With the New Year upon us, we’re all busy planning for the year ahead, and mapping out your next holiday is always at the top of the list. When you’ve got little ones, they are an important consideration when deciding where to go and what to do. The last thing you want to deal with on your holiday is bored and difficult children. The travel experts at KAYAK.com.hk have put together a list of six fantastic things to do and see, with three destinations ranking amongst the most popular destinations searched by Hong Kongers within Asia and abroad.
Seoul, South Korea
The buzzing South Korean capital Seoul is full of sights and activities to keep the kids entertained. Start your adventure in the sprawling metropolis by spending the day at the Children’s Grand Park. The list of activities is endless; a water playground, a zoo, kids’ bungee jumping, water zorbing, botanical gardens, and a marine animal enclosure with seals and polar bears. Kids can also enjoy a pony or camel ride as well as petting and feeding the animals. If this isn’t enough, the Children’s Grand Park is also home to the Seoul Children’s Museum – a wonderland of creativity and fun. The museum’s philosophy of ‘children designing happiness’ can be seen in the diverse and educational interactive exhibits, buttons to push, and games to play to stimulate the imagination.
For a family holiday your little ones won’t forget, head to Tokyo. Kids who are into the weird and wonderful creatures of the world will love the Meguro Parasitological Museum – a parasite museum which exhibits around 300 parasite specimens and related material. If they like playing dress up, take them to the Fire Museum where they can dress up like a fireman – and better yet, it’s free. Alternatively, a trip to Legoland Discovery Center will make every little person’s dreams come true. And for days when the weather is fine, get some fresh air on a stroll in the Imperial Palace and Gardens, and let the kids roam free while checking out the stunning palace.
Avoid the crowds at hot spots like Dream World or Siam Park, and spend the day at Fantasia Lagoon water park. Largely unknown by tourists, the water park has plenty of pools and slides and is conveniently located on the roof of The Mall Bangkae, where you can grab a snack and do some shopping afterwards. Make sure you also check out Imaginia Playland at the Emporium Mall, suitable for kids up to 15 years old. And don’t forget to pay a visit to the Art in Paradise 3D Museum – a fun and interactive museum to spend a few hours, decked out with an array of murals on the floors and ceilings, creating all kinds of optical illusions and perfect for taking memorable photographs.
If you fancy a family vacation Down Under, there is plenty to keep the kids entertained in cosmopolitan Sydney. After a stroll along Sydney’s gorgeous harbour, including the famous Opera House, jump on a ferry and take a short ride over to Cockatoo Island. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the island retains all the character and heritage from its previous life as a prison and shipping yard. Up next, learn about Aboriginal astronomy at the Sydney Observatory. Check out the many amazing exhibits with fascinating films about astronomy and the history of spaceflight. Or check out more of nature’s wonders at the Taronga Zoo, one of Sydney’s most famous attractions and home to more than 4,0000 animals. Here you can let the kids run wild on the sky high adventure, Wild Ropes, where they can tire themselves out on an obstacle course and cross suspension bridges, which also deliver spectacular views of Sydney Harbour.
New York, United States
New York is a popular destination for many, and is also the perfect place for a family vacation. Spend the day with the kids at the Imagination Playground in Burling Slip. Unlike most parks which come fully built, in the Imagination Park, kids have the opportunity to build the park of their dreams. Designed by famed architect David Rockwell, Imagination Park is a series of foam blocks, mats, wagons, and fabric. It is an interactive, transformable space that prompts children to create the built environment around them. Not to miss is a trip to Governor’s Island; a 172 acre island in the heart of New York Harbour. A former military base, it is now open to the general public with lush parks and gardens for picnicking, and lots of public art. Get your kids interested in a little American history at the historic Richmond Town – a completely authentic, real and original town and farm complex which gives visitors a glimpse of what the world was like in the mid-1600s.
London, United Kingdom
There are a ton of obvious attractions for families while visiting London – Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, the Natural History Museum, the London Eye, Westminster Abbey, we could go on for days. Picnics in one of the many stunning gardens – all fantastic options. But what about when the kids get hungry? Check out the American-style eatery, All Star Lanes, where you can combine classic American food like burgers and fried chicken with a game of bowling. Or visit favourite establishment, Bodean’s BBQ, where kids can get stuck into crowd pleasers like mac ‘n’ cheese while you enjoy pulled pork sandwiches or ribs – and the best bit is that kids eat free until 3pm on weekdays and 5pm on weekends. If you want to get out of the city for a few days, we suggest you check out Camp Bestival – an absolute winner in terms of keeping you entertained just as much as the kids. Set in the spectacular grounds of the Lulworth Castle, in Dorset, a short train ride from London, is the inspiring and multi-award winning family festival.
*Prices displayed are based on searches conducted on 12 January, 2016 and are based on a round trip economy fare for travel from Sunday, 5 June – Saturday, 11 June, 2016. Hotel prices are for triple occupancy per room per night. Prices are subject to change, availability may be limited or offers may no longer be available.