If you have children of different ages, finding a child friendly holiday to suit everyone can be a challenge. Everybody needs something different.
Here’s our advice on how to find a holiday that works for multi-age families, regardless of whether they’re teenagers, primary schoolers, pre-schoolers, toddlers or babies:
- Got a baby or toddler? Start family holiday planning with them first
- Spread out – choose a holiday home that has space for everyone
- Company for kids – opt for child friendly holiday property clusters
- Find family friendly holidays with a variety of activities
- Don’t forget about you – holiday relaxation for parents
Babies and toddlers? Start family holiday planning with them first
- It doesn’t matter how much of a dab hand you are at parenting, babies and toddlers on holiday need a safe environment and all the essential kit that you would normally use at home.
- Just because you also have an older child or children, doesn’t mean you won’t still need a highchair or enclosed pool.
- See our advice guides on what to look for when travelling with babies and toddlers to ensure that all the basics you rely on are provided.
- Once you have got those basics sorted, you can move on to the next steps.
Spread out – choose a holiday home that has space for everyone
- With children of multiple ages, space becomes critical in a holiday property.
- Very few hotel rooms are large enough to cater for a family of more than four, requiring interconnecting rooms or mum and dad sleeping in different bedrooms – not ideal!
- Caravans, tents and mobile homes can also be a bit of a squeeze. Family friendly villas, resort villas and gîtes are your best bet as you can choose a property that gives you the right number of bedrooms to suit your family’s needs.
- The more space you have to spread out in, the better everybody’s chances are of relaxing.
Company for kids – opt for child friendly holiday property clusters or on-resort villas
- If you have kids with siblings that get on brilliantly and are happy in each other’s company, then choosing a family holiday won’t be a problem.
- The hard work comes if they are prone to bickering or there is a big age gap between them. In these cases, having other children around makes life more fun for them and easier for you.
- Choosing a gîte cluster or on-resort villa with other kids on site gives your children instant playmates, meaning you get more time to lie in the sun and relax in peace.
- Some of our properties offer kids clubs or group activities for children, others are less structured. But simply having other children on the same grounds means there is someone else for your children to play with – whether it’s Marco Polo in the pool, kicking a football around, going for a bike ride or building dens.
Family friendly holidays with a variety of activities
- Holidays with children of different ages can be a challenge as everyone has different interests.
- Your teenager will want the buzz of a town with other teenagers nearby. Or if they’re very outdoorsy or sporty, they might want facilities that enable them to do their favourite activities.
- They might be more open to sight-seeing, galleries and museums than younger children.
- Choose a property that is in, or close to, a town that they can walk to. It might be a good idea to invite a friend along for them so that they have company when they are out and about.
- Tweens or younger children will love the company of other kids their age and the freedom to explore, play and be active. Look for properties that are in clusters or that feature activities like kayaking, swimming, cycling, horse riding or learning to cook.
- Also look for days out or events nearby that will appeal to them – whether it’s a summer fair, sand castle building competition or Easter egg hunts.
- Toddlers love the beach or splashing in a pool, but will be less keen on sightseeing. Babies with older siblings will usually go with the flow and learn to sleep while out and about, but they will restrict how much you can do altogether.
- Your best bet is to call us. We can talk through your personal requirements and suggest a holiday that’s best suited for your entire family.
Relaxation for parents
- With children of different ages, it can feel as though you are trying to please everyone and forget about you in the process. Here are some tips to ensure that you get the break you need too:
- Opt for a property that offers home cooked meals or has an on-site restaurant so that you get a break from cooking. If you have older children, set them a challenge to create a meal for the family using local ingredients and set up a roster for washing the dishes.
- Find a property that has babysitting or kids clubs on site so that you get some time out to go sightseeing or visiting areas the children are less keen on. If you’re staying in a gîte cluster or on a resort and meet another family, offer to do a babysitting swap.
- Many of our properties offer pamper treatments or classes – whether fitness, cooking, horse riding or art. Find something you would like to do and take turns with your partner to get out and do them.
Remember, holidays are meant to be relaxing. Don’t try to cram too much into them. Plan a few days out but otherwise just enjoy spending time with your children and each other.