The idea of “traveling with your dad” is usually a collection of cliches and none of them are really that great. There’s the stereotypical scene of a piqued patriarch looking up in the rearview mirror and lecturing the rambunctious kids in the backseat that he has no problem ending the family road trip early and “turning this car right around!” And let’s not forget the universal image of a floundering father trying to engage a bored and sullen teen (their eyes locked on to a phone screen) during a summer vacation. Or hey, maybe your childhood travels were actually blissful bonding moments with your pops.
But whatever your past getaways were like, traveling with your father as an adult can be a worthwhile and enriching experience. Here are just seven ideas of trips to take with your dad:
Catch a Game Away from Home
Is there any activity that’s more dad-centric than going to a sports game together? It’s a great opportunity to spend some quality time watching his favorite pro-sport (that’s probably also your favorite pro-sport) and create a memory you’ll both cherish. An away game featuring his home team is preferable, but any game at a stadium that’s historic or iconic is also great.
For football, consider flying off to Green Bay, Wisconsin (home of the legendary Lambeau Field) or Dallas (where the impressive AT&T Stadium resides). Dad loves baseball? You HAVE to take him to Chicago’s Wrigley Field or Fenway Park in Boston. If you’re looking at hockey, the PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh and the Bell Centre in Montreal are both considered must-visit rinks for fans. And if you and your father are both fans of the OTHER football (AKA soccer), than consider holidays to Manchester, England (to go to Old Trafford) or Barcelona, Spain (to see Camp Nou)…which are the home grounds of two of the most loved/hated teams in the sport (Manchester United and FC Barcelona).
Tour Somewhere Historic
Dads like history. Maybe that’s a stereotype, but there’s a reason the latest bestselling book about World War II tends to be the hottest Father’s Day gift. So for dads who love history, a trip to a historical location may be the perfect fit. Just think of how cool it would be to tour the battlefields of Gettysburg with your dad. Imagine the bonding the two of you can have while exploring the history-filled city of Savannah, Georgia. And picture how awe-struck you’ll both be at Machu Picchu in Peru.
Visit His Homeland or Hometown
If you’ve never had the chance to go with your dad to where he grew up (assuming it’s not where you also grew up), you should. Seeing where your father came from and hearing him reminisce and detail memories from his childhood and early life can be an experience unlike any other.
As Chinese-American filmmaker Kenneth Eng told us, when we profiled his documentary project of traveling to China with his father and filming him retrace his journey to escape poverty and communism, “I think engaging across generations can bring families closer and help people understand themselves better.”
Check Out a Museum for Something He Loves
It may sound crazy, but believe us: no matter the passion, there is a museum for it. Your father loves rock music? Then go to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland! Maybe he’s a classic car guy, so you take him to the Northeast Classic Car Museum in upstate New York or the Gilmore Car Museum just outside Kalamazoo, Michigan. Even if he’s a fan of PEZ, the tiny brick candy famous for its toy dispensers, you can go to the Burlingame Museum of Pez Memorabilia in California OR the company’s official visitor center in Orange, Connecticut. Start with a web search of “museum” and whatever your father is into and start planning.
The only thing that can rival the unique experience of a father-son fishing trip is a father-daughter fishing trip. What we’re saying here is that fishing with dad can work for EVERYONE. And if you think all fishing trips are the same, you’re wrong.
Head out to Montana, which is considered to be the best state in America for fly-fishing (the Hemingway-approved style that uses artificial “flies”) and catch some trout. Take a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, including a day or two spent deep sea fishing (which requires a boat trip out on the ocean to go after huge fish) and try to reel in a marlin. Make your way to Lake Nipissing in Ontario, which is home to world-class ice fishing (the cold-weather method where fishers stand on top frozen lakes and have to cut holes to the water) and pull out some pike or perch. Travel to San Francisco, a fun city with lots of attractions…and an abundance of spots for shore fishing (standing on a dock or bridge with your line in the water) to catch anything from bass to rainbow trout.
Take a Brewery Tour
There’s nothing better than grabbing a beer with your dad. So why not hit up some of the top breweries in the world to throw back a pint or two? The Guinness Brewery in Dublin may be overrun with tourists…but there’s a reason: It’s one of the most famous brewery tours in the world! A visit to the Dogfish Head Brewery in southeast Delaware is perfect for any craft beer fanatic. And if you’re willing to fly to Germany, check out the Benedictine Abbey Weihenstephan Brewery in Bavaria, which is the oldest brewery in the world.
See a Natural Wonder in Person
Taking a trip to see something that’s so astounding and awe-inspiring is probably one of the best reasons to travel and can be a life-changing experience. So why not plan such a journey with your father? You can travel to the southwest and take in the majesty of the Grand Canyon, head to South America and tour the wildlife grandeur of the Galapagos Islands, or fly to northeast Australia to explore the underwater splendor of the Great Barrier Reef.
Have a favorite trip you’ve taken with your dad? Tell us about it in the comments below!