We just returned from a much needed spring break. These past winter months in Chicago had worn us down - it evened snowed the day we left (causing a departure delay due to de-icing...and it was late-April!) - and we were all in dire need of sunshine. A quick flight to Miami followed by an even quicker flight to the big island of the Bahamas was all it took to get us out of our winter rut.
Our resort of choice, the Wyndham Viva Fortuna Beach was just right: the beautiful ocean view, the spotless, white sand beach, and the crystal clear, warm Bahamian waters were all we needed to enjoy some uninterrupted family together time. The resort had a wide range of fun activities that appealed to all the members of our family: Our son, Daniel, age 10, took advantage of the ping-pong tables, the giant chess set, air hockey, and the fun resort staff encouraged him to take part in everything from dart tournaments to pool diving. Our daughter, Chiara, age 18 months, couldn't get enough of the gated toddler appropriate park and the just-right baby pool. Mommy and Daddy enjoyed having a drink on our patio overlooking the ocean and the starlit sky after the kids went to bed. More than anything, we all enjoyed the beach, where we swam, snorkeled, and built sandcastles, and the pool, where Chiara swam around in a toddler raft while the rest of us splashed around or played Marco Polo.
This was our first-time-ever staying at an all-inclusive resort, and let me tell you, it will be hard to go back to traditional non-inclusive hotel stays. All activities, food and drinks were included in our stay. There was a wide selection of healthy foods (and of course, treats for dessert!) at a serve yourself buffet that made it easy to quickly choose a meal so we could all simply sit down and enjoy. Booster seats and highchairs were always on hand. Since we didn't have to wait around for servers, we were able to eat and go enjoy the rest of the day. Not having to carry a purse/wallet around everywhere and not having to haggle over bills was priceless. We did choose to dine for two evenings at the on-site Italian restaurant, Cafe' Viva, where we savoured the brick-oven fired pizzas (and we're an Italian-American family, so we're picky when it comes to pizza!). The beach cafe' served snack fare and drinks, ideal for soothing after-swim hunger pains.
Among the more unforgettable moments: watching toddler Chiara dip her toes into the ocean for the very first time: she squealed with delight and would have dived right into the waves had we not stopped her, and scuba diving with Daniel: he was Jr. certified at the PADI 4* dive center located right at the resort and we did a 15 ft. dive together as buddies.
Our family gives our trip to the Bahamas a 4 star rating - in fact, we wish we could have extended our five-day vacation by at least a couple of days. The stress-free, all-inclusive resort concept and the wide range of on-site activities freed up our schedule, allowing us to spend more time having fun together as a family, making for a priceless spring break vacation.
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