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Which European Cities Are Good for Family Trips?

Which European cities do you think are kid-friendly? We’re daydreaming about pinching our pennies and possibly taking Toby to Europe this summer (he’ll be two!), and I’d love to find a city that would be great with a little rascal in tow.

Which cities in Europe would you recommend for a family trip? Yolanda wrote a brilliant guide to Paris with kids, and Louisa Kamps wrote a beautiful essay on a family trip to Amsterdam. Thank you SO much for any insights! xoxo

(Photo of Berlin by Travel & Leisure)

  1. I can say Brussels is best for kids in Europe..Kids love chocolates and I am sure they can grab most of them.
    Must sees include the Belgian Comic Strip Museum, where the kids can learn about their favorite cartoon characters and the Atomium, which houses a scale model of Europe.
    I would recommend you to plan your trip itinerary to Brussels with kids vacation planner where you can take your kids into consideration while creating & planning your trip itineraries..

  2. I can say Brussels is best for kids in Europe..Kids love chocolates and I am sure they can grab most of them.
    Must sees include the Belgian Comic Strip Museum, where the kids can learn about their favorite cartoon characters and the Atomium, which houses a scale model of Europe.
    I would recommend you to plan your trip itinerary to Brussels with kids vacation planner where you can take your kids into consideration while creating & planning your trip itineraries..

  3. European countries for me are the safest places to visit especially to seniors who are already eligible for a seniors travel insurance. It is by far the safest places to go to.

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  5. Wooow …What a beautiful world. A land like no other….Sri Lanka.
    Set in the Indian Ocean in South Asia, the tropical island nation of Sri Lanka has a history dating back to the birth of time. It is a place where the original soul of Buddhism still flourishes and where nature’s beauty remains abundant and unspoilt.

    Few places in the world can offer the traveller such a remarkable combination of stunning landscapes, pristine beaches, captivating cultural heritage and unique experiences within such a compact location. Within a mere area of 65,610 kilometres lie 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, 1,330 kilometres of coastline – much of it pristine beach – 15 national parks showcasing an abundance of wildlife, nearly 500,000 acres of lush tea estates, 250 acres of botanical gardens, 350 waterfalls, 25,000 water bodies, to a culture that extends back to over 2,500 years.

    This is an island of magical proportions, once known as Serendib, Taprobane, the Pearl of the Indian Ocean, and Ceylon. Discover refreshingly Sri Lanka!

    http://www.srilanka.travel/index.php?route=common/home

  6. Wooow …What a beautiful world. A land like no other….Sri Lanka.
    Set in the Indian Ocean in South Asia, the tropical island nation of Sri Lanka has a history dating back to the birth of time. It is a place where the original soul of Buddhism still flourishes and where nature’s beauty remains abundant and unspoilt.

    Few places in the world can offer the traveller such a remarkable combination of stunning landscapes, pristine beaches, captivating cultural heritage and unique experiences within such a compact location. Within a mere area of 65,610 kilometres lie 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, 1,330 kilometres of coastline – much of it pristine beach – 15 national parks showcasing an abundance of wildlife, nearly 500,000 acres of lush tea estates, 250 acres of botanical gardens, 350 waterfalls, 25,000 water bodies, to a culture that extends back to over 2,500 years.

    This is an island of magical proportions, once known as Serendib, Taprobane, the Pearl of the Indian Ocean, and Ceylon. Discover refreshingly Sri Lanka!

    http://www.srilanka.travel/index.php?route=common/home

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  14. I know this is an old post, but I thougt that it is never to late for a good advice ;)
    I am from a small city in southern Germany. My city is called Freiburg, it is close to the Black Forest, where you can find a lot of special “family hotels” and a lot of acitivites for kids, some of them are even for free! Freiburg is also close to Switzerland and France (only 45 minutes by car), so you could do a lot and see a lot during your time here!

  15. i know this is an old post, but i thought it´s never to late for a good advice.
    i think it´s always better to go to a smaller city when you have kids with you. i am from a littly city in germany. it´s called Freiburg. it is very close to the black forest, where are lots of special “family hotels” and a lot of activities for children and some of them are even free for kids. besides of that Freiburg is only 45 minutes away from switzerland and france. so you could see a lot!

  16. Hi Joanna, I’m from Lisbon- Portugal. I think that Lisbon is a wonderful city to visit with kids. Why? Because we have amazing gardens ( Jardim da Estrela,Parque Eduardo VII, Gulbenkian…), a city full of history (it’s one of the oldest cities in the world), the Tejo River (with a wonderful space to stroll and gardens to play), and we have beautiful beaches very near (10-15 minutes). For moving around lisbon the easiest way is to take the subway ( metro). My favorite thing about my city is the light,the sunshine is one of the best things here! The food is really good (you can watch Anthony Bourdain-No reservations in Lisbon).
    Altought I LOVE LISBON, there are some other cities in Europe that are awesome. Like Paris ( LOVE LOVE LOVE), Copenhagen (it’s really nice), Barcelona (also nice), and I think that Rome is great also!

  17. I may be a bit late and you may never notice this comment, but I definitely want to recommend Tallinn (only if you’re coming between May and August though). It’s a gorgeous city that is somewhat hidden and ‘undiscovered’ – meaning it is not too crowded with tourists (except maybe mornings+early afternoons, when the cruise ships stop there). It is very manageable with a kid, since most of the city’s gorgeous places even have playgrounds nearby for fun-stops :) the best part – it’s very inexpensive compares to most city-destinations around Europe!

    look into Tallinn online, I’m sure you’ll only find rave reviews and write-ups of travels. do let me know if you’re going to consider Tallinn, I have worked as a tour guide there for a couple of summers and know all the secret and just around-the-corner hidden gems around town! katheriin.liibert [at] gmail.com or find me on facebook! xx

  18. Anonymous says...

    I am a Spaniard living in London.
    London is a fantastic place for kids, with lots of parks and activities. Most museums are free, and eating out is easy and affordable with kids. On the other hand if you would like to visit Spain, I would have to recommend Mallorca or Madrid. Both beautiful in their own way. But the beaches in Mallorca are gorgeous!

  19. Anonymous says...

    I lived in Florence for a summer, and visited many other cities over the weekends. Florence is incredibly friendly, beautiful, and family-oriented. Some of the streets are a bit bumpy (as they are cobblestone) but the sidewalks are just fine! You can see so many wonderful things without having to walk too far, all the streets are lined with friendly boutiques, stores, restaurants, and cafe’s.

    As a bonus, mostly everyone speaks some English (they won’t chastise you if you don’t attempt the language, as some other cities do). It is incredibly navigable, beautiful, SAFE and full of wonderful people, many sights and things to do. It is also much more affordable than many other cities.

  20. Hi there! I am an American mommy living in San Sebastian, Spain (coastal town 20 km from the French border)…and have to say that all of Spain is fabulously kid-friendly. You could do a combination of Madrid, Barcelona, San Sebastian….also, if you are looking to see two countries, you could go to Paris, see the sites, then take the TGV train for approx. 5 hours to spend some time in the coastal cities in France (ex. Biarritz) and San Sebastián, and possibly even another city in Spain. There is a Guggenheim museum close-by in Bilbao as well that could be a day-trip. I think in general you will be surprised how wonderfully kid-friendly all of Europe is!

  21. Franzi says...

    I lived in Berlin, so I can tell you that although it’s really big and full of people, it’s also very kids friendly, there are soo many young families living there. It’s also very green and there is so much to see.

    Paris is awesome too, but I don’t know if it’s so child friendly.. overall the people in Paris are not that nice to english speaking folk. So, they mostly pretend like they don’t understand, that was really annoying sometimes … Paris is pretty, but Berlin is fun and happier ;)

  22. Anonymous says...

    We’re going to Amsterdam in three weeks, and I have never been before. I also don’t have kids, so I’ve never really thought about the other European cities I’ve visited in terms of “family-friendliness,” but in researching Amsterdam, I’ve seen a bunch of things which say it’s very family-friendly. (Of course the pot and prostitution which come to mind don’t make it seem good for kids, but apparently (gasp!) there’s more to it than that.)

    And yeah, we’re really looking forward to biking everywhere! We checked out our hotel on Google maps and there is a bike rack out front.

  23. Anonymous says...

    The Paris of the North, Tromsø. It is in the north of Norway and you get a nice little city with wonderful cafès (that is also the reason it is called the Paris of the North) and amazing nature. Midnight sun in the summer and the northern light in the winter. There is also an aquarium, which is popular for the kids. In the main street there are lots of old wood houses that makes it a charming town.

    And we all speak english to some degree :)

  24. Anonymous says...

    Budapest <3
    The Paris of eastern Europe. We went last summer when my daughter was five. The city is considered quite safe compared to other capitals in Europe. And they are known for their wonderful public baths, for instance the Gellert Bath with its amazing architecture. There is also a water park outside the city if you have older kids.

    I also loved Lisboa, but we only had one day there once. But we went shopping with my then 2 year old daughter, and it was great. I have never baught so many shoes in only one day! ;)

  25. Spain Bloggers willl be so happy to show you our favorites places!!!! :)))) I am living in Segovia, a beatiful medieval city, if you want, i´m here! :)

  26. CZECH REPUBLIC (PRAGUE), BELGIUM (BRUGGE) & SCOTLAND (EDINBURGH).
    My parents have been dragging me around the world since I was a baby and those are my three favourite places in Europe. Minus LONDON which is an obvious pick.

  27. SP Lager is best served cold… and tastes a bit like watered-down battery acid when it’s warm!!! I won’t ever forget the dry mouth on a scorching hot Moresby Saturday morning, when it feels like I’ve gargled sawdust and bicarb soda. But funnily enough, I will miss the ole brown bottles!

  28. Anna says...

    Even though I am from Vienna (and have to agree with previous posters in that it’s clean, save, has good transportation and lovely architecture), I would not consider the Viennese especially kid-friendly. In fact, people can get downright grumpy if you take your kids to restaurants or just “out” and they dare to misbehave…

    So I’ll have to hand out another vote for Copenhagen! It’s the perfect mix of laid back people, safe, green and easy to get around combined with stylish cafés, shops and fun things to do (Tivoli, Harbour, Kristiania – the latter only if you can get a sitter)!

    Have a great trip, wherever you choose to go!

  29. Anonymous says...

    Most are, I think. Salzburg, Austria is particularly beautiful and there’s lots to do. London is great, but will be super pricey thanks to the Olympics. What about Dublin or somewhere?

    Oh – and Montpellier in southern France is great too.

  30. Vienna! It is so much fun and I get baby fever whenever I go because all of the chic couples bring their children along everywhere. You will have a great time. There are lots of outdoor parks, cafes, and even a children’s museum dedicated to music.

  31. Definitely Paris – hello Disney! Also Italy is another good one, maybe try Milan or Florence rather than Rome.

  32. if you are planning to go through Switzerland, Lausanne, do not hesitate to contact me for staying at our place. I love your blog and would love to have you and your family.

  33. Berlin for everybody: adults, young people, kids and babies. Berlin it’s another (nice) world.
    PS: Don’t come to Spain, where I am. Is not a good place for to have kids, go to restaurants or to visit a museum. Have a nice day, Joanna!
    gessamí