Family-friendly destinations in Europe

If you’re thinking about a family vacation to Europe but are unsure of the best places to visit then this blog is for you! Here is our pick of some of the most family-friendly cities in Europe, along with the popular activities and must-sees that you and your family should not miss!

 

Rome: The Eternal City

Rome is a great place for a family vacation as there is plenty to keep the children entertained but also many sights that will be of interest to parents and older children. For example, while younger children will be enthralled by the grizzly history of the Colosseum and enjoy play fighting and photo opportunities with Gladiators in full costume, older children and adults may be fascinated by the archaeological significance of this ancient structure and the rare finds at the Roman Forum. There also the Vatican Museums, which feature rare artworks, plenty of cafes and bars serving pizza and other Italian favorites, and the Trevi Fountain, where legend has it that if you throw money into the water you will be sure to return to Rome someday! You also certainly can’t miss sampling some of Italy’s famous gelato – the kids will love it!

Must-sees:

  • The Colosseum and Roman Forum
  • Vatican City, including the museums
  • Trevi Fountain
  • Rome’s Zoological Gardens, which is home to big cats, reptiles, elephants, chimps and more
  • The catacombs and crypts
  • Villa Borghese – it’s wonderful for a picnic!

Family-friendly tours and activities:

If you’re travelling with a family, we recommend purchasing hop-on/hop-off CitySightseeing bus tour tickets as tickets are valid for 24 or 48 hours and it’s a great way to get around the city!

 

Paris: More Than Just Disneyland

Disneyland resort in Paris is great fun for children but it’s by no means the only fun attraction for families in this beautiful city. There are plenty of museums, art galleries and child-friendly parks, and many of the main attractions are actually centered in a reasonably small area, meaning little legs have to do less walking! There is also of course croissants, baguettes and crepes, which children will surely enjoy indulging in!

Must-sees:

  • The Eiffel Tower (of course!)
  • Le Mur des Je t'Aime, an enormous tiled mural with the words “I Love You” written in 250 languages
  • The Louvre is a good stop if you have older children who love art, as are Musée d'Orsay and Musée Cluny
  • Arc de Triomphe – a national monument
  • Notre Dame de Paris, which is the iconic Gothic church

Family-friendly tours and attractions:

  • If you head to the Eiffel Tower, we recommend getting “Skip the Line” tickets so that you don’t have to spend a long time queuing
  • Disneyland
  • Paris has many parks and playgrounds that children will enjoy discovering, such as Square Suzanne Buisson, Parc des Buttes Chaumont and Marcel Bleustein-Blanchet (better-known as Parc de la Turlure)
  • Jardin du Luxembourg, which has large sand-pits for children to play in
  • The famous and eerie Paris catacombs

 

London: See The Queen and Much More

It would surely be impossible to go wrong with the city that gave the world Paddington Bear, Mary Poppins, Peter Pan and Harry Potter! London is an excellent choice for a family vacation in Europe and there is more than enough to keep you and the children entertained in this vast and cosmopolitan city, including the Warner Bros. Harry Potter Studios Tour, London Zoo, Big Ben, the London Eye, an array of parks to picnic in and much, much more!

Must-sees:

  • Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament
  • Tower Bridge and the Tower of London
  • Buckingham Palace – if you arrive at the right time, you’ll also see The Changing of the Guard
  • Platform 9¾ at Kings Cross Railway Station if you have a Harry Potter fan in the family
  • The London Eye (be sure to book tickets well in advance if you want to ride on)

Family-friendly activities and tours:

We recommend that you take the underground where possible as the traffic in London can be busy, making for long taxi journeys!

 

Amsterdam: Brilliant for Bikers!

Ok, bear with us – we know this may seem like a strange choice but there is much more to this beautiful city than its reputation lets on! In fact, it’s a great destination for an active family vacation in Europe as it offers paddle boats and safe cycle paths, which make for fun days out with the children. Plus, there are a great many child-friendly restaurants serving tasty food, such as patat met – French fries with mayo. Don’t forget to get some souvenir Dutch clogs too!

Must-sees:

  • Check out some of the great museums, such as the Anne Frank Museum or the Van Gogh Museum – they are good choices for older children but you should be sure to buy tickets in advance to avoid the queues
  • Artis Royal Zoo – The Netherlands first zoo
  • Vondelpark, which is lovely for a picnic by the river

Family-friendly tours and activities:

  • NEMO Science Museum has a chemistry lab and bubble display, which is great fun for younger children
  • Day trip to Keukenhof, which is a beautiful park with treasure hunts, a petting farm, a maze and a playground
  • Boat or cycle tours
  • Ridammerhoeve Goat Farm, which is an organic farm with chickens, goats and more
  • The Amsterdam Dungeon

A good option to save money is a Holland Pass, which grants you entry to a lot of the popular attractions.

 

Dublin: Full of Irish Charm

Dublin in Ireland was once voted one of the friendliest cities in Europe, making it an excellent choice for a family vacation in the UK. It also has good transport links to other cities, meaning you and your family can enjoy a Europe-wide or UK tour with ease.

In particular, we recommend Dublin to families look for an active vacation as there are plenty of outdoor pursuits to enjoy, such as cycling and hiking, and there are also some pretty parks where you can enjoy a family picnic, such as St Stephen’s Green.

Must-sees:

  • St Stephen’s Green for a picnic – the children can also enjoy the safe play area and feed the ducks
  • Dublin Zoo and Phoenix Park
  • Kilmainham Goal – Dublin’s ancient jail
  • St Patrick’s Cathedral
  • Dublin Castle or Malahide Castle

Family-friendly tours and activities:

  • National Aquatic Centre – one of the most innovative waterparks in Europe
  • If you have a natural history enthusiast in the family we recommend checking out the National Museum of Ireland, which has tributes to Ireland’s wildlife
  • Day trip to the aquarium at Bray
  • National Botanic Gardens, which has a palm house and some lovely gardens to enjoy
  • National Wax Museum, with waxwork figures of celebrities

Day and overnight trips that you can enjoy from Dublin include the mountain scenes in County Wicklow, the cosmopolitan vibe of Edinburgh in Scotland, the vibrancy of London, the romance of Paris or the classic beauty of Berlin, and much more besides!

 

If you are thinking about a family vacation in Europe and you would like us to create a personalized holiday just for you, call a member of our dedicated team on 1-347-594-5500 or click here to send an online inquiry. You can also visit our offers page for some vacation inspiration.

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