Some of the best city breaks to be had anywhere in the world are to be found on mainland Europe. They’re packed with history, culture, art and nightlife – but there are also family-friendly attractions to which you might bring the kids. If you’re pondering a break on the continent, it’s worth considering taking it at one of our favourite European cities for families.
The first thing you need to know about Gothenburg is that it’s a little on the small side. With a population of just over half a million, it’s nowhere near as frantic as some of the other European destinations. This makes it fantastic for families who’d like to spend the weekend relaxing rather than stressing out. In the historic city centre, there are a few cobbled streets to get lost in, and for the kids there’s the Universeum, which is a bit like a cross between a science museum and a zoo.
Prague is home to the sort of baroque architecture that looks like it’s been taken straight from the pages of a fairytale. It’s among the more popular destinations for stag weekends, because everything is nice and affordable. But if you’re taking children, you’ll also find plenty of distractions that they’ll love – like the castle, the zoo and the boat tour. Make sure that you’ve got your Prague airport transfers sorted in advance
This Croatian city has found fame on television as the setting for Game of Thrones. You might recognise the walls of the old city as looking remarkably similar to those of King’s Landing. There’s a beach to enjoy, and plenty of activities in the form of kayaking, biking and boating. Thus Dobrovnik represents a great compromise between city sightseeing and country adventure.
The Danish capital boasts plenty for the average family to enjoy. There are two out-of-town amusement parks to consider, one of which, Bakken, is the world’s oldest, with a history that stretches back to the 16th century. The other park, Tivoli Gardens, is right in the town centre, and provides acres of fairground fun.
If there’s one thing likely to get kids enthused about a trip to the continent, it’s the prospect of a visit to a chocolate museum. Brussels is home to just such a building, and there you’ll be able to learn everything there is to know about the humble cocoa bean – sometimes via live demonstrations. Naturally, there are also samples to scoff down.
Besides confectionary, the city provides visitors with a chance to visit some of Belgium’s most eye-popping buildings, including the European Parliament – though kids might be a bit less enthusiastic about that.