CNBC | Sarah O’Brien

All parents know what it’s like trying to pull off a good family vacation.

After planning, traveling, keeping track of luggage and children, and dealing with squabbles and untimely bathroom needs, if you return intact with everyone still mostly on speaking terms, you’re likely to consider it a success. (Even if you feel like you need another vacation to recover from it.)

Family dynamics aside, it can be challenging to find a destination that offers an appealing balance for both kids and parents without busting your budget. And some of the “best” U.S. cities for families to make their vacation destinations — as identified by a variety of expert sources — can be costly to stay in.

To find the 30 most affordable of those popular spots, GoBankingRates analyzed a variety of data like the cost of meals and hotel stays, along with the availability of kid-friendly attractions. The company used several sources, including “best of” lists from U.S. News & World Report and NBC “TODAY’s” “40 Great Places to Take Your Kids Before They’re Grown,” to compile its initial list.

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