Nothing beats traveling with your family - experiencing new things through the fresh eyes of your kids, while instilling in them a sense of adventure and new perspectives. Europe is full of ideal family trip destinations that are close enough to be accessible, yet far enough away to be new and exciting.
Here are ten adventurous family vacation ideas in Europe:
Rock Climb in Italy's Dolomites
What better place to rock climb than Northern Italy's alpine playground, where dramatic peaks tower above stunning blue lakes and green meadows? The Cinque Torri, or "Five Towers," of the Dolomites offer some of the region's most diverse and popular climbing, where local guides can introduce you and your family to the thrills of alpine pursuits.
Experience it on Backroads' Dolomites Family Multi-Adventure Tour
Hike the Fjords of Norway
Walk in the footsteps of Vikings as you hike among mountains, glaciers, waterfalls and fjords - Norway is home to all these geological wonders and more. Venturing through the wild landscape, your whole family is sure to find peace and serenity while challenging yourselves on some of Europe's greatest trails.
Experience it on Backroads' Norway Family Multi-Adventure Tour
Learn to Make Pizza and Biscotti in Italy
Arguably the best thing to come out of Italy? The food. And more specifically, the pizza! Take a cooking class where your bambinos can get messy and work with their hands, then indulge in your masterpiece. As a bonus, wash the pizza down with Chianti wine. A Tuscan classic.
Experience it on Backroads' Cinque Terre & Tuscany Family Hiking Tour
Learn to Surf in Spain's Basque Country
The beaches of the Basque Country draw surfers from all over the world wanting a taste of the North Atlantic swell the region is famous for. There are many surf schools in San Sebastián, Spain's very own surf town, which is just 20 minutes from the French border. Throw on a wet suit, practice your "hang loose" and jump in with the locals to tackle the waves!
Experience it on Backroads' Basque Country Family Multi-Adventure Tour
Go Fencing in France's Loire Valley
Once home to many French royal and noble families, the Loire Valley will have you feeling as if you've been transported into a storybook. Visit grand chateaus, eat like kings and queens, and take lessons from a fencing master. Bring history and old traditions to life as you and your family duel it out like they did in the olden days. En garde!
Experience it on Backroads' Loire Valley Family Bike Tour
Kayak along Croatia's Dalmatian Coast
Croatia's Dalmatian Coast is best experienced from atop its shimmering turquoise water. While the islands themselves boast rich culture and history, the crystal-clear Adriatic Sea is just begging to be swam in and paddled upon. Take a kayak out with your family in search of the perfect hidden cove and be sure to dive in to cool off.
Experience it on Backroads' Croatia Family Multi-Adventure Tour
Bike from the Czech Republic to Austria
Cruise through Bohemia's rolling pastures and past bustling squares in Český Krumlov. Ride along the Blue Danube in the Wachau region of Austria. Admire unique architecture, listen to folk music, and eat hearty cuisine all on a quintessential central European cycling adventure.
Experience it on Backroads' Czech Republic & Austria Family Bike Tour
Land Sail in Brittany & Normandy
Land sailing, or 'sand yachting,' is a recreational activity involving wind-powered sailing on land in a wheeled cart. Talk about fun for the family! Brittany, France was home to the 2012 Land Sailing World Championship and remains a destination for people to try their hand at this unique and thrilling sport.
Experience it on Backroads' Brittany & Normandy Family Bike Tour
Make Chocolate in Belgium
If you're looking for a sweet escape, visit Belgium, known the world over for its tasty delicacies: waffles and chocolate. There's even a Chocolate Museum in Bruges where you can learn the history of chocolate, participate in a chocolate-making workshop, and of course indulge your sweet tooth. Bet you never thought your kids would love a museum so much!
Experience it on Backroads' Netherlands & Belgium Family Bike Tour
Horseback Ride in Iceland
Icelandic horses found on the island today are direct descendants of horses the Vikings originally brought over from mainland Europe. A family ride on these majestic pony-sized creatures is a great way to tour Iceland and its rugged landscape of crevasses, fissures, waterfalls, glaciers, geysers, volcanoes and more.
Experience it on Backroads' Iceland Family Trips