Traveling to Europe is more affordable than it has been in over a decade, so now’s a great time to pack up the whole family and head across the pond. Europe has so many significant cultural and historical sites that many think it’s a continent best seen without children. They couldn’t be more wrong. Many European destinations are ideal for family vacations; these destinations offer everything from inexpensive (and kid-approved) dining options to fun activities and amazing sights. To help you plan the perfect vacation itinerary for your family, we’ve compiled a list of the best family-friendly cities to visit in Europe.
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1. Paris, France
The City of Lights is a playground for people of all ages. Paris is easy to navigate, and there are delicious kid-friendly food options on every corner. Don’t be intimidated by local Parisians; they are friendlier than they’re often portrayed. And if that’s not enough, the bigger-than-life sights such as the famous Louvre museum and Eiffel Tower will enthrall children of all ages.
2. London, England
With no language barrier to contend with, London makes a fabulous destination for Americans traveling with little ones. Enjoy world-famous attractions like the London Eye, Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, and the Harry Potter Studios Tour. You can even bring their favorite stories to life in the cultural experience of musicals.
3. Dublin, Ireland
Your children will love the whimsical Irish brogue as much as the beautiful city with its cobblestone paths and unique architecture. Meander through one of the many museums in Dublin or head to a park to feed the wild ducks (and deer)! For a special treat, take them to Imaginosity, the Dublin Children’s Museum. Your family travel memories will be that much more wonderful.
4. Amsterdam, Netherlands
Active families will love all of the bike and walking paths throughout Amsterdam. You can explore the city without ever needing a car or public transportation. Kids will especially love riding in the front area of the unique bikes called bakfiets. They’ll also enjoy counting the boats that zoom along the canals. Want to go on a day trip? Plan your trip around the tulip blooms!
5. Munich, Germany
This Bavarian capital is like a fairy tale come to life for children. They’ll be enchanted by the gorgeous buildings, the friendly locals and the plethora of treat shops lining the meticulous streets. If you want to expand on that magical feeling, head to the Bavaria Film Studios where your children can ride Falkor from The Neverending Story movie. The many Munich museums will ensure they learn a bit of history and culture through your travels as well.
6. Rome, Italy
Families who appreciate history and delectable cuisine shouldn’t pass up the opportunity to visit Rome. Feast on authentic pizza and heaps of gelato in a tucked-away piazza before visiting the world-famous Colosseum and Pantheon. Afterward, take the kids to a gladiator school where they can put their Roman skills to the test.
7. Stockholm, Sweden
This picture-perfect capital is one of the most family-friendly cities in the world. With a culture that encourages family bonding and activities, you know you’ll find plenty to do as a family in Stockholm. Pushing a stroller around? You get to ride the public buses for free! There are parks and many dedicated spaces (the like the National Museum of Science and Technology) that were designed with children in mind, and historical and cultural learning opportunities abound in this vibrant city.
8. Prague, Czech Republic
Prague is one of the most affordable destinations for an international vacation. Kids will love the Lego Museum, zoo and planetarium. Parents will love pedaling along the Vltava River for the best views of this picturesque city. Don’t miss the Christmas markets if you’re there for the holidays. And did we mention the beer is nearly as cheap as water? Now that’s a refreshing end to a fun-filled day for parents.
9. Edinburgh, Scotland
Watch your child’s eyes light up as they explore castles that are straight from their fairy tales. If being a knight for a day doesn’t tickle your child’s fancy, you can explore an extinct volcano, wander through the Edinburgh Zoo, take a Harry Potter tour or visit spooky dungeons! In Edinburgh, there’ll be plenty of space for them to romp around, and you’ll enjoy the experience as well.