These 7 Caribbean Resorts Have Best-in-Class Childcare

Baby Concierge, anyone?

June 8, 2023 6:32 am
kid friendly resorts
From water parks to baby gear lending, these resorts make traveling with kids a breeze
Getty / Danica Killelea

“Babysitting with Palm trees.” That’s what we used to call “vacationing” with our littles. Same-old, same-old, just with a slightly more tropical backdrop. I mean, if you still have to get the kids down for afternoon naps, find mac and cheese at every meal and be room-bound by a 7 p.m. bedtime, are you really even on vacation? This was us until we discovered the pure elation of vacationing at a resort that gets it. Places that understand how you want to be with your kids sometimes (most of the time?) on your vacation, but all parents need a break. A blissfully uninterrupted afternoon on a beach lounge chair without someone begging you to snorkel with them. Someone else to slather on the damn sunscreen. Heaven!

We’ve found seven resorts, all with easy direct flights from most cities in the United States, that offer A+ childcare whatever the kid’s age so everyone can feel rested, relaxed and actually on vacation.

Splash Island Water Park
Splash Island Water Park

Melia Caribe Beach Resort, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Part of the huge Melia resort compound in the DR, this all-inclusive resort, nestled into the very best part of the very best beach, has incredible options for families. A huge splash park on property with everything from baby pools to teen slides features comfortable pool-side loungers for parents. All-inclusive buffets mean littles can have pasta or pizza at literally every meal (we’ll leave the vetoes up to you), and daily structured activities for kids and teens include parkour obstacle courses through the pools and beach soccer tournaments for weeklong bragging rights. Preschoolers will have a blast at The Kidsdom (ages 3+), a special just-for-them club filled with games and toys.

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Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, Florida

Happy kids, mean happy, relaxed parents. With this in mind, the Ritz on Amelia offers dozens of activities that feature fully supervised play, plus an opportunity to learn more about beautiful Amelia Island and the ocean beyond. The Ritz Kids program includes daily activities for aged five to 12 where kids learn about sharks, coral reefs and nature on the island. Choose between half ($100) or full day ($175) camp. Or schedule a “Kids Night Out’” excursion on Fridays, which is a supervised night full of movies and games. This property also offers an “Indoor Pirate Campout” that includes a pirate-themed tent, camping lantern, treasure chest, pirate map and all the fixings for a magical sleep.

Beaches' Waterpark
Beaches water park

Beaches, Turks and Caicos

This all-inclusive property, set on gorgeous Grace Bay in Turks and Caicos, caters specifically to families and has the expansive kid itineraries to prove it. From certified nannies in the nursery for babies aged zero to two (open 9am-9pm) all the way up to programming for tweens and teens (who have fully separate activities), this is one resort where you never have to worry that your kid is being too loud at the dinner table. With amazing live family shows every night, a huge water park with lazy river, world-class snorkeling just down the beach, private babysitting by certified sitters (many of which have special needs and autism experience) and a property where your kids can bump into Sesame Street characters at every turn, you will feel very smart booking your next family vacation here.

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Teens' Club
The Teens’ Club at Grand Velas
Grand Velas

Grand Velas, Rivera Nayarit, Mexico

This gorgeous, all-inclusive, four-star property just launched a brand-new indoor-outdoor kids club with a climbing wall, illuminated dance floor and cinema. But our favorite part of this resort’s childcare menu may just be the Baby Concierge service. No need to lug all the kid things from home — instead, your concierge will make sure you have everything you need on arrival, from bottles and bottle warmers to cribs, strollers and bouncy chairs. Perhaps best of all, your Baby Concierge can also set up in-room babysitting, which means you can head out on a vacation date night while your little one snoozes in the room under a kind and watchful eye.

Xplor Fuego
Xplor Fuego
Hotel Xcaret

Hotel Xcaret, Playa del Carmen, Mexico

Got active, adventurous big kids? Ready to get them off TikTok for a week? Included in your stay at this 900-suite resort is admission to the hotel’s eight (EIGHT!) different adventure parks. Pick a new park every day of your stay and never, ever have a boring minute. From zip-lining and driving amphibious vehicles at Xplor, to swimming through underground caves at Xplor Fuego, to an (included) ferry to nearby Isla Mujeres, this is a high-adrenalin vacation perfect for little kids who are quickly becoming big ones.

Franklyn D. Resort & Spa, Jamaica

A visit to this Jamaican resort comes with one very special parenting perk. Each family is assigned their own nanny who stays with you from check in to check out. Your care provider, who works only with your family for the duration of your stay, focuses on making your vacation magical for your kids with games, activities and nap-sitting while you enjoy the resort’s adult amenities. The nannies here are childcare experts and are also all CPR certified, which means you can take in a treatment at the Seagrape Spa without a care in the world.

Wonder of the Seas
Wonder of the Seas
Royal Caribbean

Royal Caribbean’s Wonder of the Seas

While not technically a resort, this floating fun ship departing from Cape Canaveral, Florida, deserves mention because it offers some of the most spectacular kid programming in the vacation world. First off, if you’ve got big-ish kids, the whole ship is a kids’ club. There’s nowhere to get lost (no, they will not fall overboard), so kids can run and roam as your comfort allows. Huge water slides, surfing simulators, mini golf courses and a 10-story-high zip line would be more than enough to keep them happy. But Royal Caribbean ships also feature an extensive kids club program called Adventure Ocean Aquanauts (3-5), Explorers (6-8), Voyagers (9-12) and Teens (12+) where they can run experiments, get artistic, or hit the teen lounge at night for video games, foosball and dancing with other kids their age. Hire a babysitter through the Sitters at Sea program to come to your stateroom for nap time or when you want to head out on date night.


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