Wondering which are the best all-inclusive vacations for celiacs or those who follow a gluten-free diet? Look no further - I've got you covered for your next getaway.
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Disclaimer: I have not personally stayed at all of the places listed here nor can I speak to those left in the comments section. However, I have researched every one and included links to their websites. I also polled my audience, fellow gluten-free friends, TripAdvisor, and Facebook Groups to get recommendations from other travelers with celiac disease. These are the places that came up time and time again. Please make sure to do your own due diligence and double-check these places work for your diet and your needs. Resorts can change.
The Best All-Inclusive Vacations For People With Celiac Disease
- The Best All-Inclusive Vacations For People With Celiac Disease
- Tips for Visiting An All-Inclusive Resort With Celiac
- Top All-Inclusive Vacations for Celiacs & Gluten-Free Diets
- Celiac Vacation Ideas
- Looking for more gluten-free travel posts?
Tips for Visiting An All-Inclusive Resort With Celiac
Here are some of my top tips to help you stay safe when visiting an all-inclusive resort! All-inclusive resorts are very popular among couples and families with children, but not always easy when you have celiac.
- Contact the resort to ask questions before you book. Make sure you have a clear understanding of their protocols. Once booking, make sure celiac/food allergy is noted in the reservation. Like airline meals, make sure to call a few weeks before your arrival to confirm. When you arrive, speak to the concierge. Be proactive so that when you finally arrive to the resort you can relax!
- Pack Snacks & Easy Meals. Not just for traveling to the resort, but coming back as well! And something to make in the room if you get hungry.
- Make friends with a server. If you're dining in the same restaurant every night (probably the one with the most GF options), befriend a server, or try to sit in their area every time for consistency and less margin of error.
- Bring emergency supplies just in case. Whatever you need to feel better if you get sick, either from gluten, traveling, or anything else. Be prepared!
- Give yourself time for mental rest. You may still be speaking up a lot to keep yourself safe. Allow for time to rest so you don't come home feeling like you need a vacation from your vacation.
- Bring a translated dining card if your destination speaks another language. As a former Spanish teacher, I recommend those from Legal Nomads or Equal Eats, which mention ingredients, preparation, and are translated by locals.
Top All-Inclusive Vacations for Celiacs & Gluten-Free Diets
Beaches & Sandals
Beaches and Sandals resorts are well-known in celiac and allergy-free community for being extremely committed and dedicated to their guests with food restrictions. They have a concierge service that will help you plan your meals 24 hours in advance to ensure you have safe options that are prepared carefully. With multiple restaurants on-site at their resort properties, this gives them the chance to plan your food and prepare it safely.
Please note: Sandals is exclusively a couples-only resort. Beaches is kid-friendly.
"Once your booking has been completed, send an email to [email protected] with your booking number in the subject line. A representative will assist you, provide you with alternative menus and liaise with the resort on your behalf. Arrangements can be made for you to speak with the Head Chef upon arrival."
Beaches has locations in Turks and Caicos and Jamaica. Sandals has locations in Jamaica, St. Lucia, Antigua, Bahamas, Grenada, Barbados, and Curacao. My friend Courtney from Simple Adventurous Life has had a very positive experience in Sandals Jamaica with Celiac Disease. She shares about it in this post here.
Arenas del Mar Costa Rica
Arenas del Mar is a luxury beach resort on Manuel Antonio Beach in Costa Rica. what's not to love about a 5-star resort on the beach!? They've been featured in some of the top travel magazines and websites and are also well-known for their Certified Gluten-Free Dining Program since 2014.
From their website:
"The kitchen and dining room staff of both our restaurants are fully certified by the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA). A first for a resort in Central and South America."
"For our menus, we consulted with Monica Glass, a top US pastry chef who has celiac disease. We welcomed celiac bloggers to our hotel to share their experiences too."
Multiple reviews on TripAdvisor attest to their dedication to food allergies and offering a variety of gluten-free choices. A friend of mine who has celiac disease recently booked her honeymoon here!
Celiac Cruise had its first inaugural cruise in 2019, just before the pandemic, and has now grown to offer gluten-free and celiac safe cruises to the Caribbean, Alaska, and Europe! They partner with cruise ships and offer a 100% dedicated gluten-free kitchen & dining area, along with extra perks and partnerships with gluten-free brands.
I'll be attending the Caribbean sailing of the Celiac Cruise next month (March 2022) and am excited to see what it's all about! I'll be going on the cruise with my Mom. I've never actually been on a cruise before, and excited to see what this relaxed type of traveling is all about!
Celiac Vacation Ideas
For couples: The Inn Berlin, Maryland
The Inn Berlin is a beautiful bed and breakfast in Berlin, Maryland that's also 100% gluten-free. The innkeeper and owner, Maya, has celiac disease, and takes fantastic care of her guests, creating scrumptious breakfasts, lunches, and dinners all gluten-free.
Dylan and I were invited to stay at The Inn Berlin for our 5 years anniversary in July of 2021. With its stunning rooms, unique history, adorable town of Berlin just a walk away, and all the gluten-free food, you can't go wrong here. It's the perfect place for a romantic gluten-free getaway! Learn more about the Inn's gluten-free policy right here.
For solo travelers: Zaney Travel, Costa Rica
Zaney Travel is a travel company offering private tours throughout Costa Rica for visitors with celiac disease. The owner, Zane Greathouse, has celiac himself. I was invited to visit Costa Rica with Zaney Travel in November of 2021 and had a fantastic experience without any issue. The tour is in small groups and it's easy to make friends with the Costa Rican staff, who are super friendly, and your fellow travelers.
Zaney Travel personally vets all of the restaurants where you dine and the staff takes care of everything on your behalf, including translations, going into the kitchen, buying snacks, and advocating for your needs in hotels. Plus, with gorgeous hotels, epic sunsets, amazing wildlife, and excursions to coffee and chocolate farms, it's definitely something that should be on your bucket list. Read about Zaney Travel's commitment to celiac travelers on their website here.
For Families: Disney (Florida & California)
If you're traveling with kids, consider Disneyworld or Disneyland. Multiple families have reported positive experiences traveling with celiac disease to Disney. Even when I was visiting Disney after college (almost ten years ago) I didn't have any issues. They take food allergies seriously and have lots of tasty options to accommodate you.
For more information about Disney and food allergies, visit this page.
My friend Leslie of Gluten-Free Finds PA shared her experience visiting Disneyland with her son Jax (who has celiac) last year on her Instagram story highlights. Be sure to check out Alexis GF Adventures who is a travel planner with an entire blog full of Disney & gluten-free related travel info!
Those are my top recommendations for the best all-inclusive vacations for celiacs & gluten-free folks! I'll continue to update this list with more information and recommendations in the future. I'm excited to sail with Celiac Cruise in March and report back what that experience is like!
Looking for more gluten-free travel posts?
Have you ever visited an all-inclusive resort with celiac disease?
What is your favorite all-inclusive vacation for celiacs?
Let me know in the comments!