I heard it perfectly from a friend today, and he said there’s a vacation and then there’s a trip. Vacation, as my friend described, is when you don’t take the kids. There’s time to relax, create memories as a couple and less stress. A trip is when you take your children and your building amazing memories as a family but at times it can be chaotic.

There are moments where you feel like everything is perfect and you’re living a fairytale and creating those amazing family bonding time and then, on the other hand, has those moments when you’re wondering why you brought your kids at all and everything feels like forced fun.

But in the end, the good memories outweigh the craziness of a family trip.

I have been over to Europe a couple times, but never with my husband and kids. We started the trip in Monaco. But before I go into the details of the trip I’ll first tell you I hired a travel concierge to help me with everything. I told my husband for his first experience, and since we are taking the kids, this needed to be a five-star experience.

We flew into London and then over to Nice. From there we took a helicopter over to Monaco. You can drive there by car but with traffic, it’s about an hour and 30 minutes by helicopter it’s an amazing experience flying over the water while gazing at half million Dollar yachts below, and it’s only a seven-minute flight.

We stayed at Hermitage Hotel. The rooms were very French and very cute while looking over one of the harbors. We were only there for two nights so it was a quick trip. We rented a private yacht and explored Monaco. A spot for dinner I would recommend is Chèvre Dor in Ez. Which is about a 20-minute drive from the hotel up on the hillside with incredible views.

Next stop was Rome. I had been to Rome before but thought the history there was amazing and wanted my family to experience it. I think if I go again it would definitely not be in the summer it was about 90° and really crowded. We did, however, do a private tour which is nice because you skip all the lines and Rome is crazy busy and kids lines and the heat is not a good combination.

We saw the Vatican which, to be honest, it’s fun to do once, but could’ve skipped that with kids. They just won’t appreciate it unless they were older.  Even as an adult one time through the Vatican is enough for me. The next stop was The Colosseum. This is so cool and the tour is a bit shorter, I definitely recommend seeing this and its something that’s fun to do more than once.

In Rome, we stayed at the Majestic Hotel. This was a great hotel because the location was near the iconic Spanish steps and Trevi Fountain. Not to mention the amazing shopping.  The photos in this post were all done in Rome by a company called Flytographer. I’ve used them before on other family vacations, and they do a great job.  We only did two nights in Rome, and then our last stop was Amalfi.

I have never been there and this was definitely my favorite stop of the whole trip.

The hotel we stayed at was called Belmond Hotel Caruso. The views from this hotel are incredible. It’s about a 15-minute drive down the windy roads to get to the beach, but I definitely would recommend staying up on the hill versus close to the beach. The Amalfi coast is known for its insane views and incredible coast.

We also rented a private Yacht while being there. Fun fact, our boat captain said he took Matthew McConaughey the week before in the same yacht so needless to say we feel pretty cool. We took the boat along the coast and headed to Capri Island. We stopped in Capri, docked the boat to grab some gelato, checked out a few of the cute shops but didn’t venture into town much because the only way up was to take a taxi or train and the line to get on was chaotic.

We jump back on the yacht and cruised along the coast while stopping at some incredible caves, snorkeling jumping off the boat. This was probably my favorite thing of the whole trip and we definitely build some amazing family memories.

The food in Europe is amazing you’ll be surprised with how much pasta and gelato you eat, but everything is so fresh that it doesn’t feel heavy.

This trip was incredible and definitely the five-star family experience I was looking for. My next visit out to Europe I will take just my husband and go there for vacation, but I was glad that we were able to also experience this as a family this year!

To hear more about the trip, check out this week’s Date Your Wife Podcast Episode HERE!