Discovering Europe with Toddlers: Top 5 Destinations and Family-Friendly Activities

June 14, 2024

Traveling with a toddler can be an exciting adventure, but it also comes with its unique set of challenges. When planning a trip to Europe with your little one, it is important to choose the right country that's suitable for families with young children, as it can make the journey much smoother and more enjoyable for everyone involved.

We've put together a list of some of the most family-friendly countries in Europe to help you make a decision.


Portugal shines as one of Europe's most family-friendly destinations. Kids are welcomed everywhere you go, whether you're exploring museums, dining out, or strolling through town squares, families hold a special place in Portuguese society.

They make sure parents with little ones get special treatment, like priority in shops and on buses. Breastfeeding in public is widely accepted, and even tweens and teens feel secure navigating cities like Lisbon on their own. With its abundance of parks, playgrounds, and natural wonders, Portugal offers endless opportunities for family adventures.

Blessed with 300 days of sunshine annually and some of the gentlest weather on the continent, it sets the stage for unforgettable experiences with your loved ones. The only challenge? Narrowing down your list of must-visit spots!

When it comes to dining out, Portugal excels in catering to families with exceptional customer service. Special considerations, like shorter waits and ample highchairs, are common in restaurants. And let's not overlook the breathtaking beaches, particularly in the south, where you can unwind and create cherished memories with your little ones.

Here are some top family things to do:

In Lisbon:

  • Check out Jardim Da Estrela Park. A beautiful park that has a large playground. Also, keep an eye out for peacocks on the rooftops! They are everywhere in Lisbon. 
  • Take the cable car ride (telecabine Lisboa) for a beautiful view of the city. Children 3 and under are free. 
  • Visit the Oceanarium, a fantastic aquarium to take kids of any age. 
  • Enjoy the Time Out Market, with lots of different foods and a playground nearby.

In the East Algarve:

  • Hit the quiet, warm beaches known for their calm waves and yummy seafood.
  • Take a boat trip to the white sand beaches, with plenty of shade and snacks.
  • Explore the Rio Formosa Wetlands Natural Park for birdwatching and wildlife spotting.


  • Climb the Clérigos Tower: kids will love ascending the tower and reaching the top, where they can admire a stunning view of the city. The adventure of climbing the 225 steps will keep them active and reward them with breathtaking views.
  • Visit the Livraria Lello: the enchanting atmosphere of this historic bookstore will stimulate toddlers' imaginations. They can browse among the books and marvel at the magical ambiance reminiscent of something out of a fairy tale.
  • See the Sé Cathedral: the grandeur of the cathedral will impress young children, and they'll find it fascinating to admire the art and architecture. Exploring the courtyard with beautiful blue tiles will pique their curiosity.
  • Stroll along the Cais da Ribeira: a leisurely walk along the river provides toddlers with the opportunity to run, play, and explore their surroundings. They'll enjoy the vibrant atmosphere, watching the boats, and listening to music along the waterfront.
  • There are plenty of dining options with kid-friendly choices where they can enjoy delicious meals, and Porto's laid-back atmosphere makes it easy for parents to enjoy the city experiences with their little ones.


Sweden is packed with family-friendly activities, making it the perfect destination for a vacation with kids of all ages. Traveling around Sweden with children is made easy by various transportation options like renting a car, taking trains, or flying, depending on where you're headed. Big cities like Stockholm, Gothenburg, or Malmö are easily accessible by train, which can also be a fun experience for the little ones.

Sweden is renowned for its family-friendly atmosphere, offering stroller-friendly paths, kid-friendly menus, playgrounds, and parks almost everywhere you go, ensuring a stress-free travel experience with children.

There's no shortage of exciting things to do for families in Sweden. From immersing yourself in nature to thrilling amusement park rides, there's something to suit every taste. Here's why toddlers will love it too:

  • Nature exploration: take advantage of Sweden's "right to roam" rules by hiking and camping in its stunning forests. In the south, explore picturesque beaches for crab fishing, kayaking, and boating. The picturesque beaches in the south provide plenty of opportunities for sandcastle building and splashing in the waves, keeping little ones entertained for hours.
  • Amusement park visits: the colorful rides, games, and lively atmosphere of amusement parks like Liseberg in Gothenburg and Grönalund in Stockholm will captivate toddlers' imaginations and provide endless entertainment.
  • Winter adventures: kids love the thrill of playing in the snow and experiencing their first ski or snowboard lesson at family-friendly resorts like Åre and Sälen in Lapland. Meeting friendly reindeer and going on husky rides will create unforgettable memories.
  • Kid-friendly museums: places like Junibacken in Stockholm and Universeum in Gothenburg provide interactive exhibits and activities for children to learn and play.
  • Adventure park explorations: outdoor shows and exciting attractions at places like High Chaparral in Småland and Astrid Lindgren's World in Vimmerby will provide children with hours of fun and adventure.
  • Zoo trips: Kolmården Zoo near Norrköping and Skånes Djurpark in the south offer toddlers the chance to see a variety of animals up close and learn about different species in an exciting and interactive environment.
  • Castle visits: Step into the world of royalty at historic castles like Drottningholm Palace in Stockholm and Sofiero Castle in Helsingborg, where kids can let their imaginations run wild for a day of enchantment and adventure.


Mallorca stands out as one of Spain's top destinations for family vacations, alongside popular spots like Alicante and Tenerife. Known for its sunny weather, beautiful beaches, delicious cuisine, and diverse attractions, Mallorca offers something for everyone. With a variety of accommodations ranging from luxury resorts to charming rentals, visitors have plenty of options to choose from. The island also boasts an array of guided tours, ideal for families looking to explore without the hassle of driving themselves. 

For families with young children, Mallorca offers numerous family-friendly activities and attractions. From full-day tours to adventure parks, there's no shortage of entertainment options. Additionally, the island's hotels cater to families, with many featuring pools and other amenities designed for children. Whether you have a full week or just a weekend to spare, Mallorca offers ample opportunities to create lasting family memories. 

Here are some highlights:

  • Katmandu Park: this theme park in Magaluf offers a variety of interactive attractions and entertainment suitable for children of all ages, including thrilling rides, 4D experiences, and a splash park.
  • Palma Aquarium: located near Palma de Mallorca, this aquarium is home to a wide range of marine species from around the world. Families can explore fascinating underwater ecosystems and even participate in interactive experiences like touching stingrays.
  • Alcudia Waterpark: situated in the northern part of the island, this waterpark features a diverse range of slides, pools, and attractions, providing hours of fun for the whole family.
  • Pirate Adventure Mallorca: set sail on a swashbuckling adventure aboard a pirate ship, complete with live entertainment, treasure hunts, and interactive shows, sure to delight young buccaneers.
  • Marineland Mallorca: located in Costa d'en Blanes, Marineland offers a unique combination of marine life encounters, dolphin shows, and thrilling water slides, promising a day of excitement and discovery.
  • Soller Railway: take a scenic train ride from Palma to Soller aboard the historic Soller Railway, offering stunning views of Mallorca's countryside and mountains, a delightful experience for families with children.

If you're looking for more options, the Canary IslandsGran Canaria, Lanzarote, and Tenerife—are all great choices. They also have beautiful beaches and lots of family-friendly attractions like animal parks and aquariums. Renting a car is a good idea if you want to explore the islands, and you'll find that all the restaurants are used to catering to families with young children.


Lake Bled in Slovenia is one of the most beautiful and family-friendly spots you'll find in Europe. It's a must-visit for families with kids of all ages, offering a range of activities to enjoy together. From leisurely hikes to scenic boat rides, there's something for everyone to love.

Here are some fun things to do with your family at Lake Bled:

  • Explore bled castle: perched on a cliff overlooking the lake, Bled Castle offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains and the lake below. It's a great place to learn about the area's history and snap some amazing photos.
  • Hike the Ojstrica Trail: take a hike up the Ojstrica Trail for breathtaking views of Lake Bled and the surrounding countryside. It's a bit steep, but the views are totally worth it.
  • Take a boat ride: hop on a boat and head out onto the crystal-clear waters of Lake Bled. You can row yourself or take a guided tour to Bled Island, where you can explore the charming church and enjoy the scenery.
  • Go fishing: Lake Bled is a great spot for fishing, with plenty of fish species to catch. It's a fun activity for the whole family to enjoy together.
  • Try canyoning: for the more adventurous families, canyoning in nearby Triglav National Park is an exciting way to experience Slovenia's natural beauty. You'll jump along waterfalls and explore hidden gorges with experienced guides. It's sure to be a memorable experience for everyone!


In the 15th century, the mantra for kids was to stay quiet. But times have definitely changed! Nowadays, most folks in England are pretty chill about kids, even if you stumble upon the occasional grump. One of the coolest perks of visiting England with kids? Many of the top-notch museums are absolutely free! Plus, they often offer fun activities for kids like coloring or treasure hunts. When hunger strikes, numerous pubs and restaurants have special menus just for kids, featuring classics like nuggets, pizza, and burgers with fries. While fancy food options for kids might be limited, you can always request a smaller portion from the regular menu.

Here's some good news for caregivers: baby changing facilities aren't confined to just the ladies' room anymore. They're popping up everywhere, making it convenient for everyone to share diaper duty. Navigating around with kids can be a bit tricky at times. Some places might not be stroller-friendly, but trains typically have wide gates and ample space for strollers. 

As for entertaining babies and toddlers, England has got you covered. You can hit the beach, explore museums, or even groove at family-friendly raves!

Hera are some toddler-friendly activities and places to visit in England:

  • Peppa Pig World: located within Paultons Park in Hampshire, Peppa Pig World is a paradise for little fans of the beloved cartoon character. With themed rides, play areas, and live shows, toddlers will have a blast exploring Peppa's world.
  • London Zoo: situated in the heart of London, London Zoo offers an exciting day out for toddlers to encounter a variety of animals up close. From lions and tigers to penguins and gorillas, there's plenty to see and do.
  • The National Sea Life Centre: located in Birmingham, this aquarium provides an immersive underwater experience for toddlers to marvel at colorful fish, sharks, and other marine creatures. Interactive exhibits and touch pools add to the excitement.
  • Soft Play Centers: England has numerous soft play centers scattered across the country, offering indoor playgrounds where toddlers can climb, slide, and explore in a safe and fun environment, regardless of the weather outside.
  • Children's Farms: many regions in England have children's farms where toddlers can interact with farm animals, go on tractor rides, and even try their hand at feeding lambs or grooming ponies.
  • Beach Days: England boasts some beautiful beaches, particularly along the coasts of Cornwall, Devon, and Dorset. Toddlers can enjoy building sandcastles, paddling in the shallow waters, and collecting shells along the shore.
  • Local Parks and Gardens: most towns and cities in England have lovely parks and gardens with playgrounds, duck ponds, and open spaces perfect for picnics and outdoor play.
  • Toddler-Friendly Museums: many museums across England offer toddler-friendly exhibits and activities, such as sensory play areas, storytelling sessions, and interactive displays designed specifically for young children.

These are just a few examples of the many toddler-friendly attractions and activities available in England, ensuring a fun and memorable experience for both toddlers and their families.

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