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
A 1930 image of the Karl Albrecht Spiritousen and Lebensmittel shop, Essen. The shop was opened by Karl and Theo Albrecht’s mother; the brothers later founded Aldi
people
Arts and Entertainment
Standing the test of time: Michael J Fox and Christopher Lloyd in 'Back to the Future'
filmA cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Arts and Entertainment
Flora Spencer-Longhurst as Lavinia, William Houston as Titus Andronicus and Dyfan Dwyfor as Lucius
theatreThe Shakespeare play that proved too much for more than 100 people
News
exclusivePunk icon Viv Albertine on Sid Vicious, complacent white men, and why free love led to rape
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Stir crazy: Noel Fielding in 'Luxury Comedy 2: Tales from Painted Hawaii'
comedyAs ‘Luxury Comedy’ returns, Noel Fielding on why mainstream success scares him and what the future holds for 'The Boosh'
Life and Style
Flow chart: Karl Landsteiner discovered blood types in 1900, yet scientists have still not come up with an explanation for their existence
lifeAll of us have one. Yet even now, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Arts and Entertainment
'Weird Al' Yankovic, or Alfred Matthew, at the 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival Screening of
musicHis latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do our experts think he’s missed out?
Sport
New Real Madrid signing James Rodríguez with club president Florentino Perez
sportColombian World Cup star completes £63m move to Spain
Travel
Hotel Tour d’Auvergne in Paris launches pay-what-you-want
travelIt seems fraught with financial risk, but the policy has its benefits
Arts and Entertainment
booksThe best children's books for this summer
Life and Style
News to me: family events were recorded in the personal columns
techFamily events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped that
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
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

    VB.NET and C# developer (VB.NET,C#,ASP.NET)

    £30000 - £45000 per annum + Bonus+Benefits+Package: Harrington Starr: VB.NET a...

    Visitor Experience volunteer

    Unpaid voluntary role: Old Royal Naval College: To assist the Visitor Experien...

    Telesales Manager. Paddington, London

    £45-£55k OTE £75k : Charter Selection: Major London International Fashion and ...

    Recruitment Consultant (Trainee), Finchley Central, London

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

    Day In a Page

    Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

    Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

    A land of the outright bizarre
    What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

    What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

    ‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
    Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

    The worst kept secret in cinema

    A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
    Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

    The new hatched, matched and dispatched

    Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
    Why do we have blood types?

    Are you my type?

    All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
    Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

    Honesty box hotels

    Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit
    Commonwealth Games 2014: Why weight of pressure rests easy on Michael Jamieson’s shoulders

    Michael Jamieson: Why weight of pressure rests easy on his shoulders

    The Scottish swimmer is ready for ‘the biggest race of my life’ at the Commonwealth Games
    Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

    The 'scroungers’ fight back

    The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
    Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

    Fireballs in space

    Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
    A Bible for billionaires

    A Bible for billionaires

    Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
    Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

    Paranoid parenting is on the rise

    And our children are suffering because of it
    For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

    Magna Carta Island goes on sale

    Yours for a cool £4m
    Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

    The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

    Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
    We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

    We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

    Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
    The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

    The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

    For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn