Top four family friendly holiday destinations


We all know the mine-field that is travelling with kids.  Nobody wants to commit the faux-pas of taking the kids to a place where they won’t be welcome, so it helps to research a few destinations that invite families with open arms.

Say bula and slap on your broadest grin as you prepare to arrive in Fiji. This small collection of islands in the Pacific is known for its cheerful inhabitants. Most resorts here are equipped with a kids’ club for the older kids and a crèche for the youngest. With activities all day long, your kids will have the time of their life.

Japan, despite being a very modern country, has some very traditional values and as such, family is prioritised and children catered to. For instance, in Tokyo Disneyland, there are ranks of pram parking spaces, and in traditional onsen (public baths), you will find baby baths and even cots in case the kids get tired.

African nations tend to have family-oriented cultures, and travelling there with children is an educational and enlightening experience for the entire family. However, you do have to take care with inoculations, and ensure that your destinations are accessible to medical facilities.

With Lisbon airport featuring a fast-lane for families through passport control, you will soon get an idea of just how family friendly this place is. The Portuguese take their kids everywhere, so there are no off-limits spaces, even upscale restaurants.

Some tips for flying with kids:

  • Prepare a laptop or portable DVD player with favourite shows loaded onto it – and a set of earphones. A phone or tablet with game apps can make a good distraction – and don’t forget the old fashioned colouring books and stories!
  • Pack extras of everything: snacks, nappies, formula, clothes in case of delays or accidents (don’t forget about liquid restrictions).
  • Bring favourite toys or blankets to assist with settling in to sleep
  • Have healthy snacks (too much sugar + long flight = nightmare)
    • If you have a partner travelling with you, eat in-flight meals one at a time so one of you can keep an eye on the children
    • Take something to help with painful ear popping during take-off and landing – a dummy for younger kids, and sweets for older kids
    • Make sure legs are stretched at regular intervals
    • If the flight is not full, request an empty row for some extra space

Vivienne Egan writes for kids craft company

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