by Ashley Pugh -

The Best Family Guide to Portugal

Family on holiday in portugal
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Portugal is celebrated as being one of the most family-friendly destinations in Europe, so it’s the perfect place for your next holiday with the kids. There are plenty of fun activities that will suit families of all ages, from major attractions in cities like Lisbon to natural wonders in rural paradise.

Planning a family trip can be stressful, but this family guide to Portugal has all the details you need for an unforgettable escape. We will showcase some of the best things to do in Portugal with family and highlight where you can stay on your family adventure. This guide also includes the best times to visit Portugal with family so you can start planning your incredible Iberian escape.

Things to Do in Portugal with Family

Portugal is filled to the brim with amazing activities that make it a haven for families seeking adventure. Whether you want to sightsee in the major cities or go off the beaten path to explore natural wonders, there are so many options for family days out.

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Explore Lisbon

As the capital of Portugal, Lisbon is a haven for families that want a dynamic holiday. Top attractions like Belém Tower and São Jorge Castle are ideal places to visit with family as you can learn more about the local heritage and marvel at these historic buildings. Even so, there are some brilliant options for entertainment that will be fun for the whole family.

Lisbon Oceanarium is one of the largest aquariums in Europe and is perfect for children of all ages. With 8000 different sea creatures, interactive exhibits and even themed concerts for babies and toddlers, there is so much joy to be found in this delightful aquarium.

Equally, Pavilhão do Conhecimento is a great place to take any budding scientists while visiting Portugal. Translated as the Pavilion of Knowledge, this interactive museum stimulates young minds and opens up a world of discovery for families. While this museum is aimed at younger travellers, there are a range of exhibitions, lectures and practical workshops that are engaging for all, so it’s a perfect family day out in Portugal. 

Day Trip to Sintra

One of the best things to do in Portugal with family is to visit the fairytale-like town of Sintra. Accessible via a short train ride from Lisbon, Sintra delights with magnificent castles, idyllic gardens and vibrant natural scenery. Pena Palace and Quinta da Regaleira are great places to visit as children can explore the stunning grounds and imagine themselves in a fantasy kingdom, while parents can marvel at the exceptional views and intricate designs.

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Beaches in the Algarve

Another spectacular thing to do in Portugal with family is to spend some time in the Algarve. The southernmost region of Portugal is an excellent destination for families thanks to its stunning beaches, family resorts and exceptional activities that cater to a range of interests.

There are numerous Blue Flag beaches which are celebrated for their cleanliness and safety. Plus, the beaches vary from sandy shores to hidden coves, so you’re certain to find a suntrap that suits your preferences. Many beaches even offer water sports such as paddleboarding, kayaking and snorkelling, which are fun for older children and teenagers visiting Portugal.

Azores Islands Adventures

Our final spectacular suggestion for things to do in Portugal with family is a trip to the Azores Islands. These islands are rather remote but can easily be reached by flights from the mainland. They offer families a fabulous blend of natural beauty, adventure and cultural experiences which can add so much value to your Portugal trip.

The volcanic landscapes of the islands are great for nature walks and hiking, with numerous trails that are suitable for all skill levels. Likewise, the Azores Islands are one of the best places to go whale watching, with sperm whales and dolphins frequenting the shores. Plus, families can go swimming in natural pools and even bathe in mineral-rich geothermal pools to unwind after a long day of exploring.

Where to Stay in Portugal with Family

Portugal has a variety of family-friendly hotels and resorts that are perfect for visiting with children. These accommodations are well-equipped to ensure you have a relaxing break with the family, with a range of activities and kids' clubs available to keep the little ones occupied. On the other hand, there are also some exceptional city apartments which are ideal for families that want to stay in the heart of the action.

If you’d prefer a more intimate escape, there are plenty of spacious and luxury villas in Portugal that are perfect for a family holiday. Villas give you much more freedom with your itinerary and provide a sense of privacy that is desirable for families wanting to spend quality time together.

When to Visit Portugal with Family

Portugal is a timeless destination that can be visited year-round, so the best time to go will largely depend on your own preferences as a family. There are distinct seasons in Portugal that each have their benefits and drawbacks. Below we have highlighted some of the best times to visit Portugal that are ideal for families.

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Spring - Best Time for a Quiet Visit

The spring months of March to May are one of the best times to visit Portugal if you desire a more relaxed visit. Temperatures in Portugal in spring range from 15°C to 20°C and will increase to highs of 25°C by late May. There are fewer tourists around this time of year which is ideal for families seeking a quiet visit.

Regions like the Algarve and Madeira burst into bloom in spring, making this a great time for outdoor adventures as you can take note of the gorgeous wildflowers. The milder temperatures are also ideal for sightseeing and exploring without the scorching summer heat.

Summer - Best Time for Good Weather

If weather is your biggest concern for your family trip to Portugal, then summer is the optimal time to visit. From June to August, temperatures range from 25°C to 35°C in coastal areas making this the best time for action-packed beach days. While the days will be much warmer, the Algarve and Lisbon enjoy a refreshing sea breeze, making these areas pleasant even during the warmer months.

The summer season offers the best weather for swimming in turquoise waters and partaking in thrilling watersports. This is one of the busiest times of year in Portugal so be sure to book activities and accommodation in advance to avoid disappointment.


Portugal beckons families with its diverse attractions and welcoming atmosphere, making it an ideal destination for a memorable holiday. Whether exploring the vibrant cityscape of Lisbon, discovering the enchanting castles of Sintra or relaxing on the pristine beaches of the Algarve, there's something for everyone in this European gem.

With family-friendly accommodations ranging from resorts to luxury villas, and a wealth of activities catering to all ages and preferences, Portugal promises an unforgettable escape any time of year.

Holiday with family in Portugal

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Ashley Pugh Written by
Ashley Pugh

Ashley Pugh is one of the Co-Founders of and has been committed to writing family related content since 2008. There isn't much about family attractions that Ashley doesn't know, after visiting hundreds of them worldwide over the last 20 years.

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