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Our Top Ten Family Adventures Across the World

Experiencing the world together as a family creates shared memories that last a lifetime. With the fleeting passing of time and family moments ever more precious, seek out adventures that bond you through fun, thrills and wonder in extraordinary destinations.

Family Adventure – The Real Holidays Way

For active families, experiences in the wide world are what makes your holidays stand out, and testing your limits or trying something new for the first time together is the perfect panacea for families stuck in the routines of life. Read on for adventure inspiration for your family.

    Wild Wadi Swimming in Oman

    Known for its epic deserts, mountainous terrain, sweeping beaches and cultural cities, Oman makes a great choice for a diverse family getaway, focusing on outdoor activity under blue skies that fill with stars as the day comes to a close.

    One side of Oman that might surprise you is its network of secret swimming spots hidden between rocky crevices in the desert. Called wadis, these often iridescent blue or jade green pools are the perfect oasis to cool off in after a hike. With a Bedouin guide, take the path less trodden through the mountains to discover the wild wadis of Oman. Some come with swim-through caves; others rimmed by palm trees, all of them offering a refreshing splash about for fun-loving families. Pair wadi swimming with a night in the desert, dune-bashing, a camel ride at sunset and sleeping in a Bedouin tent for the ultimate Omani adventure.

    Get Sporty in Slovenia

    One of Europe’s lesser-explored gems, Slovenia is a giant outdoor playground for active families, cradled by soaring mountains, shimmering lakes, pristine forests and gushing rivers. And if you know where to find it, intrepid adventure awaits in Slovenia.

    Let us put together a fantastic itinerary that lets you experience the best of Slovenia in active pursuits that will bond the family together in the great outdoors and its stunningly beautiful nature. How about kayaking the turquoise-blue waters of Lake Bohinj then cycling the verdant folds and natural beauty of the Planica Valley? Followed by white water rafting the unfeasibly clear Soca River and flying down Europe’s biggest zipline tour with four kilometres of ziplines. Add to this a few swims in waterfalls, cable car rides up towering mountains and a visit to a network of caves that comes straight from a Lord Of The Rings film and you’ve got one seriously epic family holiday in Slovenia.

    Discover Curious Creatures in The Galapagos

    Watch your children’s eyes widen as they come face-to-face with the world’s most extraordinary creatures in the Jurassic surrounds of The Galapagos Islands. In the place that inspired Charles Darwin to write The Origin of Species and whose inhabitants confirmed his theory of evolution, The Galapagos offers a hugely educational and mind-opening experience to this day.

    We suggest staying at one of the Galapagos’ land-based lodges for a more family-friendly and comfortable stay. Finch Bay Hotel on Santa Cruz Island is a great choice for families, opening directly onto the beach with a large swimming pool and is only 15 minutes from the Charles Darwin Research Station. The hotel is also a pioneer in sustainability, with rigorous processes for energy and waste and use a carbon offsetting program in Ecuador’s biodiverse Chocó forests. From Finch, head out on daily boat trips to discover endemic wildlife: kayak around turquoise waters and spot sea lions; admire the slow pace of wise giant tortoises; snorkel with sea turtles and sharks; dive with rays, birdwatch and see frigatebirds, blue-footed and Nazca boobies.

    Go Deeper into Thailand’s Jungle

    In a country where it’s sometimes hard to divert from the well-worn tourist trails, discover a floating camp in the heart of Khao Sok National Park, far away from habitation, allowing you and your family to be immersed in jungle life with plentiful wild animal spots.

    Unique and with huge appeal for families, 500Rai floating resort is in a truly unspoiled part of the national park, located on an emerald lake surrounded by ancient rainforests, intriguing caves and gushing waterfalls offering opportunity to connect deeply with the natural environment. Aside from jumping into the water for swims right by your floating cabin, kayak the calm waters to spot hornbills in the trees or hike into pristine rainforest, looking for bison, elephant and monkeys. Enjoy quieter, gentler moments together like a Thai cookery class to perfect your favourite Thai dishes or crafting a hat or fan in a palm-weaving lesson. Connect with your family in this hidden corner of Thailand.

    Drive through Lord of the Rings Landscapes in NZ

    There’s nothing better than a family road trip for quality time together and the chance to forge your own path as you discover off-the-beaten-track destinations. We think one of the best ways to do this is among the rural beauty of New Zealand travelling in a comfortable motorhome, allowing you to stay overnight in remote spots to really get under the skin of NZ.

    Whether you choose North Island or South, or both, expect larger-than-life landscapes from the country where both The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings were filmed, plus a raft of activities, back-to-nature encounters, rustic foodie experiences and fascinating geological marvels. And with your own transport and accommodation in one, you’re free to go further into the wild if you choose. Talk to us about what suits your family, whether it’s hitting the endless surf breaks of Raglan, tapping into Māori culture with a traditional hangi feast, visiting the spurting geysers and multi-coloured pools of Rotorua, dolphin-spotting in the subtropical Bay of Islands or kayaking the coastal beauty of Abel Tasman. New Zealand is a feast for the senses.

    Explore Argentina’s Wild Wetlands

    The world’s largest wetlands, Ibera National Park in northeast Argentina is a paradise for both nature-lovers and explorers, suiting families ready to go that bit further into the wild. Arrive in Buenos Aires and connect to Posades airport before a 30-minute drive brings you to Puerto Valle Hotel, a sustainable lodge deep in the Ibera wetlands.

    Using the lodge as your base, head out on daily trips into the estuaries by boat or kayak and take jeep trips into the Laguna Valle and the Ibera Wetlands to spot capybaras, marsh deer and rare bird life. There’s also the opportunity for equine adventures on horseback or to spend time picking fruit and vegetables on the organic farm. We’d recommend taking this trip in the summer holidays and continuing the adventure by visiting the impressive curtain of water at Iguazu Falls, the largest waterfall system in the world. End in Rio de Janeiro – whizz up the cable car to Sugar Loaf mountain for dizzying views, visit the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue and join local families on famed beaches Ipanema and Copacabana for a taste of the Brazilian good life.

    Surf Morocco’s Atlantic Coastline

    For active families who love splashing about in the ocean, surfing lessons are a great way to expend energy and learn a new skill at the same time. And it also leaves room for different levels too; advanced surfers can head out the back while beginners can have fun in the white water.

    At Paradis Plage Resort in Morocco, north of famed surfing area Taghazout, stay at this beachside hotel that makes it easy to keep everyone happy. Complimentary yoga in the morning, pancakes for breakfast and surfable waves just steps away make a great start and the family-friendly Prestige Suites with two bedrooms and two bathrooms plus a living area mean there’s space to spread out. Let the hotel arrange board hire and lessons on site or head to Taghazout to tap into its cool surf culture, great waves and buzzy restaurants.  Carve out time in the spa for a rose oil massage and scrub in the hammam while the kids make friends in the complimentary kids’ club. Come evening, stargaze by the firepit before early bed, the whole family pleasantly wiped out.

    Horse Ride the Mountains of Costa Rica

    Costa Rica is known as the adventure capital of Central America making it a popular destination for thrill-seeking families looking to spike their adrenaline. However, at Arenas Del Mar, a beachfront resort clasped by rainforest, you can choose between a raft of activities, some of which will be guaranteed to quicken your pulse; others that take a slower, more immersive pace.

    We like the sound of the horse-riding journey that winds its way up into the Cerro Nara mountains. Atop your trusty stead, gently ride through verdant jungle, passing by meandering rivers and finishing at a stunning waterfall, where you can have a dip in its refreshing pool. Back at the hotel, parents can chill with a cocktail on the beach, while the kids splash in water or perhaps glimpse sloths or monkeys swinging in the trees. With plenty to do here, consider your next move – maybe canopy zip lining, a mangrove kayak tour, an eco-farm exploration or simply staying put learning how to make tortillas. Whether you go high octane or low-key, Costa Rica is big on experience.

    Safari, Stories & Surfing in Sri Lanka

    A destination beloved by the Real Holidays team, Sri Lanka’s diversity can be many things to many people. But there’s no denying it offers something truly special for families. Best explored over a couple of weeks, allow us to craft an itinerary that will take you across the island, discovering ancient Buddhist sites, spotting wildlife in national parks and surfing beach breaks.

    The joy of Sri Lanka is getting off the beaten track and enjoying interactions with locals and their traditions – an area our expertise can initiate with ease. Like cycling through cinnamon plantations and learning about how the famed spice is harvested or mask painting in a workshop in Galle including their role in storytelling and in spiritual ceremonies. These carefully curated experiences and interactions are often the most memorable alongside plentiful Sri Lankan adventure including ziplining the jungle, Hill Country trekking, whale watching and turtle spotting. Fun for the whole family.

    Quad Bike the Kalahari 

    Family thrills don’t get more exciting than zooming out over the wide-open landscapes of Botswana’s Makgadikgadi salt pans. Stretching as far as the eye can see and with little in the way of obstacles it’s the ideal terrain to make headway and experience the magical vastness of the salt pan.

    Children over 12 can ride their own quad bike, and in single file you will forge a path into the wilds. Stopping frequently, you will appreciate the deafening silence and surreal sparseness of the salt pans, perhaps spotting a brown hyena scavenging in the distance or a bat-eared fox lolloping across the pan. Come home to a warm welcome at Camp Kalahari surrounded by 4,000-year-old baobab trees, where the habituated meerkats will delight young and old, children can happily sit with a meerkat on their head – an iconic photo opportunity!

    Pair this trip with a visit to Botswana’s Okavango Delta, finishing at the thundering Victoria Falls for an incredible family adventure in Africa.