Where to Next? Top Spots for Families Making Their First Trip Abroad

Traveling internationally as a family for the first time is an exhilarating experience that can broaden horizons and build lasting bonds. Selecting the perfect destination for your first trip abroad is crucial, as it should offer not only entertainment but also safety, convenience, and educational opportunities. 

The cities highlighted in this guide, provide a unique blend of attractions and activities designed to delight and accommodate visitors of all ages. From magical theme parks and historic museums to stunning natural landscapes and rich cultural experiences, these destinations ensure a well-rounded and memorable trip for everyone. 

Let’s explore what makes these locations ideal for families embarking on their first international adventure.

Orlando, Florida, USA

Orlando is a prime destination for families embarking on their first international journey. Renowned for its world-famous theme parks, the city offers a variety of attractions that cater to all ages, making it ideal for family fun.

Theme Parks Galore

Orlando’s most notable attractions are undoubtedly its theme parks. 

Walt Disney World Resort enchants visitors with its four distinct parks: Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Each park offers a unique experience, from classic fairy tale characters and thrilling rides to explorations of future technology and encounters with exotic animals.

Universal Orlando Resort provides another layer of excitement with its two theme parks: Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure. Here, families can dive into the worlds of their favorite movies and TV shows, experiencing cutting-edge rides and attractions.

Water Parks and More

For those looking to cool down, Orlando’s water parks offer the perfect solution. From the wave pools and lazy rivers of Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach to Universal’s Volcano Bay, there’s no shortage of aquatic adventures.

Interactive Museums and Educational Attractions

Aside from thrills, Orlando provides educational experiences through interactive museums and attractions. The Orlando Science Center and the Kennedy Space Center offer hands-on exhibits and activities that engage children’s curiosity and foster a love of learning.

Family-Friendly Accommodations

Orlando excels at providing accommodations for families. Many hotels and resorts feature amenities such as kids’ clubs, family pools, and rooms designed for family stays. Dining options also abound, with many venues offering menus tailored to younger palates.

Orlando delivers an unforgettable experience for families venturing abroad for the first time. Its blend of entertainment, education, and comfort sets the stage for a trip filled with joy and excitement.

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo offers a unique blend of traditional and contemporary attractions, making it an exciting destination for families visiting from abroad for the first time. The city is a hub of cultural experiences, innovative entertainment, and kid-friendly activities that cater to all interests.

Theme Parks and Family Entertainment

Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea provide magical experiences with their diverse array of rides, shows, and parades. These parks bring to life beloved stories and characters in a way that delights both young and old.

Another highlight is the Ghibli Museum, where the imaginative worlds of Studio Ghibli films are brought to life. This museum offers a fascinating insight into animation and is designed to captivate the curiosity of children with whimsical exhibits and exclusive short films.

Cultural Experiences

Tokyo also offers unique cultural experiences that are both fun and educational. Families can participate in sushi-making workshops, where they learn about traditional Japanese cuisine in an interactive setting. Tea ceremonies and visits to historic temples provide a deeper understanding of Japanese culture and traditions.

Traveling around Tokyo with family is made easier with its efficient public transport system. The city’s trains and buses are clean, safe, and reliable, making it convenient to move from one attraction to another.

Kid-Friendly Attractions

The Ueno Zoo and Aquarium is another must-visit, especially for families. It houses a variety of species and offers educational programs that engage children with wildlife conservation.

Tokyo’s fusion of the old and new, along with its family-oriented attractions, makes it an excellent choice for families looking for an enriching first international trip. The city’s blend of activities ensures that every family member will have a memorable experience.

Paris, France

Paris, often known as the City of Light, is a dream destination for families making their first international trip. It combines iconic landmarks, child-friendly museums, and enchanting attractions that captivate visitors of all ages.

Iconic Attractions and Family Fun

No visit to Paris is complete without seeing the Eiffel Tower. Families can enjoy breathtaking views from its various levels, and the surrounding parks offer perfect spots for picnics and leisurely walks. 

Disneyland Paris, a short train ride from the city center, is another major attraction, offering magical experiences with its rides, parades, and encounters with beloved characters.

Museums and Educational Attractions

Paris is home to some of the world’s most famous museums, many of which cater to families. The Louvre, with its vast collection, offers scavenger hunts and guided tours that make art accessible and fun for kids. The Musée d’Orsay and the Centre Pompidou also host workshops and activities designed to engage young minds.

Parks and Outdoor Activities

The city’s many gardens and parks, like the Jardin du Luxembourg and the Jardin des Tuileries, provide ample space for children to play and explore. These areas often feature playgrounds, vintage carousels, and puppet shows that add to the family-friendly atmosphere.

Culinary Delights for the Family

Paris is renowned for its culinary scene, and many cafes and restaurants welcome families with special menus for children. Enjoying a crepe on a street corner or sampling macarons from a local patisserie can be a delightful experience for all.

Paris offers a blend of cultural enrichment, historical exploration, and fun, making it an ideal choice for families embarking on their first international adventure. The city’s welcoming atmosphere and abundance of activities ensure that every family member will find something to love.

Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town is a captivating destination for families embarking on their first international journey. With its stunning landscapes, rich history, and diverse wildlife, it offers an array of educational and enjoyable activities for visitors of all ages.

Outdoor Adventures and Wildlife Encounters

A visit to Boulders Beach gives families a unique opportunity to view African penguins in their natural habitat. The beach is part of the Table Mountain National Park, which also provides spectacular scenic views and hiking trails suitable for all ages.

The Table Mountain Aerial Cableway is another must-do in Cape Town. It takes visitors to the summit of Table Mountain, offering panoramic views of the city and the surrounding ocean. Once at the top, families can explore the walking trails and spot local wildlife.

Cultural and Historical Insights

The Robben Island Museum offers a poignant look at South Africa’s history. Families can take a ferry ride to the island and tour the former prison where Nelson Mandela was held, which is now a UNESCO World Heritage site. This experience provides a meaningful educational opportunity for children to learn about resilience and freedom.

Exploring the Local Ecosystem

The Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden is ideal for families interested in botany and the natural environment. The garden hosts guided walks and educational programs that teach children about South Africa’s unique plant life and conservation efforts.

Safety and Comfort

Cape Town is a family-friendly city with a wide range of accommodations designed to cater to international visitors. The city is generally safe for tourists, and there are plenty of dining options that cater to various dietary preferences and budgets.

With its blend of natural beauty, wildlife, and rich historical context, Cape Town provides a comprehensive educational and entertaining experience for families visiting for the first time. Its friendly atmosphere and array of activities ensure a memorable trip for both children and adults.

Sydney, Australia

Sydney is an excellent choice for families embarking on their first international trip. Known for its stunning harbors, vibrant culture, and numerous child-friendly attractions, Sydney offers a diverse range of experiences that appeal to families.

Iconic Landmarks and Beach Adventures

The Sydney Opera House is one of the most iconic structures in the world and a must-visit for families. Guided tours are available that cater to families and provide insights into the architecture and history of this famous landmark. Nearby, the beautiful beaches of Sydney, such as Bondi and Manly, offer sunny fun with safe swimming areas, surf lessons, and beachside parks.

Wildlife and Nature

Taronga Zoo is home to over 4,000 animals and offers an educational and fun day out for families. The zoo’s Sky Safari cable car provides stunning views of Sydney Harbour and an exciting way to see the animals from above. 

Additionally, the Royal Botanic Garden offers a peaceful retreat in the heart of the city with spacious lawns, themed gardens, and interactive children’s programs.

Cultural Experiences

The Australian National Maritime Museum and the Museum of Sydney provide fascinating insights into Sydney’s history and its people. These museums offer interactive exhibits and family-friendly activities that make learning fun and engaging.

Outdoor Activities and Safety

Sydney is also great for outdoor activities such as ferry rides across Sydney Harbour and climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge for adventurous families. The city’s efficient public transportation makes it easy and safe to navigate with children.

Sydney not only delights with its natural beauty and iconic landmarks but also offers a safe, engaging, and enriching environment for families. It’s a destination that combines leisure and learning in a vibrant setting, ensuring that families have a memorable and comprehensive travel experience.

Travel Tips for Families on Their First Trip Abroad

Traveling internationally with a family for the first time can be both exciting and overwhelming. 

Here are essential tips to ensure your journey is smooth, enjoyable, and memorable.

Planning and Preparation

Begin planning well in advance to ensure the availability of accommodations and activities that are suitable for families. Research visa requirements, vaccination policies, and local customs to avoid any last-minute surprises. Booking flights with minimal layovers can also reduce travel stress.

Packing Essentials

Pack efficiently by including versatile clothing suited to various weather conditions, comfortable footwear, and all necessary travel documents in an easily accessible bag. Don’t forget to bring along some familiar snacks for picky eaters and entertainment like books, games, and tablets to keep children engaged during long travels.

Health and Safety

Consult with a travel doctor for advice on vaccinations and health precautions. It’s crucial to carry a first-aid kit equipped with basic medical supplies and any prescription medications with their original labels. Always have a plan for accessing healthcare in your destination country.

Managing Jet Lag

Adjusting to new time zones can be challenging. A few days before departure, try aligning your family’s sleep schedule with the destination. Keep hydrated and encourage light activity upon arrival to help reset your internal clocks.

Cultural Sensitivity and Engagement

Teach your children about the local culture and a few basic phrases in the local language. This not only shows respect but also enriches the travel experience. Engaging with local traditions and cuisines can be exciting and educational for children.

Itinerary Planning

When crafting your itinerary, balance sightseeing with rest periods to prevent exhaustion. Include activities that interest both adults and children to keep everyone motivated and happy throughout the trip.

With thoughtful preparation and these practical tips, your family’s first international trip can be a fulfilling adventure. Remember, the goal is to create lasting memories together, so stay flexible and enjoy every moment of your journey.


Embarking on your family’s first international trip is an exciting opportunity to explore new cultures, landscapes, and experiences. By choosing the destinations mentioned, you set the stage for a journey filled with adventure, learning, and unforgettable memories. Each of these cities offers unique attractions and activities that cater specifically to families, ensuring that your travels are enjoyable and stress-free.

It’s time to plan your family’s next adventure! No matter which destination you choose, you’re guaranteed a trip that will bring joy and education to each family member. Start packing your bags, prepare your itinerary, and set off on a journey that will be talked about for years to come. 

Embrace the world’s wonders and make your first international family trip one for the history books!

The information provided in this article was accurate at the time of publication. However, it's important to note that dates, times, fees, and other related details are subject to change without prior notice. We will always make every effort to update the information whenever possible.

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