Rich, varied, plenty to get stuck into and always immensely satisfying, we think Andalucia is the paella of Spanish family holiday destinations – whether you want to get active on the beach or delve into the Alhambra. And with this enticing range of luxury hotels, resorts and haciendas from Kirker Holidays you can feel confident you’re experiencing the best of sunny southern Spain.
A family safari is the ultimate I-Spy and there’s no better place to get spotting than Kenya’s wildlife reserves. Pride of place on your itinerary, the Masai Mara not only offers your cubs the chance to tick off the entire cast of The Lion King, but also to take part in other exciting activities like night drives and walking safaris. Wash the dust off afterwards with a few days at the coast.
Arranging a family skiing holiday can be a rigmarole. Travel with a company that knows the best family resorts, offers catered chalets and hotels that are spot-on for families, provides a full range of childcare, pre-books your equipment and throws in some great deals. Esprit’s been doing just that for more than 30 years.
Scott Dunn have taken children’s clubs to new and exciting heights with their inspiring range of Explorers Clubs, now available at five stunning resorts in the Med, Maldives and Thailand. A lot of thought has been put into the childcare, healthy eating and superb facilities at each one. And we love the choice of activities – from pottery making classes in Crete to bike rides in Sicily.
Madagascar is surely one of the most exciting and unique family holiday destinations. Imagine setting out on foot for close encounters with wild lemurs or taking a night walk in search of chameleons. There are fabulous things to do on the coast too, from snorkelling and sea kayaking to whale watching and visiting a pirate graveyard.
Designer villas, rustic farmhouses, historic townhouses… if you’re after a holiday home in Spain with real ‘wow factor’ look no further than this stunning collection of luxury villas in and around Sitges on the sunny Spanish coast of Cataluña. Each one’s an architectural masterpiece, with a swimming pool to die for and a great location close to beautiful beaches and buzzing Barcelona.
Fabled as the birthplace of Aphrodite, goddess of beauty and love, Cyprus has holidaymakers smitten by its beaches, climate and scenery. Where better place to unwind in luxury than the island’s Hotel Almyra? As well as a wonderful range of children’s activities, it offers a good choice of family accommodation with bustling Paphos on your doorstep.
Perfect for nature-loving families, this Central American beauty has jungles, beaches, active volcanoes, plus loads of opportunities for adventure. Spielberg’s Jurassic Park was filmed here, but you won’t find any dinosaurs (sorry kids). Instead, there’s amazing wildlife, ranging from turtles and toucans to treefrogs – and you can see them all on these fabulous itineraries from Families Worldwide.
My family love the Caribbean – it’s that combination of gorgeous beaches, friendly people and adventurous things to do like exploring the rainforest that a European holiday cannot offer. We have had some amazing holidays out on boats, jumping off into the warm sea, swimming to private beaches and snorkelling in the reefs. Try it yourself in the British Virgin Islands.
This corner of Canada is crying out for a family adventure. It’s only a seven-hour flight to Toronto and this well-paced self-drive holiday combines excellent hotels with exciting activities. Top of most children’s wishlist will be the Maid of the Mist at Niagara Falls, but no doubt the kayaking and mountain biking in Ontario’s backcountry will be just as memorable.
Somehow you just know you’re going to have a great time at a Club Med resort. They’ve had 40 years to perfect the art of the all-inclusive family holiday. But that hasn’t stopped them from innovating. Children’s clubs in 14 resorts are now designed around local themes and the environment. On the activity front, you’ll love the Flying Trapeze Academies.
I know what it’s like leaving the pooch behind when we go on holiday. Those mournful eyes and looks of recrimination – and that’s just the kids. Rural Retreats puts the woof and bounce back into UK holidays with its tail-wagging round-up of dog-friendly cottages. They could well become our second best friends…
We have always loved big house parties with family and friends. There is the flexibility to run things on your own schedule rather than by hotel mealtimes and, usually lots more space to spread out. We have stayed in some incredible properties around the world too – castle, barns, forts and party houses that offer something special compared to home.
This is so much more than just another family-friendly hotel. Located on Jersey’s south coast, The Merton has been refining the art of family-friendy for over sixty years. The result – thoughtful family accommodation, imaginative facilities (we particularly like the Aquadome), the right mix of dining options and spot-on child-care – and a beach close by.
If your kids are like mine and love the Percy Jackson novels, they will love visiting the Greek mainland and seeing all of that mythology made real. This is a fascinating corner of Greece, rich in legends, and there is much to appeal to the kids, from long stretches of golden beach to family climbing on the island of Proti.
From Paris to Prague, this stylish collection of family-friendly apartments makes a city break in Europe with the kids more fun, more flexible and more affordable. Not only have i-escape visited and reviewed each characterful property, but they’ve put together a great online search facility for planning a city break just how you like it.
This fantastic collection of family villas is a real eye-opener, dispelling the myth that Ibiza is just for partygoers. Tucked away in quiet parts of the island, properties range from stylish villas to rural fincas, all with gorgeous swimming pools. Oliver’s Travels also have some great ideas for child-friendly activities on Ibiza.
You couldn’t dream up a cast of creatures with more child appeal – from marine iguanas that snort water from their nostrils to frigatebirds shaking bright red, party-balloon throat pouches – and it’s all there, right at your feet. The magic continues underwater. The Galapagos are the ultimate wildlife-travel treat – and this cruise/hotel combo is perfect for families.
Bring it on! We love Florida! Where else can you get face to face with Mickey Mouse, Harry Potter, Cinderella and a real-life astronaut all within the space of a few days? Or swim with manatees one morning, and plunge down a mega waterslide the next? Whether your idea of fun is to paddle a kayak in the Keys or take a simulated mission to Mars, Florida delivers, big time.
An exotic choice of destination for the long summer holidays but so worth it. Don’t miss the giant caves of Mulu – one of them could swallow five St Paul’s cathedrals. You also have to spend a night in a communal Iban longhouse and see orang-utans in their natural habitat. Older kids will love the challenge of climbing Kinabalu
If you thought travelling to a city with the kids was a no no, check out these hugely imaginative short breaks in Paris, Rome and London as well as the Loire Valley. Tailor-made for individual families, everything is organised for you, from transport and accommodation to family activities ranging from treasure hunts and cookery lessons to gladiator school.
Renting a cottage in the Lake District is the gateway to unforgettable family adventures – whether you’ve got teens hell-bent on conquering Helvellyn or tots dabbling their toes in Rydal Water. The choice of activities is boundless – from canoeing and sailing to riding steam trains and exploring slate mines.
If style and luxury are on your wishlist, but you still want the flexibility and family-friendly space that comes with a villa holiday, then Villa Retreats’ selection of contemporary beauties in Andalucia is hard to beat. Take your pick of properties with stunning pools, home cinemas and sports facilities. Some even have the option of a private chef.
Upping the adventure stakes on a beach holiday, a voyage onboard a crewed gulet is a magical way to experience the Mediterranean, dropping anchor in secluded bays, swimming, snorkelling or relaxing on deck. With Peter Sommer Travels you also get an insight into local culture, cuisine and archaeology thanks to their expert guides and tailor-made itineraries.