Family vacation recommendations

Dear all,

out of current occasions, does anybody have good recommendations and tips for reasonably priced family vacations?
For example any vacation appartments, locations, etc. that are less known and you had an enjoyful stay in the past?

Best regards,

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Unfortunately, everything that is “reasonable priced” is completely over-crowded/over-run by people with ill-bred and sometimes even anti-social kids, so that the vacations are not really enjoyable anymore. The cheaper the place is, the worse it gets.

My solution to this is throwing in more money so that those people/families cannot afford it anymore.

For me, in vacations it is important to be able to relax and have rest, and if those places are overrun by strange people who don’t know how to behave, then it’s not enjoyable anymore for me so I better would stay at home and read a book on my balcony.

So, my recommendation is, don’t save on holidays :wink: The extra spent money is well worth the additional comfort and ability to relax. Like that you can basically go almost everywhere. Of course, avoid the big top tourist locations.

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Dealing with other children and/or parents can be very difficult. So far, we did not have very bad experiences fortuantely.

What do you book? All-inclusive hotel stays? Or vacation appartments?
Abd where do you usually go?

A lot is very subjective for such a topic, and may even only be based on very few outlier experiences made.
Nevertheless, I’ve had good experiences with “other guests” at (Swiss, Dutch) campsites, in cabins, huts, pods, whatever they are called.
Everything that a hotel or apartment has, is supplied in such cabins, so it’s not “camping” in the classical sense.
And I would say, for a similar price, a fix installed cabin, hut etc at a campsite will give you & your family a better social experience than a hotel or apartment.
Also facilities for families are usually good (if the campsite caters for families & doesn’t focus on other clientele).

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If your kids are somewhat older (from 9 years up), go on city trips by train to ITA, GER or FRA, depending on your preferences and language skills. Train tickets in these countries are usually much cheaper than in Switzerland and much more flexible that traveling by air.

Don’t book everything ahead. Take a reasonably priced AirBnB in one city for 2 nights, then decide to stay or to continue elsewhere.

Prefer medium-sized or lesser known cities over the tourist mega hubs (choose Marseille or Lyon instead of Paris… chose Trieste instead of Venezia, you get the idea…). Let the kids choose one of the destinations, maybe on a beach or something.

Nothing worse than to book a two week AI holiday and then find out on the second day that you hate the place and the other guests…

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At least 4-5 star hotels in good areas, but never all-inclusive. All inclusive tends to be quantity over quality so we prefer to eat outside hotels in restaurants. I’m not a big fan of apartments because I don’t want to clean or cook by myself during vacations.

When we decided for a destination then we usually check where are the places for cheap mass tourism and then we avoid those. We look where are to more exclusive areas with less mass tourism. Basically on every island or place you have different places for different kinds of people.

We try not to visit the same place 2 times but rather visit always different places. Life is short and you can’t visit all the places in the world in a lifetime so I think it’s better to always change and visit new places.

My child is not yet in that age, but that’s a great suggestion. I will definately keep that in mind.

I take overseas flights to avoid overcrowded locations (which are mostly in Western Europe) then I can save a bit on accommodation and meals and also get a taste of different cultures

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I also made good experience with cabins or huts. Unfortunately, must of them need to be reserved a long time in advance. Additionally, if you haven’t been there upfront, it is a bit of a gamble, how it really is in real life.

Do you have any gems that you can recommend?

We did now twice a week in Tuscany in a house within the wine and olive region. It’s a bit far from the sea but you can get a bargain with a great pool. The beaches are about 1h away and in 30min you are in world class cultural places such as Sienna and Firenze.

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That’s a great tip, thanks! We haven’t been to Tuscany yet. I will definately check it out.

You didn’t specify when do you want to do them.
It makes a big difference in prices.

That is a good point. So far, we made vacations during summer time (July/August), but considering the heatwave in europe, I am thinking of traveling during the spring vacation or in the autumn vacations.

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  1. If you have children, then you are bound by school vacations anyway, so not much flexibility in when to go on vacation. In some sense it is also an advantage, as you know in advance when you are going.

  2. Children don’t care about how cool and famous a place you are going to. A cool trip to Iceland? They will probably rather complain that it is too cold to be in a swimming pool. So make it simple.

  3. Otherwise it is the same as any mustachian purchase: define required parameters (sea, beach, mountains, nature; travel by car/plane/train/boat; duration; requirements to the accomodation such as a pool on site, close to the sea); look for options (Airbnb/booking.com/?) and compare expenses (accomodation + travel+ estimated spending on site).

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Very interesting to see other people’s (especially Mustachians) ideal concept of vacations. Mine is simple: ‘‘Luxury is the absence of unwanted people around me’’.

To follow it, I always try to avoid crowds and families. As I have the chance of not having kids my wife and I can visit even the most touristic places pretty empty.

I even made myself and world school holiday calendar to choose the right country at the right time (for example I would never go to Bali when the Aussies are on holiday) so far it worked like a charm.

To give you some ideas at cheap prices I would recommend Eastern Europe, Transylvanian Romania. For the kids, the old vampire castles could be a fun story to experience and the Russian tourists who used to populate the area in summer are not here this year for obvious reasons

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Marvellous concept :slight_smile: This is exactly my credo too.

You should publish it, it might interest many.

This might be a similar concept

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these are some I’ve been at:
it’s focussed around the Neuenburgersee, i just like it for the “beaches” & “foreign language”.

https://www.corbiere.ch/index.html
kind of my favourite as not too huge

nice on the lake

there’s also a campsite at Yvonand beach itself, which I’m been wanting to try out.

wanted to check this one out. probably a good base for day-trips

My favourite was this one, just another level of coolness compared to anything you’ll find in CH, IMO (i guess the Dutch have camping in their genes :grin:)
De Laakens Camping , Netherlands

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Great! Thanks a lot!

Hi Dr. PI,

all very true.

Dr.PI
If you have children, then you are bound by school vacations anyway, so not much flexibility in when to go on vacation. In some sense it is also an advantage, as you know in advance when you are going.

Our child is still in kindergarden. There are a couple of joker days on which the children can have additional days of. And in kindergarden there is no worry that they are missing important lectures. So, there is still some flexibility with the dates. But sure this will become less and less.

Dr.PI
Children don’t care about how cool and famous a place you are going to. A cool trip to Iceland? They will probably rather complain that it is too cold to be in a swimming pool. So make it simple.

Very true. We could go to the playground every day and our child would have the same joy. Just like in all things in live, it is the art of finding the perfect balance: joy for the children, but also some time away for the parents.

Dr.PI
Otherwise it is the same as any mustachian purchase: define required parameters (sea, beach, mountains, nature; travel by car/plane/train/boat; duration; requirements to the accomodation such as a pool on site, close to the sea); look for options (Airbnb/booking.com/?) and compare expenses (accomodation + travel+ estimated spending on site).

Exactly

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