Family travel: A single parent's conundrum


Q. I'm a single parent with two children who are 10 and 12. For our summer holiday this year, I'd like a nine- to 11-day break at the end of August and my budget is around £3,000. The accommodation should be comfortable with a range of activities. Any suggestions for us? L Jerrard, via email

A. Thanks to some specialist tour operators, single-room supplements and spending your days alone while your children make friends need not be an issue.

Mango (01902 373 410; mangoholidays.co.uk) organises small, informal group holidays exclusively for single-parent families to a variety of locations, from Jersey to Lanzarote.

One of its summer destinations is the pretty port town of Puerto de Sóller in Mallorca, with a nine-night holiday departing on 18 August. The holiday is usually co-ordinated by an accompanying single parent and their children, with the group comprising children aged around 6-12. A loose itinerary is based on "homespun fun", with beach games, walks and picnics, as well as optional extras such as boat tours and water-park visits.

A total of £2,252 for the three of you (£799 for you, £699 for your first child and £629 for the second) includes half-board at the family-run Hotel Marina, return flights from Gatwick, transfers and a local payment of €125.

Hotel rooms come with three beds, but for an extra £15 you could upgrade to a studio with a mini kitchenette. If you are content to let your children enjoy the activities at the hotel, there are mountain walks, such as the Camí des Rost, which takes you from the town of Sóller up into the hills to the artists' enclave of Deià. The island's capital, Palma, is accessible on an antique narrow-gauge train from Sóller (00 902 364 711; trendesoller.com; daily 8am-7pm; €17), and has plenty of diversions, including Modernist architecture, a medieval cathedral, smart shops and a Miró museum (00 34 971 908 200; esbaluard.org; open 10am-10pm daily except Monday; €6).

Another specialist operator, Small Families (0845 9000 895; smallfamilies. co.uk), offers a 10-night stay in Agadir, Morocco for a total of £2,766 for the three of you. The price includes Thomas Cook flights from Gatwick or Manchester on 19 August, all-inclusive accommodation in a room with three beds, transfers and the services of a Small Families host. Again, this is a group trip, with the group ranging between 20-30 people and the age of children between four and 12. The resort is the Caribbean Village Tamlelt, which offers a comprehensive range of activities, from tennis and spa treatments to archery. There's also a kids' club for four- to 11-year-olds, and six restaurants. The focus is on the beach, but the Souss-Massa National Park – with impressive birdlife and sand dunes – and the walled city of Taroudant are both easy day trips.

If you didn't want to travel in a group, consider a well-organised campsite such as one run by Eurocamp (0844 406 0402; eurocamp.co.uk). The ambience at its sites is usually convivial enough to allow families to mingle.

New for this year is a collection of smart safari-style tents in France and Italy such as Le Moulin de Paulhiac, in the Dordogne just outside the village of Daglan. The campsite is surrounded by rolling hills and forested countryside. There is a swimming pool with slides; activities include canoe trips.

A nine-night stay in a safari tent (with two bedrooms) comes to £1,063, but this doesn't include flights, transfers, activities or meals. The most convenient airport is Bergerac, which is served by Ryanair and FlyBe; alternatively, you could take the train to Sarlat (08705 186 186; eurostar.com).

Send your family travel queries to The Independent Parent, Travel Desk, The Independent, Independent House, 191 Marsh Wall, London E14 9RS, or email crusoe@independent.co.uk

The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations

Suggested Topics
News
scienceExcitement from alien hunters at 'evidence' of extraterrestrial life
Life and Style
Customers can get their caffeine fix on the move
food + drink
News
newsRyan Crighton goes in search of the capo dei capi
Arts and Entertainment
Actors front row from left, Jared Leto, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Ellen DeGeneres, Bradley Cooper, Peter Nyongío Jr., and, second row, from left, Channing Tatum, Julia Roberts, Kevin Spacey, Brad Pitt, Lupita Nyongío and Angelina Jolie as they pose for a
film
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
sport
Life and Style
techCould new invention save millions in healthcare bills?
Sport
David Moyes gets soaked
sport Moyes becomes latest manager to take part in the ALS challenge
Voices
A meteor streaks across the sky during the Perseid Meteor Shower at a wind farm near Bogdanci, south of Skopje, Macedonia, in the early hours of 13 August
voicesHagel and Dempsey were pure Hollywood. They only needed Tom Cruise, says Robert Fisk
News
peopleEnglishman managed quintessential Hollywood restaurant Chasen's
Life and Style
food + drinkHarrods launches gourmet food qualification for staff
Arts and Entertainment
Michael Flatley prepares to bid farewell to the West End stage
danceMichael Flatley hits West End for last time alongside Team GB World champion Alice Upcott
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Life and Style
Horst P Horst mid-fashion shoot in New York, 1949
fashionFar-reaching retrospective to celebrate Horst P Horst's six decades of creativity
News
Members and supporters of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) community walk with a rainbow flag during a rally in July
i100
Life and Style
Black Ivory Coffee is made using beans plucked from elephants' waste after ingested by the animals
food + drinkFirm says it has created the "rarest" coffee in the world
Life and Style
news

As Voltaire once said, “Ice cream is exquisite. What a pity it isn’t illegal”

Life and Style
food + drinkThese simple recipes will have you refreshed within minutes
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Oracle 11g SQL 2008 DBA (Unix, Oracle RAC, Mirroring, Replicati

    £6000 - £50000 per annum + Bonus+Benefits+Package: Harrington Starr: Oracle 11...

    Recruitment Consultant (Graduate Trainee), Finchley Central

    £17K OTE £30K: Charter Selection: Highly successful and innovative specialist...

    SQL DBA/ C# Developer - T-SQL, C#.Net

    £45000 - £55000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Working with an exciting ...

    Sales and Office Administrator – Sports Media

    £23,000: Sauce Recruitment: A global leader in sports and entertainment is now...

    Day In a Page

    All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

    Robert Fisk: All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

    Chuck Hagel and Martin Dempsey were pure Hollywood. They only needed Tom Cruise
    Mafia Dons: is the Camorra in control of the Granite City?

    Mafia Dons: is the Camorra in control of the Granite City?

    So claims an EU report which points to the Italian Mob’s alleged grip on everything from public works to property
    Emmys look set to overhaul the Oscars as Hollywood’s prize draw

    Emmys look set to overhaul the Oscars as Hollywood’s prize draw

    Once the poor relation, the awards show now has the top stars and boasts the best drama
    What happens to African migrants once they land in Italy during the summer?

    What happens to migrants once they land in Italy?

    Memphis Barker follows their trail through southern Europe
    French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

    French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

    The ugly causeway is being dismantled, an elegant connection erected in its place. So everyone’s happy, right?
    Frank Mugisha: Uganda's most outspoken gay rights activist on changing people's attitudes, coming out, and the threat of being attacked

    Frank Mugisha: 'Coming out was a gradual process '

    Uganda's most outspoken gay rights activist on changing people's attitudes, coming out, and the threat of being attacked
    Radio 1 to hire 'YouTube-famous' vloggers to broadcast online

    Radio 1’s new top ten

    The ‘vloggers’ signed up to find twentysomething audience
    David Abraham: Big ideas for the small screen

    David Abraham: Big ideas for the small screen

    A blistering attack on US influence on British television has lifted the savvy head of Channel 4 out of the shadows
    Florence Knight's perfect picnic: Make the most of summer's last Bank Holiday weekend

    Florence Knight's perfect picnic

    Polpetto's head chef shares her favourite recipes from Iced Earl Grey tea to baked peaches, mascarpone & brown sugar meringues...
    Horst P Horst: The fashion photography genius who inspired Madonna comes to the V&A

    Horst P Horst comes to the V&A

    The London's museum has delved into its archives to stage a far-reaching retrospective celebrating the photographer's six decades of creativity
    Mark Hix recipes: Try our chef's summery soups for a real seasonal refresher

    Mark Hix's summery soups

    Soup isn’t just about comforting broths and steaming hot bowls...
    Tim Sherwood column: 'It started as a three-horse race but turned into the Grand National'

    Tim Sherwood column

    I would have taken the Crystal Palace job if I’d been offered it soon after my interview... but the whole process dragged on so I had to pull out
    Eden Hazard: Young, gifted... not yet perfect

    Eden Hazard: Young, gifted... not yet perfect

    Eden Hazard admits he is still below the level of Ronaldo and Messi but, after a breakthrough season, is ready to thrill Chelsea’s fans
    Tim Howard: I’m an old dog. I don’t get too excited

    Tim Howard: I’m an old dog. I don’t get too excited

    The Everton and US goalkeeper was such a star at the World Cup that the President phoned to congratulate him... not that he knows what the fuss is all about
    Match of the Day at 50: Show reminds us that even the most revered BBC institution may have a finite lifespan – thanks to the opposition

    Tom Peck on Match of the Day at 50

    The show reminds us that even the most revered BBC institution may have a finite lifespan – thanks to the opposition