Europe is the perfect introduction to walking holidays for children. The popular walking areas include plenty of easier terrain with a wide variety of family-friendly accommodation.
If you are considering a family holiday with the kids – then please check out the “Walking with Kids” section on our website.
If you enjoyed walking holidays before having a family, please don’t give up your favourite holiday style just because you are now parents! From babies in carriers to teenagers, walking with children has much to offer. Obviously, you will have to tailor your trip a bit, particularly with younger kids, but modern carriers mean even a baby is no longer an impediment to a walking holiday. Plus, many mountain inns and guest houses are family-owned and family-friendly
Planning your first family walking holiday…
Get the kids involved in the holiday planning. Show them pictures and video clips of the area that you will be visiting and let them make suggestions as to what they may like to do including non-walking activities.
Make sure everyone has the right gear. Children need good boots, just like adults. And their feet grow fast – so don’t rely on last year’s pair fitting them still – check if they need new shoes in good time before the trip.
Wet weather clothing is important too. Kids are particularly vulnerable to hypothermia, so layers of good quality fabric is key.
Mum or Dad may have to consider a larger backpack – although kids often like to carry a small rucksack themselves – you’ll be the ones carrying extra snacks, spare clothing, first aid gear and sun tan lotion!
Choose the right itinerary!
If your children are very young, or just new to hiking, then don’t be overly ambitious on your first trip.
If the kids aren’t up to walking from one location to the next- then consider a trip where you stay in one place all week – and do a variety of day trips.
Keep the days short and fun, to encourage the kids. If the weather doesn’t cooperate, don’t push it, have some alternative activities planned for poor weather. Look for a location where you can take a break from outdoor activities to visit local attractions, zoos, or museums.
Walking is a wonderful family adventure, and Europe has plenty of options which allow families to enjoy a healthy family holiday. Plus you are introducing the next generation to the joys of the great outdoors!