A family holiday in January gives you and your children something to look forward to and enjoy in the slump after Christmas when it is cold and dreary.

Here are our top picks for the best locations for a family holiday at the start of the year.


Travel time from the UK: 4 hours

Temperature: 17-21C

The beach at Playa del Papagayo

For decent warmth in January, the Canary Islands are the closest option to the UK. Lanzarote is the least high rise island in the Canaries with a great volcanic landscape, good theme parks, a submarine trip you can take and fine beaches.

We travelled there one January – read about the beaches, parks and attractions for children in Lanzarote here.

The other islands are also great options including Tenerife, Gran Canaria and Fuerteventura (read our review of a holiday in Fuerteventura here).


Travel time from the UK: 7 hours

Temperature: 20-25C


The Middle East is only really bearable with children between October and March. Dubai is a fantastic family destination – great beaches, warm sea, huge resorts and lots of attractions.

It is expanding all the time, with a new Legoland recently opened to go with water parks, indoor ski slopes and giant aquariums.


Travel time from the UK: 9 hours

Temperature: 26-28C

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A woman sits on a swing on a tropical beach in the Caribbean

January in the Caribbean is peak season for a reason.

Tropical paradise doesn’t come cheap but the weather is perfect and the beaches are stunning sandy white stretches.

The Dominican Republic is more affordable than other areas and accommodation will often be an all-inclusive hotel.

If you want to get out and about, Barbados has villas to rent and Antigua is a small and safe option – both are well served with flights from the UK.


Travel time from the UK: 20 hours

Temperature: 23-26C

A panoramic view of Melbourne in Australia

Holiday season down under, January is when the schools are off in Australia.

The weather is hot everywhere but probably best in Melbourne. There are beaches aplenty and some great sights along the fabulous Great Ocean Road. Children can enjoy a zoo, an aquarium and LEGOLAND Discovery Centre in the city. Try an excursion to Phillip Island to spot some penguins.


Temperature: around 2-8C

The lake and buildings at Whinfell Forest Center Parcs

Britain in January? Are you sure? If you don’t want to fly, consider somewhere with plenty of indoor entertainment. Center Parcs is at its cheapest in January and you can spend all day in the pool if it is raining.

Or try a city break because the coastal resorts have shut down – how about York which has several indoor museums.

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Where do you like to holiday in January, let us know in the comments!

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