Staycation Tips With Toddlers

Staycation Tips With Toddlers. I have to admit when I see everyone lounging by hotel pools or taking these glamorous local vacations, I often wonder how they manage it. How do you afford it? Where do you go? How many snacks do you pack for kids and how do you carry luggage and kids in and out of a hotel? (Hint, get a hotel luggage cart and put it all on there!)


I started by looking on Sparkle Momm Marketing’s website for inspiration. Trip Advisor, Yelp, and Google are great tools as well. You can also check Groupon for coupons or if you have a specific hotel or resort in mind look at their website and social media for deals. Also, if you can stay on weekdays, it tends to be cheaper to stay in a hotel.

We have done very little traveling with kids, but the one thing I knew we needed was a suite with a separate bedroom to put the kids to bed in while Mom and Dad stay up. Most suite rooms will have room to add a blow-up mattress, cot, or extra bed from the hotel to the room. If using a bed or crib from a hotel, call and confirm ahead of time. I also knew that I didn’t want to be too far away from home (kids stayed one night with their grandparents to give Mom and Dad one night to celebrate a late anniversary) so I narrowed my search down to areas within about half-hour. I also knew I needed an epic pool for my husband and the kids, but one safe enough that I could take the kids alone.

Here are a few that looked like a lot of fun and were considered:

The Holiday Inn Scottsdale Resort

The Great Wolf Lodge (read our review here)

Arizona Grand (read our review here)

Pointe Hilton Tapatio Cliffs Resort

Pointe Hilton At The Peak

Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Gainey Ranch

Resort Life

I chose the Pointe Hilton At The Peak because of the combination of the lazy river, waterslide, and easy access to amenities.

This baja step-style pool where you can stand up was a big hit with little kids.

Mini golf in your swimsuit to stay cool.

While cabanas can be expensive to rent, if you have a big family, or want a designated spot for (older) kids to return to it can definitely be a good idea.

Sunscreen, shade, and hydration are super important in our Arizona summers. We brought our mesh bag with our reusable bottles of water, as well as a couple of frozen ones to hold to cool off and drink when they melt.


I might overpack, just a little, ok a lot. But I would rather have extra stuff than not have something I need. Even though we were not staying long, I used our largest suitcase to have plenty of room for clothes, swimsuits, toiletries, and a few luxuries from home like blankets for kids. I also packed two bathing suits because I hate putting wet suits on kids. That way we could hang one to dry while swimming in the other.

I brought bubble bath as well as some Crayola Bath Dropz that change the color of the water to get my kids to take a bath and wash off all the chlorine. I brought a cooler with lots of drinks to keep us hydrated, and some fresh fruit to eat was able to fit it in our mini-fridge. It came in handy having lots of water, however, I was grateful that the hotel supplied ice water throughout the whole place.


I packed snacks I knew the kids would eat because, well you know, kids. I brought breakfast food and planned on eating other meals at the resort while we were there. I did however forget to look at what was open during our stay. Resorts have been short-staffed lately and some of the restaurants may not have as long of hours, and some of the little stores where you can grab something real quick to eat or drink may not be open. We did end up ordering out and eating dinner in our room on our coffee table, and the kids had a blast!

Travel Hacks

A few things I do to save time or make life easier.

Use your hotel-provided laundry bag to throw wet clothes in the suitcase before checking out.

Don’t forget the seat for the potty if you have young kids. I pack mine inside of a plastic bag to keep it from touching anything else.

Let your kids participate in the packing. Have them pack their bathing suit to get them excited about the pool, or snow coat if heading to the cold. Give them a limited space (we use backpacks) and let them bring what they think they will need. You can obviously sneak out anything you don’t really need. We started at a young age to teach them responsibilities.

Most importantly, remember to HAVE FUN and try to get some rest and relaxation!! After all, it’s supposed to be a mini-vacation for you! Do you have any staycation tips for toddlers?

Kim is a chef, dishwasher, dry cleaner, housekeeper, landscaper, snack fetcher, photographer and personal assistant to toddler twins. Curently homeschooling her three year olds and loving teaching preschool. She loves exploring everything with her kids and photographing every minute of it. Follow her on Instagram @phoenixwithtwins.

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