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10 Best Family Vacation Movies of all time

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Christmas is just around the corner; for many, that means vacation time. Family vacation movies are the perfect way to get into the holiday spirit. It doesn’t matter how busy you are; you can always take some time off to watch your favorite vacation movies. We’ve picked the 10 best vacation movies for families to bring you laughter and holiday cheer.

Best Family Vacation Movies

TV Guide Description

10 Best Family Vacation Movies

Genre

Adventure/comedy/romace/drama/action

Total Listings

10

1. National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983)

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

One of the most iconic vacation movies ever made, National Lampoon’s Vacation stars Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo as they take their kids on a cross-country road trip from Chicago to Los Angeles. This movie is jam-packed with laughs and misadventures making it a great pick for any vacation night!

2. Home Alone (1990)

Home Alone popular christmas movies

Another classic among the vacation movies, Home Alone follows Kevin McCallister (Macaulay Culkin) as he accidentally gets left behind when his family leaves for vacation. After he realizes that two burglars are trying to rob his Home, he comes up with ingenious ways to protect his house and ensure the robbers never get inside.

3. Father of the Bride (1991)

Father of the Bride Vacation Movies

This beloved vacation film stars Steve Martin as a father struggling to come to terms with his daughter’s upcoming wedding. It features plenty of comical and heartfelt moments, making it a great vacation-time pick for both young and old audiences.

The movie embodies everything that vacation movies should be – entertaining, funny, and full of emotion. From the touching father-daughter moments between George and Annie to their hilarious interactions with Franck Eggelhoffer (Martin Short), Father of the Bride offers something for everyone. Plus, it’s the perfect movie to watch if you’re feeling nostalgic or need a good laugh. 

4. The Santa Clause (1990)

The Santa Clause Christmas movies on Disney Plus

The Santa Clause is one of the classic feel-good vacation movies. It stars Tim Allen as a divorced dad who accidentally kills Santa Claus and takes on the responsibility of delivering presents to children worldwide. This movie follows Scott Calvin as he learns what it means to be Santa Claus and how to use his newfound magical powers for good. 

The Santa Clause has a heartwarming message: no matter the circumstances, family always comes first. In this film, Scott’s commitment to being a father is highlighted throughout as he strives to make things right for his son Charlie, even if it means taking on the biggest job.

5. The Parent Trap (1998)

The Parent Trap Vacation Movies

The Parent Trap (1998) is one of the classic vacation movies that will always have a special place in our hearts. It tells the story of identical twin sisters, Hallie and Annie, separated at birth by their divorced parents. When they miraculously meet at summer camp, the girls hatch a plan to switch places and reunite their family. 

The film is full of heartfelt moments and laughter-filled hijinks along the way. If you’re looking for an enjoyable vacation movie with your family or friends, The Parent Trap should be on your list. 

Also check: Best Christmas Movies You Should Watch this Holiday

6. Up (2009)

Up 2009 Vacation Movies

Up (2009) is an animated film by Pixar that follows the adventures of a 78-year-old widower named Carl and his 8-year-old stowaway, Russell. The movie follows their journey to Paradise Falls in South America, where they explore the wonders of nature while confronting life’s challenges together. With its uplifting story and beautiful animation, Up is a great vacation movie for viewers of all ages.

One of the best things about vacation movies like Up is that they remind us to appreciate our own lives and enjoy every moment we have with family and friends. Watching Up can bring back fond memories of vacations past or get you excited for your next vacation adventure. 

7. Lorax (2012)

Lorax 2012 Vacation Movies

How about some environmental awareness and a positive message about the power of making a difference? Lorax is one of those vacation movies that tell an important story while still being fun and entertaining for the whole family. The movie follows the story of Ted, who wants to win over his crush, Audrey, by giving her a real tree instead of the pre-packaged ones from her dad’s company. 

He sets out on a mission to find The Once-ler, the mysterious figure behind the disappearance of all the trees in town. Along his journey, he discovers that true happiness can be found only through taking care of nature. It’s an inspiring and heartwarming message for all ages and provides plenty of laughs along the way! 

8. Madagascar (2005)

Madagascar (2005) vacation movies

If you’re looking for a fun vacation movie to watch with your family or friends, Madagascar (2005) should be at the top of your list! This funny and heart-warming animated adventure follows four unlikely friends – Alex the lion, Marty the zebra, Melman the giraffe, and Gloria the hippo – as they find themselves stranded on an exotic island after a shipwreck. During their vacation in this new home, these four try to survive as wild animals and come up against both natural obstacles and other creatures living on the island.

The humor of this movie shines through with its wacky characters, slapstick comedy routines, and hilarious one-liners that will have everyone laughing out loud. It also has some surprisingly touching moments as the four friends learn to work together and develop creative solutions to make it back to their home in New York City. 

9. The Muppets (2011)

The Muppets (2011) list of Vacation movie

“The Muppets” features beloved characters, a catchy soundtrack, and a storyline that will make you laugh out loud. The movie follows the misadventures of Kermit the Frog and his friends as they embark on an epic road trip across America to save their theater from being demolished by an evil oil baron. They meet new friends, reunite with old ones, and battle against all odds to keep their dream alive.

The movie has something in it for everyone – adventure-seekers will appreciate the thrilling quests taken by our unlikely heroes; music fans will love the abundance of toe-tapping tunes, and those who enjoy some good old-fashioned comedy will be delighted by the humorous dialogue. 

10. Brave (2012)

Brave 2012 Vacation Movies

If you’re looking for a vacation movie that will make the whole family laugh and touch their hearts, Brave (2012) is an excellent pick. Brave follows the story of young Princess Merida, who lives in the mystical Scottish kingdom of DunBroch. She embarks on a quest to end an ancient curse that threatens her kingdom and discovers important lessons about bravery, true love, and family loyalty along the way. 

The visuals center around beautiful landscapes of Scotland’s highlands – perfect for vacation viewing. Brave is also laced with humor and heartwarming moments that everyone can relate to, making it an enjoyable watch, no matter your age. With its humorous and heartwarming story, Brave is a vacation-must watch that your family will love.

Also check: 10 Best Nickelodeon Christmas Movies to Watch this Holiday

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