Family Travel Bloggers recommend their favorite family trips around the world. This week, they are giving away tips and epic itineraries within Europe. Iceland, Lapland, Norway, Croatia and a cool RV road trip with a a baby in 8 countries, here we come!

Road Tripping Iceland With Kids

The Land of Fire and Ice, Iceland is the most unique place we have ever been to and ended up being a trip of a lifetime for us. My girls were 9 and 11 when we went. Iceland is attributed to one thing… nature… And even if you don’t consider yourself outdoorsy, you will soon find yourself excited about lacing up those hiking boots and heading out to find an adventure for the day.  Iceland has so many unforgettable displays of nature including glaciers that extend as far as your eyes can see, waterfalls so tall you can walk behind them, hidden hot springs, and beaches covered in icebergs. There is no place I’d recommend more than Hotel Ranga to call home while you’re there. The average cost for a week there is about $3000.
No trip to Iceland is complete without driving the Golden Circle, where you’ll explore two fabulous waterfalls and a stunning geyser.  The entire family will fall in love with the Icelandic horses you’ll see throughout the country, so find a place where you can book some riding while you’re there.  Or get out on the water to do a puffin tour. I recommend your last day you head over to the Blue Lagoon and spend the afternoon soaking in the magical water and reflecting on the memories you just made as a family.
Christine – My Traveling Kids

Norway with kid and baby

Norway is one of our favorite countries to explore with our kids. We have an almost 4-year-old and a 1.5-year-old child, and they have already spent 2 to 3 months in Norway. Our first Norwegian family trip was a 3-week-long road trip in the south of the country where we conquered the Pulpit Rock, among other spectacular sights. At the same time, later, we traveled for several weeks in the north and explored places like Kirkenes, Nordkapp, Tromso, and Lofoten.
Our Southern Norway itinerary included stops like the capital, Oslo, Verdens Ende at the end of Oslofjord, Stavanger with the Norwegian Petrol Museum, the well-known Pulpit Rock hike, glaciers near Odda, and the world heritage buildings in Bergen, among others. It is better to focus on one region if your time is limited to a week or less.
The cost of traveling in Norway varies highly depending on the accommodation type you choose and if you cook for yourself or prefer eating out, as restaurants are quite pricey. We drive our own RV, so our accommodation costs are decimal. We only needed to pay parking fees now and then. Otherwise, a night in a decent hotel for 2 adults and 1-2 kids in most places would cost around $120-150. If you plan a road trip like us, it is wise to rent a car, which is about $40 per day but will give you the flexibility you need with small kids. If you want to save money, rent apartments with a kitchen, cook your own meals, and occasionally eat out. Although we have spent less than$1000 in 3 weeks, probably the safest way to count the budget is about $200-300 per day for a family of four that includes a place to stay, car rental, entrance tickets, and food.
Katalin, Our Life Our Travel   

 


Finnish Lapland

Our favourite family trip was to see Santa Claus in Lapland, when our son was 5 years old. We visited him in Rovaniemi, his official hometown in Finnish Lapland and it was an amazing trip. We didn’t do a package, instead choosing to visit Lapland on a budget. We stayed in an AirBnB and flew into Helsinki and got the overnight train to Lapland, a journey dubbed the “Santa Claus Express”.
Once there we visited Santa at the Santa Claus Village, went to Elf School at Santa’s underground cavern at Santa Park, had a magical reindeer sleigh ride through a snowy forest and a thrilling husky safari through wintery woods and across frozen lakes.  We also visited two amazing museums in Rovaniemi which our son loved.
Our trip cost us £653/€708 for the train and 4-nights’ accommodation. Our excursions at Santa Village, Santa Park and a Rovaniemi Culture Pass cost €335 (these were gifted to us) and our husky safari cost €298. Santa is free to visit at Santa Claus Village, you pay around €40 for a video and photos of your meeting which is optional. You can even stay in the Santa Claus Holiday Village.
I think Lapland with kids is every parent’s dream and we are so glad we did it. We’d love to do it all again someday in the future.
This is where we stayed.
Cath – Passports and Adventures

Sweden, Finland, Norway, and Faroes with Denmark

Duration of trip: 3 months, with a 3-week itinerary suggestion
Kids ages: Our daughter was 9 at the time
Budget Estimate: roughly 3,700€ per person (excluding international flights)
Itinerary in few words:
Finland: New Delhi to Helsinki; Explore Helsinki; Day Trip to Porvoo and Moomin Island; Helsinki to Rovaniemi (Finnair); Explore Rovaniemi; Rovaniemi to Oslo
Norway: Explore Oslo; Oslo to Bergen (by Bergen Railway); Bergen to Norwegian Fjords exploration; Explore Flam; Explore Alesund; Alesund to Bergen; Bergen to Oslo, Oslo to Stockholm; Explore Stockholm; Stockholm to Gothenburg; Gothenburg to Malmo; Explore Ystad; Explore Bornholm (Ferry)
Denmark: Malmo to Copenhagen via Orseund Bridge; Explore Copenhagen; Day trip to Dragor; Day trip to Roskilde; Day trip to Bakkan; Copenhagen to Aarhus; Explore Aarhus; Aarhus to Copenhagen; Explore Odense or Billund (Legoland) on the way; Day trip to Louisiana Museum of Modern Art and Frederiksborg Castle; Day trip to Kronborg Castle in Helsingør; Day trip to Møns Klint and Stevns Klint; Copenhagen to Faroes (Smyril Line ferry).
Faroe Islands: Explore Faroes; Faroes to Copenhagen; Copenhagen to New Delhi.
(places, where I’ve not mentioned the mode of transport, means we traveled by a rental car)

Hotel recommendations: 
Helsinki: Spacious 50s house with a wood-heated sauna in Lintuvaara, Espoo
Rovaniemi:  Villa Kyyhkynen
Oslo Park Inn by Radisson Oslo
BergenApartment near bergen city
Alesund:  Holiday home with a view – just 20 min to Alesund
StockholmGenerator – Private 4-bed Room
Gothenburg:  Charming little house Landvetter, close to town and nature
MalmoRadisson Blu Hotel Malmö
CopenhagenApēron Apartment Hotel
AarhusBeautiful 2.V. apartment in the Latin Quarter
Faroe IslandsApartment with a fantastic view
Anjali, Travel Melodies

 

Road Trip In Croatia With Kids

One of our favourite family trips was the summer we spent backpacking around Croatia when our children were aged 8, 11 and 13. Croatia proved a fantastic destination for a family trip as the country offers diverse attractions for all ages and interests. Warm, clear seas for snorkelling, swimming and water sports contrast with densely forested, rolling hills of inland Croatia. We loved the beaches of Lumbarda and Plitvice National Parks, famous for its stunning lakes and waterfalls, was spectacular. We visited museums and old churches in historic cities such as Dubrovnik and Split and enjoyed exploring quieter, local towns like friendly Cavtat. The Croatian islands offer a slower, more laid-back vibe for families seeking a more relaxing break. Our favourite was beautiful Korcula Island where we visited vineyards, hired bikes and ate amazing food. We did this trip over three weeks but it could be completed in two busy weeks. To keep costs down, we travelled around Croatia by public transport utilising the excellent foot passenger catamarans. Attraction costs range from 26 Euro per adult to walk Dubrovnik’s famous city walls to 40 Euro for an adult ticket to Plitvice National Park. Accommodation costs vary according to location and season. We mostly stayed in Airbnb’s; our favourite Airbnb in Croatia was a spacious first floor apartment with a fantastic veranda (suitable for families with older children). The apartment costs from 100 Euro per night in peak season.
Following Croatia, we continued our road trip to Bosnia and Montenegro.
Sinead, Map Made Memories

Camper Van Road Trip In Central Europe With Baby

If for your next adventurous road trip you want to start from the north of France and end up in Lithuania after crossing 8 borders and having to deal with a baby, here is the perfect guide for you.
France, Germany, Austria, Slovenia, Czech Republic, Poland and Lithuania, we got it covered !
If you’re planning to ride comfortably around Central and Eastern Europe for a couple of months, set a budget around 5000€. Keep in mind that we traveled with a 4 month old toddler so we wanted to reward ourselves with comfy hotels where to sleep and relax.
Gas and highway fees are not a problem starting from Germany, as there are no tolls. In some of the countries listed above you will pay for a road vignette (sticker /badge pass) that will cost you between 8,70 € and 15€ for ten days of driving around. Once you get to the Eastern part of Europe you can load the car tank at a really cheap price.
But lets get down to business with the places we discovered during our trip.
Strasbourg, France, is just at the boarder with Germany. A city full of charm thanks to the many canals surrounding the “la petite France “ quarter and a perfect mix of German renaissance and art nouveau architecture.
Munich, Germany: Passing through the Black Forest on our way there was great! Munich is absolutely what you expect from it: modern but with a new-gothic soul.
Vienna, Austria: One word, classy. I think it says it all.
Bled, Slovenia: my suggestion would be to avoid going to Bled in the summer. There is way too many people for this gorgeous town with its iconic little island floating on cristal blue water.
Ljubljana, Slovenia: same as above, it was packed.
Skofja Loka, Slovenia. We finally found what we we’re looking for, the true Slovenian touch. A real traditional town, Skofja Loka kept her beauty and didn’t change to become a mainstream site for tourists.
Ostrava, Czech Republic: in the middle of Czech Republic you’ll find this uprising digital nomad mecca. Here is where Eastern Europe shows its recent history connected to the ex-Soviet Union.
Warsaw, Poland: If I had to pick a city in Europe to go right now, it would probably be Warsaw. The town combines modernity and history in the most perfect way. It’s cheap, it’s beautiful, it’s vibrant… you’ll love it!
Vilnius, Lithuania: another joyful surprise. The locals are working hard to make this “the place to be” and I can say without any doubt that their efforts are paying. Vilnius is cheap, interesting, and very charming.
Kaunas, Lithuania is town where you can stay for a couple of days not more, it’s worth the visit but rather small.
Klaipeida, Lithuania: they call it the queen of the north… on the Baltic Sea. For me it was too cold to judge… in August… but I am Italian.
Central and Eastern Europe are really places that need to be explored mostly because some of them have remained untouched from mass tourism.
By the way our baby was still alive and in good health after this insane road trip, don’t worry, he’s safe.
Alice, Simone & little Cesare, Take Your Bag Blog

 

 

 

Stay tuned for next week’s adventures, with Africa, Asia and Oceania!

 

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