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9 Best Spring Break Destinations in Europe

9 Best Spring Break Destinations in Europe

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Are you thinking about heading to Europe for spring break this year? Keep scrolling for my list of the best spring break destinations in Europe that your whole family will love!
This list of the best spring break destinations in Europe was written by family travel expert Marcie Cheung and contains affiliate links which means if you purchase something from one of my affiliate links, I may earn a small commission that goes back into maintaining this blog.

If you’re considering a getaway to Europe for spring break but aren’t sure what to see and do, you’ll love to know springtime is a great time to visit many of the best destinations the Old Continent has to offer!

Spring is a great time in Europe, but weather and activities vary depending on the countries you visit. Of course, your spring break Europe itinerary will depend on what kind of vacation you are aiming for. 

Regardless of what type of Euro escape you’re envisioning, Spring is a great time for that getaway, especially if you’re keen on avoiding overwhelming crowds and higher hotel rates.

It’s during the months of March and April that you can still catch some winter sports and then glimpse colorful spring flowers only a few hours away, as the warm weather takes longer to reach some destinations.

While southern Europe begins to unfold the beach umbrellas and lounge chairs, others cling to the frosty winter for a few more weeks, especially in the mountainous areas.

Europe is also home to many cities where the weather is not a determining factor for your enjoyment. After all, admiring the striking architecture and stunning museum collections, or relaxing in a quaint cafe are activities that can bring joy regardless of the temperature outside.

Whether you dream of a spring break vacation lying on a dreamy beach, sightseeing in a bustling city, calmly strolling through a quaint village, or sloping down a white mountain peak, Europe is guaranteed to deliver. 

What’s also cool about Europe is that you can get away with a Europe backpacking packing list if you don’t want to haul luggage.

Here are my top picks for places to spend spring break in Europe with your kids!

The Best Spring Break Destinations in Europe

1. Prague (Czech Republic)

Prague is one of the prettiest cities in Europe. 

Real-life castles combine with extraordinary beer halls and pop culture to make this a favorite destination in the European continent. As such, it receives millions of tourists a year, especially during the summer and the Christmas season.

Charles Bridge in Prague, Czech Republic.
Charles Bridge in Prague, Czech Republic.

Spring is the best time to visit as the crowds are smaller and the weather milder, making it perfect for sightseeing.

Absolute must-sees in Prague are St. Vitus Cathedral (Prague Castle), Charles Bridge, Gothic Church of Our Lady before Týn, Prašná brána (Powder Tower), and Old Town Square, which house the world-famous Astronomical Clock.

Plan on spending some time on the banks of the Vilava River, where you will find tons of restaurants and beer halls that serve extraordinary beer, as well as the Kafka Museum.

Where to Stay in Prague with Kids

2. Paris (France)

Paris is one of the most visited cities in the world, attracting visitors all year long. 

With so much to see and do in the City of Lights, visitors can be seen arriving in the city every day of the year. As you can imagine, the crowds can get to be a problem, especially if you want to cover as many attractions as possible in a short time. 

Spring in Paris. Blossoming cherry tree and Eiffel tower. Focus on the Eiffel tower
It’s hard to beat Paris in springtime.

March and April are good months to avoid the huge number of tourists that will surely arrive as soon as summer creeps in, making it a marvelous spring break destination.

Plus, Paris is especially lovely in the spring, with flowers and trees blossoming in the perfectly manicured lawns and the sidewalk cafés all over town!

Highlights in Paris include the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Museum, Arc de Triomphe, and Notre Dame Cathedral – temporarily off-limits for restoration, but still worth checking out from the outside while strolling or boating along the Seine River.

If want to see a stunning gothic church from the inside, head to Saint Chapelle, which sits within the walls of the Palais de Justice. Other worthy sights in Paris include the Basilique du Sacré Coeur, the Panthéon, the Musée Rodin, and Place des Vosges.

It is impossible to see all of Paris within one visit, but do try to make time just to stroll along the Avenue des Champs-Elysées, have a picnic on the grounds of the Eiffel Tower, and just lose yourself in some of Paris’s smaller, lesser-known streets.

I’ve got a great itinerary for visiting Paris in 5 days with kids!

Where to Stay in Paris with Kids

3. Cascais (Portugal)

Located a mere 15 miles from Lisbon, Cascais is a perfect base beach town for exploring other sea towns along the Portuguese coast or for a day trip from the city, depending on how you want to spend most of your time. 

Santa Marta lighthouse and Municipal museum, Cascais, Lisbon, Portugal. Lighthouse Museum of Santa Marta in Cascais Portugal, as seen from Santa Marta Beach on a beautiful day. Cascais, Portugal.
Santa Marta lighthouse and municipal museum in Cascais, Portugal.

Formerly a premier summer retreat for the Portuguese elite, Cascais is now a popular beach resort that attracts tourists from all over the world. And it’s one of the cutest cities in Portugal.

Home to three of the best beaches in Portugal, Cascais is a great spot for enjoying a sun-filled spring break vacation in Europe with some culture and history thrown in for an added bonus. 

After getting your fill of laying in the sun and swimming in Praia da Ribeira, Praia da Rainha, and Praia da Conceição (if that is at all possible), explore the town’s cobblestoned streets.

You’ll be rewarded with interesting museums, awesome shops, and plenty of restaurants and bars serving delicious food and superb drinks.

Boca do Inferno overview offers fantastic views, while the Fortaleza da Cidadela fortress is the place to learn about the rich history of the place.

Where to Stay in Cascais with Kids

4. Reykjavik (Iceland)

Iceland is a striking country full of volcanos, glaciers, waterfalls, hot springs, and magical northern lights.

Reykjavik is the gateway to seeing plenty of natural wonders while offering tons of cultural activities including art museums, photography exhibits, and music performances.

A street in central part of Reykjavik, Iceland
How cute is this street in Reykjavik, Iceland?

Highlights include Reykjavik’s city lake Reykjavikurtjorn and the Hallgrimskirkja Church, a 244-foot-high expressionist building with a viewing platform that boasts breathtaking 360-degree views of the entire city.

Outdoor adventures on offer in and around Iceland’s capital city include whale watching, hiking, caving, exploring volcanoes, and horseback riding.

If you’re wondering about the possibility of seeing the elusive northern lights during a spring break vacation in Europe, the answer is yes. This is one of the best Iceland travel tips.

November through March is prime time for chasing aurora borealis, but the odds of glimpsing this mesmerizing celestial phenomenon are still quite decent until mid-April.

Where to Stay in Reykjavik with Kids

5. Vienna (Austria)

Famous for being an important music, art, and cultural center, Vienna is home to a myriad of cultural highlights and museums.

Beautiful view of famous Wiener Ringstrasse with historic Burgtheater (Imperial Court Theatre) and traditional red electric tram at sunset in Vienna, Austria
Check out the famous Wiener Ringstrasse with historic Burgtheater in Vienna Austria.

The most notable ones include Schönbrunn Palace, Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, the Natural History Museum (Naturhistorisches Museum), and the Belvedere Museum which features the world’s largest collection of Gustav Klimt paintings.

In case you’re wondering, Vienna’s world-famous tradition of fantastic coffee houses and patisserie, which dates back to the Astro-Hungarian empire, is also present all year long!

Where to Stay in Vienna with Kids

6. Barcelona (Spain)

If you love the hustle and bustle of a lively major city but are yearning for some serious beach time during your spring break vacation in Europe, Barcelona is definitely the right choice for you. 

Image of Barcelona Spain
Barcelona is the perfect mix of beaches, architecture, and amazing food.

With stunning architecture, an impressive art scene, killer nightlife, and gorgeous beaches in the area, you might even get tempted to spend your whole vacation in the capital of Catalonia in Spain!

Not-to-be-missed sites in Barcelona include the gorgeous Sagrada Família, the largest unfinished Roman church in the world, the Museu Picasso, and Fundació Joan Miró.

Keep your eyes wide open as you stroll around the city, though, because you’re sure to find many attention-grabbing buildings and statues as well as eye-catching galleries and bars.

As for beach fun, you can choose from Bogatell, Badalona, Barceloneta, and Mar Bella, to name just a few! Check out all my top Barcelona travel tips!

Where to Stay in Barcelona with Kids

7. Zermatt (Switzerland)

Perched at an elevation of 5,310 feet, right under the Matterhorn peak, Zermatt is a winter playground in the Swiss Alps. 

The snow season stretches out until May, which makes it a swell destination for travelers wanting to hit the slopes and enjoy various winter sports.

Aerial View on Zermatt Valley and Matterhorn Peak at Dawn, Switzerland
Zermatt Switzerland is perfect for families wanting a spring ski vacation.

Even though Zermatt is usually seen as a destination for skiing and snowboarding, you can also try your hand at snowmobiling, ice skating, mountain climbing, and hiking during your visit.

On the après-ski side, there are tons of lively options as well as high-end shopping at Bahnhofstrasse, not to mention plenty of fabulous spas.

Where to Stay in Zermatt with Kids

8. Dublin (Ireland)

If you’re into history, Dublin is a good option for you. It’s one of the best places to visit in Ireland with kids.

This walkable city boasts its centuries-old heritage at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Kilmainham Gaol, and Dublin Castle

Night view of the St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin, Ireland
Don’t miss St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin, Ireland.

During springtime, the city comes alive in many different ways. If you time your visit right, you’ll be able to witness the month-long St. Patrick’s Festival celebration that culminates with the parade on March 17. Needless to say, St. Paddy’s in Ireland is an unforgettable experience.

Ireland’s capital is still chilly in March and April, but the cold is mild and you’ll find plenty of Irish Whisky and stout to take you off the edge.

The iconic Jameson Distillery Bow St and the Guinness Storehouse are must-visits, whether you’re interested in history or want to try out their goods (or both).

Where to Stay in Dublin with Kids

9. Ibiza (Spain)

If beach fun and partying are what you’re after for your European spring break, Ibiza will definitely do the trick. This is my top pick for college students looking for some spring break fun!

This charming island is famous for its splendid beaches, wild nightlife, and electronic dance music club scene in the summer, which attract large numbers of tourists. 

Cala d'Hort in Ibiza, Spain.
Cala d’Hort in Ibiza, Spain.

During spring, though, the weather is not too hot and the big crowds haven’t arrived yet, giving you a chance to explore the island’s countryside and experience a calmer Ibiza.

Well, not calmer, really, but maybe slightly less wild, because partying is almost part of the island’s DNA, after all.

A spring break in Ibiza will let you have the perfect mix of beach time, nature adventure, and partying for a fun and unforgettable getaway. It’s no wonder why it’s one of the top spring break destinations in Europe.

Where to Stay in Ibiza with Kids

Spring Break in Europe Wrap Up

Spring in Europe is a lovely time of year to visit. You’ll enjoy fewer crowds and you’ll beat the summer heat.

Whether you want to know how to plan a trip to Europe with kids or are embarking on a college spring break trip, this post has you covered!

Looking for more European travel content? Check out my kid-friendly London itinerary, Paris travel tips, and Paris with teens.

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