Family adventures during the… school & university holidays
At Cox & Kings we know how important family holidays are for spending quality time together. Between deciding on a destination, planning around school and university term times and selecting activities that will keep the whole family engaged, it can be difficult to know where to begin. We have handpicked a selection of destinations that are best suited to the respective school and university holidays.
Easter Holidays: March - April
Oman, South Africa, Vietnam and Cambodia are all suitable Easter destinations as these countries experience less rainfall and milder climates at this time of year. South Africa is a great option for a short break as it’s only two hours ahead, so you won’t suffer from jet lag. In Oman and South Africa, spring is a great time for wildlife. On Oman’s eastern coast, you can spot the endangered green sea turtle – the second largest turtle species in the world – in Ras al-Jinz. The Amakhala Private Game Reserve in eastern South Africa is home to the big five as well as over 250 species of bird and provides a safe, malaria-free safari.
Each of these destinations has a variety of family activities, whether it’s feeding elephants in South Africa, riding camels across Oman’s Sharqiya Sands or kayaking around Halong Bay in Vietnam. See Cape Town’s highlights on a paddleboard tour, drive across Oman’s sand dunes in a 4x4 or learn to cook traditional Vietnamese cuisine in Hoi An.
A traditional cooking class
Summer Holidays: July – September
The long summer holidays offer plenty of time for an extended adventure or to travel further afield. Summer is the best time to travel to Western Canada and Tanzania, as it tends to be warm and sunny.
Comprised of 16 national parks, Tanzania is the perfect place for a family safari. The Selous Wildlife Reserve is renowned for its wildlife, with sightings of hippos, crocodiles, lions, leopards and more. The summer holidays coincide with the dry season, making it easier to see wildlife as the vegetation is shorter and they cluster at waterholes. In the Serengeti plains, you can spot approximately 2 million, 800,000 zebra and gazelle migrating. From July to October, they search for vegetation and you will be privy to dramatic river crossings.
Western Canada is equally as beautiful with the snow-capped Canadian Rockies and British Columbia’s vineyards that layer the hills. Take a walk across the Athabasca Glacier – one of the largest non-polar ice fields in the world – where the ice can be up to 300 metres thick in parts.
Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands also have stunning landscapes and an intriguing selection of wildlife during the summer, much of it endemic. Summer in the Galapagos is nesting time for the blue-footed boobies and playtime for sea lion pups. On Isabela Island’s western coast, whales and dolphins are often spotted and in September, Galapagos penguins swim alongside snorkelers.
Wildlife spotting on safari
Autumn Half Term: October
The autumn half term is the perfect time to travel to Morocco and Jordan; destinations that are under a five-hour flight from the UK, yet still warm. Autumn is also the best time of year to visit India, as it’s much cooler. The Taj Mahal is undeniably a highlight of any trip to India. The impressive testament to love is perfectly symmetrical and took 22 years to construct with the help of around 20,000 workers. Combine India’s Golden Triangle with Ranthambore National Park, home to the majestic Bengal tigers. These endangered big cats have the largest canine teeth of any living cat and retractable claws for climbing trees.
In Marrakech, make your way through the maze of colourful souks, full of exotic spices and craft shops. Taste the flavourful cuisine that is slow-cooked in a traditional clay tagine; its conical shape retains the heat, making the food extremely tender. Jordan is a fascinating country, with the therapeutic salt-water of the Dead Sea, the mars-like setting of Wadi Rum and celestial night skies. Petra, the ancient centre of the Arab city, is thought to have been established as early as 9,000 BC. Deemed one of the new Seven Wonders of the World in 2007, it is a spectacular sight, especially by candlelight.
Zip lining through the jungle
Christmas Holidays: December - January
Why not escape the grips of British winter for an Australian adventure? Sail around the Sydney Harbour, walk through the Blue Mountains and watch the sun set over Uluru. Spend a couple of nights surrounded by the tropical Daintree rainforest in treehouse-style accommodation at Silky Oak Lodge. Alternatively, you can snorkel around the Great Barrier Reef, explore the outback or meet the inhabitants of Kangaroo Island.
Costa Rica and Sri Lanka have their dry seasons during this time. In Sri Lanka, climb Sigiriya rock fortress, a Unesco-listed world heritage site decorated with colourful frescoes, then search for leopards in Yala National Park. Learn how tea is produced on a working tea plantation in Koslanda, from it being picked to the fermentation and packaging. Costa Rica is brimming with colourful wildlife, host to more than 5% of the world’s biodiversity. With more than 101 volcanic formations in the country, there are plenty of walks to brightly coloured crater lakes. You can view sloths and butterflies from a relaxing hot spring, zip line through the rainforest or encounter monkeys along the canopy walkways.
Tea plantation, Sri Lanka
Cox & Kings arranges a selection of family adventures. To visit many of the stunning sights described in this article, options include our Tanzania Family Adventure, or the Vietnam & Cambodia Family Adventure. Alternatively, find out more about all our family holidays here.Share:
- Tags: Adventure, Culture & History, Family Adventure, India, Latin America, Morocco, South Africa, Wildlife, Worldwide