Five Child-Friendly Holidays That You Wish You’d Had Growing Up

Published: Monday 7th Jul 2014

Written by: Betheny Ellis

One of the best things about being a parent is organising child-friendly holidays your little ones will never forget. Today there are more attractions, better transport links and a much wider selection of quality accommodation available than there was even twenty years ago. All this means that you are able to treat your loved ones to holidays you wished you’d had when growing up.  Here are five ideas to get you thinking: 

Going Deep

If you are holidaying in Yorkshire take a day trip to The Deep – an amazing state-of-the-art aquarium in Hull, designated the City of Culture for 2017. The Deep is recognised as one of the best underwater experiences around where visitors can see sharks, swordfish, rays, turtles, penguins and over 3,000 fish.  For a special treat, older children can enrol on a half-day guided tour called the Deep Experience where they will be able to go behind the scenes at the aquarium, feed some of the creatures and learn about the tasks resident aquarists do on a day-to-day basis.  A great experience for any budding young marine biologist.

Train up Snowdon

If you want to give your children a special memory then a train journey up to the summit of Wales’ highest mountain should be an experience they will remember for a long time. The Snowdon Mountain Railway operates both a diesel and steam engine train on this hour-long journey to the top of Snowdon, 3,560 feet above sea level. You’ll then have half an hour to enjoy the stunning scenery and awe-inspiring views before you return. Combine this day out with a child-friendly holiday in North Wales, enjoying the lakes and mountains, and your kids will have an experience to cherish.

Swallows and Amazon on Lake Coniston

Many adults today must have grown up enchanted by Arthur Ransome’s book Swallows and Amazons which follows the adventures of a group of children as they explore and play in the Lake District. If you are planning a trip to this part of the world you have the opportunity to allow your children to follow in their footsteps. The Coniston Boating Centre on Lake Coniston hires electric motor boats, rowing boats, canoes, kayaks, sailing boats and bikes so you and your family can enjoy the settings made famous by Ransome. You might even get them to read the book during their stay in this stunning location.

A day out at Latitude

Music festivals used to be no-go zones for children but today youngsters are positively welcomed with open arms.  Why not time your cottage holiday in Suffolk to coincide with the child-friendly Latitude festival at Henham Park near Southwold that usually takes place in mid to late July. Recently voted best family festival in the UK, the event has a designated Kids’ Area where activities include animation, pizza making and theatre. For youngsters in their teens, past workshops have taught comic book design, silk screen printing and beat boxing – an activity that probably wasn’t invented when you were young!

Fossil hunting

Most children are fascinated by dinosaurs and fossils, so why not nurture that interest with a trip to Dorset and its famous Jurassic Coast? Thousands of fossils have been discovered on this 95-mile stretch of coastline stretching from Exmouth in Devon to the Old Harry Rocks in Studland Bay, Dorset – an area designated as a World Heritage Site. Surrounded by stunning scenery, children can search for fossils themselves or take part in a guided walk where experienced fossil hunters will share the secrets of their trade. A visit to the Dinosaurland Fossil Museum in Lyme Regis – packed full with geological wonders – will ensure a lifelong fascination with all things prehistoric.

Betheny Ellis
Betheny Ellis


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