in a scenic setting! Or, head to Little Water Cay to spot endangered rock iguanas.

RELATED ARTICLE: Fun Things To Do In Turks & Caicos With Kids

Look here for Tours and Things to Do in Turks & Caicos with Viator!

Where to Stay in Turks & Caicos with Kids

If you’re looking for an all-inclusive hotel in Turks & Caicos, you’ll love Beaches Turks & Caicos, known for its expansive property, Kids’ Club, and extensive activity roster. Families also love the Grace Bay Club Resort, located on Grace Bay Beach, which has its own children’s pool, among other perks. Other popular resorts for families in Turks & Caicos include Seven Stars Resort & Spa, The Palms Turks and Caicos, and The Somerset On Grace Bay.

RELATED ARTICLE: 7 Best Family Resorts in Turks & Caicos

Aruba 

Two boys race down a beach in Aruba, while one carries a toy sail boat, one of the best hot places to visit in December with kids!
Photo Courtesy: Melyn Dankerlui

Aruba boasts beautiful beaches, activities galore, and so much more! It’s surely one of the best beach vacations in December, with temperatures reaching the high 80s or low 90s. Though it can get a bit touristy and expensive, the clear, calm waters, good weather, and friendly locals make it worthwhile! Spend your vacation relaxing on Baby Beach, known for its soft sand. Families also love Eagle Beach for snorkeling, swimming, or relaxing, since it’s the widest in Aruba. For more water fun, be sure to visit De Palm Island, accessible via a short ferry ride. Kids will love the waterslides, banana boat rides, and snorkeling excursions! Toddlers, young kids, or general animal enthusiasts can’t miss the Aruba Butterfly Farm, either. Some of the colorful insects may even land on your child’s arm if they stand still enough! The Donkey Sanctuary is another hit with kids of all ages.

RELATED ARTICLE: 12 Things To Do In Aruba With Kids

Look for Tours and Things to Do in Aruba with Viator or Getyourguide.com here!

Where to Stay in Aruba with Kids

If you want to stay at the best family resorts in Aruba, try either Playa Linda Beach Resort and Marriott’s Aruba Ocean Club. Both are located within a short walk of the famous Hadicurari Beach and Palm Beach. We also suggest Barcelo Aruba, Marriott’s Aruba Surf Club, and The Ritz-Carlton Aruba.

RELATED ARTICLE: 7 Best Family Resorts In Aruba (Includes All-Inclusive)

Grand Cayman

A small girl wearing a colorful dress smiles while her parents look on in the background on a beach in the Cayman Islands.
Photo Courtesy: Jen Grzenia

With an average temperature of around 70 to 80 degrees, Grand Cayman is surely one of the best warm places to visit in December. Between gorgeous beaches, safe tourist areas, and lots of things to do with kids, this just might be the perfect winter getaway! Take in amazing views from Seven Mile Beach, a popular strip for water sports, sandcastle-building, and everything in between. Or, visit the quieter Starfish Point to spot vibrant sea life! Then, interact with live rays at Stingray City. Kids can also take an Atlantis Submarine Ride or visit the Cayman Turtle Center. Here, there’s the Turtle Lagoon, a shallow wading pool, featuring lots of other fish too. Grab snorkeling gear from the front desk and go wild! Or, visit Boatswain’s Beach, home to giant sea turtles. If your kids are old enough for a snorkeling adventure, take a day trip to Little Cayman!

RELATED ARTICLE: The Best Things To Do In Grand Cayman With Kids

Check out Tours and Things To Do in Grand Cayman with Viator! Book your tour today!

Where to Stay in Grand Cayman with Kids

It won’t be hard to find family-friendly resorts in Grand Cayman. While enjoying one of the best places to visit in December with kids, parents recommend hotels like The Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman or Kimpton Seafire Resort & Spa. Seven Mile Beach, offering calm waves and a shallow shoreline. We also suggest the Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort, Regal Beach Club, and the Caribbean Club Hotel.

RELATED ARTICLE: 6 Best Family Resorts In Grand Cayman (All Parent-Recommended)

Best Hot Places to Visit in December with Kids in the UAE & Asia

Looking for the best warm places to spend Christmas as a family? For a unique December vacation filled with history and culture, families can visit the United Arab Emirates or Asia, which boast a ton of family-friendly locations. Keep reading to learn our favorite options for the best hot places to visit in December with kids in the UAE and Asia.

Phuket, Thailand

A family snorkels in the Surin Islands of Thailand, one of the best hot places to visit in December with kids!
Photo Courtesy: Ashley Sanders Potter

Skip the typical destinations and take your family on an adventure to Thailand’s largest island, Phuket! With temperatures in the low 70s to mid-80s, it’s definitely one of the best December hot weather vacations for families. Not only will you be able to enjoy the warmth and the beach, but also immerse yourselves in the Thai culture. Patong Beach is the most famous (and crowded!) on the island. For a low-key experience, try Freedom Beach, Kata Beach, or Karon Beach. Each offers sunshine, water sports, and more fun! You’ll also find shopping carnivals, live music, seafood festivals, and open-air performances on different parts of Phuket during December, culminating with a huge celebration on New Year’s Eve. If you don’t want to party, enjoy the ambiance! Other things to do in Phuket with kids include visiting the Big Buddha atop Nakkerd Hill or the Phuket Night Market!

Thailand Vacation Rentals: villa rentals & more | Vrbo

Reserve your Phuket Tour here with Viator!

Dubai, UAE

A young boy wearing swim trunks stands on a beach with one of the Best Family Hotels in Dubai in the distance.

Christmas kicks off early in Dubai, so consider the whole month of December a celebration! Though this may not be the winter wonderland you expect, it’s great for a milder warm-weather vacation. Temperatures reach around 70 degrees in December, and the entire city overflows with spectacular decorations. Where else can you spot a super tall Christmas tree alongside soaring skyscrapers and palm trees? Only in Dubai! See classic attractions like the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, in new surroundings. Kids will be wowed by the magical Burj Khalifa Fountain Show! Adventurous families can even travel to the desert to ride a camel or sand-surf with companies such as Platinum Heritage, Desert Safari Dubai, or Arabian Adventures. Kids will also love the Dubai Dolphinarium, Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, and LEGOLAND. If you miss the cold weather back home, you can always check out Dubai’s indoor ski resort!

RELATED ARTICLE: Best Things To Do In Dubai With Kids

Choose your Tour in Dubai with Viator here!

Where to Stay in Dubai with Kids

If you need somewhere to stay in Dubai with kids, we have some suggestions for your upcoming vacation to one of the best hot places to visit in December with kids! Try the Grand Hyatt Hotel and Residences Dubai, which has a Kids’ Club and spacious suites. For a secluded stay on the incredible Palm Jumeirah, book a room at Rixos The Palm Hotel and Suites Dubai. Other options for families include The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, Le Méridien Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, and Jumeirah Beach Hotel.

RELATED ARTICLE: The 12 Best Family Hotels in Dubai

Happy Travels!

Girl in dress and straw hat in front of blue and pink shops in Cartagena, Colombia.
Photo Courtesy: Marina Nicholl

We hope you liked this list of 11 Hot Places to Visit in December that Families Will Love! This list is sure to answer that nagging question of “where to vacation in December with kids“? With so many great options to choose from, you never have to worry about where to go during the December holiday break! Enjoy vacationing with your kids!

RELATED ARTICLE: 12 Best Colorful Towns For Families

*Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the attractions, accommodations, or things to do on this list may be closed. Please ensure availability before making your decision. 

*This post may contain affiliate links that may earn us a small commission, at no additional cost to you. Affiliate links in no way inform the hotels, sights, products, or other recommendations included in our articles. All opinions and recommendations expressed here are compiled from submissions submitted by the generous members of our Families Who Love To Travel community.


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The Families Love Travel Team has a zest for life and an even bigger passion for globetrotting! Comprised of real-life travel professionals, we work hard behind the scenes to provide dynamic solutions for adventuring with children. Our enthusiastic team understands the challenges that often accompany traveling with kids and is committed to making Families Love Travel an inclusive space to convey these experiences.
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