Who wouldn’t love a fun family vacation? As soon as we’re able to travel again, we’ll be off, even if it’s just somewhere nearby. If you’re keen to get started on your future holiday planning, here are some great family-friendly resorts in Asia. They aren’t too far from Singapore and have loads to offer kids – and parents too!
For a short family getaway, why not explore Malaysia’s Desaru Coast? It’s only a 90-minute drive or a 30-minute ferry and shuttle ride away. Plus, later this year, visitors from Singapore can hop on a direct ferry to Desaru Coast from Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal.
The recently revamped beachfront development has loads to offer, including family-friendly activities, hotels and dining. Take your pick from four five-star properties in the area – Westin Desaru Coast Resort, Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villas, One&Only Desaru Coast and Hard Rock Hotel Desaru Coast. You can rest easy about the “new normal”, too: each property has full sanitisation and safety measures including contactless check-in, room entry and menus. During your stay, one must-visit is Adventure Waterpark, which has more than 20 slides, a huge wave pool and a lazy river – kids will have a blast! Besides enjoying water sports and hanging out at the beach, families can also enjoy trips to Panti Forest Reserve, Desaru Fruit Farm and Tanjung Belungkor mangroves.
InterContinental Koh Samui Resort
For your next family vacation, gather the fam and head to InterContinental Koh Samui Resort on the popular Thai island. The waters off the five-star property are among the only places where you can observe the country’s famous pink dolphins. The resort’s Pink Dolphin Discovery Tour offers guests the option of a half- or full-day speedboat tour to the nearby Khanon area (25 minutes away) to see the friendly creatures. On the way back, the boat will pop by Koh Tan where you can enjoy snorkelling or swimming in waters filled with tropical reef fish, fan corals and giant clams.
Take your pick of the family-friendly resort’s luxurious rooms and villas, including the spacious Two Bedroom Family Villas, which can comfortably house the entire brood. While the parents enjoy cocktails at the Air Bar or a relaxing massage at Baan Thai Spa by Harnn, the kids will be entertained with fun games and activities at the Planet Trekker’s Kids’ Club.
Telunas Beach Resort
Telunas Beach Resort has recently added four new overwater bungalows to its collection, two of which are three-bedroom villas – perfect for a family vacation, and super close to Singapore! Besides these, the Indonesian resort also has overwater rooms that are located on the main Telunas jetty. If you need baby cots or extra mattresses, just let the team know and they’ll arrange it for you. The family-friendly resort has loads of fun activities on offer, including kayaking, hiking, badminton, ping-pong, gaga ball, beach volleyball and soccer, and even a low ropes course. Brave little ones (and adults) will also love leaping off the new jumping deck! Families can also enjoy exploring the beach and tidal pools, getting creative at the pottery studio and having a fun bonfire under the stars.
During meal times, dig into a delicious spread at the overwater dining room, including yummy desserts and fruit. There’s also a special kids’ menu for little diners, and vegetarian options for any who want them. In the evenings, you’ll be able to catch the sunset while enjoying the cool ocean breeze.
Anantara Mui Ne Resort
Shanti Travel offers ready-made itineraries and tailor-made vacations for different interests and budgets. One of their favourite family-friendly destinations is Vietnam, a welcoming and lively country with loads to offer for both adults and kids. Only a two-hour flight from Singapore, the country’s highlights include stunning landscapes, a rich history, lovely beaches and delicious cuisine. A great time to visit is from November to March, which is the dry season.
For a family break, the Shanti Travel team recommends staying at the Anantara Mui Ne Resort, a seaside hotel on the southeast coast. There are a variety of rooms and villa options that are great for families. The family-friendly resort also has tropical gardens, a beachfront infinity pool and a fun kids’ club to keep little ones entertained. While you’re there, head out and explore the town’s unique geological formations, including Ta Cu Mountain and the red-and-white sand dunes of Mui Ne. In addition, the beach has rock-free waters that are perfect for swimming, kayaking and surfing.
Sohamsa Ocean Estate
Sohamsa Ocean Estate has two stunning cliff-side villas that will do great for a family vacation. Located about half an hour from Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali, the five-bedroom Villa Soham and four-bedroom Villa Hamsa share a dedicated team of 10 staff members that will be at your beck and call – you won’t need to lift a finger! The villas feature a private pools, spacious living and dining areas. Both are well-equipped with mod-cons including Wi-Fi access, a handy room-to-room phone system, 48-inch flat-screen TVs, game consoles and Sonos sound systems. Villa Soham even has its own gym and massage room with a steam room and sauna to boot. Special items for families such as high chairs, cots and pool toys can be arranged.
Besides enjoying the amenities and facilities, including the gym and pool within the villas, guests can rent the seven-seater car for up to eight hours a day to explore the area. Go shopping at Nusa Dua’s Bali Collection, enjoy a day out at the Pandawa Beach, or pay a visit to the famous Uluwatu temple.
Grand Cliff Nusa Dua
Keep the family happy and well-entertained at Grand Cliff Nusa Dua in Bali. Spanning three levels, this contemporary seaside property features a private pool, two living rooms, indoor and outdoor dining area, a games room, home theatre, poolside spa and a relaxation pavilion. The five-bedroom villa is well-equipped for families, offering high chairs, car seats, baby cots and games. Coming fully staffed, the villa includes a private chef and a driver. Big and little kids will enjoy watching movies in the home theatre and playing games on the Playstation 4. There’s also a karaoke machine, board games and billiard table to keep everyone busy and happy.
Little ones will enjoy a trip to Pirates Bay at Nusa Dua, This exciting kid-friendly spot features a pirate ship, treehouses and hanging bridges. Take the older kids to Surf & Turf, a trendy beach club that houses the first FlowRider in Bali. You could also head to Tanjung Benoa for some watersports. End the day with a trip to Jimbaran beach for a seafood dinner as the sun sets.
Kaba Kaba Estate
Surrounded by rice terraces and greenery, Kaba Kaba Estate in Bali’s Tabanan regency is a great spot for a family vacation. This expansive eight-bedroom villa has multiple pools – a main pool, two suite plunge pools and a pool specially for the little ones. Kids will also be delighted that there is a special room for them with bunk beds. Besides a living room, a dining pavilion that seats 18 people, a library and media room, there’s also a swanky rooftop bar that’s great for entertaining. Those who prefer a more relaxing holiday vibe will find a dedicated spa with two massage tables, a spa bath and private garden. Want to get some sun? Head to the tennis court and croquet lawn for a quick game, or hop on one of the bikes (including two children’s bikes) and explore the surrounding rice fields and villages.
Besides enjoying the pools, spa and games in the villa, guests can arrange for Balinese dance lessons and yoga sessions. You could also make a trip to visit sacred Pura Tanah Lot, an ancient Hindu temple perched on a cliff.
ÀNI – Sri Lanka
On the hunt for a family-friendly resort? This charming seaside property on Sri Lanka’s south coast is a lovely family vacation destination. It houses two private villas – the eight-bedroom Villa Monara and seven-bedroom Villa Divia. Both come with separate dining and living areas, ensuite bathrooms and connecting twin rooms that can sleep up to three kids each. With an all-inclusive concept, the stay includes delicious meals paired with wines and spirits and relaxing spa treatments. For dinner, the in-house chef can whip up a tasty meal according to preferences and dietary requirements.
The family-friendly resort has a tennis court where you can enjoy complimentary lessons and a gym with a personal trainer. Or, you can go cycling, do some yoga or try meditation. If you enjoy lounging by the pool, you’ll be glad to know that each villa comes with its own 24-metre private pool and a kids’ pool with a fun water slide. Kids also can also enjoy games and hands-on activities organised by the villa staff.
For a change from tropical, how about a trip to Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido? Surrounded by stunning mountains, Kiroro Resort is made up of two main hotels: Sheraton Hokkaido Kiroro Resort and The Kiroro Tribute Portfolio Hotel Hokkaido.
Time to hit the slopes? Enrol the kids in the Annie Kids Ski School, which has ski classes for kids as young as three. There are also snowboarding classes for children aged six to 12. Little ones will be well-taken care of the entire day, with the ski package including lunch and other recreational activities. Besides skiing, there are other fun winter activities on offer, such as snow banana boating, mini snowmobiles, and sledding and tubing at the snow park. The resort is also a great spot to visit all year round, not just during the winter. You can also enjoy a scenic ride on the Mount Yoichi gondola, try paddle tennis and even go trout fishing at the Kiroro pond.
SAii Phi Phi Island Village
At this beachfront resort in Thailand, you can choose to stay in a contemporary Thai-style bungalow or a hillside pool villa, including a two-bedroom family bungalow. Formerly known as Phi Phi Island Village Beach Resort, the eco-friendly property houses multiple restaurants and bars and has a lovely freeform pool to take a dip in.
Little guests can look forward to family-friendly activities, including a trip to the resort’s marine discovery centre. You can also head out the resort on an excursion and explore the beautiful surroundings.
Sri Panwa Phuket
Planning a family vacation? The five-star property on the southern tip of Phuket has various villas options, including one- and two-bedroom pool villas and two-to-five-bedroom residence villas that are great for larger groups. There are various family-friendly activities on offer, including snorkelling, cooking classes and batik painting. Teens and tweens will also enjoy hanging out at the game room that has foosball, table tennis and billiards.
If it’s your first time to the spot, explore Phuket town on a private tour (full- and half-day options) or take a yacht trip to surrounding islands. If you’re keen to stay put, you can spend the day lounging by the infinity pool or ramp things up a session in the resort’s Muay Thai boxing ring.
Enjoy a fuss-free family vacation to The Sanchaya in Bintan, with accommodation comprising beachfront villas and suites – including the two-bedroom villa that’ll fit the entire brood comfortably. At this family-friendly resort, all the rooms come with super king-size beds (with a pillow menu), Bang & Olufsen TVs and sound systems. While you’re there, you’ll want to visit the Balinese-inspired spa for a well-deserved pampering sesh.
Families can look forward to loads of great activities to keep everyone entertained, including beach volleyball, kite flying, archery and miniature croquet. Guests can also join family cooking classes and mocktail-making classes, in which the kids get decked out in mini chefs’ hats and aprons.
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