I'm going to give you 5 rather pricey vacation destinations (and expensive hotels to match). According to Fox, they're vacations that don't cost a bundle. Not quite.
1. The Grand Hotel, Point Clear, Ala.
No offense to anyone living there, but I can't imagine why I would want to go to Alabama in the middle of the summer. Its hot, humid, and absolutely nothing there. But that won't stop you from spending over $250 and up per night at the Grand Hotel that apparently appeals to kids because of its "pool and large waterslide". Actually, the Super 8 probably has a pool too, and most kids aren't going to care either way.
2. Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
I have to admit that as theme parks go, paying 75 cents for hot dogs and rides sounds like a pretty good deal. They recommend the Casa Blanca Inn, which they say is pricey but worth it because of the fireplace - just what I want in summertime - and a continental breakfast. Last I checked, a continental breakfast involved a prepackaged danish and coffee, certainly not worth the $165 and up per night price tag.
3. The Empress Hotel, Victoria, British Columbia
The Empress Hotel. That's right, an inexpensive vacation somehow involves staying at the Empress Hotel for $224 (US) and up every night.
4. Great Basin National Park, Nevada
Now we're talking. Camping runs free to $12/night. Finally Fox has a recommendation that I approve of. Forget the glitz and the merchandise and the licensed TV characters - take your kids out into nature and let them enjoy themselves free of consumerism and slick marketing ads.
5. Isla Mujeres, Quintana Roo, Mexico
This is where we see the difference between American hospitality and other cultures. Head down to Mexico (which of course will cost you a bit in airfare) and instead of $165 and a continental breakfast, you get the same beach front location, a gourmet breakfast, and happy hour drinks for $140 a night! If you include other costs this still is not a bargain bin vacation but I bet it will be a lot more fun swimming with whale sharks than listening to "Papa Doo Run Run" while riding a roller coaster.
We've planned our summer vacation. We are heading north to hill country and staying in an inexpensive hotel while touring the local wine vineyards for 2 days. Its not a week of camping, but you can bet Mickey won't be anywhere to be found.