The October half-term is a great excuse to chase the last of the sunshine before its time to put up your Christmas decorations, or simply factor in some fun family time. Whether you’re looking to thrill toddlers or teenagers, there are many options from sun-kissed Halloween-themed hangouts, to sports camps led by professionals, or even culinary adventures for little foodies. Here, we round up some half-term recommendations that should hit the sweet spot for both adults and children, who don’t like spending holidays just lying around.
QUINTA DO LAGO, PORTUGAL
A spooktacular adventure in the Algarve
There are spooky chills and sporty thrills in store for your children at the Quinta do Lago lifestyle resort, in the Algarve, this half-term. Combining all the fun of a treasured family holiday with themed activities, your little ones can enjoy a Monster Hunt nature trail ramble, creepy mini golf (for all budding “Gory” McIlroys?), a spooktacular brunch with Halloween-inspired red-coloured mocktails and a fun costume parade to end the week’s activities. On Halloween itself, the resort’s lakeside hangout, The Shack, will host a Sunset Scary Party with a spine-chilling Mexican Dias de los Muertos theme.
Quinta do Lago Resort offers a great variety of activities this half term, including Halloween brunch with mocktails and spooky mini golf.
Quinta do Lago are also offering three incredible sports camps; junior tennis camp, dance camp and a soccer camp held under the watchful eye of former Irish goalkeeper, Shay Given. Stay at the nearby boutique Magnolia Hotel, which features a “Miami retro” style pool area and spa.
SANI RESORT, GREECE
Tasty delights for tiny foodies in Greece
World-renowned children’s nutritionist Annabel Karmel MBE returns to the Sani Resort on the beautiful shores of Aegean Sea this half-term to offer a culinary adventure like no other. She has already curated the resort’s children’s menus offering top quality meals that explore new flavours as well as offering exciting vegan and gluten-free options. Proving that there’s no reason why little ones can’t enjoy a fine dining experience as well as their chicken nuggets on October 23rd, she will be hosting a culinary experience for all children to participate in.
Sani Resort is focusing on initiating children in the art of fine-dining with renowned nutritionist Annabel Karmel MBE.
Her new concept for the menu this year is called “Little Guests Taste Adventures”, which takes youngsters on a culinary journey and has been launched alongside a brand-new menu theme that ranges from super-fuel starters to flavour-packed mains and puddings. For more mouth-watering information about this special foodie event, visit Sani Resort.
FODELE BEACH, Greece
Splashing around in style in the Aegean
Take advantage of the quieter end of the season and balmy temperatures in Greece to enjoy a non-so-quiet holiday at Fodele Beach & Water Park Holiday Resort, an all-inclusive resort in Crete. There are plenty of activities to keep your children occupied with their award-winning waterpark taking centre stage. Rated as one of the best in the world by Trivago, the expansive waterpark is an unmissable holiday highlight featuring the 81.84m Rafting Slide and age-appropriate splash zones. They also host a Kid’s Club playground and games for everyone including archery and volleyball.
Fodele Resort is home to an award-winning waterpark, which is sure to delight children and grown-ups alike.
The beachfront resort, just 25km from Heraklion airport, offers visitors 400 stylish guestrooms to choose from, including their newly renovated Sea Front Family room with stunning sea views over the hotel’s private beach. Additionally, there are seven restaurants to choose from including Basilikos which features stunning views of the Aegean. More information at Fodele Beach.
LEE VALLEY, GREATER London
A sporting east London adventure for active kids
Want to make sure that your kids stay active this autumn half-term? Then Lee Valley, in north-east London, might be just the place you’re looking for. There are tons of incredibly exciting activities on offer meaning means your young ones will be fully occupied – and exhausted! Whether it’s taking on the challenge of the Velodrome at their VeloPark, sprinting for gold at the Athletics Centre, enjoying the Hockey and Tennis Centre or learning how to ice skate at the Lee Valley Ice Centre, there’s literally something for all ages.
Lee Valley offers multiple opportunities for kids to try new and exciting sports.
At the Velo Park this half-term week, children aged from 12 to 16 can try Olympic cycling disciplines, zip around on a BMX, or train like an athlete at their Star Track camps, where they will learn how to hurdle, do the high jump, throw a javelin and sprint like there’s no tomorrow. Visit Lee Valley for more information on all activities.
MARRIOT BONVOY, UK COUNTRYSIDE AND COAST
A homegrown way to explore Great Britain
Staying at home can offer as much fun as jumping on a plane. Marriott Bonvoy have a wide network of hotels which means you can plot an exciting tour of the UK’s wonderful countryside or coastline this half-term. Whether it’s stomping through lush woodlands or along beautiful beaches, the options really are endless. As well as the children you can also take the family dog (do check that the hotel is pet-friendly first). Depending on how far you’re willing to venture from home, you can explore anywhere from the west country to Wales, from the Lake District to all the corners of Scotland, without reaching for your passport.
Bristol Marriott Royal Hotel (left) and Delta Hotels Breadsall Priory Country Club (right) are two of the hotels taking part in this special offer for half term.
Marriott Bonvoy is currently running a promotion where children under 12 can stay and eat for free. With half-term in mind, they are offering a variety of discounts if you book in advance. Visit Marriott Bonvoy for more information about these bespoke homegrown breaks.
Words: Lisa Marks
Opening image: The Magnolia Hotel. Quinta do Lago Resort. The Algarve.