Family holiday destinations

Deciding where to go on your cheap family holiday in 2019/2020 can be tricky. You want to go somewhere that guarantees great weather, although perhaps not too hot, and that is within easy reach of the UK.

It also has to be full of things to keep your little ones entertained but great value at the same time. To help you find the ideal destination for your next family holiday, we've collected some of the best family friendly destinations which each have ideal weather at certain times of year.

Spring - March, April & May

Spring is a fantastic time to take a family holiday. It's before the crowds and roaring heat close to home of summer, but after the chill of winter.

What's more, with the May half term holiday, there are many online deals from providers such as Jet2holidays and TUI to help you get away for less. Three destinations which are ideal for family breaks in spring include:

1. Cyprus

Spring is great time to visit Cyprus as temperatures are on the up (from 18°C in March to 24°C in May), and there's plenty of sunshine. The sea is a little chilly so you might want a hotel with a heated pool.

Family holidays on the beach in Cyprus © smikeymikey1 - Fotolia.com
Family holidays on the beach in Cyprus © smikeymikey1 - Fotolia.com

For kids on family holidays, Cyprus has loads to offer such as water parks Fassouri Watermania, Limassol, and Paphos Aphrodite Waterpark are especially good), the Camel Park in Mazotos, countless water sport opportunities as well as many museums and ruins for culture vultures.

2. Orlando, USA

Orlando is heaven for kids - any many grown ups - on a family holiday. There are so many parks to visit including the world famous Walt Disney World Resort and sprawling Universal Studios, as well as water parks and live performances. The list is endless!

Walt Disney World Resort, Florida, USA © Disney - courtesy of VISIT FLORIDA
Walt Disney World Resort, Florida, USA © Disney - courtesy of VISIT FLORIDA

Weatherwise, Orlando is nice and warm, with daytime temperatures growing from 25°C in March to 31°C in May. There's loads of sunshine and only the small chance of a passing shower. Just watch out for the very high UV - pack an extra strong SPF for young skin.

3. Cancun, Mexico

While you bask in eight hours of sunshine and temperatures in the low thirties each day, your children could be having the time of their lives. Cancun and the surrounding Riviera Maya have a host of great attractions for those on family escapes.

Isla Mujeres, Cancun, Caribbean Coast, Mexico © Tose - Dreamstime.com
Isla Mujeres, Cancun, Caribbean Coast, Mexico © Tose - Dreamstime.com

Don't miss the chance to get up close to the friendliest mammals of all at both Dolphin Discovery and the Interactive Aquarium. Then there's the Sea Adventure Water Park, Wet'n Wild Cancun, and the huge Xel-Ha park complex, complete with more marine life, beaches and all amenities.

More spring destinations

You could stay closer to home and enjoy pleasant warm weather however, as with Cyprus, minor details such as cooler sea temperatures and chilly evenings may make this option less desirable.

If you do decide to take a family holiday in Europe in spring, stick to places in the eastern Med where it gets warmer quicker, which not only include Cyprus but also Turkey and even Malta.

Summer - June, July & August

The best thing about taking a budget family holiday in summer is the variety of choice you have. You don't need to travel far (a big bonus with kids in tow) to find great weather and fully equipped resorts. Some top destinations for cheap family holidays in the summer months, include:

1. Tenerife, Canary Islands

Tenerife is an ideal summer family holiday destination, crammed with loads of things to do and beautiful weather. Expect daytime highs of between 23°C in June and 26°C in August, ensuring it's not too hot like many places in further east in the Med. Days are nice and long with eight hours of sunshine, and there's only a low level of heat and humidity by June.

Water slide at Siam Park, Tenerife, Canary Islands - photo courtesy of Tenerife Tourism
Water slide at Siam Park, Tenerife, Canary Islands - photo courtesy of Tenerife Tourism

The sea however, is a little nippy, reaching only 21°C by June, so a heated pool may be in order for your family holiday. That, or you could just hit one of the water parks, such as the renowned Siam Park (Europe's largest) or Aqualand with its dolphins. There's also Loro Parque, Monkey Park, and Jungle Park Las Aquilas for more animal encounters.

2. Crete, Greece

Crete is Greece's largest island, and as such is well equipped to cater to those on holidays with children. Aquaworld Aquarium is hugely popular with kids, as is the Lychnostatis Open Air Museum, which runs various events for children.

Then there's Limnoupolis Water Park in Chania and Water City in Anopolis for a good day's splash about. There's also an endless supply of water sport and boat trips to keep everyone entertained.

In summer, Crete is magical, with 12 hours of sunshine each day, temperatures ranging from 27°C to 28°C, and only moderate heat and humidity. It can get a little gusty on the northern coast, so head to the beaches on the south for more sheltered beaches and bays.

3. Majorca, Balearic Islands

The Balearic Islands are much loved by holidaymakers of all ages thanks to the variety and beauty on offer. In Majorca during summer you'll benefit from 25°C to 29°C temperatures, up to 11 hours of sunshine, and barely any rain.

Evenings are pleasant and there's only moderate heat and humidity, even in July and AUgust. The sea warms up through the months reaching 24°C by August.

Calo des Moro Beach, Majorca, Balearic Islands © MarkusBeck - Fotolia.com
Calo des Moro Beach, Majorca, Balearic Islands © MarkusBeck - Fotolia.com

Majorca is brimming with activities for families on holiday. Meet lemurs at the Safari Zoo or watch jumping dolphins at Marineland. There's also the chance to see big fish at the Palma Aquarium, and enormous birds (and eggs) at the Ostrich Farm.

If you get through all of that, visit Natura Parc and Jungle Parc for some outdoor fun, or tackle any of the sporting activities such as paintballing, go karting, kids' golf, bowling and more.

Autumn - September, October & November

Many families like to go away in autumn as it's after the heat and hustle of summer and, thanks to the October half term holiday, there are often many great deals on family holidays to be had. To help you decide where to go in the autumn for a memorable family holiday, three great cheap family holiday destinations in autumn include:

1. Algarve, Portugal

The Algarve is home to some f the best known holiday resorts going, from Albufeira to Vilamoura. There's something for everyone and every budget. Look out for Zoomarine with its slides, rides and swimming pools, and don't miss Aqualand for immense water slides.

Praia da Rocha, Algarve, Portugal © Agostinho Goncalves - Shutterstock
Praia da Rocha, Algarve, Portugal © Agostinho Goncalves - Shutterstock

The Algarve is also a great place to pack a picnic and head inland to explore the many beautiful parks and reserves. For waterfalls and rockpools make for the Pego do Inferno near Tavira.

What makes the Algarve so great in the autumn? Well temperatures remain balmy at between 26°C in September and 19°C in November, and you'll see loads of sunshine, up to nine hours each day.

Also, in September the sea is as warm as it gets all year here at 21°C. As a general rule, the further east towards Spain you go, the warmer and less breezy are conditions.

2. Marmaris, Turkey

Marmaris in September is still positively summery with daily highs of 30°C, 11 hours of sunshine and warm seas at 25°C. Things do start to cool down quite rapidly from October to November, dropping to around 19°C during the day by November however, it is still a fabulous place to explore.

Boats in the harbour, Marmaris, Turkey © monticellllo - Fotolia.com
Boats in the harbour, Marmaris, Turkey © monticellllo - Fotolia.com

Don't miss Marmaris Castle, and for those keen to get out to sea, there are various family specific boat cruises that operate. You can also indulge in a range of water sports, from rides to snorkelling.

More autumn destinations

Similarly with spring, if you're planning a family holiday in autumn and crave hot conditions, think eastern Med and North Africa, if not further afield.

However, if you're content with warm and sunny weather closer to home, the likes of the Algarve and even the Canary Islands offer plenty of places for people to enjoy at this time of year when travelling with kids.

Winter - December, January & February

You can't beat waving goodbye to dark, cold, rainy days and jetting off for some winter sun with your loved ones. As a general rule, finding great weather will determine just how far you have to travel for a family holiday in the winter months.

Read on for some of the best suggestions for families, each with plenty to see and do for all ages:

1. Dubai, UAE

Dubai is a veritable playground for children and one they definitely won't get bored with. By winter, conditions in Dubai have eased while remaining warm, sunny and almost free from humidity.

Wild Wadi Waterpark, Dubai, UAE © Volkan YILMAZ - Flickr Creative Commons
Wild Wadi Waterpark, Dubai, UAE © Volkan YILMAZ - Flickr Creative Commons

Daytime temperature sit between 26°C and 25°C from December to February, while the sea takes a hit dropping from 25°C to 22°C, although this is still as warm as it gets for some European destinations. Do remember a strong SPF as UV is still prevalent.

Activity wise, choose from surreal experience such as at Ski Dubai, and wonderful water parks such as Wild Wadi, or theme parks like KidZania and SEGA Republic, among many, many others.

2. Gran Canaria, Canary Islands

Gran Canaria offers decent winter sun for those after budget family holidays between December and February. Temperatures plateau in the low twenties, and you'll see between six and seven hours of sunshine each day.

Palmitos Park, Maspalomas, Gran Canaria, Canary Islands © Hamik - Dreamstime.com
Palmitos Park, Maspalomas, Gran Canaria, Canary Islands © Hamik - Dreamstime.com

There is a chance of getting a little wet, but only from a passing shower. The only downside is that the sea is a little nippy at this time, so a hotel with a heated pool is advisable.

The winter months are ideal for getting out and about, exploring the island and making the most of attractions such as Sioux City, where you step back in time to the wild west, the Angry Birds Activity Park, for some competitive fun, or Aqualand Maspalomas with it giant slides.

3. Varadero, Cuba

Varadero on Cuba's north Atlantic Sea coast, offers splendid weather in winter. Days are warm between 26°C and 27°C, not to mention sunny with seven hours each day.

Varadero Beach, Cuba © lezumbalaberenjena - Flickr Creative Commons
Varadero Beach, Cuba © lezumbalaberenjena - Flickr Creative Commons

You might endure a short tropical downpour but nothing much else, while the water is also inviting at between 26°C and 24°C. There's low to moderate levels of heat and humidity, which is great for those who don't like it too feel too hot.

For families, Varadero is home not only to a platinum stretch of sand and many resorts, but also Todo en Uno amusement park and the Delfinario for a one-on-one dolphin session, plus 4x4 safaris, surfing and wind surfing schools, golf courses and much more.

For more information on when to go and where for family breaks throughout the year, check out the holiday weather pages on Weather2Travel.com.

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