As all parents know, when it comes to the ingredients for a successful family holiday, one of the key factors is keeping the children happy and entertained. If children are content, then the chances are Mum and Dad will relax too, and the whole family will enjoy their holiday.
Happy holidays don’t just happen by accident. Choosing the right kind of location really helps – here are five of the best summer holiday destinations for families to consider.
As a summer holiday destination, Tenerife has long been loved by families and Costa Adeje, on the south coast, is one of the island’s prized locations. It’s beautifully presented, with a range of top-class hotels, designer shops – there are retail centres in Playa del Duque and Playa Fanabe – and tempting restaurants, and it’s perfect for families. Why? Well, there are blue flag beaches boasting golden sands, crystal clear seas and watersports. If the kids ever tire of the beach, don’t worry – Siam Park, rated the best water park in the world by Trip Advisor, is in Costa Adeje. So too is Aqualand, which also has a dolphinarium.
Ibiza may be best known these days for its club and dance scene, but that’s just one side of its appeal and shouldn’t detract from its suitability as a family holiday destination. The Ibiza Spotlight website makes a strong pitch for its appeal: ‘For thousands of families each year, Ibiza becomes their own holiday paradise – a beautiful place to enjoy the warm weather, safe bathing and many attractions for kids of all ages.’ Try resorts like Cala Llonga, Portinax, Es Cana, Playa d’es Figueral and Santa Eulalia – leave San Antonio and Playa d’en Bossa to the clubbers and enjoy the rest of the friendly and welcoming White Isle.
For a long-haul beach holiday to savour with the family, Cancun is an excellent destination. Yes, it’s further afield than Europe but a holiday in Cancun will be a cultural experience that the children are never likely to forget, sampling Mexico at its finest. You’ll get a spectacular beach holiday, with vast expanses of white sand, sparkling sea and all the sun you can handle but there are also some seriously exciting adventures to be had. Kids will be thrilled by the likes of Dolphin Discovery, Sea Adventure, Ventura Park and a boat trip to Isla Mujeres. If you’re in Cancun, do not pass up the chance to visit the nearby El Rey Mayan ruins.
Kos, a member of the Greek Dodecanese islands, has been a big favourite with families for many years. Its plus points are multiple – what seems like endless beaches, watersports activities in abundance, a reliably high climate, and plenty of hotels that know exactly how to entertain families, with kids clubs and a fun environment. If you fancy venturing out and about, a boat trip to the volcanic island of Nisyros is a good idea – you can actually walk in the crater and look at the boiling holes. It’s perfectly safe though; the last explosion was back in 1888! Meanwhile, for a change of pace there’s the Lido Waterpark at Mastihari.
New York City
A family holiday in New York – how cool is that? The answer, particularly for families with older kids, has surely got to be ‘very cool indeed’. If you have teenage children who are perhaps wanting a bit more from a holiday than chilling out around a pool or beach, New York is an unbeatable location. The author of this Telegraph article visited there with two teenagers and crammed plenty into the stay; Central Park, Manhattan, Brooklyn Bridge, Empire State Building and loads of shopping and people watching. There’s sport to watch – try to get tickets to the Yankees or the Mets – and still beaches in the form of Coney Island and others.