SAFEST PLACES TO TRAVEL FOR FUN FAMILY HOLIDAYS
This week is officially marked as Family Safety Week, and since we have your best interests at heart, we’ve highlighted the safest destinations to whisk the family off to this summer 2018.
But what makes a destination family-friendly? Is it the warm hospitality of the local community you’re greeted with? Are the beach resorts committed to providing facilities and activities suitable for young children? Is there a public transportation system, which is efficient and easy to use? The safest places to travel usually encompass most of these qualities – plus a little help from popular places to eat and drink, thrilling theme parks, insightful museums and gorgeous beaches, naturally…
Majorca offers a host of family-friendly accommodation options with resorts providing babysitting services, cradles, dedicated play areas, waterparks and swimming pools for children. The biggest in the Balearics also boasts 31 Blue Flag beaches, which speaks volumes about how the local community is not only keen to entertain tourists but also take care of their beaches all-year-round. Head out to the natural beaches on the northeast, east, and south coasts with your family for an entire day of fun in the sun. If you fancy a day soaking up a spot of Mediterranean history and culture, the buzzing capital of Palma should be your top pick. Home to more than half of Majorca’s population, Palma offers you flavours of the local culture through its various traditional festivals, live musical concerts, authentic stalls and fantastic food scene.
With The Sunday Times naming Palma as the world’s best place to live in 2015, the city is dotted with trendy restaurants, luxury boutique hotels, fashionable bars, rooftop cafes, international shopping centres and a popular nigh scene to ensure all ages are entertained from morning until night.
Where to stay: Club Cala Romani is ideal for a fun, family stay by the sand with summer prices from £250pp.
The island nation of Malta, which lies nestled in the Mediterranean Sea, is a diverse family holiday destination offering a blend of culture, history, coastlines and cosmopolitan harbour towns. The island may be small, but it’s brimming with quaint coves and bays that offer a host of natural adventure and watersports activities ideal for young families to enjoy. As the sun starts to go down, wander the UNESCO-listed capital of Valletta, where you’ll find famous cathedrals, 16th century architecture and a wealth of baroque architecture to admire. TV fans can even visit the locale where hit series Game of Thrones was filmed in Mdina, the resort’s old capital dating back 4000 years.
Plan a boat ride to the nearby islands of Gozo, Comino or the Blue Grotto where you and the kids can float through natural caves and swim under arches – or head to nearby Marsalforn Bay, a popular resort complete with charming sandy beaches.
Looking for action and adventure? Popeye Village is a must-visit for the young (and young at heart!), the 1980’s film set for favourite cartoon Popeye is now an open-air museum packed with fun-loving activities and attractions, from visiting Olive’s House and the comic museum to winding down at Anchor Bay next door. Or, plan a boat ride to the nearby islands of Gozo, Comino or the Blue Grotto where you can explore the island’s natural caves and swim under arches.
Where to stay: Qawra Palace Hotel is a 4-star family run accommodation located in the heart of gorgeous St. Paul's Bay.
If you’re looking for a splash of luxury, Dubai is the ultimate family holiday destination, offering a plethora of entertainment, delectable restaurants, tropical beaches, a diverse shopping experiences in both its swanky malls and souks - plus award-winning attractions.
If food is the first thing to tick off the list, visit the Ripe market at Zabeel park, which houses many reasonably priced eateries – plus you’re likely to find “kids eat free” deals in some establishments too. Lime Tree Café, Jumeirah Beach Road, has both a tasty menu and tot-loving play area, with toys, books and even a mini play kitchen; equally Tub of Butter in Sheikh Zayed Road boasts mini kids tables and chairs, plus colouring books to enjoy while you wait.
For fun-filled days, you’ve got KidZania Dubai, The Wild Wadi Water Park, The Ski Dubai Snow Park, Children’s City Museum, The Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo and Aquaventure Water Park. Don’t miss out on experiencing one of the myriad family activities - especially dune buggy rides, desert safaris and camel riding, an exciting afternoon for the whole family.
Where to stay: Ramada Jumeirah Hotel is a modern yet comfortable hotel located just 1km from the city's beach and famous landmarks, prices from £380pp.
The beauty of the Balearic Islands, is that each of the resorts have their own distinct feel - whether you're looking for a week in lively Ibiza, mellow Menorca, or popular crowd-pleaser Majorca. Take your family out on the Camí de Cavalls coastal path, a medieval bridle path dotted with lighthouses and watchtowers in Menorca - ideal for an evening stroll. If you like a little more action and adventure (or have teens instead of toddlers), embark on an exciting jeep safari tour in the biggest resort of Majorca, where you can equally catch the Soller steam train through the winding towns.
Hop on Captain Nemo's boat trip in upbeat Ibiza, or choose from a variety of sun-soaked activities dotted around the island including Acrobosc s'Argamassa, Surf Lounge Ibiza, Aguamar, or Ocean Mania. For a slightly slower-pace, head to Fornentera, the smallest of the Balearic Islands makes for a tranquil escape in the sunshine, complete with untouched beaches, unhurried town squares and plenty of beautiful walking trails to mooch along. With plenty of sun-kissed beaches, resorts with swimming pools and nearby attractions to keep your family wanting for more, the Balearic Islands should be the top choice for safe family vacation destinations.
Where to stay: Menorca's Club Hotel Sur Menorca is a great option if you want a half board beach holiday in family-friendly Balearics.
The largest of the Canary Islands, Tenerife attracts more than five million tourists every year - and rightly so. The resort's rugged landscape is full of diversity, making it an attractive holiday option for couples, families, and groups thanks to it's colourful beaches, fantastic watersports, traditional Canarian towns and medley of entertainment; plus the resorts year-round sunshine is equally tempting. Keep the littlun's busy at the exciting selection of water and theme parks including Loro Parque and world-famous Siam Park.
If you want to relax in the sunshine at a slightly slower pace, head to the resort's beautiful beaches including the Los Cristianos bay area, plus La Tejita, Las Teresitas, El Duque or the south coast's El Medano beach, ideal for kiteboarding and windsurfing. Want to explore more of the island without the travelling? Head out on a boat trip and explore more of the island from the waves.
Where to stay: The Suites at Beverly Hills is a top-class hotel located in the island's popular Los Cristianos resort.