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Active Holidays & Activity Breaks

Whether you choose walking, cycling, surfing, sailing, diving, whitewater rafting or a treetop adventure course – or a combination of some or all of these (or any number of other active pursuits besides)! – an active family holiday is a wonderful way to spend some quality time with the kids, allowing you to enjoy a favourite pastime or perhaps even discover a new hobby together. 
It’s worth pointing out that active holidays can be very tiring, which is not always a bad thing but does mean that they are generally best suited to children aged 6 or 7 and up. Depending on the activity and safety requirements, some operators do cater to younger kids, but make sure you discuss a holiday’s suitability with the operator in detail before committing yourself. In particular, will there be other things to do if your child turns out not to enjoy or be up to certain activities? Is there any flexibility is or the holiday itinerary written in stone?
Note that accommodation and meals are generally included in activity holiday prices, leaving you free to concentrate on wearing yourselves out…


Simply Morzine

Simply Morzine exclusive family alpine holiday offer

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Study age limits for the holiday you’re considering and make sure you’re confident the activities are within both yours and your child’s abilities, fitness levels and comfort zones.
Don’t rule out certain types of holiday for your family. Some cycling operators provide child-seats/trailers, while walking holidays with tots are possible using combined rucksacks/child-carriers. Some offer discounts/free places for very young siblings, but check there’s enough to entertain them on-site or nearby (perhaps a swimming pool or a playroom). 
Ask if instruction is given by fluent English-speakers, and if children can do activities without parental accompaniment if necessary. 
Check whether insurance is included or you need to take out your own.
Ask if you need to invest in specialist clothing or equipment. Most operators provide everything you need, although sturdy footwear is a must. Old trainers and clothes are generally advisable. Avoid jeans, which become heavy when dirty or wet, and take a set of lightweight waterproofs. 
In the unlikely event there are no laundry facilities on-site or nearby, pack accordingly. Take plenty of plastic bags for carrying spare clothes/dirty or wet items. 
Make a list of essentials needed on your type of holiday, remembering that even for summer activity holidays you need to be prepared for nearly all kinds of weather. These may include: a water-bottle, sunblock, lip salve, sunglasses with cord, fleece tops for evenings, insect repellent/sting relief and a waterproof camera.
See also our tips pages on whitewater raftingdivingboating and surfing.

Editors favourite
Kids Club
  • Villa Pia, Tuscany

    A stunning manor in rural Tuscany with self-catering apartments, but home-cooked communal meals are available, making meal times what they used to be.

  • Chalet Eva, Savoie

    A spacious ski in/ski out fully-catered chalet in Reberty 2000 sleeping up to 22 people and with childcare included in the price.

  • Simply Morzine summer family alpine holidays, Morzine

    Amazing active mountain holidays for all the family in the French Alps. Free activities, luxury accommodation, first-class service, incredible locations!

  • Country Kids, Languedoc-Roussillon

    A luxury family-friendly resort with wonderful facilities, accredited crèche from 3 months+, great kids club for older kids, heated pool + petting farm in Languedoc-Roussillon.

  • Club Med Kamarina, Sicily

    Family-friendly all-inclusive bungalows for relaxing but active family holidays and breaks with children of all ages in Sicily.

  • Helona Beach Resort, Kos

    A luxury boutique hotel set on the beach in Kos, with a sister hotel close by offering all the activities, childcare and facilities you may need.

  • Sea Garden, Bodrum Peninsula

    A 4-star family-friendly resort combining loads of activities for adults and children, in a quiet location on Turkey's Aegean Coast.

  • San Lucianu, Corsica

    Stunning location on the island of Corsica, excellent childcare and facilities and only a short flight from the UK.

  • San Agostino Resort, Peloponnese, Peloponnese

    A big sandy beach, enthusiastic staff, good food and great watersports makes this family resort in the Peloponnese, Greece a sure fire hit.

  • Lakitira Hotel and Village, Kos

    Excellent childcare, family-friendly facilities, activities and watersports at this family resort in Kos.

  • Cottages in Normandy, Normandy

    Check out the wide selection of family-friendly cottages in rural and coastal Normandy.

  • Cottages in Dordogne and Lot, Dordogne

    Stunning surroundings, luxury cottages, baby and toddler-friendly cottages and much more in the Dordogne and Lot.

  • Cottages in Sussex, Sussex

    Book a family-friendly cottage in Sussex, make yourself a base and visit all this region has to offer - beach, countryside and more.

  • Cottages in Northumberland, Northumberland

    Enjoy an relaxing or active family holiday or break and base your family in a self-catering cottage in Northumberland.

  • Cottages in the Scottish Highlands, Highlands

    Located across the Scottish Highlands; Cottages4You offer a large selection of family-friendly self-catering holiday accommodation.

  • Cottages in Dorset, Dorset

    Choose a luxury family cottage, a coastal property, a cottage with swimming pool, and much more in Dorset.

  • Cottages in Brittany, Brittany

    A wide selection of cottages with sea views, rural landscapes or both, in the popular family holiday destination of Brittany.

  • Cottages in Cumbria, Cumbria

    Head to Cumbria and the Lake District to enjoy an active family holiday with a variety of self-catering cottage properties to rent.

  • Cottages in Devon, Devon

    Rural and coastal cottages, ideal for family holidays and breaks in Devon.

  • Cottages in Norfolk, Norfolk

    Self-catering cottages ideal for small families holidays or large family gatherings, in rural and coastal Norfolk.

  • Cottages in Cornwall, Cornwall

    A wide range of family-friendly cottages in Cornwall, in rural and coast locations and with a choice of facilities to suit your family.

  • Cottages in Yorkshire, Yorkshire

    Family cottages in rural and coastal Yorkshire, ideal for families with young children, active families and families who want to relax their own self-catering holiday property.

  • Hotel Snowflake and Apartments, Lapland

    Family-orientated hotel in Lapland with plenty of indoor and outdoor activities.

  • Imagine Roussillon, Languedoc-Roussillon

    Luxury family-friendly self-catering villa and apartments with pool, inclusive kids club and much more, near the coast in Languedoc-Roussillon region.

  • Gran Hotel Bahia Del Duque, Tenerife

    A glam – even somewhat bling – 5-star hotel on Tenerife with kid's clubs, activities for older children and a babysitting service.

  • Club Atlantica Sungarden Beach, Cyprus, Ayia Napa

    Atlantica Club is chic, cheerful and chilled-out at the same time.

  • Aldemar Royal Mare Village, Crete

    4* spa resort with great sports facilities and activities.

  • Las Lomas Village, La Manga, La Manga

    A village of spacious apartments located on a hillside in La Manga Club resort in Spain, offering a wide range of family activities.

  • Watergate Bay Hotel, Cornwall

    A great family hotel and resort for older kids and teens, who can take advantage of the excellent surfing tuition in Cornwall.

  • Almhof & Kroller, Tyrol

    A family hotel in The Tirol, offering up to 72 hrs free childcare to each family & a direct access to the ski lift and nursery slopes.

  • Achensee, Tyrol

    A spacious ultra family-friendly hotel in The Tirol, perfect for active families in the summer and winter. Plus free childcare

  • Darwin Forest Country Park , Derbyshire

    Located in the Peak District, this holiday park provides activities for those looking to relax or for the more active.

  • Insotel Club Tarida Beach, Ibiza

    Fun and active family holidays and breaks, with direct access to the beach and on an all-inclusive basis in Ibiza.

  • Club Med Sant' Ambroggio, Corsica

    Surrounded by beautiful clear waters, Sant'Ambroggio is perfect for watersports.

  • Club Med Opio en Provence, Alpes Maritimes

    A great choice for all-inclusive family holidays in Alpes Maritimes, southern France, especially for older kids due to plenty of activities.

  • Club Med Gregolimano, Euboea

    An all-inclusive family holiday resort in Greece with spacious rooms, good food, excellent beaches and stunning views.

  • Club Med Da Balaia, Algarve

    Highly rated property for all-inclusive family holidays and breaks, with great staff and food, making this resort in the Algarve a top choice.

  • Center Parcs Elveden Forest, Suffolk

    This family-friendly holiday park in Suffolk is ideal for activity-based, weatherproof family holidays or breaks.

  • Center Parcs Whinfell Forest, Cumbria

    Set in lovely woodland on the edge of the Lake District, popular for activity-based, weatherproof family holidays or breaks.

  • Camping les Etangs Fleuris, Touquin, Ile de France

    A rural campsite, close to Paris and Disneyland Resort Paris.

  • Bedruthan Hotel & Spa, Cornwall

    Stylish hotel for family holidays and breaks in Cornwall, ultra-child-friendly and also eco-friendly.

  • Ria Park, Algarve

    Something for everyone located in the most exclusive part of the Algarve.

  • Mediterranean Disney Cruise, Europe

    A Disney Mediterranean cruise ideal for a short break or longer; perfect for families of all ages.

  • Memmo Baleeira, Algarve

    Luxury hotel on the beach in the Algarve, ideal for active families, with surfing a big drawing point.

  • The Village At Indian Point

    The Village At Indian Point, USA

    Family lodges in a stunning lake-side setting ideal for an active, outdoor-based family holiday in Missouri, USA.

  • Kolping Hotel Spa & Family Resort, Hungary

    A spacious, car-free family resort offering self-catering and hotel accommodation near Lake Balaton, Hungary.

  • PGL Chateau de Grande Romaine, Paris

    Close to Paris, this family activity holiday camp offers abseiling, archery and the zip-wire, but with the comfort of modern accommodation.

  • PGL Barton Hall, Devon

    With an outdoor pool, dry ski slope and a lake on-site, this is a top choice for a family adventure and activity holiday in Devon.

  • Oakdene Forest, New Forest

    Oakdene Forest provides a large selection of activities and facilities, such as an indoor pool with flume, archery, snorkelling, fishing and a kids club.

  • The Bay, Yorkshire

    The site is well laid out, and you can even walk from the site to the beach. Cottages and lodges are well equipped making them ideal when you holiday with kids

See more >
Editors favourite
Kids Club
See more >

Ask our experts

Let our experts tailor the perfect family holiday for you. Call 08432 907480 or complete our form


Related Articles

Active Favourite
Simply Morzine summer family alpine holidays
Amazing active mountain holidays for all the family in the French Alps. Free activities, luxury accommodation, first-class service, incredible locations!

Ring 08432 907480 and book your family holiday with our specialist travel consultant and receive a free Boden voucher. (ATOL T7480)
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