You’ve read our article on the best summer vacation movies for adults – but don’t worry, we haven’t forgotten about the kids! We know how hard it can be to find summer activities to keep kids occupied, but these feel-good summer flicks really do the trick (for a few hours, anyway). These are our favorite summer movies for kids.
The Parent Trap
This classic summer-camp film was originally released in 1961. The remake, released in 1998, is sure to be a quick favorite with the kids. This is an adorable, warm-hearted flick that follows the lives of two identical twins separated at birth, who accidentally meet again at summer camp when they are 11 years old. Despite the film now being nearly two decades old, the film still makes for an enjoyable afternoon treat that the kids will love.
This gorgeous film is set on an island in the Florida keys, and will definitely get you in the mood for a dip in the ocean – keep a blow-up pool handy, if you can! The film is about a young boy who spends the summer with his uncle, but discovers another friendly resident in the area – Flipper, the dolphin. They soon become the best of friends. Kids will love this charming story, and you’ll love the sweet summer shots of the crystal clear ocean. Win-win!
Pixar and Disney teamed up on this underwater animation film, which became an instant classic after it was released in 2003. Set in Australia’s iconic Great Barrier Reef, the story is about a Clownfish on a mission to save his son, Nemo, when he is captured by scuba divers. Finding Nemo is the best-selling DVD title of all time, so you know it’s worth the watch.
It may be the oldest pick on this list, but it’s no secret that The Goonies remains a true cult classic that has stood the test of time. The plot follows a group of young friends who set out on a quest to find pirate’s treasure in the hope of saving their neighborhood from demolition. This is a great story about friendship and adventure – older elementary school kids will love it.
The Little Mermaid
If your kids are anything like mine, they love the classic animated Disney films – and The Little Mermaid is no exception. Released in 1989, the popularity of this film as a summer favorite has stood the test of time. Based on a Danish fairy tale, it’s impossible not to become enamoured with this magical story where a mermaid falls in love with a human. This film has a delightful soundtrack and plenty of sing-a-long songs that kids young and old will enjoy.
Lilo & Stitch
When you can’t afford a tropical Hawaiian holiday, this endearing children’s film is the next best thing. This animated movie is about a Hawaiian girl, Lilo, who finds an unusual creature that she loves and cares for like she would a dog. The plot thickens when it turns out her new friend happens to be an alien from another planet. This is a sweet little flick the whole family will enjoy.
High School Musical 2
Teenagers will enjoy this film about a group of friends working at a country club during summer break. The film has lovely summer scenery and a killer singalong soundtrack – and you’ll soon see that the characters in the movie often burst into song. This is second film in a total of three, so a great way to keep bored teenagers occupied for the whole day would be to hire out the whole set from the video store!
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
One for kids in high school, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is a delightfully playful film that you will enjoy watching, too. It really captures the spirit of summer. You’ll likely already know the storyline: Ferris is a cheeky senior high school student who takes the day off and spends the day having fun, duping his parents and teachers in the process. It’s a charming film guaranteed to put you in a good mood.
What are your favorite summer vacation movies to watch with your kids?