Best Children's Books About Vacation

49 Children's Books About Vacation

Updated Jan. 19, 2019
At the Boardwalk book
#1
At the Boardwalk
Written and illustrated by Kelly Ramsdell Fineman
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

From sunrise to sunset, the attractions of a beach boardwalk include popcorn, taffy, arcade games, and a dazzling amusement park.

The Lost Stars book
#2
The Lost Stars
Written and illustrated by Hannah Cumming
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Everyone has become so focused on bright lights and new technology that they have forgotten about the stars. Fed up with not being appreciated, the stars decide to leave their posts and go on holiday. But what will happen when the lights go out? A charming picture book, from an emerging new talent, warning us to appreciate the natural beauty of the world, before it is lost.

The Magical World of Strega Nona book
#3
The Magical World of Strega Nona
Written and illustrated by Tomie dePaola
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Enter the marvelous, magical world of Strega Nona! This wonderful treasury features six favorite stories about Strega Nona and her sidekick, the bumbling Big Anthony—including the original Strega Nona, as well as Strega Nona Meets Her Match, Strega Nona: Her Story, Strega Nona Takes a Vacation, Strega Nona’s Harvest, and Strega Nona’s Gift. Tomie’s brand-new introductions to each story take readers behind the scenes to see how Strega Nona’s world has developed through the years. Also including an original lullaby—with sheet music and a CD—a map of Strega Nona’s town, and some fun recipes, this collection will give readers and music lovers much to savor. Strega Nona, Tomie dePaola’s beloved “grandmother witch,” has been enchanting readers since the publication of the Caldecott Honor Award–winning Strega Nona in 1975. Strega Nona’s gentle humor, irrepressible spirit, and matter-of-fact approach to life have won her legions of fans young and old, and the American Library Association called her “an enduring character who has charmed generations of children.”

Home and Dry book
#4
Home and Dry
Written and illustrated by Sarah Smith
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

It’s always raining on the island where the Paddlings live. But for a quirky family that loves everything and anything to do with water, that’s perfect! Once a year, though, the summer comes, the rain stops, and the Paddlings have to look for water elsewhere. Which means that they won’t be in for a surprise visitor! What happens next is an exciting story of danger and rescue.

Tilly's Staycation book
#5
Tilly's Staycation
Written and illustrated by Gillian Hibbs
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

As all of her friends embark on exciting vacations, Tilly finds it hard to believe that she and her mother will have fun staying home.

The Night Before Summer Vacation book
#6
The Night Before Summer Vacation
Written by Natasha Wing and illustrated by Julie Durrell
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A little girl and her family are getting ready to go on vacation . . . or at least they are trying to. In the effort to pack everything that will be needed, there’s bound to be something overlooked, and what that is provides a funny ending to this meter-perfect “twist” on Clement Moore’s classic.

Secret of Shadow Ranch #5 book
#7
Secret of Shadow Ranch #5
Written by Carolyn Keene
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Nancy is looking forward to a fun-filled vacation at Shadow Ranch, but she soon finds herself involved in solving a baffling mystery.

Madeline in London book
#8
Madeline in London
Written and illustrated by Ludwig Bemelmans
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

“In an old house in Paris that was covered with vines lived twelve little girls in two straight lines the smallest one was Madeline.” Nothing frightens Madeline—not tigers, not even mice. With its endearing, courageous heroine, cheerful humor, and wonderful, whimsical drawings of Paris, the Madeline stories are true classics that continue to charm readers even after 75 years! Pepito has moved to England. To help celebrate his birthday, Miss Clavel and the girls pay him a visit. When his mother won’t let Pepito keep one of his birthday presents–a horse–Madeline is more than willing to help out.

The Animals’ Vacation book
#9
The Animals’ Vacation
Written by Shel Haber and illustrated by Jan Haber
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Discover a treasure trove of beautifully illustrated books with our new series, G+D Vintage! Featuring books from our Wonder Books line originally published in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, there’s something for every reader in these timeless stories with classic illustrations. It’s time for the zoo animals to go on vacation! Their plane makes several stops: a forest for the deer, the North Pole for the polar bear, the mountains for the panda, the jungle for the monkey, and more. But after two months away, the animals are happy to be reunited at the zoo–just in time to welcome Mrs. Kangaroo’s baby!

Pussy Cat, Pussy Cat book
#10
Pussy Cat, Pussy Cat
Written and illustrated by Annie Kubler
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-2

Presents the nursery rhyme about the cat that went to London to visit the Queen. On board pages.

Llama Llama Gram and Grandpa book
#11
Llama Llama Gram and Grandpa
Written and illustrated by Anna Dewdney
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

It's an exciting day for Llama Llama; he's going to visit Gram and Grandpa Llama and spend the night! His first night away from homea.and from Mama. But he makes sure to pack everything he needs. And there are so many fun things to do with Gram and Grandpa. It's not until he gets ready for bed that he realizes that he's forgotten something important. Fuzzy Llama! Fortunately, Grandpa Llama has a wonderful solution and soon Llama Llama is having sweet dreams.

A Stone for Sascha book
#12
A Stone for Sascha
Written and illustrated by Aaron Becker
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-9

A girl grieves the loss of her dog in an achingly beautiful wordless epic from the Caldecott Honor-winning creator of Journey. This year's summer vacation will be very different for a young girl and her family without Sascha, the beloved family dog, along for the ride. But a wistful walk along the beach to gather cool, polished stones becomes a brilliant turning point in the girl's grief. There, at the edge of a vast ocean beneath an infinite sky, she uncovers, alongside the reader, a profound and joyous truth. In his first picture book following the conclusion of his best-selling Journey trilogy, Aaron Becker achieves a tremendous feat, connecting the private, personal loss of one child to a cycle spanning millennia -- and delivering a stunningly layered tale that demands to be pored over again and again.

Froggy Goes to Grandma's book
#13
Froggy Goes to Grandma's
Written by Jonathan London and illustrated by Frank Remkiewicz
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Froggy has a ball visiting Grandma! When Froggy and his family go to visit Grandma, they look forward to all kinds of fun: a baseball game, a trip to the amusement park, a visit to the museum to see the Frogga Lisa. But best of all is cooking with Grandma and learning to make her specialty, spaghetti with fly sauce. Froggy’s antics everywhere he goes will delight his many fans.

Mr. Men: Road Trip! book
#14
Mr. Men: Road Trip!
Written by Adam Hargreaves
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Hit the road with the Mr. Men Little Miss crew and get ready to laugh your way across the USA! The Mr. Men Little Miss crew is traveling across America on a road trip that has something for everyone, from Niagara Falls to the Grand Canyon to the Hollywood Walk of Fame. With visits to the biggest and most famous sights–like the Statue of Liberty, the Gateway Arch, and the Golden Gate Bridge–this team is sure to have an adventure anywhere they go!

She Loves You (Yeah, Yeah, Yeah) book
#15
She Loves You (Yeah, Yeah, Yeah)
Written by Ann Hood
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 10-14

The year is 1966. The Vietnam War rages overseas, the Beatles have catapulted into stardom, and twelve-year-old Rhode Island native Trudy Mixer is not thrilled with life. Her best friend, Michelle, has decided to become a cheerleader, everyone at school is now calling her Gertrude (her hated real name), and the gem of her middle school career, the Beatles fan club, has dwindled down to only three other members–the least popular kids at school. And at home, her workaholic father has become even more distant. Determined to regain her social status and prove herself to her father, Trudy looks toward the biggest thing happening worldwide: the Beatles. She is set on seeing them in Boston during their final world tour–and meeting her beloved Paul McCartney. So on a hot August day, unknown to their families, Trudy and crew set off on their journey, each of them with soaring hopes for what lies ahead.

Goldfish on Vacation book
#16
Goldfish on Vacation
Written by Sally Lloyd-Jones and illustrated by Leo Espinosa
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

From a New York Times bestselling author and a rising-star illustrator comes a humorous tale based on an amazing-but-true story about the summer a city fountain was used as a goldfish pond. H, Little O, and Baby Em are stuck in the city for the summer with only their pet goldfish—Barracuda, Patch, and Fiss—for company. It’s looking like it might be a pretty boring vacation, but one day, something exciting happens. Someone starts fixing up the old fountain down the street—the one Grandpa says horses used to drink from before everyone had cars—and a sign appears: “Calling All Goldfish Looking for a Summer Home.” H, Little O, and Baby Em can’t wait to send their goldfish on vacation, and the fish, well, they seem pretty excited too. Based on the true story of Hamilton Fountain in New York City, this charming tale of one special summer will delight readers young and old. Author’s Note included.

Postcards from Venice book
#17
Postcards from Venice
Written and illustrated by Dee Romito
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-13

Twelve-year-old Skyler is in for a summer of adventure in Venice, Italy, as she pursues a dream opportunity in this hilarious MIX novel that’s a companion to The BFF Bucket List.

Spy School Goes South book
#18
Spy School Goes South
Written by Stuart Gibbs
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Ben is taken to Mexico by his nemesis in the hopes that he’ll finally be able to take down SPYDER in this latest addition to the New York Times bestselling Spy School series. Thirteen-year-old Ben Ripley has been caught in the snares of SPYDER more than once and knows well enough to be suspicious of anything that seems too good to be true—despite needing special tutoring in advanced survival techniques. So when Murray Hill finally breaks his silence with an offer to hand over the SPYDER elite, Ben knows that there must be something going on. But his hesitation doesn’t stop the assignment. The Mission: Follow Murray Hill to an undisclosed location with no one else but Erica Hale to identify SPYDER leadership. Once found, contact the CIA to sweep in and finish the job. DO NOT CONTACT SPYDER DIRECTLY. However, as Ben suspected, nothing goes as planned, and what should be an easy mission quickly turns deadly. Now, Ben and Erica will have to face rogue agents, trained killers, and even very hungry crocodiles in a race against the clock to find out what SPYDER is up to this time—and thwart their evil plans.

Bitty Bot's Big Beach Getaway book
#19
Bitty Bot's Big Beach Getaway
Written by Tim McCanna and illustrated by Tad Carpenter
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

The world’s cutest robot goes on a rhyming, deep-sea adventure with two new friends in this sweet and silly companion to Bitty Bot.

Long Fin Silver book
#20
Long Fin Silver
Written by Davy Ocean and illustrated by Aaron Blecha
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Harry Hammer looks for the lost treasure of Long Fin Silver, the greatest pirate of the deep seas, in this ninth Shark School (mis)adventure. Harry Hammer can’t believe his luck! He and his family are going on vacation to Treasure Reef, home of The Lost Treasure of that dastardly, long-ago pirate Long Fin Silver. Legend has it that Long Fin buried the Black Blood Pearl, the most valuable and beautiful gem in the history of the ocean. Harry and his pesky cousin Harvey are on the hunt for treasure, but they best beware of where they look, as they’re about to come fin-to-fin with the spooky spirit of Long Fin Silver himself!

Space Camp book
#21
Space Camp
Written by Ray O’Ryan and illustrated by Jason Kraft
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 5-9

Zack and his friends are off to space camp on a new planet in the fourteenth Galaxy Zack adventure. Camp Among the Stars! Summer vacation is finally here and Zack is pumped for space camp! He can’t wait to play galactic games, tell scary stories, and go on crazy camping adventures with new friends. But when there’s trouble between his cabin mates, it’s up to Zack to bring everyone together. Will he be able to find a solution before the entire summer is ruined? With easy-to-read language and illustrations on almost every page, the Galaxy Zack chapter books are perfect for beginning readers.

A Lullaby of Summer Things book
#22
A Lullaby of Summer Things
Written by Natalie Ziarnik and illustrated by Madeline Valentine
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

This simple, lyrical picture book is as warm, reassuring, and filled with joy as a vacation at the beach. Readers will join a little girl and her siblings as they wind down from a perfect day—hanging up towels, eating dinner, and getting ready for bed—each activity sparking a memory of their day—playing catch with the dog, chasing waves, and looking at sailboats along the shore. And when the lights of the family beach house go off—“In the dusky evening light, a sleepy house says goodnight”--young listeners will be lulled to sleep themselves.

Davy's Summer Vacation book
#23
Davy's Summer Vacation
Written by Brigitte Weninger and illustrated by Eve Tharlet
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

When Davy hears about his friend Wendy Wildgoose’s wonderful vacation at the beach, he wants to go too. But he and his family can’t fly like geese and their wagon is too weak to carry their luggage, so the beach is out. But Davy takes the family on a wonderful trip that is just as fun!

Motorcycle Road Trip! book
#24
Motorcycle Road Trip!
Written by Stanley Strickland and illustrated by Rhys Jefferys
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

Grab hold of this book that lets you steer a motorcycle on a fun road trip! Pack some snacks, fire up the engine, and put on your helmet. It's time for a motorcycle road trip! The view of the city from here is fantastic! Turn right to merge onto the bridge. Get on your bike and strap on your helmet-it's time to go on a road trip! Kids will love using the die-cut handles in this novelty board book to control the motorcycle and steer through a city, a forest, and so much more to get to the beach!

Captain Awesome Takes Flight book
#25
Captain Awesome Takes Flight
Written by Stan Kirby and illustrated by George O’Connor
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 5-9

Captain Awesome battles an evil flight attendant who’s trying to stop him from going on vacation in the nineteenth adventure of the Sunnyview Superhero Squad! When Eugene McGillicudy finds himself at the airport, things seem pretty normal at first—and pretty boring—until Eugene bumps into a flight attendant and has a sudden realization. That flight attendant isn’t just any flight attendant. She’s the evil Fun E. Racer, and she’s here to stop Captain Awesome from going on vacation! With easy-to-read language and illustrations on almost every page, the Captain Awesome chapter books are perfect for beginning readers!

Have a suggestion for a book to add to this list? Send an email to [email protected] with your book and list suggestion.