Top Ten Getaways for Tiny Travelers
|Teton Village, Wyoming (Hemera)|
Teton Village, Wyoming
(307)733-2292 or (888)DEEP-SNOW
Located 12 miles from the town of Jackson, this popular ski resort provides an authentic "Wild West" atmosphere as a backdrop for exciting skiing, a safe and well-regarded ski school, and an exceptional childcare program. And if your family needs a break from the slopes, Jackson Hole's proximity to the Grand Tetons, Yellowstone National Park, and the National Elk Refuge provides the opportunity to experience the breathtaking beauty of this part of the country in hiking boots.
The Kid's Ranch, licensed by the state, is open for children 2 months to 5 years from 8:30am-4:30pm during the entire ski season. Facilities include a six crib nursery and separate playroom for babies and toddlers ages 2 to -18 months (reservations required). Pre-schoolers from 19 months to 5 years enjoy their own toy-stocked playroom, arts and crafts, games, snow play and sledding, lunch, and rest time. Childcare rates range from approximately $47-$63/half-day and $58/day with lunch and snacks provided. The caring staff is CPR and first-aid trained. Evening babysitting can also be arranged through the Kid's Ranch. Kids 3 to 5 years can join the Rough Riders introduction-to-skiing program, where they learn to turn and stop on beginner runs, then participate in 2-hour group lessons in both the morning and afternoon. Older children (6-13 years) can take snowboard and skiing lessons in the morning or all day.
Taos Ski Valley
Taos Ski Valley, NM
(505)776-2291 or (800)776-1111
The natural beauty is reminiscent of the Alps, the snow is soft and light, and you are surrounded by the influence of Native American and Spanish cultures in this southwestern haven for skiers and families. Eighteen miles from the town, you can visit the Taos Pueblo, the multi-layered adobe dwelling of the Native Americans who have inhabited this community for 1,000 years. (Open daily to the publiccheck for closings due to religious observances.) Artists flock to Taos and art lovers can browse for hours in the many galleries and museums.
Excellent daycare is available at the ski resort's Kindercare for a maximum of 15 infants (from 6 weeks old) and 30 toddlers (up to 2 years old), so be sure to reserve a spot in advance. For babies, the ratio is one staff member for every two infants. Toddlers enjoy a well-stocked playroom with toys, games, and arts and crafts, as well as many opportunities to play in the snow. Full day care is $55 including lunch and snacks; half-day and multi-day discounts are also available. The ski school is often noted as one of the country's best. Based in the Kinderkafig, the Junior Elite Ski School has two levels: one for toilet-trained 3- to 5-year-olds and another for 6- to 12-year-olds. The younger group's program combines lessons, snow play, and indoor activities with one instructor for every six children. The older group receives more formal instruction for two hours in the morning, plus afternoon supervised skiing. The fee is $66/day and includes lunch and hot chocolate. The day care staff and ski instructors can provide you with a list of evening babysitters.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication