Four of the best beaches in Europe for your next family holiday

When it comes to child-friendly vacation, not all destinations are created equal. This is particularly the case when it comes to beachside getaways.

While beaches in European countries such as Portugal and France have been attracting families for years, there are now some new kids on the block, such as Italy and Croatia, that are giving those spots a run for their money.

As Marco Marino, a travel expert from Reviewbox, notes: “Coastal Italy is a wonderful place to take children of any age. The sun and sand are certainly there, and in most places, the little ones will be the center of attention. Good old Italian hospitality is well and alive.”

With this in mind, here are four of the top family-friendly beachside destinations in Europe. 

1) Giannella Beach, Italy

Nestled on Tuscany’s Monte Argentario Peninsula, the five-mile long Giannella Beach is a favorite with both adults and little steps. The beach is sandy and shallow, which makes it ideal for fun in and out of water.

It also means that the younger family members can play along the shoreline safely. The beach is fringed by a picturesque pine forest and there are lots of coves to explore as a family. Those feeling a bit more adventurous can try their hand at sailing.

2) Praia de Odeceixe, Portugal

Located in Algarve, Praia de Odeceixe is a pristine white-sand beach flanked by jagged cliffs. Being at the mouth or a river, it offers shallow and calm waters on one side and waves on the other.

There is a surf school right on the beach, something that is bound to interest older kids. There are also multiple dining options about half an hour’s walk away in the village of Odeceixe.

3) Copacabana Beach, Croatia 

Around five miles from Dubrovnik, Copacabana is a pebble beach with shallow and warm water that is perfect for kids. The area boasts stunning views of Elafiti islands and plenty of entertainment options for the whole family.

While adults and teenagers try their hand at jet skiing or volleyball, the little ones will love the inflatable playground and ubiquitous ice cream stands. And if in doubt, you can always put the whole family on a banana ride. 

4) Dune du Pilat, France

Not a beach as much as a sand formation, the Dune du Pilat sits in between the Atlantic Ocean and a pine forest, around 37 miles from Bordeaux. The dune sees one million visitors each year, and for a good reason—it is the tallest sand dune in Europe.

Why not climb the 154 steps to the top of the formation for breathtaking views of the Les Landes forest. Best of all, once on top, the little—and bigger—kids will be able to roll or sand-board down the dune right to the beach. Parents will be pleased to know that the water in the area is calm due to a sandbar that sits around a mile from the shore. 

Ready for a family getaway? Why not check out our article on how to plan a vacation your whole family will love.

Photo by Deivid Sáenz