Family vacations have always been a high priority for us. With our varied work schedules, vacation time IS family time. Kent and I realize that as the kids get older, there won't be as many family vacations in our future with just the four of us. (Of course we joke that as long as we are paying and the destinations are cool, they will find the time!)
While Kent and I have been to San Francisco several times, the kids haven't experienced a "city" vacation - no car, no hotel and no "kid" destinations (i.e. amusement park). It was amazing. We introduced them to Uber and a studio apartment.
We biked the Golden Gate Bridge. We toured Alcatraz. We shopped and ate in Chinatown and Fisherman's Wharf. We rode the BART and the cable cars. Yes, it was touristy, but it also was amazing.
When the kids were younger, we thought vacationing with teens would be a drag because they wouldn't want to hang with us. We were wrong. We have no physical limitations (they're not too little now and we're not too old yet). We share the same interests in exploring and seeing interesting places, and the two of them stop bickering just shy of killing each other.
Best of all, by visiting "real" places, we get opportunities to talk about what it's like to be with people and in places that are very different than those they know. While they don't have to be "of the world," they have to live "in" it. I love the fact that my kids still seek my opinion on things. I don't know how long that will last, but like our vacations, I will enjoy it while it lasts.
Let's hope that's a good, long time.