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How to Survive
the October Half-Term

04 OCT 2014 - BY BEN TAUB

The first school holidays of the academic year can be a tricky time for parents. After all, October doesn't benefit from the same sunny weather as the summer holidays, which mean the kids may not be able to spend much time playing outdoors and amusing themselves. Similarly, the mid-term break lacks the general excitement of the Christmas holidays, when there typically tends to be much more going on to help keep the little ones occupied. Consequently, it's up to mums and dads to think of ways to ensure that their children don't get bored during their week off, and this is often much easier said than done.

If you're struggling for inspiration and are worried about how you're going to stop your kids from nagging you silly this Octoberhalf-term, then maybe you ought to think about heading off on a mini break. These provide a great way to keep the whole family entertained, and can be as enjoyable for parents as they are for children.

Here's a look at just a few of the places that are worth visiting at this time of year.


Unfortunately, October tends to be full of rainy days, and if there's one place to be when the weather's less than perfect, it's London. The capital is absolutely bursting with fantastic attractions that are just perfect for when playing outside isn't an option.

For instance, the Launch Pad on the top floor of the Science Museum is full of amazing games, gizmos and gadgets that kids of all ages are sure to find absolutely captivating. What's more, they're likely to learn something without even realisingit, so this really is a terrific place to bring your kids if you want to continue their intellectual development while they're not at school.

Elsewhere, a trip to the observation platform of the Shard – the western hemisphere's tallest building – or a spin on the London Eye are sure to thrill and excite, while other attractions such as the London Dungeons and the SEA LIFE Aquarium are always full of incredible surprises.

The London Eye


The French capital is a terrific place for a short break with the kids. Firstly, the fact that it can be reached by car is a real plus and makes it extremely simple and convenient to reach en famille. Once you arrive at your destination you'll then be spoilt for choice in terms of amazing child-friendly attractions.

The Cite des Enfants, for instance, is similar to London's Science Museum and is entirely dedicated to fuelling kids' imaginations, while the Pompidou Centre is another place that has been specifically designed with kids in mind.

Of course, it's every child's dream to visit Disneyland, and by heading to Paris you'll be able to do just that. So, if you want to make this a half-term to remember, taking the short trip across the Channel could well be just the ticket.


Balearic Islands

It may not feel particularly summery in the UK in October, but the sun is in fact much closer than you think, with the Balearic Islands just a two-and-a-half hour flight away. Majorca, Menorca and Ibiza are bathed in glorious sunshine throughout the month, and are renowned for their amazing all inclusive family-friendly resorts and hotels.

Staying in one of these is a great option for parents who want to relax and work on their tan while the kids amuse themselves in the pool or on the beach. In fact, parenting will probably have never seemed easier!

The Balearic Islands