Travel really is a life changing experience, and so is something you should absolutely share with your children. As much as travel with children can be an amazing experience for the whole family, it does involve some specific challenges, which means choosing the right destination is key to make sure you all have the best experience.
For a destination to be perfect for a family vacation, it needs to meet certain requirements. The best family vacation destinations have plenty to keep the kids entertain, offer unique educational and cultural experiences, and are easy to travel around. Here are the top destinations from around the world that tick most or all of these boxes.
London is a great place for families, with a range of historic sites and fun things to do. It is also easy to get around, thanks to its well organized transport system, including tourist attractions in themselves such as double decker buses and the “tube” (the London Underground). You can teach your kids about history at the Tower of London, feel like royalty at the majestic Buckingham Palace, or take in the views from the London Eye.
There are also a number of entertainment attractions to keep the family entertained. Head to London’s legendary West End and see a show. Harry Potter fans young and old will love “Harry Potter World” at London’s Warner Brothers studios, where they can immerse themselves in the real sets, costumes and props from the movie. Harry Potter studio tickets can be bought online even at the last minute, when the official site is sold out.
This is a great destination for travelers on a budget, making it ideal for families that need to budget for extra little ones. The South East Asian country also offers a wealth of natural, cultural and culinary experiences, ideal for opening your children up to new worlds. The thriving southern metropolis of Ho Chi Minh city, formerly Saigon, is a great place to experience Vietnamese life: head to the Banh Thanh Market for amazing shopping, food and to get a taste of local culture.
Away from the busy city life, Vietnam offers a wealth of natural wonders that the whole family will appreciate. Halong Bay has been named one of the “natural wonders of the world” for good reason: this dramatic collection of islands, beaches and rocky cliffs raising out of the sea is a sight to behold. The beautiful valley of Ninh Binh is full of lush green rice paddies, and up north is Sapa, a mountainous region with rice terraces carved into the hillsides.
New York City
You can’t go past the Big Apple when it comes to a vacation destination of any kind, whether for families, party-goers, art lovers, or those on business. Even for those who live here, it is worth reminding ourselves of the many great sites and attractions the city has to offer. New York is a great place to spend time with kids, firstly because it is one of the world’s great cultural centers. Take the kids to the Met, the Museum of Natural History, the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, or the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, for an unparalleled educational experience.
Another great place in New York City for families is central park. With over 800 acres of green space, wooded areas, lawns, and lakes, this is the perfect place to get outside and away from your devices, and spend quality time together. Finally, you can take your children to see the city’s great icons, such as the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, and the Brooklyn Bridge, for a truly unforgettable experience.
With exotic animals, friendly people, and great weather, where better for a family vacation than Australia? This vast country covers a diverse range of climates, landscapes, and with them, offers a variety of different experiences. There are the modern, exciting cities like Sydney and Melbourne, the wild untamed “outback” in the center, and the tropical north. Here you will find the world’s largest coral reef, the Great Barrier Reef, the perfect place for your children to learn to snorkel or scuba dive.
Your kids will also love getting up close and personal with Australian animals, from Koalas and Kangaroos and even the less cuddly, like snakes and spiders. Australia also makes a great winter escape, with the country being in summertime for December to March. This time of year means warm, sunny weather throughout the country, making it the perfect time to head to one of its many beautiful, sandy beaches, or to learn to surf.