Where to go during October half term – in the UK and overseas
The autumn term can sometimes feel like hard work as you all get into the swing of the school routine again after the summer holidays. So, October half term is the ideal time to spend some quality time as a family on a getaway to recharge.
And, after a few disrupted years of travel, a break this October half term may be more needed than ever – for parents and children. To help you decide where to go if you’ve not booked yet, here are some of the best family destinations, whether you’d like to crunch through autumn leaves in the UK or build sandcastles on a balmy beach.
1. Lanzarote, Canary Islands
In October, the average temperature in Lanzarote is around 23C, with nine hours of sunshine a day – perfect conditions to enjoy days on Lanzarote’s fantastic beaches. Sandcastles aside, there’s plenty to do on this fascinating island, from a trip to Timanfaya National Park to see its volcanic lunar-like landscape, and spotting albino crabs at Jameos del Agua to a visit to the Green Lagoon (Charco de los Clicos) next to the village of El Golfo. Ask the kids for their theories on what’s created its colour and then reveal that it’s caused by algae at the bottom.
2. London, England
Children of all ages will be excited by a trip to England’s capital, London. There are world-class museums to expand their minds in, famous attractions such as Madame Tussauds and even the transport there can be exciting, whether you use the Emirates Air Line cable car, pretend they are driving a driverless DLR train or sail along the Thames on a boat.
3. Crete, Greece
The average temperature in Crete in October is a not-too-shabby 20C – perfect if your kids don’t like intense heat. And you’ll all have plenty to do on Greece’s largest island whether you’re after a laid-back beach-based holiday (just be prepared for unpredictable weather in October) or one packed with history. One must-see on the island is Knossos Palace, an archaeological site that was the centre of Minoan civilisation and the capital of Minoan Crete. Before you visit, tell older children about the legend of the Minotaur.
4. Edinburgh, Scotland
Many of the schools in Edinburgh start back earlier than English schools, meaning that if you are travelling to Scotland from England or Wales, you may find family attractions are quieter than elsewhere in the UK. Harry Potter fans will love staying in JK Rowling’s home city and can visit spots associated with the much-loved wizard. Plus, there’s also a castle to explore and an ancient volcano, Arthur’s Seat, to climb.
5. Barcelona, Spain
While the weather in Barcelona over half term won’t be as toasty as in summer, temperatures are likely to be in the late teens, making it a lovely time to explore the city. Kids will have a blast burning off energy in Park Guell and spotting the colourful Gaudi works, and you can all learn more about the artist in G Experiència. You can also explore the biggest science museum in Europe, CosmoCaixa. You could also spend some time on one of the city’s beaches, try new tapas dishes and watch all of the street performers on La Rambla.