The Top 10 Family-Friendly Winter Wonderland Destinations

    Top Family-Friendly Winter Wonderland Destinations

    With Christmas creeping round the corner, you might be considering a last-minute festive getaway for you and the family; or are thinking of booking somewhere to get through the dreary months of January or February.

    Whatever you’re considering, there’s no denying that a holiday is the perfect way to beat the dull and gloomy winter blues.

    At SkyParkSecure, we decided to create the ultimate family-friendly winter wonderland index, to determine the best city breaks for families to take during the colder months. To do this, we took multiple factors into account, from family-friendly hotels and restaurants, through to free attractions, and much more.

    So, read on to discover the best cities in the world to take your kids – and don’t forget to book your airport parking once you’ve sorted your flights!

    Top Family-Friendly Winter Wonderland Destinations Infographic

    London, UK

    London tops the list as the best winter family destination, and for good reason: it’s the most family-friendly city!

    Not only does it have the most family-friendly hotels, and second most restaurants, at 4,425 and 5,883 respectively; but it has the most activities for kids, at 707; as well as 1,000 attractions offering free entry – the most on our list.

    If you visit London at Christmas, then make sure you visit Winter Wonderland, with its festive stalls, fairground rides, and magical ice kingdom. However, London’s perfect at all times of the year – kids will never fail to enjoy attractions such as The London Dungeon or Madame Tussauds; or even playing in one of the many beautiful parks.

    Winter Wonderland, Hyde Park, London

    Winter Wonderland, Hyde Park, London

    Tokyo, Japan

    Tokyo comes a close second for winter family destinations – and with 2,858 kid-friendly hotels, it has the third most on our list. The city also boasts 367 activities that are good for kids, as well as 803 attractions that offer free entry.

    Tokyo can often come across as expensive, but you can visit on a budget – you can dine out for four people for £16.16 on average (the second cheapest on our list), as well as riding around on public transport for just £3.24.

    From Disneyland to the Ghibli Museum, as well as the many animal cafes and video game arcades; Tokyo is quite literally a playground the kids will fall in love with!

    Moiwa Lodge, Niseko-chō, Japan

    Niseko Ski Resort, Japan

    Located in Japan, on Hokkaido – the country’s second-largest island, Niseko Ski Resort has over 2,000 acres of ski area. It’s home to luxury hotels, spas, restaurants and of course, fantastic snowy views.

    And it’s so popular! Travel experts at SkyParkSecure have revealed the top 10 most Instagrammable winter wonderlands from all over the world and Niseko Ski Resort in Japan was crowned as the most Insta-worthy winter spot with over 696k hashtags.

    Paris, France

    In third place is Paris, with 1,000 attractions offering free entry, as well as the second most activities ideal for kids, at 528. The family will also be able to dine like kings here – Paris boasts the most family-friendly restaurants, at a staggering 5,982.

    Once you’ve done Disneyland Paris, take the kids on a trip to Ménagerie du Jardin des Plantes, a zoo home to red pandas, leopards, apes, and more; or enjoy a walk around the picturesque Jardin du Luxembourg, which is home to the city’s oldest carousel, as well as playing host to plenty of pony rides and puppet shows.

    Hong Kong, China

    If you’d prefer to venture somewhere further afield for your winter family holiday, then Hong Kong could be the answer. Choose from 2,110 family-friendly restaurants, with the average meal costing just £18.84 for four.

    Hong Kong is known for being extremely safe, and it has the seventh lowest crime rates on our list, with a score of 21.7 – ideal when you’re travelling with children.

    The city also has its own Disneyland, but some prefer Ocean Park instead, as it has fewer crowds. Alternatively, you could visit the Science Museum which has over 500 exhibits on display or embark on a dolphin watching tour and see if you can spot the elusive pink dolphin!

    Prague, Czechia

    Czechia’s capital makes it into a very respectable fifth place, with the fifth highest number of family-friendly hotels (2,496), and the fifth most activities for kids (306).

    If your children are fascinated with history, then they’ll love wandering around the quirky cobblestone streets, and venturing into the castle. However, there’s so much more to Prague than just that: Prague Zoo is rated amongst the best in the world, and kids will be able to see more than 700 species, as well as enjoy the petting farm and play area. You could also visit the National Theatre, which hosts musicals, plays, and sometimes even traditional Czech circuses!

    Prague in winter, Czechia

    Prague in winter, Czechia

    Taipei, Taiwan

    Taipei makes it into sixth place, and for good reason: it has the lowest crime rates on our list, at 14.9; and is also extremely cheap too – with the average meal for four costing £16.16, and public transport at £2.52, the city places the joint second cheapest for both of these.

    Taipei is perfect for kids, with something to do wherever you look. Catch the gondola to the zoo, ride a swan boat at Bitan Riverside park, or spend the day running around at the water park – Taiwan is hot all year round, so you’ll be grateful for it even if you visit over winter!

    New York City, New York, USA

    New York City makes it into seventh place, with 2,393 family-friendly restaurants, 439 kid-friendly activities, and 907 attractions with free entry.

    Start off at the mammoth playground that’s Central Park, which has plenty of lakes and playgrounds to keep the kids entertained; or you could visit Bryant Park and play at one of the ping pong tables.

    If you visit at Christmas, you could go skating at Rockefeller Center; and make sure you visit the New York Public Library, which is home to the original Winnie-the-Pooh stuffed animals, dating back to the 1920s.

    Edinburgh, UK

    Scotland’s capital makes it into eighth place, with 909 family-friendly hotels, 899 restaurants, and 477 free attractions.

    Kids will love the free Potter Trail, that takes you past key sights from the Harry Potter books and movies, where you can take a trip down Diagon Alley, and see the café where JK Rowling wrote the first book. If you’re with the whole family, you should also take a trip to The Chocolatarium where you can make your own creations, or the Wild West Cowboy Street, where you’re transported to an old western movie, with cowboys and saloons.

    Dubrovnik, Croatia

    The majestic city of Dubrovnik makes it into ninth place; with its low crime rates (the second lowest on our list), as well as the ninth lowest pollution levels, with a score of 23.45.

    The nearby beaches might be a bit cold to visit in the winter, but there’s still plenty to do with the family. Head to Lokrum Island to visit the wild peacocks (just steer clear of the nudist beach!), or ride the cable car to the top of Mount Srd for beautiful views over the city.

    Seoul, South Korea

    Rounding off our top 10 list of the best winter family destinations, is South Korea’s capital, Seoul. With street vendors and stalls across the city, you can eat cheaply if you choose to, with a meal for four costing an average of £19.76. The city also has a great variety of family-friendly hotels, at an impressive 3,385.

    Kids will love visiting the kitschy stores of Myeongdong, but that can get very pricy very quickly! Instead, visit one of the many kids’ cafes that offer great food and sensory play experiences; or if you want to venture further afield, you could go strawberry picking at Daega Farm, or enjoy the thrills offered at Lotte World Adventure park.

    Seoul Forest Park, Ttukseom-ro, Seongdong-gu, Seoul

    Seoul Forest Park, Ttukseom-ro, Seongdong-gu, Seoul

    Taipei is the safest family-friendly city

    As you can see, there are so many places that are perfect to visit with families – whether you want to venture further afield to Asia or the USA, or stay closer to home with a European adventure.

    If safety is the key focus for you on your trip, then look to Taipei or Dubrovnik, which have the lowest crime rates on our list; closely followed by Whistler, Finland’s Rovaniemi, and Munich.

    Rovaniemi is best visited in December, as it’s the official hometown of Santa Claus. Your kids can meet the main man himself, as well as going on a reindeer sleigh ride, or taking a class at Elf School.

    Santa Claus Village, Rovaniemi, Finland

    Santa Claus Village, Rovaniemi, Finland

    Srinagar is one of the best destinations for budget family holidays

    Alternatively, if you’re looking for somewhere that’s more affordable, you have a few options. India’s Srinagar has the cheapest meals, at just £13.52 for four, followed by Taipei, Tokyo, and Hong Kong.

    Known to be one of the most picturesque cities in India, enjoy a boat ride across Dal Lake with its beautiful floating gardens, or wander through the maze of alleys in Srinagar’s Old City, with artisan stalls lining the streets, selling their wares.

    Alternatively, if you want to make the most of free attractions, then London, Paris, New York, Tokyo, and Prague have the most options.

    So, now you’ve got all the inspiration you could possibly need for a family-friendly winter holiday, all that’s left to do is book your trip! Whether you opt for a cultural European city break, or a far-flung Asian adventure, you’re guaranteed to have a great time.

    If you’ve got an early flight out or late flight back, make sure you book a hotel with parking, so the kids can get some sleep, and you can enjoy some much-needed relaxation time. We have deals at airports all across the country, so be sure to lock in the best price with us. Alternatively, we can help with car hire and comparing travel money rates, which you can sort in advance, so you don’t have to stress about it while on holiday.

    Methodology

    Seed List

    • https://www.elledecor.com/life-culture/travel/g2821/cold-winter-vacations/
    • https://www.cntraveler.com/gallery/the-most-beautiful-winter-escapes-in-the-world
    • https://www.travelandleisure.com/best-winter-family-vacations-8356377
    • https://familytraveller.com/ski-holidays/family-winter-breaks/
    • https://www.lonelyplanet.com/articles/best-winter-destinations-europe
    • https://baby-magazine.telegraph.co.uk/eight-festive-getaways-special-christmas/

    Sources

    • Crime Index, Pollution Index, Food Costs (Multiplied by 4), and Transport Costs (Multiplied by 4): https://www.numbeo.com
    • Hotels, Restaurants, and Family and Free Activities: https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/

    Scored using a normalisation formula, all Numbeo factors were scored as lowest=best, whilst TripAdvisor factors were scores as highest=best


    Photos by:
    Devon RogersUnsplash | Hamish DuncanUnsplash | Clark GuUnsplash | fox jiaUnsplash | Ketevan SaliaUnsplash

    LEAVE A REPLY