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Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

San Francisco...
Level Contributor
257 posts
24 reviews
Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

Family of 4, 2 school-aged kids, budget not an issue. Thinking of UK....or Europe.....but open to ANY ideas not located in North or South America. We plan to travel for 2 weeks next summer, want someplace fun for kids and interesting for adults. Like to travel, see new things, don't want an AI resort or anything too limiting, but also not spending hours a day in a rental car (although we do like having our own car to drive). I'm fresh out of ideas!!!! What do you think we should do?

14 replies to this topic
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
2 posts
10 reviews
1. Re: Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

I think the UK is a great idea maybe France or Africa

Destination Expert
for Kent, Solo Travel
Level Contributor
14,807 posts
141 reviews
2. Re: Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

I'd suggest you fly to London, stay for at least 5 days, and the take the Eurostar train to either Paris or Amsterdam. Paris is much larger than Amsterdam, so there is far more to see and do. But, if you prefer a slower pace, then Amsterdam would be a better option, and English is almost universally spoken in the Netherlands.

Much depends on your flights and whether you book open jaw (fly into one city but home from another) or just a return from just one airport.

London and Dublin would be another good option, especially as flights into Dublin can be cheaper ( and shorter) than to the other cities. Flights between Dublin and London are almost every half hour, & very short (an hour) but Dublin is an international hub for other European cities too.

Using these cities as bases will give you a good base for both the capitals and also easy day trips to the surrounding towns and countryside, using local trains.

The train network in Europe is far more comprehensive than in the USA, & for getting in, out & around cities, & is the preferred option for us locals. You won't need a car if city based, & it's often more of a hindrance than a help.

Many train companies run special family ticket promotions offering discounts. The local forums can advise.

London has the widest range of parks and museums and they are all free. And fast local trains to Windsor, Oxford, Canterbury and various sea side towns. For public transport in & around London ( and much more!!) please see www.tfl.gov.uk ,

Paris has Eurodisney and it's a very easy short train ride to Versailles. .

Amsterdam is the smallest of the 3 cities, but being built on canals, is probably the most unusual. Good local trains can get you to LEGOLAND, Ghent and Antwerp.

Dublin is compact, historical with good transport links to the coast, locally bookable tours to the Wicklow mountains ...and a leprechaun museum!

For train travel anywhere in the world, I'd suggest a read of the very user friendly website at www.seat61.com or indeed the train travel forum here in trip advisor.

I've found the Dorling Kindersley "eye witness" guidebooks invaluable for family focused trips to cities. Although they are very good reads, their most useful aspect is realistic ( and usually walkable) child friendly itineraries for trips lasting between 1 and 5 days.

The individual destinations forums here in trip advisor also contain "trip reports" which often contain valuable insights into the practicalities of travelling in any given destination, plus some hidden gems that get missed out.

The forums can also advise on local festivals, family transport cards, best area's to stay, possible licencing requirements of AirBnB properties and much more. ...

Most of this info is located in the Top Questions box, which can't be seen using the very limited trip advisor, phone app, so you'll need a pc/laptop/tablet to access the full web content.

Lastly.......locally bookable tours... Viator is a commercial company that leaps to the top of the page when using the "things to do" menu. They are not always best value, as some cities have free guided tours. Again the local forum can advise.

Hope this helps!

San Francisco...
Level Contributor
257 posts
24 reviews
3. Re: Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

INCREDIBLY HELPFUL!!!!!! Thanks, thinking about this now!

Healy, Alaska
Destination Expert
for Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Level Contributor
45,436 posts
44 reviews
4. Re: Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

The world is a big place . . .Europe, Australia and New Zealand, Asia, Africa . . . gee can I go with?? :)

United Kingdom
Level Contributor
828 posts
5. Re: Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

I pretty much agree with mcpinder When it comes to travel books I find the "Rough Guide To" series most useful but in your case I would suggest you add

"Lonely Planet" too.

Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
32,736 posts
62 reviews
6. Re: Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

We had a great trip to the UK with our two in 2016. You can browse my trip report for ideas.


We also really enjoyed our trip to Italy, but I didn't do a trip report for that one. I can give you some ideas here if you are interested in knowing more. Honestly, I think the UK was more kid friendly for the most part.

San Francisco...
Level Contributor
257 posts
24 reviews
7. Re: Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

thanks so much!!!

United States
Level Contributor
41 posts
8. Re: Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

If you’re looking for really exciting and off the beaten path, think Ukraine. I know what you’re thinking, it’s a war zone. But it’s not! The best part is, it is sooo cheap! It’s 15 cents to ride the subway in Kiev anywhere you’d like, and you can live like kings and queens for not that much money! Another example, you can get a bed at a hostel in downtown Kiev for $6. Our family went a couple of years ago, and loved it. It’s a challenge, but is different than the traditional vacation.

9. Re: Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

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Removed on: 28 June 2018, 11:54
Toronto, Canada
Destination Expert
for Family Travel, Honeymoons and Romance
Level Contributor
30,107 posts
29 reviews
10. Re: Where to go? TA, please help - I can't figure this out!

dujeivandic @ #9.............Spamming the Forums with your holiday listing is not permitted on Tripadvisor

The Forum Moderators will remove all posts doing so....

Edited: 24 June 2018, 17:45
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