Fun, beautiful and interesting places to visit in the UK with kids: holiday destinations in the UK perfect for families with kids.
The UK has been my favorite destinations for years.
I first visited when I was a kid myself, then explored several parts of it when I studied English on summer programmes and eventually realised my dream to live in London before starting university, an experienced I adored and that make London my first real city love.
It is important for me to show the UK to my kids however, there are many areas I haven’t experienced yet with little ones.
Therefore, for this roundup, I have asked trusted local experts to pass on their best tips for a family trip to the UK!
These are their, and my, recommendations about the best UK destinations for a family holiday.
The best places to visit in the UK with kids
London – the most exciting city destination in the UK for families with kids!
London bases mum and travel writer Katja from Globetotting.com recommends discovering the family friendly side of London.
You can’t plan a family holiday to the UK and not visit London.
The capital is a big city with an even bigger personality, jam-packed full of fun things to do with kids.
If it’s history that you’re after then London delivers by the bucketload.
The city is nearly 2,000 years old and is full of fun historical facts and stories – try the Tower of London for starters and a tour around the Houses of Parliament.
For culture you have over 200 museums to choose from – many of them free.
Start with the Natural History Museum and its neighbours, the Science Museum and the V&A. But don’t forget some of the smaller, quirkier gallery spaces such as the Old Operating Theatre near London Bridge
Make sure to catch a musical or play while you’re in town; there are a number of theatres dedicated to performances specifically for kids.
If the weather is on your side – or even if it’s not – take advantage of how green the city is.
London is home to hundreds of parks of varying sizes and almost as many playgrounds.
The Princess Diana Memorial playground is always a hit with children.
Before you go, make sure to book a kids’ afternoon tea.
London offers plenty of family-friendly themed teas – the perfect activity to round off your time in the capital.
The Peak District – fabulous UK holiday idea for outdoorsy families
Travel loving mum and writer Jenny from Peak District Kids recommends a family holiday in this stunning part of the country.
Nestled between the big cities of Manchester, Sheffield and Derby, The Peak District National Park is the oldest National Park in the UK.
With it’s green rolling hills, dramatic escarpments, quaint country villages and farms, it’s the perfect getaway for outdoor loving families.
The Peak District is our home, and of a weekend we love nothing better than a family walk in the hills.
Our favourites are the Nine Ladies Circle through Stanton Moor Peak or the walk starting next to The Robin Hood pub in Baslow, with spectacular views from Birchen Edge.
Alternatively, hire some bikes and ride the Monsal Trail or Tissington Trail.
Visit Blaze Farm in Wildboarclough for a free walk around the farm and a taste of the scrummy homemade ice-cream, or head over to Chatsworth House to marvel the grand gardens, play in the adventure playground or even go wild swimming!
A good family day out in the Peak District is taking the cable car up to the Heights of Abraham and venturing into the underground caverns, or riding the vintage trams at Crich Tramway Museum.
But if you’re seeking thrills head to Gullivers Kingdom, or nearby Alton Towers!
There really is so much to do! But this isn’t a place to tick off attractions. The Peak District is a place to connect with nature and enjoy the slower pace of life together.
Dartmoor, Devon – perfect holiday destination in the UK for families who love nature
Local mum and Travel writer Emma from Wanderlust and Wet Wipes recommend a beautiful family holiday in her native Dartmoor.
I may be a little biased, having grown up on the edge of this National Park, but Dartmoor is truly one of the UK’s crown jewels.
Stunningly beautiful and with so much on offer, it’s hard to argue with! Since having children, we have loved heading back to visit as there is so much to do for families. Firstly, one of our favourite activities is to go for a hike.
We like nothing better than tramping along old railway lines and exploring ruins from forgotten times.
Depending on the ages and abilities of your kids, you can head up to the top of the tors and splash through streams.
There are also a good number of gorges to discover.
If you need a purpose to your walk, try something like geocaching or letter boxing to keep the little ones entertained.
If that’s not enough, head to a National Trust / English Heritage property near Dartmoor.
They’re historical and beautiful plus they offer a range of kid friendly activities. There are plenty of picture postcard villages and towns in or on the edge of Dartmoor too.
All that should have worked up an appetite so grab a traditional Cornish pasty (easily found in Devon!) or a Devon Cream Tea.
If you need something more substantial, get some traditional pub fare like scampi and chips or enjoy a cold drink after a long walk (or a hot drink if it’s raining).
South Wales – wonderful UK family destination for castle lovers
Travel loving mum Catherine, author of Passports and Adventures, shares why she loves South Wales as one of the best places to explore with kids in the UK
One of the best places in the UK to visit with kids is South Wales.
Host to the capital Cardiff, a wealth of amazing castles in Wales for kids, sandy beaches galore and both beautiful and rugged mountains, South Wales has it all.
There are lots of things to do in South Wales with kids and if you are visiting Cardiff, you’ll be spoiled for choice.
As well as Cardiff Castle in the city centre and Cardiff Bay, there are lots of family-friendly museums, St Fagans is a must and many parks to wander through and explore.
Venture further afield along the coast and you can enjoy the many beaches or enjoy a walk along the Wales Coast Path.
You should also take time to visit the Gower Peninsula, an area of natural beauty. Head to Rhossili Bay or Three Cliffs in this area.
Along the coastline you can also discover some castle but to find the best you need to head a little inland. Some of the best castles to visit in South Wales with kids are located north and east of Cardiff, with some on the edge of the Brecon Beacons National Park.
Our favourites are Caerphilly Castle with its dragons (yes, dragons!), Chepstow, Raglan and Carreg Cennen in the west.
If animals appeal to your kids head to Cefn Mably Farm Park between Cardiff and Newport or to Folly Farm in West Wales. Do your kids like the outdoors?
Then the Caerphilly Mountain Range might be just the place for them to enjoy. And if your kids are older, why not tackle the hike up Pen-y-Fan, the highest mountain in South Wales.
No matter where you go in South Wales with kids, you will find something to entertain the kids and to enjoy with them. It is a stunning part of the UK and a must-visit.
Definitely a strong case for declaring South Wales one of the best places to visit in the UK with kids, wouldn’t you agree?
Cornwall – great UK holiday destination for beach lovers (and a great family road trip!)
Cornwall is one of the most beautiful parts of England and one of the spots in the country that gets the best weather.
If you are looking for a place where you can mix sightseeing, time at the beach and possibly even catch a bit of sun, Cornwall is the place!
There is plenty to see and do for kids in Cornwall: this area has many pretty towns, lovely sandy beaches, castles (Tintagel is here, famous for the King Arthur saga) and you also have many National Trust properties that are great for adults but also always very well equipped to entertain kids of all ages.
My favorite way to discover Cornwall is with a road trip, so you can experience many different places and stay in the type of properties I love most: B&Bs! You can find the best Bed and Breakfasts in Cornwall here.
Northern Ireland – fabulous UK road trip idea of families!
A family trip to Northern Ireland is my very own recommendation for a UK holiday with kids and a recommendations I give from the bottom of my heart as I find Northern Ireland simply stunning!
This is one of our favourite road trips for families!
The whole area is beautiful and has plenty of things to do with kids.
If you want to see stunning nature, then you have lots to choose from: the Giants Causeway, right on the very North shore of northern Irland is stunning and a real pleasure to visit with kids.
The paths to the causeway and teh causeway itself area easy even for little kids to tackle and there is a beautiful and informative visitors center that has lots of educational displays for kids, to teach them through play about this peculiar rock formation.
Not far from the causeway there is the scenic and stunning Carrick-a-rede bridge, which is great for adventurous kids (older ones, but little ones can easily walk to its access point) and you also have close to hear Dunluce Castle, which is one of the most scenic castles you can see in the whole of Ireland, North and South.
Last but not least, norther Ireland is home to wonderful towns such as Belfast, which has very cool museums and attractions for kids, and the wonderful Derry/Londonderry, which has an interesting and important history, beautiful city walls and incredible murals, both beautiful and significant.
I believe this is one of the most beautiful places to visit in the UK with kids for all families interested in nature and history.
You can spend many days in Northern Ireland and not get tired of it but you can also cover a good bit of ground with a weekend there. You can find our Northern Ireland weekend itinerary.
I hope you enjoyed this quick list of the best places to visit in the UK with kids. Safe travel planning!
Looking for more places to visit in the UK with kids? Then you may also enjoy our review of our weekend at ThomasLand, a real fun family weekend away for little ones, and our visit to the UK National Space Center, a wonderful place for space loving kids (and adults)