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Cheap city break for family of 5 - October half term

(24 Posts)
LemonBreeland Wed 06-Jun-18 11:49:40

I was wondering if anyone can recommend a good cheap European city break for a family of 5 in October half term. We are in Scotland so half term is earlier than England. Kids are 7 -15. Probably AirBnB

Here is what I am looking for:
Not too cold, but doesn't need to be hot
Cheap flights
Interesting things to do

RideSallyRide76 Wed 06-Jun-18 12:15:09

Don't know what the hotels are like but Groupon has a couple of short breaks to Amsterdam and Barcelona. Prices look good. Is this the sort of thing you're after?

Ricekrispie22 Wed 06-Jun-18 17:20:42

Rome or Barcelona. Both will be mild in October and both have plenty of engaging and interesting activities/sights/attractions for both teens and children.

Ouchiebum Wed 06-Jun-18 17:22:41

Lisbon. I went last year with two kids and they loved it. Plenty to do and see. The tuk Tuks were a big hit as were the old trams. Relatively inexpensive to eat out.

Ricekrispie22 Wed 06-Jun-18 17:37:11

I'd probably lean towards Barcelona.
Gaudi's house and park are brilliant for children to explore.
Scaling the towers of La Sagrada is quite an adventure.
Cycle along the long, wide promenade at the water front. There are several bike hire shops in the city and most offer tours as well.
The aquarium is a must. It's one of the best in Europe apparently.
Tibidabo Amusement Park is a fun half-day out and getting there by the tram and funicular is an experience in itself. There's a decent selection of rides which cater for everyone.
Cuitadella Park is a great place to escape the hustle and bustle with youngsters. It not only houses the city zoo, but also has row boats, fountains, and plazas.
CosmoCaixa is a little bit of a trek but worth it. It’s crammed full of activities and exhibitions. Do not miss out on Toca Toca. It’s an amazing activity where the children can actually touch exotic animals and learn all about their habitats. My daughter loved touching the snakes and lizards, while I hid behind her!
You'll love the magic fountain night show. It's much better when it's fully dark and fortunately in October you won't have to stay up so late for it.
The chocolate museum is also worth a trip. The most is browsing through various sculptures made of chocolate in forms. We saw a chocolate bull fighting scene, Mickey Mouse made of chocolate, and my DS's favourite, Nemo!
Walk through (and possibly buy a picnic) from Santa Caterina Food Market. Their eyes will be on stalks.
Even in October, let your kids design their own ice cream creation at Eyescream and Friends.

Middleoftheroad Wed 06-Jun-18 17:40:22

My DH and DTs went to Amsterdam and everything was eye-wateringly expensive.

Decorhate Thu 07-Jun-18 07:00:42

What is your budget for flights + accommodation? We are also a family of 5 & recently went to Berlin. It seemed to work out a lot cheaper than other city breaks when I was looking on Expedia. I don't think they do much in the way of Air B&B though.

LemonBreeland Thu 07-Jun-18 13:03:48

Thanks for all of the ideas. WE had been looking at Barcelona and Lisbon, so good to hear positive things about those places.

@Middleoftheroad we would love to go to Amsterdam, but all of the accommodation seems incredibly expensive.

Middleoftheroad Thu 07-Jun-18 13:36:20

It was so expensive!! They went for ONE night and it was about £700 for basic no frills flight, three star hotel (plus £££ taxi transfers) then spends!!!!

Floralnomad Fri 08-Jun-18 00:05:04

I was also going to say Lisbon , ds went with my dsis in Feb and found it incredibly cheap to eat out .

frenchfancy Sat 09-Jun-18 07:05:16

We did Naples last October. We loved. Loads to do. Weather great.

whiteroseredrose Sat 09-Jun-18 07:22:56

We went to the Loire valley one half term which was amazing. Chateaux walks and rivers!

whiteroseredrose Sat 09-Jun-18 08:27:36

@frenchfancy we've been scared off Naples because everyone kept saying it was dangerous. Would you mind sharing where you stayed and what you did?

RazzleDazzle3 Sat 09-Jun-18 08:30:48

I booked flights through skyscanner earlier this week Gatwick to Barcelona October half term, mon-fri, £239 for 4 of us.

I think our half term is week later than others thoughsmile

frenchfancy Sat 09-Jun-18 15:50:19

@whiteroseredrose It was actually the second time visiting Naples, we enjoyed the first visit so much the children pestered to go back. The first time we only had 3 days and stayed at a hotel near the central station, which was convenient but not the most lovely area. Last october we took and airbnb near the castel dell ovo which was a much more touristy area. Next time we go (there definitely will be a next time) we will stay near the Amadeo metro in the Chiaia district.

Naples seems to be the type of city you either love or hate. But there is so much to see and do. Everyone we met was lovely and the food is great (especially the pizzas!)

Nomad86 Sat 09-Jun-18 19:27:28

Lisbon. We just got back and it was incredibly cheap. We had a three bed Airbnb for £80 per night, though you can find much cheaper ones. The science museum and oceanarium are great if it's wet too and cater for all ages.

whiteroseredrose Sun 10-Jun-18 09:25:37

Thanks @frenchfancy. We've been to Rome and Florence and I really fancied Naples next partly because it's close to Pompeii and Vesuvius. I'll do my research around the areas you've mentioned smile

BlueKittens Sun 10-Jun-18 11:12:37

I love Naples- I’m going back this summer. Find the beauty in the historic streets, full of life. See Naples and diediet

BlueKittens Sun 10-Jun-18 11:13:41

^ Pozzouli is a good alternative to Naples- nearby but out of the craziness. Sophia Loren’s home town.

Branleuse Sun 10-Jun-18 11:16:26

Seville, Madrid or Valletta maybe

bluebeck Sun 10-Jun-18 16:34:23

Agree with Rome - nowhere else quite like it.

I also love Sorrento/Naples.

Have they been to Athens?

itstimeforanamechange Wed 13-Jun-18 10:48:55

Not sure when Scottish half term is but the Amsterdam marathon/half marathon coincides with the beginning of the English one, which may explain expensive accommodation prices.

What about places like Budapest or Lviv? Or as someone else suggested Berlin? Hamburg is also really nice and I think you can fly direct from Edinburgh.

tracelab Thu 14-Jun-18 07:07:01

I'm an Amsterdam blogger and can highly recommend the city. As it's so small accommodation in the centre is expensive but transport is great so it's easy to stay a little out of town and pay a lot less. Here is a link to the blog for inspiration and some specific posts you might find useful.

An area guide if you are considering an AirBnB:

Accommodation at all price levels:

Vixnixtrix1981 Wed 20-Jun-18 16:19:13

I second Naples - I went with DS who was 9! Both loved it, we also did Rome amongst other places, but Naples wowed us in a way we didn't expect.

Really lovely place, with amazing friendly people and CHEAP, CHEAP food

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