Laurel Perry

Trips with school-age children hit the family travel sweet spot. Long gone are the days of potty training and afternoon naps, yet the attitudes and scheduling commitments of the teenage years haven’t arrived. Attention spans are longer, meaning a kid-friendly tour of a great museum is not just manageable, but actually enjoyable. And their growth means school-age children are finally tall enough for horseback riding, ziplining and other fun physical activities while on vacation.

This is a great age at which to engage children in the planning process or cater to their interests. Come to Ciao Bambino advisors with your top priorities, whether those include sightseeing, adventure or relaxation, and we can craft an age-appropriate trip that school-age children will remember well into their adult years.

Any number of destinations work well with this fairly flexible age range. If your child has a unique interest, like seeing World War II battlefields or a specific animal species, we’re ready to help you start planning — there’s not a continent on earth that we don’t know from firsthand experience. But if you’d rather brainstorm ideas from some of our tried-and-true favorites, we can do that, too. Here’s a short list of some top vacation destinations with school-age children.

Italy

We’re big believers that Italy ranks high as a great destination at any age, but perhaps with school-age children most of all. Feast on kid-friendly foods, like the best pizza, pasta, and gelato in the world (and get them involved in making their own through our favorite cooking class experiences). Take scavenger hunt tours through big cities, then unwind in the countryside via bike rides and winery visits.

Dude Ranches

If vacation time is limited to just a week in the summer and you want to max out the family fun, a dude ranch is a great bet. School-age children are typically old enough to handle longer trail rides, and the additional onsite activities that our favorite ranches offer are sure to please everyone.

France

Say oui to a vacation in France with kids of this age. Combine a few days in Paris, where we love apartment rentals as a great lodging option with maximum value, with a few days in countryside regions like the Loire Valley or Provence. Private art tours, pastry classes and castle visits are great activities for the school-age set.

Costa Rica

This Central American country has captured the attention of more and more families over the past few years, and with good reason. There’s so much adventure to be found, not to mention countless exotic animal species and stunning beaches. One of our top pro tips is to engage a kid-friendly naturalist who can lead your family on epic hikes through the jungle; they’ll help you spot those hard-to-see creatures. We know all the best guides and activity vendors to make the trip feel effortless.

England

Recognizable to most school-age children because of its popularity as a location in movies and books, England makes a fabulous vacation destination for families. Visit famous sites from films and from history with kid-friendly guides that we know by name. London is a fun city to experiment with modes of transportation — take a speedboat up the Thames, the Tube across town, black taxis for quick journeys and red double-decker buses for efficient sightseeing.

Alaska

Some cruise lines and on-shore activity options have strict age limits, so many families delay their dream vacation to Alaska until children are of school age. But when that time finally arrives, families find this is a destination well worth the wait. Be sure to research what to pack; even in the summer months, warm clothing that’s waterproof is essential.

Switzerland

We absolutely love Switzerland for a family vacation with school-age children, in part because they’re old enough to enjoy one of Europe’s most beautiful natural playgrounds via hikes through the Alps. Lake swimming in summer and skiing in winter means this destination works in all seasons.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico

The Yucatan is ideal for families who want to balance lazy days on the beach at a kid-friendly resort with more exciting adventures, like snorkeling, sailing, turtle nest observations and hikes among ancient ruins.

Thailand

This country makes a great introduction to Asia travel for families with school-age children, both because of the variety of experiences found here (beaches, cities, mountains and more) and because of its solid safety record.

If you find yourself feeling nostalgic for the adorable baby and toddler years or dreading the inevitable teenage transition, it’s time to start planning some amazing vacations with school-age children and take advantage of this ideal age group. There’s no better time to start instilling a love of travel in kids.

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Experience the Best Vacations with School-Age Children

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Family-Friendly Packages
Europe
Greece Family Vacation Package

7 Days / 6 Nights

From $3,776 Per Person

Africa
Tanzania Family Vacation Package

7 Days / 6 Nights

From $7,345 Per Adult

Portugal
Portugal Family Vacation Package

7 Days / 6 Nights

From $3,080 Per Person

Scotland
Scotland Family Vacation Package

7 Days

From $6,564 Per Person

Europe
Classic Italy Family Vacation Package

7 Days / 6 Nights

From $4,524 Per Person

Iceland
Iceland Family Vacation Package

7 Days

From $4,063 Per Person

Our Happy Travelers
"Everything was great on the trip! Thanks so much for all of your help in planning everything and organizing the tours. All of the guides were great! Extremely knowledgeable, friendly and did a great job with the kids."

–Tomeny Family Trip

"Katie planned the perfect trip. We all agree it was the best trip we've had, and the hotels were some of the best we've stayed in. We found that with a baby, it was only possible to get through about half of the suggested itinerary each day, which was great because it gave us options. We took time each night to debate what we would do the next day, and really enjoyed having those possibilities laid out for us.​"

–Beck Family Trip

"Katie went above & beyond for our family. We had a spectacular trip. I appreciate how Katie understood our needs as a family and gave me realistic feedback. The places where we stayed were exactly what I was looking for. I valued Katie’s patience with me as I was building my trip and deciding what exactly we were looking for as a family. She was available for input whenever needed and I would definitely use her and Ciao Bambino again."

–Roberts Family Trip

"Overall the trip was incredible and I am so thankful to you for helping me plan it! We had such a good time and it was so well planned. I would love to use your services again for our next big adventure!"

–Millman Trip

“I have been blown away with the services you provide. I first contacted Barbara last summer on a recommendation to Ciao Bambino from a friend. I wasn't sure what to expect as I had not used this type of service before. We were beyond impressed with everything Barbara set up for our family.”

–Detter Family Trip

Travel Blog

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Hotels

Family-Friendly Hotels

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Four Seasons Resort Hualalai »

72-100 Ka'Upulehu Drive, Kailua-Kona

The Fairmont Orchid »

1 North Kaniku Drive, Kohala Coast

Four Seasons Resort Hualalai »

72-100 Ka'Upulehu Drive, Kailua-Kona

Honua Kai Resort and Spa »

130 Kai Malina Parkway, Lahaina

Kaanapali Alii »

50 Nohea Drive, Lahaina

Koloa Landing »

2641 Poipu Road, Koloa

The Fairmont Orchid »

1 North Kaniku Drive, Kohala Coast

Turtle Bay Resort »

57091 Kamehameha Highway, Kahuku

Kiahuna Plantation and The Beach Bungalows »

2253-B Poipu Road, East Entrance

Fairmont Kea Lani »

4100 Wailea Alanui Dr, Wailea, Kihei, HI 96753, USA

Mas de Thau »

Domain Saint Martin Du Pin, Montagnac

Imagine Roussillon »

Mas Sisqueille, Canet-en-Roussillon

Hotel Mayfair Paris »

3 Rue Rouget de Lisle

Le Mas de Chastelas »

2 Chemin du Chastelas, Gassin

Hotel Verneuil »

8 Rue de Verneuil

Country Kids Resort »

Le Mas Pandit, 34800 Octon

Le Fleuray Hotel »

Route Dame-Marie-Les-Bois, Cangey

Hameau Des Baux »

Chemin De Bourgeac, Le Paradou

Le Mas De Pierre »

2320 Route De Serres, St. Paul De Vence

Le Meurice »

228 Rue De Rivoli

Les Fermes De Marie »

163 chemin de Riante Colline, 74120 Megève

Pavillon De La Reine »

28 Place des Vosges

Parador de Nerja »

Calle de Almuñécar, 8, 29780 Nerja

Aguilas5 Sevilla Suites »

Calle Águilas, 5, Sevilla, Andalusia, 41004, Spain

Parador de Granada »

Calle Real de la Alhambra, Granada

Hospes Las Casas del Rey de Baeza »

Plaza Jesús de la Redención, Sevilla, Spain

Majestic Hotel and Spa Barcelona »

Passeig de Gràcia 68-70

Hotel Ritz Madrid by Belmond »

Plaza de la Lealtad, 5

Puente Romano Beach Resort and Spa »

Bulevar Príncipe Alfonso von Hohenlohe, s/n, 29602 Marbella, Málaga, Spain

Marbella Club »

Bulevar Príncipe Alfonso von Hohenlohe

AC Palacio del Retiro »

Alfonso XII 14, Madrid

Shangri-la Hotel, The Marina Cairns »

Pierpoint Road, Cairns, Queensland

Mandalay Luxury Beachfront Apartments »

Corner Garrick & Beryl Streets, 4877 Port Douglas

Kailua-Kona, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Waimea, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Kailua-Kona, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Lahaina, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Lahaina, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Koloa, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Waimea, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Kahuku, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Lahaina, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Koloa, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Wailea, HI
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Montagnac, France
Great for ages: 0-2, 6-12
Canet-en-Roussillon, France
Great for ages: 0-12
Paris, France
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Maillane, France
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Paris, France
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Gassin, France
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Paris, France
Great for ages: 0-2, 6-18
Octon, France
Great for ages: 0-12
Cangey, France
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Paradou, France
Great for ages: 0-5
Saint-Paul-de-Vence, France
Great for ages: 0-12
Paris, France
Great for ages: 0-5, 13-18
Megève, France
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Paris, France
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Paris, France
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Nerja, Spain
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Sevilla, Spain
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Granada, Spain
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Sevilla, Spain
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Sevilla, Spain
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Barcelona, Spain
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Madrid, Spain
Great for ages: 0-2, 6-18
Marbella, Spain
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Marbella, Spain
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Barcelona, Spain
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Madrid, Spain
Great for ages: 0-5, 13-18
Cairns, Australia
Great for ages: 0-12
Port Douglas, Australia
Great for ages: Multi-Generational
Destinations

Build a Lifetime of Memories

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England Family Vacations
Yucatan Peninsula Family Vacations
Thailand Family Vacations
Switzerland Family Vacations
Montana Family Vacations
Experiences

Active Fun for the Whole Family

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Family Dude Ranch Vacations
Nature & Wildlife Trips for Families
Service Trips & Volunteerism for Families
Cultural Immersion Travel
Family Biking and Multi-Sport Trips
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