Ferris wheel at Disney California Adventure Park
Live like a local

Spring break ideas for families

March 13, 2019

Our family-friendly hotels are experts at looking after little ones. We also have ideas for exciting places. Here are some fun ways to spend quality time together.
Kayaks and boats in Hyde Park by The Dorchester in London

Hyde Park

As well as being one of London’s most beautiful parks, the 350-acre Hyde Park is a popular destination for families. Spend an hour boating on the Serpentine, enjoy a picturesque horse ride, tackle the climbing frames in the playground or pick up ice creams and fresh sandwiches from one of the park kiosks for a picnic lunch.

Hyde Park
London, UK

Cutty Sark

The famous Cutty Sark was the fastest ship in the world when it was built in 1869 to transport tea from China to Britain. Today, it’s a popular attraction for families fascinated by marine history. Young sailors can explore the ship to meet Captain Woodget and other characters from Cutty Sark’s history, take control at the wheel, climb into the crew’s bunks and enjoy interactive games and activities.

Cutty Sark
King William Walk, London SE10 9HT, UK

Display at the National Maritime Museum London
Los Angeles
Santa Monica pier

Santa Monica Pier

Santa Monica Pier has been a Los Angeles fixture for many years. A popular attraction all year round, the pier is home to a number of child-friendly attractions including a vintage carousel, a Ferris wheel, an arcade, an aquarium and a Trapeze School. There’s also a selection of food stands to choose from for an easy beachside dinner.

Santa Monica Pier
Santa Monica, CA 90401, USA

Kidspace Children’s Museum

Kidspace Children’s Museum is a non-profit institution that promises learning in a fun environment. By combining hands-on experiences with captivating interactive activities, the outdoor museum takes youngsters on a fascinating journey through the natural world. Highlights include the Arroyo Adventure zone, Roberts Pavilion and The Robert & Mary Galvin Physics Forest.

Kidspace Children’s Museum
480 N Arroyo Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91103, USA

Kidspace Children's Museum in London
Steep roller coaster at Thorpe Park in London

Thorpe Park

One of the UK’s best-loved theme parks, Thorpe Park has a huge number of rides for all the family. From adult attractions like the famous ‘SAW – The Ride’, and teen favourites such as rapids, to child-friendly 4D experiences and rides including log flumes, dodgems, teacups and swinging ships, there’s something to entertain all age groups.

Thorpe Park Resort
Staines Rd, Chertsey KT16 8PN, UK

The Look Out Discovery Centre

Offering ‘edutainment’ at its best, The Look Out Discovery Centre is filled with exciting science and nature-themed games and activities to inspire a child’s imagination. The space hosts over 90 activities ranging from puzzles to interactive exhibits. Outside, there are also three excellent playgrounds and a series of forest walking and cycling trails. If travelling with toddlers, keep an eye out for the centre’s special toddler days.

The Look Out Discovery Centre
Nine Mile Ride, Bracknell RG12 7QW, UK

Women playing with child at the Look Out Discovery Centre London

Parc Zoologique de Paris

Located in the largest public park in the city, Bois de Vincennes, the zoo should be at the top of the itinerary for animal lovers. Visit the park to see over 2,000 animals from all over the globe, including giraffes and lions to jaguars, monkeys, penguins, and many more. There are also family tours available as well as educational presentations and feeding sessions, which visitors can watch.

© Manuel Cohen
Parc Zoologique de Paris
Avenue Daumesnil, 75012 Paris, France

Parc Zoologique Paris Dorchester Collection
Animal display at grande galerie secondaire

La Galerie des Enfants du Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle

If your family is interested in nature, science or animals, take a trip to Galerie des Enfants, the Children’s Gallery at the French Natural History Museum. The gallery is designed for kids aged six to 12, but its array of interactive exhibitions on the themes of cities, rivers, the rainforest and the Earth will delight children and adults alike.

© Image: MNHN – Patrick Lafaite
Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle
Grande Galerie de l’Évolution, 36 Rue Geoffroy-Saint-Hilaire, 75005 Paris, France


Indro Montanelli Public Gardens

This large and beautiful 18th century park was the city’s first public garden, and is the perfect spot for the whole family to enjoy. Majestic trees, fountains and ponds dot the vast lawns, making for a tranquil space for picnicking and relaxing while the kids have a run around. The park also features three different playgrounds and the Butterfly Oasis, a tropical garden home to 50 species of the elegant insects.

Indro Montanelli Public Gardens
Bastioni di Porta Venezia, 20121 Milan, Italy

Child playing in Indro Montanelli Public Gardens London
Principe Hotel suggest a visit to Castello Sforzesco in Milan

Sforza Castle (Castello Sforzesco)

Instantly recognisable by its vibrant red brick exterior, Sforza Castle is a 15th century fortress built on the site of even older fortifications. While its exterior is impressive in itself, inside are several fascinating museums for all the family. A whole range of artefacts and artworks are on display, including Michelangelo’s final work, an unfinished marble sculpture of Christ and the Virgin Mary entitled ‘Pietà Rondanini’.

Sforza Castle (Castello Sforzesco)
Piazza Castello, 20121 Milan, Italy



Discover the art of Italian woodwork and treat your children to a figurine from the charming family-run Bartolucci toyshop. The magical store is filled with a wonderful collection of traditional handmade and painted wooden toys, available to buy. Naturally, the most popular character is Pinocchio, which children will instantly recognise from the Walt Disney movie.

Via dei Pastini, 96-98, 00186 Rome, Italy

Bartolucci wooden figures in shop
Ride the Luneur Park colorful ferris wheel in London

Luneur Park

If you’re visiting Rome at the weekend, Luneur Park is a definite highlight for children under 12. The amusement park has been designed with a ‘Garden of Wonders’ theme and is packed full of imaginative attractions such as a giant Ferris wheel, a golden labyrinth, exciting rides, adventure challenges and interactive workshops.

Luneur Park
Via delle Tre Fontane, 100, 00144 Rome, Italy

Dorchester Collection

Plan your family getaway

Our concierge teams will be happy to inspire you with more ideas for days out. For family-friendly stays with Dorchester Collection, take a look at our family offers.

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