If you’re looking for some good quality family time, road trips are the way to go. The below journeys can be done with both younger kids and teens, varying up the stops and drive lengths based on their needs – and attention spans!
One of the most famous drives in the world, South Africa’s Garden Route runs all the way from Mossel Bay in the Western Cape to the Eastern Cape’s Storms River. We recommend starting in bustling Cape Town taking time to visit historic Robben Island and see the penguin colony at Boulders Beach. From there drive along the coast to Gaansbai, a fishing town that’s known for whale watching and great white sharks – diving with the latter is probably best suited for adventurous teens only! Next head further east to Plettenburg Bay for a stay at Kurland, a lovely retreat situated on a polo estate with limitless family activities including horse riding, hiking, mountain biking and with plenty of wildlife activities nearby. Last comes the safari element with a few nights at Kwandwe Ecca Lodge in the malaria-free Eastern Cape. Here you can introduce the kids to the Big 5 through game drives, guided walks and even fishing excursions!
Grootbos Private Nature Reserve is situated within the forest clad hills which overlook the whale-watching haven of Walker Bay. It features a comprehensive program of fun learning activities for the children including adventures on the beach and at the rock pools, treasure hunts and horseback rides, all hosted by experienced guides.
California was built for road trips! Your epic adventure begins in Los Angeles, where kids will likely behave for weeks before hand, lured by the promise of a trip to Disney Land and Universal Studios. Next, head out on the open Pacific Coast Highway for a stop at the beach town of Santa Barbara with its zoo and beautiful beaches. Turn onto the spectacular Highway 1 as you drive one of the most scenic roads in the country to Big Sur. Along the way, stop to stretch the legs at lighthouses, charming cafes and along the iconic arched bridges that line the road. Monteray Bay, and its world-famous aquarium, will surely be a highlight where humpback and blue whales can be viewed in the open ocean. End your journey in San Francisco, or continue on to indulge in the winelands of Napa or explore Yosemite National Park.
After all that driving, parents deserve a bit of downtime in Napa, southern California’s wonderful wine region. Calistoga Ranch is tucked away in a secluded canyon with endless activities from cooking classes and wine tasting to hiking and mountain biking. It’s extremely family friendly with special activities for the little ones.
Driving is by far the best way to explore New Zealand, and the flexibility you have with driving times and places to stop make it appropriate for children of all ages. Start your journey in Nelson on the northern tip of the South Island with plenty of fun in the sun, hiking the trails and kayaking the bays of Abel Tasman National Park. Head south to the coastal town of Kaikoura for some whale watching or swimming with dolphins before boarding the Tranz Alpine train in Christchurch and travelling all the way to the island’s west coast. From there you will explore the glacier country of Franz Josef, the rolling countryside of Wanaka and finally arrive in the adventure capital of Queenstown. However, the latter is not just for adrenaline-obsessed teens, but features a range of activities for younger children including visiting working sheep farms, gondola rides, river safaris, horseback riding and hot air balloon rides.
One of the most unique properties in New Zealand, Hapuku Lodge is famous for its tree houses perched two stories above the ground. Head out early in the morning to collect eggs at the chicken coup, get up close to the deer that live right on the property and chill out in the afternoons by the lovely pool overlooking the mountains.
A road trip for adventurous families, Oman has topped our list of up-and-coming family destinations this year. After a few days exploring Muscat, drive along the coast to the turtle sanctuary of Ras Al Jinz, witnessing a nesting site of the endangered green turtle. Continue on into the interior deserts and tire the kids out with activities such as camel riding, sandboarding and dune bashing. Next, head up into the mountains for a breath of fresh air and a stay at one of the country’s finest properties, Alila Jabal Akhdar. And lastly if you have the time, drive way up north to the Musandam Peninsula to cap off your holiday with a few nights on the beach.
The ultimate property for families, Six Senses Zighy Bay is home to a stunning beach, plenty of water-based activities and some of the best family villas we’ve seen! It’s the perfect way to end your journey through the Omani desert.
The South of France is a great summer road trip for older kids, or those littlies who are happy exploring the great outdoors and don’t need things like Kid’s Clubs for entertainment. Start in the beautiful village of Eze on the French Riviera, spending a few days on the beach and visiting a perfume factory. Head into the heartland of Provence, stopping at lavender fields and local markets – sure to be a peaceful experience for kids used to frenetic Asian markets! Continue west to Avignon, brushing up on the history of the region as you drive and stopping at an olive oil factory.
Despite saying this journey was for those who didn’t need a Kid’s Club, Terre Blanche Hotel Spa & Golf Resort does feature a fantastic club for children aged two to 12! There is also a kid’s pool and a special restaurant for children. The property is in the heart of Provence and situated on a 750-acre estate, perfect for horse riding and hiking, with medieval villages nearby just waiting to be explored.
To book your next family getaway, contact Lightfoot Travel at +852 2815 0068 (HK) or +65 6438 4091 (SG), email@example.com. Lightfoot Travel is a luxury tour operator offering expert travel advice and inspiration, tailor-made itineraries & full booking services.