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Family Adventure Holidays

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Camel ride in Egypt.Camel ride in Egypt.

Adventure holidays can be a great way of tackling destinations and/or activities you might be wary of doing alone. They can also be a clever means of linking in holidays with educational themes and the National Curriculum, and of discovering cultures that might not be easily accessible on more mainstream holidays.

The last 15 years or so have seen a huge increase in the number and type of family adventure holidays available, and you can now offer your kids all manner of potentially life-changing experiences around the globe, from France to Borneo and from Iceland to the Galapagos islands. Even those with very young children are now catered for, or there are tailor-made teen adventures perfect for those with hard-to-please older kids. 

Many adventure holidays involve spectacular wildlife encounters, and there are generally also activities, some of them optional. You might stay on a working farm or a wild campsite, or even spend a night or two on a train. Sometimes you’ll stay and eat with native families, giving you insight into other ways of life as well as the knowledge that you’re helping sustain local communities. Note that some adventure holiday specialists give you the option to book your travel separately.

Great destinations for family adventure holidays include Costa Rica, Egypt, Finland, Jordan, Morocco, South Africa and Thailand.

Scroll down for our tips for choosing and making the most of your family adventure holiday.

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The Family Adventure Company
The Family Adventure Company

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With The Family Adventure Company

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The Family Adventure Company

Worldwide adventures for families

G Adventures

Active adventure holidays for adults and kids

Intrepid Travel

Small group family adventure holidays

Tips

Bear in mind that despite the generally high prices, this is generally not a luxurious holiday option. However, accommodation is clean, comfortable and often characterful.

Ask yourselves if you’re the kind of family who enjoys sharing company for a week or two – most adventure-holiday operators take small groups of 15–20, hence 3–5 families. It might even be an idea to check with your operator if any other families have already booked on a given trip and date, to find out if your children will be with other kids of around the same age (especially if you are travelling with one child).

Take into account that adventure holidays may also not be right for families who like to go their own way and not be tied down to schedules and arrangements made by others.

Consider whether your kids of an age when they can adapt to a new schedule – one that may differ from one day to the next. If you have young kids who still nap, have rigid mealtimes and/or are limited in what they eat, you may find this kind of holiday too stressful.

Think about whether your family is fit enough for the kind of holiday you’re planning. Though itineraries for family adventure holidays are less taxing than adult holidays, there’ll still probably be a reasonable amount of walking and excursions, often in conditions hotter than they’re used to.

Research your destination before booking – if lots of innoculations are required, or the region is malarial, you need to plan ahead (and may even want to look elsewhere if travelling with younger kids). See our Healthy & Safe Family Holidays and Breaks page for more information.

Check with your operator if other families have booked on a given trip, to find out if your children will be with other kids of around the same age (especially if you’re travelling with one child).

Before you arrive, prepare yourself for culture shock and for the need for time to adjust to your new surroundings. Warn your kids that locals may take a strong interest in them but that this is normally a friendly interest.

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