The idea of travelling long-haul with a new-born babe or wobbly toddler might seem too stressful to even contemplate, but when your little ones are at their littlest, it is in fact the easiest time to travel further afield as a family. Not only is it easier to get them to sleep on overnight flights and adjust to jet lag, it’s much more affordable, with many properties offering ‘kids stay free’ for under 4s. The trick is finding the right destination for you, as well as the right balance between travel time, weather and amenities you might need when you get there. Here are our top nine baby and toddler friendly holiday hotspots…

NIYAMA PRIVATE ISLANDS

The Explorers Kids’ Club, located on Niyama’s second island, aptly named ‘PLAY’, caters for children between the ages of 12 months and 12 years old. There is a nap room, kids’ pool, stage and movie area, soft play and indoor/outdoor play areas. Globetrotters (12 months–2 years) is chargeable, US$20 (plus service charges and taxes) per hour, offering parents a well-deserved rest. Activities are themed and tailored towards each child, from baking and crafts to nap time and stories. Adventurers (3-4 years) will enjoy endless fun on the beach, in the pool and at the kids’ club.

NIYAMA

Favourite Family Room: Family Beach Pool Villa
Time difference: GMT +5 hours
Flight time London to Malé: Between November and March British Airways fly direct – 12 hours. Year-round flights via a multitude of destinations such as Italy, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Muscat and Colombo are also options.
Transfer time: 40-minute seaplane

Heritage Le Telfair, Mauritius

Unique for the Indian Ocean, Le Telfair’s fantastic Baby Corner takes children from 0–3 years old complimentary! The Timomo Club is for those between 3-11 years and open until 11pm daily. One of the best-equipped family hotels we work with, the kids’ club is kitted out with everything you could wish for. The hotel team can also organise additional baby-friendly amenities in your room if you don’t want to pack endless nappies, bibs, formula or other baby accessories.

heritage le telfair

Favourite family room: Beachfront Suite
Time difference: GMT +4 hours
Flight time London to Port Louis: Year-round direct flights with British Airways and Air Mauritius – 12 hours
Transfer time: A one-hour drive

Soneva Kiri, Thailand

As the Soneva Kiri team put it… ‘The Den is our pride and joy’. The Den is Soneva Kiri’s kids’ club and it’s got to be up there with one of the best in the world. A giant manta ray shaped construction houses fun beyond your wildest dreams. From an ice-cream bar and chocolate shop, to the ‘Eco-Den’ activity programme for 1-5-year olds – you name it, they’ve thought of it. Children can attend for free from one year, before which there’s an additional babysitter charge.

Soneva Kiri

Favourite family room: Beach Pool Villa Suite
Time difference: GMT +7 hours
Flight time London to Bangkok: Year-round direct flights with British Airways and Thai Airways – 11hrs 15 mins
Transfer time: A one-hour, 15-minute flight (private hotel plane)

Colony Club, Barbados

Although only run seasonally, we love the Kids Korner at Colony Club. Not only do they cater from toddlers to teens (and tweens in between!), but they are fully equipped with everything you could need for babies and infants. The Bambini Baby Boutique bath amenities are just one example of how the Colony Club team go the extra mile for families.

Colony club

Favourite family room: Garden View Junior Suite
Time difference: GMT -4 hours
Flight time London to Bridgetown: Year-round direct flights with British Airways and Virgin Atlantic – 9 hours
Transfer time: A 40-minute drive

Kokomo Island Resort, Fiji

There’s no escaping the fact that Fiji is a long way to travel with little ones… but we can assure you that once you’re there it’s worth the journey, especially if you’re staying at Kokomo Island Resort. In Fiji, you’ll instantly feel part of the family and your little ones will be loved, cared for and spoilt rotten! The Kokomo interactive kids’ club has its own pirate playground, pool and neighbouring pizzeria. They can also arrange a personal nanny service.

Kokomo

Favourite family room: Two Bedroom Beachfront Villa
Time difference: GMT +12 hours
Flight time London to Nadi: Year-round indirect flights via Hong Kong, Los Angeles or Auckland – 24 to 26 hours
Transfer time: A 45-minute seaplane or helicopter (private hotel aircraft)

Carneros Resort & Spa, California

Although there’s no official kids’ club at Carneros Resort & Spa, it’s still one of our top recommendations for families travelling in California. There are activity programmes for all ages and a separate kids’ pool, with an adjoining bar serving up family friendly snacks all day long. Babysitting is available for when the vineyards call and the cottages are so gorgeous, you won’t mind cosying up for a film night or two while the little ones sleep.

Carneros

Favourite family room: Garden Suites
Time difference: GMT -8 hours
Flight time London to San Francisco: Year-round direct flights with British Airways – 11 hours 15 minutes
Transfer time: A one-hour drive

The Ritz-Carlton, Langkawi, Malaysia

Ritz Kids is globally recognised as one of the best kids’ clubs around. Babies and toddlers up to four years will need supervision, but there are also babysitters on hand to give parents a few hours off if needed. Parents will be required to complete a ‘registration’ form for the team to create a bespoke and personalised holiday experience for their little ones. We love the attention to detail every step of the way, from the welcome pack to in-room amenities and free gifts throughout your stay. The kids’ club also has its own pool.

rit carlton

Favourite family room: Ocean Front Villa
Time difference: GMT +8 hours
Flight time London to Langkawi: Year-round indirect flights via Kuala Lumpur with British Airways or Malaysia Airlines – 12 hours
Transfer time: A 10-minute drive

Baraza Resort & Spa, Zanzibar

The Baraza Kids’ Club welcomes little ones of all ages, although toddlers must be potty-trained during peak season periods. Babes will be happy learning to splash in the kids’ pool while those who are able to walk and run will adore the endless stretch of soft, white sand which fronts the hotel. We love the creative activity programmes on offer each day, as well as the multitude of experiences families of all ages can enjoy together.

baraza

Favourite family room: Garden View Two Bedroom Villa
Time difference: GMT +3 hours
Flight time London to Zanzibar: Year-round indirect flights via Nairobi with British Airways or Kenya Airways – 12 hours
Transfer time: A one-hour drive

Carlisle Bay, Antigua

Welcoming children from six months to six years in their Cool Kids’ Club, little ones will love being on holiday at Carlisle Bay. The team here really encourage children to get out and explore with them, whether on the beach, in the water or around the hotel. We love the movie screening room and innovative offering of kids’ activities, from visiting ‘StingRay City’, to meeting the horses and getting creative with beach art and treasure hunts.

Carlisle Bay

Favourite family room: Beach Balcony Suite
Time difference: GMT -4 hours
Flight time London to St. Johns: Year-round direct flights with British Airways – 9 hours
Transfer time: A 45-minute drive

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