Every holiday should be an escape from the every day and a voyage into the new so we’re always looking for inventive ways to make your holidays extra-special. Below, we take a look at some of the exceptional experiences that children, teenagers and families can enjoy across Europe with Rocco Forte Hotels.
Master windsurfing in Sicily
Imagine learning to windsurf at Verdura Resort. After a week, you’re finally ready for a planing board (to help you lift out of the water). Your feet are positioned correctly on the board; one just behind the mast foot and the other near the rear straps as you maintain a low and balanced stance.
When the time is right, you clip your harness in, timing it so you don’t overbalance. As you tighten the sail, you feel a rush like a plane taking off or a shot of electricity. This is planing: the sensation of the board being pushed up and skimming over the water, rather than cutting through it. This allows you to go much, much faster. Channel that energy, enjoy the moment – you’ve worked hard to get here.
See a ghost at the Tower of London
During your stay at Brown’s Hotel, embark on a private tour of the Tower of London, ostensibly to see the Crown Jewels. You know better: this is all about ghost hunting. Your guide regales you with stories of the Tower’s foundation in 1066, the role of the Beefeaters, how the moment the last raven leaves the tower will be when the kingdom falls.
Many apparitions, the guide jokingly says, have been spotted here – Anne Boleyn; Walter Raleigh; the two Princes Edward V and Richard of York. Children especially have also reported seeing a ghostly “White Woman”, though nobody is sure exactly who she is. But those are just fairy stories, of course. Hang on, what was that clinking sound? Why has the room got so cold?
Seek out the secrets of Scottish tartan
Ever dreamed of being a fashion designer? The key, as with all things, is people and passion. On a tour of the Scottish borders’ wool mills from The Balmoral in Edinburgh, you’ll see how world-class tartan and cashmere are made.
At Lochcarron Mill in Selkirk, you can watch tartan take form, the threads intertwining in an intricate dance on the loom. Every pattern carries a unique story, steeped in history and heritage or sparked by inspiration and creativity. Next stop is Hawick, home to the prestigious Johnstons of Elgin mill. Cashmere creations come alive here, expertly knitted by artisans and used in designer collections by the likes of Chanel and Burberry.
Dive into the Cold War in Berlin
During your stay at Hotel de Rome in Berlin, book on to TimeRide – a thrilling bus journey into the past. Your seat is a portal to a bygone era, as a VR headset morphs the world before your eyes into 1985 Berlin.
Suddenly, you're at Checkpoint Charlie where soldiers maintain a stern vigil. With a jolt, the bus lurches forward, hurtling you into a world that is no more. The Gendarmenmarkt bustles with life – children trailing after the ice cream vendor, the distinct hum of Trabant cars filling the air.
Onward to the imposing Palace of the Republic, its bronze mirrored windows reflecting a city divided. The humdrum of daily life – the sizzle of Bratwurst, the cacophony of the market square, all transports you back to a moment in history. With TimeRide, the past isn't a list of dates. It's a journey into a country lost in time, a window into life as it was in a divided Berlin.
Every moment with Rocco Forte Hotels is a “wow” moment, giving you experiences your family will cherish forever. For more family holiday ideas, read our article on how to Inspire, Sculpt and Blow Young Minds.