Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

20 Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

Traveling with kids is one of the best ways to have them experience the world! 

There are so many cheap and top European cities to visit that are child-friendly and safe. A lot of these destinations are popular European cities and are all full of amazing adventures that your entire family will love. A couple of them are underrated European cities though, and while you may be ready to cross them off your list quickly, you should give them a chance!  After all, you never know what you may discover while you are there.

Our 20 best European cities to travel with kids include:


1. Barcelona, Spain


Barcelona is a coastal city in the northeastern part of Spain.  It is the largest city, as well as the capital of Catalonia. Approximately one and a half million people live within this city, but when you consider the people who live within the nearby municipalities of the Province of Barcelona, that number climbs to almost five million. Barcelona is one of the best European cities to visit with kids because it has everything from beaches and parks to theme parks, mountains, and many shopping opportunities.  

Best Time to Visit Barcelona

This is one of the best European cities in spring because the weather is nice and multiple cultural events take place.  During this time, the temperatures are warming up, yet there are still fewer tourists at all the attractions.  There is no bad time of the year for visiting Barcelona, but you may enjoy it more during the spring before it gets too hot. If you can, plan your European city vacation to Barcelona in April to experience the best of this area.

Why Visit Barcelona

A visit to Barcelona is a must simply because of the architecture, culture, and food.  Add in the fact that you can walk to many places quite easily and you have a family vacation that meets most of your major requirements.

Casa Mila, Barcelona , Spain - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

Out of the massive list of things to do in Barcelona, the one that truly must be on your list with kids is a ride on the cable car to Montjuïc Castle. Other must-see sights with kids include Casa Mila, Poble Espanyol, and the Barcelona Zoo and Aquarium. If your kids are a little older, I recommend doing a bike tour of this city, because it will allow you to see so much more than you would if you were riding in a car or using public transportation.  While many people will wander over to Parc Güell, your kids may prefer the wide-open spaces of Parc de la Ciutadella. 

Top 5 Things to Do in Barcelona with Kids

 

1. Take a Bike Tour

Taking a bike tour is one of the best ways to see the sights in Barcelona with kids.  I recommend choosing a tour that goes through both El Born and Gothic quarters, as those two areas will intrigue your kids the most.

2. Ride the Cable Car

All kids will love riding the cable car from Barceloneta to Montjuic and back again.  You can choose to get on board at either end and you can explore new sights before climbing back on for your return journey.  The best part is the views are amazing and you will capture many unique pictures during your ride.

3. Spend Time at the Beach

As long as you visit Barcelona during the warmer months of the year, the beach is going to be the perfect place to spend some downtime as a family.

Beach in Barcelona

There are plenty of beaches to choose from along the one hundred miles of coastline, but I recommend Nova Icaria Beach.  This beach has a little for everyone, including swimming, beach volleyball, and a shopping center when you are tired of the sun and the sand.

4. Ride the Hop On Hop Off Bus

If you have smaller children, or a few family members are balking about walking through Barcelona, then the Hop On Hop Off Bus is going to be the perfect solution.  There are two different routes available, so you can choose the one that fits your needs the most, or simply do them both.  You can book one- or two-day passes, depending on how long you think you will be at each attraction, so you have enough time to see everything this city has to offer.

5. Visit the Barcelona Maritime Museum

One of the most kid-friendly museums in Barcelona is the Barcelona Maritime Museum.  You can spend hours there with your family, as everyone plays with toy boats and wanders through the full-sized ones.  While all the boats are wonderful, it will be the Spanish Gallion that you will all love.


2. Amalfi Coast, Italy


The Amalfi Coast in Italy is absolutely breathtaking, and it is the perfect place to take kids when you are tired of all the historical sights in the country. While the Amalfi Coast is not technically a city, it is still one of the best European destinations to visit with kids.  This area can be found on the southern coastline of Italy and it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that attracts thousands of tourists every year.  The thirteen little towns within the Amalfi Coast all connect to each other and the drive to each of them offers stunning views.

Amalfi Coast, Italy - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

This is one of the best European cities to visit in July, due to the number of festivals that are held here, as well as the beautiful weather. On July 26th of every year, you can watch the boats float along in parade-like fashion in front of Castello Aragonese and if you time your trip just right, you can still be in the area for Praiano’s Luminaria di San Domenico. In between trips to the beach, you can hike up Mount Vesuvius, explore the ruins of Pompeii, or take a cooking class over in Minori.  

Best Time to visit the Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi Coast is the best European city to visit during the fall and spring, which is why you should plan your vacation there for the months of April, May, September, or October.  The weather during these months is beautiful with warm temperatures, but not too hot.  Add in the fact that the crowds have dispersed at these times and you will have adventures without many people and the higher price tags.

Why Visit the Amalfi Coast

One of the main reasons you should choose the Amalfi Coast for your best European cities to visit with kids is the fact the villages are all on the side of cliffs.  You will never see homes and other buildings spread out on a cliff like they are on the Amalfi Coast and it will start many conversations of how this is all possible.

Top 5 Things to Do in the Amalfi Coast with Kids

 

1. Spend Time at the Beaches

One of the main things you will do with kids on the Amalfi Coast is to spend time at the beaches.  The water is welcoming; the sand allows for plenty of playing and relaxing, and you will all love hanging out together and having fun.  While you can choose any beach you wish, you might want to check out the one by Marina Piccola.

2. Attend a Festival

If you happen to visit this European city in July or August, you will have a chance to attend one of the many festivals that take place at that time of the year.  Each one has parades, historical tournaments, food, and fireworks.  The most popular festivals are Praiano’s Luminaria di San Domenico and the Festa di Sant’Anna.

3. Take a Cooking Class

Over in Italy, you do what the Italians do, and that is cook!  There are plenty of cooking classes available to take as a family, so make a reservation and learn how to make your favorite Italian dish.

Cooking Class

For most kids, this will be pizza, but think of how yummy pizza night will now be back home.

4. Visit the Amalfi Paper Museum

Spending a little time in the Amalfi Paper Museum will have you learning how a paper mill was run back in the 13th century.  After looking at all the exhibits, you can get hands on and make some paper on your own.

5. Swim in a Grotto

While you may all love swimming right near the beach, there is something special about swimming in one of the grottoes on the Amalfi Coast.  You have two choices, either the Blue or Emerald Grotto, and you must plan your trip right if you want to avoid the crowds.  If you visit the Amalfi Coast during the spring, you won’t have too much trouble.  However, a summer trip to the Amalfi Coast will have you fighting the crowds at the grottoes, unless you visit really early in the morning.


3. Vienna, Austria


Vienna has a lot to live up to since it is the capital of Austria, as well as the largest city and one of the nine states of the country.  More than two and a half million people live within Vienna and it is considered one of the most livable cities out of all the top European cities and the rest of the cities in the world. History is everywhere in Vienna, but don’t worry, there is plenty of action that your kids will enjoy.  You can all wander along the narrow streets, as you discover independent bookstores and charming cafés. Most of the popular attractions are all within easy access of the Innere Stadt, but you will find that you can reach those that are further away without too much of an issue. 

Vienna, Austria

St. Stephen’s Cathedral should be at the top of your list followed by Schönbrunn Palace and the House of Music, or Haus der Musik. Kids of all ages will love visiting Tiergarten, which is the oldest zoo in the entire world, and you can spend all day visiting with the eight thousand plus animals that live there.  There is some nightlife in Vienna, but you may decide that this is definitely one of the best European cities to visit with kids, because most people choose to go to bed early there.  

Best Time to Visit Vienna

Vienna is one of the top European cities in spring because the temperatures haven’t gotten too hot and the crowds of tourists have not arrived.  The second-best time to visit this best European city is during the months of September and October, because it is cooling down and most of the tourists head home.

Why Visit Vienna

Vienna is known as the City of Music, as well as the City of Dreams, and they are both excellent reasons to visit this European capital city.

Top 5 things to do in Vienna with Kids

 

1. Visit the House of Music

Music lovers must visit the House of Music when in Vienna.  The interactive exhibits on all five floors will have even the most uninterested kid involved in no time at all.  Each person in your group can play digital music, create their own CD, or even pretend they are a conductor of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra.

2. Take the Hop On Hop Off Bus

One of the best ways to see the sights of a city, without a ton of walking, is to ride the Hop On Hop Off Bus.  In Vienna, these buses have two different routes and each one takes between an hour and a half and two hours if you simply ride and do not get off.  Imagine seeing sites like the Vienna State Opera, St. Stephen’s Cathedral, and the Hofburg Imperial Palace without needing to worry about how you are getting to them.

3. Visit the Schönbrunn Palace

There are plenty of palaces to see while in Vienna, but this one offers a children’s museum, as well as plenty of space to run around and play outside.

Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna, Austria - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

The entire family will love trying to solve getting through the maze, but you may want to leave that for the end of your trip, or you may never see the inside of the palace.

4. Visit the Schönbrunn Zoo

This might be the oldest zoo in the world, but that won’t be what interests you during your visit.  Instead, you will be all over the Giant pandas and all the other animals that can be found there.  Plan your day wisely, especially if you are a panda fan, because it will be very difficult to walk away from watching these creatures.

5. Conquer History Quickly at Time Travel Vienna

Do you want to learn more about the history of Vienna without boring your kids to death?  Well, visit Time Travel Vienna and you can experience approximately two thousand years of history in under an hour.  You will find this attraction within the former wine cellars of St. Michael’s monastery, but be prepared for a thrill, especially if you don’t like being beneath the surface of the earth.


4. Budapest, Hungary


Budapest is one of the largest European cities, at least according to the population.  This city is the capital of Hungary and while it is small at just over two hundred miles, more than one and a half million people live there.  Of course, that is just the city.  Budapest also happens to be a county in Hungary and more than three million people live within those limits. Kids of all ages will love spending time in Budapest, and you will love knowing that you will have no trouble at all having toddlers and babies in tow.  As you wander around this city, you will discover that there are plenty of playgrounds to stop at, so your little ones can always run off some extra energy and have some kid-friendly fun. 

Gellért Hill, Budapest, Hungary - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

Gellért Hill is a favorite amongst the locals, although you may prefer the open spaces of City Park. While your kids may not have any interest in the thermal baths, you are still going to want to stop at a few when you are visiting.  Let the kids soak their feet while you relax for a little or simply take turns in the baths, while your significant other watches the kids.  

Best Time to Visit Budapest

The weather in Budapest is never really considered warm, but the best time to visit isn’t when it is the warmest.  The summer months bring warm temperatures and rain, as well as a plethora of tourists.  Therefore, you will want to visit this European city in the spring or the fall.  If you do happen to visit this European city in December, you will be rewarded with fabulous Christmas markets.

Why Visit Budapest

This is one of the Eastern European cities that is full of thrilling history, amazing architecture, and delectable cuisine.  Add in a few spectacular festivals and you have everything that you need for a family vacation and so much more.

Top 5 Things to Do in Budapest with Kids

 

1. Go Hiking

There are many places to go hiking in Budapest, but Gellért Hill is the best option when you are traveling with kids.  When you reach the top of this hill, you will be rewarded with views of the Danube and the rest of the city.  In addition, there are a few monuments and exhibits at the top, which are perfect for exploring.

2. Visit the Hungarian Railway Museum

Most kids love trains, so make time to visit the Hungarian Railway Museum.  This museum has plenty of locomotives and vintage trains and the kids will love having a chance to operate a handcar and steam engine.  The horse tram is a hit with little ones too.

3. Explore the Labyrinth of Caves

Within the Budapest Castle District, you will find the Labyrinth of Caves.  These caves can be found deep underground and you will feel as if you are being transported back in time, as you are walking through.

Cave

It can be cold in these caves, so make sure you wear warm clothes down there.

4. Attend the Circus

The Budapest Circus will have you watching very talented performers, whether clowns, acrobats, or jugglers.  Add in the animals and your entire family will be at the edge of your seats the whole time.  This circus is open year-round, so you never need to worry about missing it.

5. Take a Sightseeing Cruise

Riding in a boat on the Danube River can be fun for kids and adults.  While you can choose a basic sightseeing cruise, you may prefer one where you eat lunch or dinner, as you are floating along.  You won’t need to worry about who is hungry, because food will be available and you can simply just sit back and relax as you see the sights.


5.  Paris, France


Okay, so Paris is considered the best European city for solo female travelers, thanks to the museums and fashion options.  However, it is also a phenomenal destination to travel with kids. Long walks along the River Seine can be accomplished at any time and it is the perfect spot to spend a little time after exploring the Louvre or any of the other fascinating museums in the city. Paris is also considered one of the top European cities to visit with someone you love, as a solo male traveler, traveling with your girlfriends, or traveling as a family.  This is the capital city of France and more than two million people live there.  This isn’t the cheapest European city to visit, but it is one of the most popular and you will love your time there.

Champs Élysées, Paris, France - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

Shopping is best on Champs Élysées, but you can also find some great options over in Le Marais. Your kids may or may not be too thrilled with Versailles Palace, but they will love clambering to the top of the Eiffel Tower. Make sure you stop at a few of the bakeries as you wander through Paris, especially those that sell delectable crepes that your kids will fall in love with.  

Best Time to Visit Paris

Paris is one of the best European cities in summer, because the weather is perfect, and the days are long.  Yes, you will join the thousands upon thousands of other tourists that arrive in this city for the summer, but the crowds will not dampen your spirit as you explore this popular European city.

Why Visit Paris

When you decide to visit Paris for a family vacation, you will quickly realize you are making the right choice with all the landmarks you can see.  Add in the shopping adventures, the wonderful pastries, and the theme parks and you have an adventure like none other.

Top 5 Things to Do in Paris with Kids

 

1. Climb to the Top of the Eiffel Tower

Okay, so you might not want to climb stairs to the top of the Eiffel Tower, but you will want to take the elevator to the top to see the views.  If you have younger kids, you will probably do this during the day.  However, if you can keep your kids up later, attempt this feat at night when the entire city is lit up.  I recommend purchasing your tickets in advance, so you do not need to stand in a long line, no matter when you decide to go.

2. Visit the Louvre

Your kids are not going to want to spend that much time in the Louvre, but you should get an hour or two out of them.  Simply have them look at the exhibits in advance and choose a couple of things they want to see.  Then add those items to your list and make a plan on how you can see everything on your list as quickly as possible.  You should arrive early, before all the crowds, and if the Mona Lisa is on your list, go there first.

3. Visit the Pompidou Centre

Your kids will stand in awe as they look at the Pompidou Centre with all its water pipes, electric cables, and ducts on the outside.

Pompidou Centre
Credits: Wikipedia

It is like a construction wonderland that is even more enticing when you reach the modern art gallery inside.  For a different view, take the escalator to the roof to see all of Paris.

4. Spend Some Time at the Luxembourg Gardens

Every child loves wide-open spaces and that is why Luxembourg Gardens should be close to the top of your list.  In addition to the flowers, there is a playground, marionette theater, carousel, and a pond where you can sail boats.  Take a picnic lunch, or at least a few snacks, with you, because you will be here for a while.

5. Visit the Jardin des Tuilleries

If you are looking for a park by a palace, then Jardin des Tuilleries should be at the top of your list when in Paris.  There is no longer a palace here since it was burnt to the ground back in 1871, but it has been replaced by the Arc du Carrousel.  This is an excellent option when the kids need to work off some energy after spending time at the Louvre.


6. Lisbon, Portugal


Lisbon might not be one of the largest European cities, but a lot of people still live within the city itself.  Inside the city, there are approximately half a million people and that number reaches almost three million when you account for the rest of Lisbon.  You will find this city on the southwestern side of Portugal and it is one of the oldest cities in the world. Lisbon is also one of the most child-friendly cities in Europe, so be prepared to have it easy when you choose to visit.  Imagine going to any restaurant in the city and finding it completely possible to find something that your child will eat and enjoy every bite of your meal without worrying about something going wrong! 

Lisbon, Portugal - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

The public transportation is not always the best with children, but it is manageable if you can stay patient and plan your needs in advance. A few of the best places to visit in Lisbon are the Parque das Nações, the Lisbon Zoo, and the Electricity Museum.  Also, the Route 28 Tram is amazing and taking a ride on it will allow you all to see the sights without worrying about missing something important.  

Best Time to Visit Lisbon

Lisbon is a European city that is best visited in spring or fall.  The weather is still mostly warm at those times of the year, accommodations are cheaper, and there are fewer people visiting.

Why Visit Lisbon

If you are looking for one of the cheapest European cities to visit, Lisbon should be at the top of your list.  Nothing is as expensive as other European cities here and you get amazing weather, a ton of history, and fabulous food for those low prices.

 

Top 5 Things to Do in Lisbon with Kids

 

1. Take a Ride on the Cable Car

The cable car, or telecabine, offers views of the Parque das Nacoes and that is the number one reason why you must take a ride on it at least once.  The entire journey from one end to the other takes approximately twenty minutes.  You can see many nearby attractions from the cable car too, so make sure everyone is paying attention or something might be missed.

2. Visit Castelo de São Jorge

Everyone loves castles and Lisbon has a few that are waiting for you to explore.  Castelo de São Jorge is the best, because it is massive and full of adventures.  Look around the archaeological area before exploring the gardens and taking in the views from the Tower of Ulysses.

3. Explore the Decks of the Fragata D. Fernando II E Glória

This ship has been preserved, so it is exactly as it was back in 1843 when it was first out on the water.  You can wander from deck to deck, as you get a feel for what it would have been like to work and live on this ship back in the day.

Fragata D. Fernando II E Glória
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

The life-like mannequins help with the re-enactments, so you never need to wonder if you are right with what you are thinking.

4. Take a Tour on a Tramcar

Most popular European cities have Hop On Hop Off Buses, but in Lisbon, you will take the Hills Tramcar Tour.  Throughout this tour, you will see many of the historic monuments, as well as other attractions.  You can get on and off the tram whenever you wish, and passes are normally good for twenty-four hours.  The trams are easy to recognize, since they are bright red, so the kids will be able to alert you to when one is heading your way.

5. Go Out on the Water with Hippotrip

If you are always looking for a unique way to see the sights, Hippotrip is your best option in Lisbon.  This amphibious vehicle can be driven as a “bus” on the streets before turning into a “boat” that’ll cruise the River Tagus!  You will leave Doca de Santo Amaro and see many attractions from both land and water.  You won’t be able to get off this tour whenever you wish, but you won’t mind since you will be having quite the adventure!


7. London, England


The largest city in England, and the entire United Kingdom, is London.  This city is the capital of England as well and you will find it directly on the River Thames.  So many people live within London, and with all the different cultures, you can hear more than three hundred different languages spoken if you are there long enough.  When it comes to the population, London has the most people within all the European cities. London is a busy city, but it is still one of the best European cities to visit with kids!  Depending on the ages of your kids, you can all walk away from a vacation in London with a lot more knowledge of that area, the Royal Family, and much more.  

London Transport Museum - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

Yes, it can rain quite often in this city, but there are plenty of things that you can do inside to avoid the raindrops that are falling.  A few favorite museums include the London Transport Museum, the Natural History Museum, and the Royal Air Force Museum. Of course, you cannot visit London and not take the time to see Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, London Sea Life Aquarium, and the London Zoo.  

Best Time to Visit London

This is the best of the European cities in spring, because the temperatures are mild, and everything is in bloom.  The crowds will have yet to arrive, so the lines for all the attractions will be much shorter, but honestly, there’s never a bad time to visit London!

Why Visit London

One of the biggest reasons why London might be at the top of your list of best European cities is the fact that you will not need to learn another language to visit.  The locals all speak English, although, some words and phrases might be a bit different.  Add in the diversity, attractions, and the possibility of bumping into a member of the Royal family and you can’t get a much better vacation!

Top 5 Things to Do in London with Kids

 

1. See Everything Harry Potter

Harry Potter fans will love exploring many of the Harry Potter sites in London.  You can do a Warner Bros. Studio Tour, stop at Tower Bridge, stay in the Wizard Chamber at the Georgian House Hotel, and do a little shopping at the Harry Potter Shop at Platform 9 3/4.  Add in a performance of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at the Palace Theater and your Potter fan may never want to go home.

2. Visit a Playground or Two

There are plenty of playgrounds in London and you will all have a fantastic time at any of them.  If you are looking for a couple of the best though, you may want to consider Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Playground, Kew Children’s Garden, and Kensington Memorial Park.

3. Create Some Pottery

You may not think that creating pottery is very vacation-like, but if it happens to rain when you are in London one day, you will be thankful you have this on your list!

Pottery

The Pottery Café has everything you will need, and you can either pick up your finished pottery before you head home or have it shipped to you.

4. Ride the Tallest Ferris Wheel in Europe

The London Eye happens to be the largest Ferris wheel in Europe, so you might want to take a spin during your visit.  The lines will be long at any time for this attraction, so plan accordingly and purchase your tickets in advance.  I even recommend the fast track ticket with kids, since the lines can end up being two to three hours long without them.

5. Have Afternoon Tea

Not everywhere in London is going to have an afternoon tea that your kids can go to, but St. Ermin’s Hotel does.  They offer a special menu for kids and you can also spend a little time visiting the hotel’s bees.


8. Florence, Italy


The capital of the Tuscany region is Florence and more than one and a half million people live there.  Every year, the population of this popular European city swells even more, as millions of people arrive to see the sights, drink some wine, and experience the culture.  Add in the extraordinary beauty and you have a city that is a must-see for all generations. Florence is another spectacular destination, and it is easy to see why it is one of the best European cities to visit with kids.  

Boboli Gardens, Florence , Italy - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

As an adult, you are going to be tempted to stop at every winery you see, and technically, you can, with your kids in tow. However, make sure you reward them for their patience by allowing them to run through the vineyards or allowing them to walk through the Boboli Gardens.  Take the time to see the Duomo, the Piazzale Michelangelo, Uffizi Gallery, and Ponte Vecchio. This is also an excellent destination to have your kids learn how to cook, because who doesn’t love Italian cuisine! There are plenty of cooking classes to choose from, so choose one or two and see how your little chefs do! 

Best Time to Visit Florence

This is one of the best European cities in spring, due to the warming temperatures, but fall is also amazing.  The summer months are warmer, but that is when prices soar, and the number of visitors increases.  There are many festivals during these months too, so you will have even more things to choose from to keep busy.

Why Visit Florence

Florence has always held a little bit of a mysterious feel which is why you must visit once to see if you can be the one to crack the code.  While this is a large city, you will be impressed by its small-town feel and how you can walk around without a worry in the world.

Top 5 Things to Do in Florence with Kids

 

1. Take a Family Tour of Palazzo Vecchio

There are plenty of tours available at Palazzo Vecchio, but you will want to choose the family friendly one, which is Life at Court.  The costumed guides will share all sorts of interesting and unique information, as you tour the palace and learn about the Medici family.  The kids will love the puppet shows and scavenger hunts that are included.

2. Go on a Treasure Hunt at the Uffizi Gallery

You may want to go to the Uffizi Gallery for the fabulous exhibits, but your kids will be bored unless you take the family tour.  These tours will allow your kids to go on a treasure hunt, while you are wandering around from one exhibit to the next.  There are even trivia games to keep your entire family alert because everyone wants to have the right answer.

3. Ride the Carousel at the Piazza della Repubblica

The antique carousel in this Piazza is just waiting for your family to take a spin, but there is so much more you can do in this area as well. Watch the street performers, visit Bartolucci, which is a toy workshop, and grab a pastry from a local café.

Piazza della Repubblica

4. Picnic at the Boboli Gardens

You can picnic in many places during a visit to Florence, but the Boboli Gardens are your best option.  The kids can work off some energy, while you sit by a fountain or wander down a nearby path.  Make sure you go all the way to the top of the gardens, so you can all see the fabulous views of this European city.

5. Visit the Stibbert Museum

If you have kids who love to make swords out of anything and everything, then the Stibbert Museum must be on your list of places to visit while in this city.  The museum is inside a villa that Frederick Stibbert lived in while he added onto the collection he inherited.  While there are plenty of tapestries, paintings, and musical instruments, your kids will most likely be intrigued by the coats of armor and the horses and knights lined up in procession in the main hall.


9. Rome, Italy


Rome is one of the most popular and best European capital cities, which is why it should be on your list to visit at least once.  This is also the only city in the world to have an independent country within its limits.  Almost three million people live in Rome and that number grows each day, as more and more people arrive in the city to see the sights. Rome is the best European city to visit in spring, although it can get a little crowded during the Easter holiday.  History is everywhere in this European destination, but your kids won’t even realize that they are learning anything as they are exploring sites like the Colosseum, the Pantheon, and the Roman Forum. 

Roman Forum, Italy - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

Take a little time to wander around Vatican City, before grabbing some cuisine at a trattoria or a local café. Just save some room for gelato, because there are enough different varieties that you simply all must try.  

Best Time to Visit Rome

The best time to visit this European city is during the spring or the fall, because the days are warm, the nights are cool, and the crowds have either not yet arrived or finally left with the summer sun.

Why Visit Rome

There are very few places in the world where you can see ancient ruins, amazing architecture, and the Pope all within minutes or days of each other.  Add in the delicious foods, the slower pace, and the diversity, and you may have a vacation you can never replicate again.

Top 5 Things to Do in Rome with Kids

 

1. Visit the Animal Spaces at the Colosseum

You may be interested in the architecture and history surrounding the Colosseum, but your kids will be bored until you ask them whether or not they want to see where the lions, elephants, and bears were kept until it was time for a battle or performance.  This space is down below the arena, where there are dozens of different passageways, tunnels, and chambers.  You must arrange for a tour prior to going or you will not be allowed in this space.

2. Visit the Borghese Gardens

Everyone can sit and relax in this public park or you can all go for a run, ride a bike, or row a boat out on the lake.  The playgrounds are perfect for the kids, when they have energy and you do not.

3. Grab a Little Gelato

You will not want to go a day without grabbing some gelato when you are in Rome.

Gelato

This Italian treat can be found in shops and carts all over this European city and you will want to try as much as you can before claiming your favorite.

4. Search the City for the Giant Foot

Not many cities have a giant foot sitting out near a city street, but you can find one in Rome.  This foot can be found on Via del Pie’ di Marmo, which is near the Piazza della Minerva.  This foot is from a statue of an Egyptian goddess and her name was Isis.  Once you find this foot, you can surprise your kids by telling them they can find even more giant feet scattered throughout this city.

5. Toss a Few Coins into the Trevi Fountain

All kids love to make wishes, so have them toss a few coins into the Trevi Fountain as you look around.  This fountain has been around since the 1700s and thousands of people toss coins into it every single day.


10. Prague, Czech Republic


Prague is a European capital city and while the city itself has just over a million people living in it, the metropolitan area has more than two and a half million.  The rich history of this city brings people here all year long, although the cultural attractions will give you the most enjoyment.  This city is right next to the Vltava River, which adds to the ambiance of everything that occurs within the area. Prague offers extraordinary architecture, an abundance of history, and enough culture to keep you and your family busy for days.  While that may seem boring to your kids at first, once they see all the fun and exciting activities that are available, you will all have an amazing time during your visit. 

Prague, Czech Republic - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

This is one of the best European cities to visit during the summer, because your kids can play over in Letna Park while you enjoy a nice cold drink in the beer garden nearby.  Another day can be spent over at Petrin Hill, just don’t forget about the funicular when you are there. Before leaving Prague, you must take a boat cruise along the Vltava River, because it offers a unique perspective of the entire historical center.  

Best Time to Visit Prague

Many people believe that the second best time to visit Prague is during the spring and fall (after summer), because the weather is nice and there are not as many tourists as there are during the summer months.  However, this is one of the best European cities to visit in winter as well, because prices are low, tourists are practically non-existent, and the Christmas markets are open and ready to celebrate the holiday season.

Why Visit Prague

There are so many events that take place in Prague and that means if you plan your trip right, you will get so much more than history and cultural attractions.  Imagine visiting this part of the world during the Bohemian Carnevale or when the Czech Beer Festival is taking place!  Plus, since the public transportation is so easy to use, you will never need to worry about how you are getting from one place to the next.  That is always a good thing when you are traveling with kids!

Top 5 Things to Do in Prague with Kids

 

1. Explore the Prague Toy Museum

Toys from today and the ancient world can be found inside this toy museum and your kids will love seeing how the toys have evolved over the years.  You can have great discussions with your kids about why some toys are better than others, as well as why they have never had all the toys they wanted over the years.

2. Watch the Changing of the Guard at Prague Castle

The Changing of the Guard takes place every day at the Prague Castle, so plan your visit accordingly if you do not want to miss out.  Afterward, you can explore the rest of the complex, which includes the aforementioned toy museum.

3. Have an Adventure or Two at the Bobsleigh Track

There is never a rule that you need to sightsee and never do anything for fun when you are on vacation, so take the time to check out the Bobsleigh Track when you are in Prague.

Bobsleigh Track
Credits: Helmuts Rudzītis, Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0

You can take one of the sleds down the one-kilometer long track at breakneck speeds or use the brake to control your speed, so you reach the end safely.

4. Visit the Astronomical Clock on the Hour

If you happen to be near the Astronomical Clock between the hours of nine in the morning and nine at night, you must wander over to it.  This will ensure you can hear the trumpets play and see the little parade of Christ and his disciples come through the wooden doors.

5. Visit Dino Park

Small children might be afraid when they see the dinosaurs at Dino Park at first, because of their size and the frightful sounds they make.  However, since these dinosaurs do not move, most kids get over that fear rather quickly.  Afterwards, you can go watch a 3D movie about dinosaurs on the second floor of the shopping mall next door.


11. Brittany, France


Brittany is a cultural region that can be found over in the western part of France.  It was once an independent kingdom before finally returning to French rule in 1532.  Some of the oldest buildings in the world can be found in Brittany, although you must search for some of them amongst all the newer buildings.  There are approximately four and a half million people living in Brittany, although many of those people are within the metropolitan areas. There is a lot of sand in Brittany, but that isn’t the only thing that turns this destination into a fascinating area when vacationing with kids.  When you are not sinking your toes into the sand and swimming in the water, you can see the marine life over at Océanopolis or spend hours wandering around La Vallee des Saints as you see all the statues.  Anyone who loves day trips will want to take the quick boat ride over to Île de Bréhat for a little hiking and to see the tide mill.

Brittany, France - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

One of the best things to do near Brittany though is visiting the Village de Poul-Fetan.  This village will take the entire family back to the 1800s, where you can listen to stories, watch them make bread from scratch, and see how they lived all those years ago. When you are planning your vacation in Brittany, you will want to see if you can be there during Fest-Noz.  This nighttime festival is very family-friendly and includes traditional music and lots of food. There are a few of these festivals held throughout the year, but the best ones are during the summer months.  

Best Time to Visit Brittany

This is one of the best European cities in summer with many people agreeing that it is the best European city in August.  The temperatures are the warmest and while it does rain, it is not as much as other times of the year.  It is important to note that you should still be prepared for cool temperatures at this time of the year, so pack a sweatshirt or light jacket just in case.

Why Visit Brittany

As you are exploring the history and art of this region, you can also participate in the fun that takes place during the numerous festivals held throughout the year.  With more than one thousand festivals each year, there is an excellent chance one will be taking place during your visit.

Top 5 Things to Do in Brittany with Kids

 

1. Attend Fest-Noz

Fest-Noz is a festival that is held multiple times during the year.  When you attend, you will be transported back in time to the Middle Ages.  Each time the festival is held, you will have the chance to listen to traditional music, dance, and eat until you cannot eat anymore.

2. Do a Few Water Sports

The location of Brittany will have you by so much of this country’s shoreline and that means you will have ample opportunities to participate in water sports.  Yes, you can simply go swimming, but you may also want to consider kayaking and surfing for a slight change of pace.  When you are tired of the water, grab an ice cream cone or build a large sandcastle.

3. Go Back in Time at Village de Poul-Fetan

If you have always wondered how people lived in the 1800s in Brittany, you can see for yourself through the many workshops and storytelling sessions within this village.

Village de Poul-Fetan
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

The village looks just as it did all those years ago, and people act out what they would have been doing on any given day back then.

4. Visit an Aquarium

Océanopolis is the aquarium near Brittany and your entire family will love seeing all the marine life that lives there.  After wandering through the tropical greenhouse and Indian ocean area, take some time to look at the sharks and play one of the interactive games nearby.

5. Learn How Paper is Made at Moulin à Papier de Pen-Mar

Paper is not something that kids or adults see as often anymore, which is why your kids might be slightly curious about how it has been produced over the years.  You will begin your tour by watching pulp get mashed before cloth is cut.  At the end, all the paper is hung up by the rafters in an attic to completely dry before being sold.


12. Corfu, Greece


Corfu is one of the Ionian Islands and the main city on the island is known by the same name.  Some of the best Greek history can be found in this city, which is evident with the numerous museums, castles, theaters, and festivals. It is no surprise that kids do not like standing in long lines to see attractions or have fun, which is why Corfu is one of the best European cities to visit with kids.  When you choose this destination, you will quickly realize that the things your kids love the most will not have massive lines.

Corfu, Greece - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

One of your first stops should be Sidari Beach, because it will give you time to relax and get to know the area.  After some time in the sun and the sand, you can easily wander around and find the perfect spot to grab a bite to eat at one of the nearby restaurants. Other stops that your kids will love include Old Fortress Corfu, Mount Pantokrator, The Liston, St. Spyridon Church, and Angelokastro Castle.  

Best Time to Visit Corfu

Corfu is one of the best European cities in June, because the temperatures are warming up and the crowds have yet to arrive to celebrate the summer season.  The fall and spring are always amazing in this part of the world, especially since many festivals take place during those months.

Why Visit Corfu

Corfu is almost always filled with sunshine, spectacular beaches, and incredible foods that you will not be able to get enough of.  Add the fact you can explore the island and use the city of Corfu as your home base for your entire vacation is a great way to have the best vacation ever.

Top 5 Things to Do in Corfu with Kids

 

1. Spend Time at Sidari Beach

There are many beaches on the island of Corfu, but Sidari Beach is the best option when you are traveling with kids.  You can spend a lot of time in the water and on the sand, but whenever someone gets hungry, you will have a plethora of restaurants to choose from.

2. Wander Through the Old Fortress Corfu

Kids will love wandering through this old fortress, which was once used to protect the entire island from intruders of the Ottoman Empire.  As your kids are running around, you will love the views of the water.  Don’t forget to check out the ancient ruins of the lighthouse before you leave.

3. Hike Mount Pantokrator

The hike to the summit of Mount Pantokrator can take a couple of hours, but you will guarantee your kids will sleep well afterward!

Mount Pantokrator

The summit is nine hundred and six meters above sea level, and you can see the entire island from there.

4. Wander the Streets of The Liston

The Liston is one of the most popular squares within Corfu and your family will love walking up and down the streets, as you pop into old buildings and small cafes.

5. Stop in at St. Spyridon Church

This church was constructed in 1590 and your kids can walk around before you stop to pay your respects to Saint Spyridon, whose remains can be found here.


13. Dalmatia Coast, Croatia


Dalmatia is one of the four historical regions within Croatia and it can be found by the eastern shore of the Adriatic Sea.  Dalmatia is technically not a city but a strip of coastline with multiple cities and islands. But this area is so gorgeous it has to make our list! This area was part of the Republic of Venice, the Republic of Ragusa, the Austrian Empire, and the Kingdom of Italy before finally becoming part of Croatia after World War II. Every inch of Croatia is spectacular, but there is something about the Dalmatian Coast that will have your kids intrigued and wanting more.  I recommend starting over in the city of Zadar, especially if your family loves music because the steps act like instruments. The wind and the waves create sounds through the openings of the stairs, and it is such a unique experience that your entire family will not forget. And you can also make your way through famous Dubrovnik, Hvar, Split, and other cities on the Dalmatian Coast. 

Zadar, Croatia - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

Island hopping is a must when in Croatia and your kids will love exploring as many of the thousand islands in the Dalmatian Coast as you can with the time you have available. Korčula is known for its food, while Kornati and Mljet are best known for their incredible natural surroundings. There are plenty of waterfalls to see in Dalmatia too, and while you will find many within the Plitvice National Park, do not discount Krka National Park during your visit.  We know you’ll need some time to get to most of the Dalmatian cities and hope you do as they are so varied and each so unique in their own way. 

Best Time to Visit Dalmatia

It is best to visit the Dalmatia coast during the summer months because the weather is the best at that time of the year.  Yes, you will need to deal with the crowds at this time, but it will be worth the warm temperatures.

Why Visit Dalmatia

As alluring as Dalmatia is, not too many tourists have discovered this entire part of this coastline in Croatia yet.  Yes, most people know the major destinations of Dubrovnik, Split, and Hvar which are parts of the Dalmatia coastline but there’s more to see than these three cities and if you wait too long to visit, you may miss the opportunity to see the best part of this amazing place before even more people arrive.

Top 5 Things to Do in Dalmatia with Kids

 

1. Climb the Walls of Dubrovnik

Kids are also looking for an excuse to climb things, so wander over to the Walls of Dubrovnik and let them climb until they are worn out.  You will get to see amazing views, while your kids can do something they love, without getting in trouble for it.

2. Wander Through Old Town in Dubrovnik

As you will discover, you will want to venture to other areas of Dalmatia during your visit, so you can see what other parts of this region has to offer.  Old Town in Dubrovnik is an incredible place to walk around after wandering the wall as you look at the architecture and grab a bite to eat.

3. Take a Cable Car Ride

Seeing views in most cities in this part of the world is as easy as taking a ride on the local cable car. The picturesque views will have you snapping photo after photo, while your kids simply sit there and wonder how high up they are.

Cable Car Ride

 

4. Visit the Birds at the Sokolarski Raptor Centre, Šibenik

This place is so unique as many species of birds can be found here. You and your kids will learn so much about many of the birds, while also seeing them fly around.

5. Museum of Senses, Split

If you have ever wondered which one of your senses, you use for different things, you will really question it when you wander through the Museum of Senses.  Walking through a tunnel will have your kids wondering what they are really seeing, as the sights change every time they move their head or hear a different sound.


14. Dublin, Ireland


One of the best European capital cities to visit is Dublin and you will find it on the east coast of Ireland.  The Dublin Mountains are to the south of the city, while the River Liffey is to the east.  Approximately two million people live within Dublin and one of the biggest debates between them all is where the Gaels really established this city all those years ago. The temperatures in Dublin are usually on the cooler side, which is why you must plan your visit to this city carefully. Dublin in Ireland is one of the best European cities to visit during the month of August, but it can also be warm and nice during the months of June and July.  Of course, this is when the crowds will be in full force, so you may want to settle on slightly cooler temperatures during the spring or the fall.

Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

St. Patrick’s Cathedral is a must-see and no one in your family will be able to resist seeing Trinity College and the Book of Kells.  Little ones may prefer Phoenix Park and Dublin Zoo though, due to the large green spaces and lots of animals. If your family loves the theater, then seeing a performance at Abbey Theatre is something that you will want to plan for an afternoon or evening. You can also take a tour of the theatre, which is perfect for those kids that have the desire to be involved in all thing’s drama.  

Best Time to Visit Dublin

This is one of the best European cities in the summer, especially July and August, because it is warmest there at that time.  However, since this city is in Ireland, you may also want to consider the fact that this is one of the best of the European cities to visit in March.  This is when St. Patrick’s Day occurs, and they celebrate with the St. Patrick’s Day Festival, something you should see at least once in a lifetime.

Why Visit Dublin

One of the best reasons to visit Dublin is the vast number of pubs, but you may need to settle for the music, the food, and the friendly people you will encounter since you are traveling with the kids.

Top 5 Things to Do in Dublin with Kids

 

1. Visit the Dublin Zoo at Phoenix Park

Phoenix Park is one of the largest walled city parks in Europe and it is where you will find the Dublin Zoo.  As you wander from one animal group to the next, you will find that time is going by faster than you planned.

2. Visit Imaginosity

Imaginosity is a children’s museum in Dublin that has interactive exhibits that will intrigue even the wariest of kids.  You can spend hours in the construction zone, get a checkup at the pretend doctor’s office, and climb up to a treehouse.

3. Visit St. Anne’s Park

The playground will have your kids running around at this park, but you may want to direct their attention to the ruins and towers.  Afterwards, go to Bull Island to see views of the bay.

St. Anne’s Park
Credits: William Murphy Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0

4. Watch a Gaelic Football Game or a Hurling Match

Gaelic games are quite the sight to see, and you will all be on the edge of your seats as you watch any of the games throughout the year.  As fun as these sports are for the athletes, it is you, the spectator, that always seems to have the most fun!

5. Visit the Leprechaun Museum

Everything may not be green inside the Leprechaun Museum, but that doesn’t mean that your kids won’t have a good time during your visit.  You must take a guided tour to listen to the different Irish myths and folktales.  In between them all, you will find yourself in quirky rooms filled with items you would least likely expect to see.


15.  Reykjavik, Iceland


One of the most underrated European cities is Reykjavik, and it happens to be the capital, and largest city within the country of Iceland.  There are a few over two hundred thousand people living within this European city.  What makes this city so special is that it is considered the safest, cleanest, and greenest city in the entire world. Iceland can be cold and snowy, but honestly, it is not as bad as you may think.  Plus, it is one of the best European cities for outdoor activities! You can spend every minute of your day outdoors, as you explore volcanoes, rocky formations, and local wildlife. 

Northern Lights Iceland - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

Laugardalur Park, Strokker, and the Botanical Garden are wonderful destinations to explore but don’t forget to spend a few hours relaxing at the Blue Lagoon. If you’re visiting during the onder monthesm, you will also want to keep the kids up late one night, so you can see the incredible Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights.  

Best Time to Visit Reykjavik

This is one of the best European cities in July, because the days are long, and the temperatures are warm.  A trip to this wonderful destination during the winter will have you wondering where the daylight is since darkness covers this city for most of the days and nights.

Why Visit Reykjavik

One of the best reasons to visit this European city is to see the Northern Lights and they might be the only reason to visit during any season outside of summer.  If you do visit during the summer months, you will appreciate the long days that will allow you to see more in the time you are there.

Top 5 Things to Do in Reykjavik with Kids

 

1. See Some Street Art on Laugavegur Street

Laugavegur Street is one of the best places to get oriented in Reykjavik, so you may want to head here first.  When you are on this street, you must spend some time looking at all the street art in between going into all the shops.

2. Stop at Hallsgrimkirkja

Hallsgrimkirkja is a church in Reykjavik and you will find it at the top of a hill in the middle of the city.  You will want to climb to the top of the tower to see magnificent views of Reykjavik.

3. Take a Stroll Along the Waterfront

One of the best things to do in Reykjavik is walk along the waterfront. You can see many of the popular attractions near the waterfront, while the mountains linger out in the background.

reykjavik Waterfront

4. Visit Laugardalur

Laugardular is a recreational area that is packed with a swimming pool, a large park, botanical gardens, an ice-skating rink, and a zoo.  If you time your visit right, you can even attend the Secret Solstice festivals that are held in this location throughout the year.

5. Take a Bus Tour

If you do not feel like walking all over Reykjavik, you may want to take one of the many bus tours that are available.  The Hop On Hop Off bus will allow you to get on and off whenever you wish when your pass is valid.  This is an excellent way to see the sights without worrying about how you will get to all of them.


16. Munich, Germany


Munich is the European capital city of Bavaria, which is one of the federal states in the country of Germany.  This is the third largest city in the entire country, and it is filled with museums, theatres, and festivals.  This is one of the fastest-growing cities in Germany, which is due to the number of tourists that arrive each year. Munich is one of the best European cities to visit with kids because there is so much to do and see.  The Toy Museum is a great place to start, but make sure you are out near Marienplatz when the jousting knights are performing.  If the kids are getting antsy while looking at different attractions, you can have them get rid of some of their energy by walking up and down the steps of the Alter Peter Church, since there are three hundred of them! 

Olympic Stadium, Munich, Germany - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

Another area for running around is the Englischer Gartens and you can go there after the Deutches Museum. Olympia Park is where you will find the Aquarium, as well as the Olympia Tower and BMW Welt, and kids are always fairly worn out when they leave this part of the city.  

Best Time to Visit Munich

One of the best European cities to visit in April or May is Munich, because the number of tourists is at its lowest.  The temperatures are still cool at this time, but after you throw on a jacket, you will love not standing in line.  Munich is also one of the best European cities to visit in October, because that is when Oktoberfest is held.  However, you will be joining thousands of other people who flock to this city at that time to celebrate.

Why Visit Munich

The multiple festivals and the plentiful beer gardens are only two of the reasons why you should visit Munich at least once on vacation.  Add in the more than eighty museums and the two fairytale castles and you’ll have a trip of a lifetime.

Top 5 Things to Do in Munich with Kids

 

1. Visit a Fairytale Castle

Neuschwanstein Castle is one of the two fairytale castles near Munich and it is one of the most popular attractions in all of Europe.  This is the castle that Walt Disney used to create his castle at Walt Disney World.

2. Spend Time at a Beer Garden

You may think that since you are traveling with kids, you cannot spend any time at a beer garden.  However, most beer gardens in Munich have a playground.  That means the kids can play while you enjoy a pint of brew.

3. Immerse Yourself into the Movies at the Bavaria Film Studios

Most kids love the movies, and many would love to be in one, so take them to the Bavaria Film Studios. This is where they can ride on the dragon from the Never Ending Story or watch stunt shows to learn how many stunts are accomplished.

Bavaria Film Studios
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

4. Spend Time in Marienplatz

The central square within Munich’s Old Town is Marienplatz and while you will all love looking around at everything, it will be the old clock that captures your kids’ attention.  Right out front of City Hall is Glockenspiel, which is more than one hundred years old.  This clock will only chime at eleven in the morning and at noon, so you must plan your time there carefully if you want to see the life-sized figures reenact the historical events.  You will know when the show is over, because a golden bird will pop out and chirp three times.

5. Spend Time at Olympic Park

One of the best places for your kids to work off some energy is Olympic Park.  You can all play almost any sport you wish, because they offer anything from soccer and ice hockey to mini-golf, boating, and inline skating.


17. Krakow, Poland


One of the oldest cities in Poland is Krakow and you will find this city along the Vistula River.  Krakow used to be one of the European capital cities, but that changed in 1596.  At least eight million people live within a one-hundred-kilometer radius of the main square in this city.  Back at the beginning of this century, Krakow was designated as the European Capital of Culture. Krakow is one of the best European cities to visit with kids due to its diversity and the fact that there is plenty for kids to do to keep busy.  The Museum of Polish Aviation will have your kids seeing all types of airplanes, but their favorite part will be sitting inside one and looking at the massive engines. 

Krakow, Poland

As fabulous as the museum will be, kids will be the happiest when they are at the Krakow Main Market Square. When you are not eating some of the traditional foods from the market, you can all feed the pigeons and listen to the bugle call every hour on the hour.  You can also take a picnic lunch over to eat at Jordan Park before riding on the train and playing on the numerous playgrounds.  

Best Time to Visit Krakow

This is the best European city to visit in summer, due to the temperatures, festivals, and the ability to spend time outside long into the night.  Yes, you will encounter larger crowds at this time, as well as higher prices, but your experience will be worth all that.

Why Visit Krakow

An abundance of history might be enough to visit Krakow, but you may also want to consider the cafés and stunning parks when you are planning your vacation.  The food is also something else you will want to consider, because you will be amazed at how well your kids will eat the traditional cuisine during your visit.

Top 5 Things to Do in Krakow with Kids

 

1. Visit Old Town

Whether you are traveling with kids or not, Old Town must be on your list of things to do.  I recommend beginning within the Main Market before going to St. Mary’s Basilica and Sukiennice, which is a 14th-century market hall.  The street performers will keep your kids entertained, as you roam around the cobblestone streets.

2. Visit Wawel Castle and Cathedral

You won’t want to tackle a tour of this castle with kids unless you want a ton of moaning and groaning along the way.  Therefore, stop in the cathedral, see the inner courtyards, and end your time there in the dragon’s den.

3. See the Planes at the Museum of Polish Aviation

Plane lovers will enjoy sitting inside a couple of the airplanes at this museum.  You will all see planes from years ago, as well as a couple of newer models on display.  This museum has exhibits inside and outside, so plan your visit according to the weather.

Museum of Polish Aviation, Krakow, Poland - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

 

4. Visit Jordan Park

Jordan Park has plenty of green space for running around, but your favorite part will be the lake.  When your kids are not on the playgrounds or walking around the paths, you may want to take them out on a paddleboat to see the park from a different vantage point.

5. Visit the Wieliczka Salt Mine

This salt mine is located in an underground cavern and while there are nine levels, you will only be allowed on three of them during your tour.  It might be best to do a private tour, so you won’t be dragging your kids along if they are not ready to continue with a larger group.  Your kids will love getting to lick the walls before learning how to use the medieval winch to move big blocks of salt.


18. Bohinj, Slovenia


Bohinj is also known as Bohinj Valley and Bohinj Basin and it can be found within the Julian Alps in northwestern Slovenia.  There are twenty-four villages within this area and since Bohinj chose to welcome tourists many years ago, these villages have become quite busy during certain parts of the year. Slovenia is a wonderful country, and when you spend time there with kids, you must take the time to visit Bohinj.  I recommend that you begin near Ribcev Laz, so you can see the arched bridge and the Zlatorog statue as you all walk around the lake.  Once you have all gotten some energy worked off, you can make your way over to the Mount Vogel Cable Car.

Zlatorog statue, Bohinj, Slovenia - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

The ride to the top of the mountain is fantastic and you will find that you have more than enough opportunities to take pictures of the fabulous views.  There are numerous hiking trails at the top, but only one of them is deemed the best for kids, so make sure you ask before venturing out on one. If you have older kids that can easily walk, then you must take the time to go see Slap Savica, which is a waterfall that is more beautiful than you could ever imagine.  

Best Time to Visit Bohinj

The best time to visit Bohinj is during the summer months, because it is reasonably warm.  A visit during this time will have you swimming in Lake Bohinj and that is something you do not want to miss out on simply because you visited at a different time of the year.

Why Visit Bohinj

One of the main reasons why you must visit this European destination is to see the sparkling water of Lake Bohinj. This area might not be as spectacular as other parts of Slovenia, but the lake more than makes up for that.  Plus, this is the perfect destination if you want to take day trips to other parts of this country.

Top 5 Things to Do in Bohinj with Kids

 

1. Take a Boat Ride Across the Lake

One of the best ways to see Bohinj is to take a boat ride across the lake.  Most of the boat rides leave from a dock in Ribcev Laz and it is an excellent option for when the kids need a little downtime.

2. See the Mostnica Gorge

This gorge is near Stara Fuzina and the hike there is a little more than a mile long.  You will all marvel at the steep walls and how unique the gorge looks compared to others you may have seen in the past.

3. Visit a Waterfall

Unless you are traveling with really small children, you must take the time to visit a waterfall when in Bohinj. Slap Savica is quite close to the lake and you will need to climb more than five hundred steps to see it.

Slap Savica
Credits: Martijn Baten, Flickr CC BY 2.0

4. Ride the Mount Vogel Cable Car

Another option for when everyone needs a break is to take the Mount Vogel Cable Car.  You can choose to ride to the top and then do a hike before riding back down or you can simply do the round trip all at once.

5. Wander Through Ribcev Laz

This small town is a perfect place to walk around at any time during your trip.  After wandering around the streets, you may want to consider walking down to the lake to see the church and arched bridge, as well as the Zlatorog statue.


19. Riga, Latvia


One of the best European cities to visit is Riga, which is the capital of Latvia.  More than six hundred thousand people live in this city and that is approximately a third of all the people who live within this country.  This city was founded in 1201, and while it is often considered one of the most underrated European cities, more than one million people visit each year. The Museum of the Occupation of Latvia is very informative when it comes to the history of the area, but it may not be best for smaller children so plan your trip accordingly when it comes to your family.  The Latvian War Museum may be a better option, but most kids will prefer the open space of the Riga Town Hall Square or the Riga Zoo with all the animals.

Riga, Latvia - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

Your entire family will love the Central Market, especially when it comes to mealtime since you will have so many options and no one will need to agree on just one.  A boat ride out on the Pilsetas Kanals is perfect when you need some downtime and there is nothing better than ending the day over in the Vermanes Garden.  

Best Time to Visit Riga

As long as you do not mind crowds, the best time to visit Riga is during the summer months.  This is when the weather is the best and many festivals are taking place.  This is usually the best European city to visit in July, especially in the beginning, because most people will choose to visit the middle of July all the way through August.

Why Visit Riga

The oldest zoo in Latvia, the largest food market in Europe, and plenty of art nouveau buildings will be what piques your attention with Riga.  Add in the plethora of attractions and wonderful restaurants, and you may wonder why you haven’t considered this European city before!

Top 5 Things to Do in Riga with Kids

 

1. Visit the Ethnographic Open-Air Museum of Latvia

At this museum, you can all see different structures from between the 17th and 20th centuries.  Your kids will love visiting the school, homes of where different locals lived, and a church.  During your visit, you will see an old home oven and a spinning wheel and most times, there will be someone there using them.

2. Get into Science at the Zinoo Center

At the Zinoo Center, you will want to go up to the fifth floor to see what types of science experiments are being done when you are visiting.  You never know what you will see when looking under the microscope or through the telescope.  A favorite area of past guests includes the room that offers optical illusions.

3. See a Puppet Show

At the Riga Puppet Theater, you can see a puppet show by one of the two companies that utilize the theater. There are thirty different shows each year, so you will want to check to see what is being performed during your visit.

Puppet Show

4. Visit the Chocolate Museum

Everyone loves chocolate, so stop by the Chocolate Museum to see how chocolate was invented.  Once you are well-versed in chocolate, you must stop in the confectionary store to find the perfect sweet treat.

5. Visit a Park

There are many parks in Riga, so you will have your choice of Bastion Hill, Kronvalda Park, Esplanade, and Riga Park.  You might even want to consider stopping at the playground at Vermanes Park.


20. Valletta, Malta


Valletta is one of the smallest European cities and it is the capital city of Malta.  You will find this city on the southeastern section of the main island and only a little over six thousand people live there.  Of course, the metro area around Valletta has a population of almost four hundred thousand. Kids love exploring, but they can only handle so many historical sites and museums before they are ready to scream.  However, that is what makes Valletta one of the best European cities to visit with kids, because there is always something that will keep them entertained and happy for hours.  The Toy Museum is a great place to start and kids will love seeing all the matchbox cars, trains, dolls, and more.

Valletta, Malta - Best European Cities to Travel with Kids

The Upper Barrakka Gardens are excellent when it is time for a quick snack or lunch, and you will all love the views of the Saluting Battery and the natural harbor.  If you are looking for a unique way to explore Valletta, I recommend that you hop onto one of the Malta Fun Trains. There are plenty of stops for getting on and off and you will learn so much more about Valletta than if you were just wandering around on your own.  

Best Time to Visit Valletta

The busiest time in Valletta is summer, which is why this is one of the best European cities in spring.  There is very little rain during this time and the temperatures are beginning to warm up as the first tourists arrive.

Why Visit Valletta

History is everywhere in Valletta, but most people visit for the beaches, culture, and to spend time with the friendly locals.  This is also the best place to spend time in Malta because you can easily take a bus to wherever else you want to go on the island.

Top 5 Things to Do in Valletta with Kids

 

1. Spend Some Time at the Valletta Waterfront

Kids will love watching the street performers, as you walk along the Valletta Waterfront.  There are nineteen warehouses down here and many of them are filled with shops and restaurants, so you can grab a bite to eat when everyone gets hungry.

2. Ride the Fun Train

While many of the popular European cities have Hop On Hop Off buses for tours, Valletta takes this opportunity a little further with the Fun Train.  These trains offer tours all year long, and there is a commentary to ensure you know what you are looking at as you pass on by.

3. Visit the Upper Barrakka Garden

No one can believe that this garden is in the middle of a major city, but it is. The kids will love the large open space to run around in, while you will love relaxing under a tree as you eat a picnic lunch.

Upper Barrakka Garden
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

4. Visit the Toy Museum

This European capital city is one of many that have toy museums.  Your kids will love exploring all the toys, both old and new, and you will too.  Imagine looking at toys from your younger years, while your kids wonder how you ever played with something like that.

5. Visit the National Library of Malta

This massive, and historical, library can be found on Old Treasury Street and you will know you found the right building when you spot the Queen Victoria bronze statue.  After registering as a visitor, you can wander around inside and see some old books from different parts of the world.

These are the 20 best European cities to visit with kids, and they should be on your bucket list for future vacations.  It will not be easy to choose which one you will visit first, but this guide should help steer you in the right direction. There are certainly more than twenty best European cities to visit with kids but you will find that your vacation is everything that you dreamed it would be and more from in the cities on our list. Now, the only thing that you must do is decide which one of these cities will be at the top of your list for your next family vacation!

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