How to Plan a Holiday Your Teenagers Will Love

If you have teenagers, choosing where to go on a family holiday can become a much-debated household topic. There’s the creeping feeling in the back of your mind that this holiday could be your last as a family (trust us – it never is!) so it’s important that you find somewhere that covers all bases and appeals to everyone. You need to find something that’s enticing enough to convince them to leave their friends behind for a week or two, but also has moments of calm and relaxation.

Bear in mind the following factors when planning a holiday, and you’re sure to find one that teenagers will love.


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Family safari holidays can offer the perfect option for teenagers. Many children have grown up watching David Attenborough documentaries on a Sunday evening, gazing in awe at the natural wonders of the world. Now, give them the chance to experience this magic in real life. Consider timing your safari adventure to coincide with the Great Wildebeest Migration – an annual event dubbed ‘the Wildlife World Cup’ where Wildebeest migrate clockwise around the Serengeti-Masai Mara ecosystem. Then fly out to Zanzibar to swim with dolphins and relax on the white sand beaches.

A Good Base

As your children get older, privacy understandably becomes more important to them, so make sure you take this into account when booking accommodation. No teenager wants to be sharing with younger siblings or parents; try and find somewhere that allows them the space to have their own room. Self-catering is often more suitable than hotel accommodation as it takes some pressure off timings (you won’t worry about making the breakfast buffet in time).


Photo by Tabea Damm on UnsplashPhoto by Tabea Damm on Unsplash


It can be scary letting your kids loose in a foreign country, but if they’re old enough to have a relative amount of independence in your hometown, chances are they can probably handle the walk to the local village in another country. Give them some space and don’t force them to attend every activity you have planned. It will benefit all of you.

Boasting Rights

Photo by Elijah O'Donell on UnsplashPhoto by Elijah O’Donell on Unsplash


If it didn’t get uploaded to Instagram, Snapchat or Facebook it didn’t happen, right? Teens really aren’t that different to us in that they love showing off what they’ve been up to on their holidays – they just do it on social media rather than over the water cooler at work. Impressive architecture, novelty signs, rare wildlife, and unique streets are all surefire ways to get those likes rolling in.


If you have a teen that thrives in cosmopolitan cities, it might not be entirely fair to take them to a remote farmhouse. Try and find some common ground. In the planning stages, create a list documenting what each family member wants from their holiday, and incorporate something for everyone into your trip. South Africa is a great all-encompassing destination. Spend a couple of days soaking up the cosmopolitan culture of Cape Town before heading to one of the many National Parks and then on to the stunning Cape coastline. Don’t forget to book a South African Wine Tour – after all, it’s your holiday too!


It’s not always easy planning a family holiday. Whether you end up going on a European city break or an African safari holiday, get the teens involved in the planning stages, treat them like adults, and you might be pleasantly surprised.

Hannah Moultrie is based in the UK and writes for a variety of publications. She spends her time traveling, reading, and searching for the perfect slice of pizza.

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