The 5 best family holiday destinations in the UK
The UK may be small but it has it fair share of great places for a family holiday, from building sandcastles on the beaches of Devon to mountain biking through the leafy woodlands of the New Forest. We’ve picked out five areas that are sure to offer something special for you and your family. Beaches are a big part of family holidays and Devon, South Wales and Norfolk all score highly on this front.
Family holidays in Devon are always great value for money, especially if you head up to north Devon, which also has a fantastic range of family friendly accommodation offering a vast range of activities and facilities. If you want beaches with great waves for body boarding and plenty of space for beach games then head to Woolacombe or Saunton Sands, while Barricane, Combesgate, Rockham and Grunta are the best destinations for delving into rock pools. There are also plenty of other attractions to keep children and adults occupied including glass blowing at Dartington Crystal and a trip on the beautiful Lynton and Barnstaple railway.
South Wales has some of the best beaches in the world and as yet remains relatively undiscovered and largely unspoilt, with plenty of space for you and your family to spread out and run wild. A week’s holiday in this part of the UK and you could visit a different beach each day and still have plenty more to visit on your next holiday. Budding extreme sports fans will love this coastline, with landsailing on Cefn Sidan and paragliding and surfing at Rhossili. Secluded Barafundle Bay in West Wales is great for youngsters who love to head off on a beach combing exploration and the sea in midsummer is really quite pleasant (if you are used to British sea temperatures).
Norfolk is famous for its long pale beaches backed by sand dunes and its traditional British beach holiday with Victorian piers, fish and chips, buckets and spades, ice cream dribbling down your chin, seaside cafés, and colourful windbreaks topped off with good old fashioned family fun! Beaches at Cromer, Wells-next-the-Sea, Hunstanton and Sheringham all come top of the list for families. The Pleasure Beach in Great Yarmouth offers full-throttle white knuckle rides, water attractions and fun rides to keep the children (and adults) happy for hours, and its free.
Situated in the south of the UK the New Forest National Park is a haven for adventurous families. There are plenty of activities on offer such as archery, bike hire, canoeing, combat games, kayaking, cycling and sea kayaking. Treasure Trails and guided walks take place all over the area taking in ancient historical sites and wildlife spotting. Drawing on the resources of The New Forest, the Countryside Education Trust organises courses and activities for children and adults to learn about, understand and care for the countryside. Car and movie lovers should head to the Beaulieu National Motor Museum, which includes a James Bond exhibition and animal lovers will have a great day out at Marwell Wildlife Park.
The Cotswolds are full of English charm with some of the country’s most beautiful rolling countryside, sleepy villages, forests and rivers, excellent food, adventure and animal parks galore and a wide range of quality family accommodation and activities. Families will be spoilt for choice with great days out such as the Cotswold Water Park where you can have a go at stand-up paddle boarding or water zorbing (walking on water in a giant bubble!) or the quaint Dragonfly Maze at Bourton-on-the-Water with a secret surprise at its centre.