By Daniel Mackrell on 11 October 2019

It seems like only last week that schools across the country opened their gates for the new academic year, but the first half term is already here.

Many kids will be celebrating that a week off is just around the corner, while parents will be left wondering how to keep them entertained during the Autumn break. If you have the time off there are plenty of short holidays that you can take your family on during the October half term, especially if you want to get away from the cold, wet weather in the UK.

It also provides a good opportunity to get yourself rested ahead of the winter months and the busy Christmas period.

There is still some time to get your next family trip booked, and here are some great destinations that you can visit and enjoy with your family during the week-long break.

Benidorm, Spain

Benidorm remains a popular location for British holidaymakers, and it can be one of the busiest areas during the summer months. Fortunately, travellers can expect more of the same warm weather throughout October. The number of clouds around the city does increase as the month progresses, but it should remain warm, especially compared with the UK.

Families often head to Benidorm for its many sandy beaches, as well as its wide array of water sports that keep both adults and children busy. There are also waterparks, zoos, theme parks and variety shows to ensure that the entertainment continues throughout your holiday.

The city provides an affordable option for holidaymakers looking to travel on a budget, while the nightlife also has plenty to offer for those looking to party their nights away in the city.

If you’re hoping to enjoy a quieter trip with your family, Benidorm still has plenty of quieter narrow streets and market places nestled among its busy high streets and high-rise buildings. There are also many restaurants and tapas bars offering traditional Spanish food.

Rome, Italy

Rome has the prefect mix of history and modern life on display, with bustling roads surrounding ancient ruins throughout the city. There is plenty to visit and enjoy, providing a chance to show your family wonders dating as far back as the 2nd century.

Travelling later in the year means that you can travel in more comfort than the summer months, while still enjoying temperatures of 24-25 degrees.

It also gives you the chance to enjoy the Italian city during a quieter period, which often means that you can visit some of the bigger tourist destinations without the long queues. There is plenty to visit to keep your kids entertained, and the history of Rome often ensures that they continue to learn, even when they are away from school.

The Colosseum, the Pantheon and the Roman Forum are among some of the biggest tourist spots in the city, while the many Italian restaurants and wine on offer make the city the perfect trip for food fans.

Barcelona, Spain

The Spanish capital is a bustling city and Las Ramblas is filled with people all year-round, making it a great destination for anyone looking to stay busy during their next trip.

For children, there are plenty of visually impressive places to visit, including the Sagrada Familia, Gaudi Park, and the many museums that Barcelona has to offer. You can also stop by the various marketplaces and stalls that are spread out across the city, while the sandy beach provides a popular destination for both tourists and locals to enjoy the sun.

If it does get a bit rainy, there is still plenty to do inside, with the CosmoCaixa science museum offering free entry for under-16s and some great interactive exhibits. There is also an aquarium, and the option of visiting Camp Nou, the home of Spanish football team Barcelona FC.

Eiffel Tower at night in Paris, France

Paris, France

The French capital has plenty to offer young travellers with an interest in art and culture, providing plenty of attractions to visit.

The Eiffel Tower and the Louvre Museum are both popular tourist spots, so it is worth booking ahead of time if you are keen to visit them during your trip. Other places of interest include the Natural History Museum, the Arc de Triomphe, and Notre Dame Cathedral.

Paris is an easy destination to reach from the UK, with the option of a short flight over the Channel, a trip on a ferry, or a journey on the Eurostar. Making it one of the simplest places to access if you are hoping for a stress-free journey where you can put most of your focus on ensuring that your children are happy.

Disneyland provides a perfect location to head to for a short break if you have young children. At the magical theme park there are plenty of rides for both adults and children to enjoy, while Disney characters can be spotted at every turn, ready to take pictures and sign autographs.

October is set to be a particularly popular time for many Disney fans, as Halloween will take over the park. Meaning visitors can expect many spooky decorations and nods to some of Disney’s spookier creations.

Paphos, Cyprus

Cyprus is one of the few countries in Europe that maintains high temperatures and long days of sun throughout October, and it continues to attract tourists further into Autumn. It can get as warm as 27 degrees, which means that water sports remain a popular option for tourists looking to stay active during their trip abroad.

Paphos also has the Aphrodite Waterpark which provides plenty of fun for the whole family, while snorkelling and swimming at the beach are also popular options.

If you’re feeling particularly adventurous you could book a trip to venture up Troodos Mountains, or visit Avakas Gorge. There are also various castles across the island that you can visit, including St Hilarion, which supposedly helped inspire Walt Disney when creating the castle for Snow White.

You can do day trips into the capital city of Nicosia too, which has many high street stores, as well as restaurants, bars and museums. The city also provides opportunities to look at the northern part of Cyprus, which remains separated from the rest of the country after being taken over by Turkey in 1974.

How to prepare for a family holiday

If you have a young family and haven’t done much travelling with them yet, the first big trip abroad can be quite a daunting. You will want to make sure that you have everything in place to ensure the holiday goes smoothly without any last-minute surprises.

There are plenty of things that you can do to avoid any unexpected delays to your travel. This includes checking with your airline ahead of time to see if there are any rules or restrictions for travelling with young children, in most cases you can get earlier access onto the plane.

It is also valuable to get us much rest as you can ahead of your trip and try to arrange the flights so that they are at a time that suits you, so that it doesn’t drastically interfere with your daily routine. It’s also worth bringing any items that your children are familiar with, whether it’s a toy or a blanket, to keep them calm during travel.

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