From the kids tackling home-schooling to grandparents longing for a hug from the little ones, we've no doubt that the entire family are desperate for a holiday together. With a sense of optimism that these dark days will soon be behind us, travel to Europe is set to bounce back strong. Whether you want to embrace endless exciting activities or simply relax on a swathe of soft sand, these European retreats promise a (long overdue) luxury family holiday to remember...
Elounda Peninsula All Suite Hotel, Crete, Greece
Seriously special and overlooking the blue hues of Mirabello Bay, this all-suite resort flaunts plenty to get the whole family excited; there's a Six Senses Spa, picturesque and totally private Blue Flag beach, and no less than eight restaurants to get your teeth into! For children up to 12 years old, the animal-themed crèche and extensive kids' club flaunt a waterpark with safe shallow pools and waterslides, several playgrounds and a thriving vegetable garden, all supervised by a team operated by Worldwide Kids. Teenagers and adults can choose from golf, tennis and sailing lessons, water-skiing and an array of beach ball games, while during the summer, a dance school is run by the renowned Greek choreographer and judge of the Greek edition of Dancing with the Stars, Fokas Evangelin!
Ikos Dassia, Corfu, Greece
Not only family-friendly but family-focused, this all-inclusive Corfiot retreat is nestled within beachfront gardens on the inspiring Ionian coast. Your little ones will be in pure paradise at the complimentary Hero Kids Club, which also has a crèche service and teenage club, all operated under the guaranteed quality of Worldwide Kids. If all that isn't enough, there are also multiple family-friendly swimming pools, a gelateria serving delicious sweet treats, children's shows at the Ikos Theatre (with dancers trained in London's West End no less) and a safe sandy beach, where complimentary childcare is available for little ones over four, giving parents time to unwind.
Elysium Hotel, Paphos, Cyprus
A mere ten minutes from Paphos Harbour, this dreamily designed Cypriot retreat has perfected the art of appealing to all ages. The Angel's Kids' Club is open during school holidays and summertime, offering an array of activities for children, while there is always access to the well-stocked entertainment room, alfresco play area and shaded kids' pool. What's more, a year-round crèche allows parents to embrace the resort's amazing adults-only elements, including the sunken Royal Pool and heavenly Opium Spa. The resort's enviable location also affords easy access to the UNESCO-listed Tombs of the Kings, believed to have been the burial sites of Paphos' ancient aristocrats and high officials, promising a thought-provoking and educational historical tour for the whole family.
Daios Cove Luxury Resort and Villas, Crete, Greece
Located in a pristine private cove, this is the perfect choice for families after five-star serenity. Marvel at the striking architecture that overlooks the calming waters of the Mediterranean, as well embracing the child-friendly beach and a huge infinity swimming pool with a safe, shallow section reserved exclusively for little travellers. Endless sporting activities for all the family to enjoy are also on offer, from paddle-boarding to scuba-diving to tennis. While little ones are being looked after by Worldwide Kids at the crèche and complimentary children's club, escape for a little bit of 'us' time to the laid-back Beach House or gorgeous Goco Spa. Meanwhile, hard-to-please teenagers will be delighted to discover the games room, fully equipped with pool billiards, table tennis and the latest video gaming.
Marbella Club Hotel, Golf Resort & Spa, Marbella, Spain
Live like royalty in this elegant Andalusian retreat, once the private residence of Prince Alfonso von Hohenlohe. Amid the acres of stunning subtropical gardens, little ones will soon discover the huge 5,000-metre-squared Minimec-designed kids' club, resembling a mini village and set within a charming converted farmhouse. Designed for children aged four to 14 years old, fully supervised and fun-filled activities include inventive art and crafts, locally influenced music and dancing, perfume-making, cookery and various educational nature experiences. Elsewhere in the luxury Marbella resort, you'll uncover outstanding golf, tennis, watersports facilities, an equestrian centre and a gorgeous golden beach, making this the ideal choice for every generation.
Ikos Olivia, Halkidiki, Greece
Set within gorgeous gardens and ancient olive trees, overlooking a perfect private beach, this luxury Halkidiki hotel is paradise for families. A trio of cracking kids' clubs are operated by UK-based childcare company Worldwide Kids, offering young travellers aged four months up to 17 years old a range of engaging and educational activities in super safe surroundings. As well as arts and crafts, cookery, kids' yoga, sports and water adventures, there is a dedicated children's pool and fabulous family-friendly shows at the in-house theatre. Dreamy dining is guaranteed here with no less than four restaurants flaunting menus created by Michelin-starred chefs, including dedicated choices for younger diners. Even better, the resort is all-inclusive, meaning you can feast to your heart's delight with it all included in your stay.
Hillside Beach Club, Fethiye, Turkey
Families of all ages are welcomed with open arms at Hillside Beach Club, a super-stylish sanctuary surrounded by woodland and the bright blue Aegean Sea. Littlest guests (up to three years old) can embrace the Baby Park, an inspiring space filled with a sandpit, baby pool, playground and plenty of watery fun! Slightly older children (aged four to ten to be exact) will no doubt be found at Kidside, a fun-filled hub where experienced childcare experts provide various educational workshops, while eight to 15-year-olds are catered for at the Activity Centre, where they can choose from DJ courses, dance lessons, beach sports and more! Adults can escape to the spa or one of the child-free beaches that nestle among fragrant pine forest, before you all reconvene for a family dinner or movie on the beach.
Annabelle, Paphos, Cyprus
Overlooking the picturesque fishing harbour and old fort of Paphos, this charming Cypriot hotel offers various interconnecting rooms, studios and suites that are ideal for a luxury family holiday. Pint-sized travellers can look forward to hours of fun at sister hotel Almyra's award-winning kids' clubs, literally steps away from Annabelle. Offering tailored entertainment for five different age groups, rest assured that the words "I'm bored!" are completely off limits! Activities include pottery making, treasure hunts and baking delicious sweet treats. Meanwhile, thoughtful touches like early restaurant sittings, junior sports camps, a family pool and children's spa treatments ensure young VIPs are always front of mind.
VILA VITA Parc Resort & Spa, Algarve, Portugal
From dolphin-spotting, family yoga sessions and watersports, to programmes dedicated to golf-loving guests, a children's club and a luxurious spa, this prized Portuguese resort provides an array of attractions that balance quality family moments with time-out for two. Highlights include ten restaurants (including one with no less than two Michelin stars!), secluded sandy beaches, tennis courts and extensive golf facilities, while Annabela's Kids' Park invites four to 12-year-olds to embrace an ever-changing schedule of fun-filled activities, including beach games, mini golf, t-shirt painting, magic shows, baking cookies, excursions, pyjama parties and discos! Older kids, meanwhile, can celebrate their coastal surroundings by carving waves during expert-led surf lessons.