Best Family-Friendly Destinations in Southern Spain

Introducing guest blogger Lucia from Viva La Vita

Are you planning a family vacation to Southern Spain but need help figuring out where to go? Look no further! Southern Spain is full of family-friendly destinations that offer something for everyone. 

From stunning beaches and historic cities to theme parks and outdoor adventures, there’s no shortage of fun and exciting activities for the whole family. In this article, we’ll explore some of the best family-friendly destinations in Southern Spain that will create unforgettable memories for the whole family.

I have divided this article into a few sections, so you can quickly find the place that is the most interesting for your family trip – there are recommendations for beautiful natural parks in Spain, family-friendly attractions and finally, natural sights for the whole family.

Let’s dive in!

This post is part of our Explore My City series – come and visit cities around the world through the eyes of locals


Famous Parks in Southern Spain

If you’re planning to visit Southern Spain, you’re in for a treat. 

Southern Spain is home to some of the country’s most breathtaking and well-known parks. These stunning natural parks attract travellers worldwide due to their beauty and unique landscapes that are hard to find in other parts of the country.

The parks that are worth your time include:

1. Doñana National Park

Doñana National Park is one of the most protected areas in Southern Europe. It is a natural reserve in Andalucía, in the southernmost part of this region. 

It is an area of marshes, shallow streams, and dunes in Las Marismas, the delta where the Guadalquivir River flows into the Atlantic Ocean. A truly unique landscape to explore!

OG Best Family-Friendly Destinations in Southern Spain - Doñana National Park

The park features an extensive network of wetlands, forests, and dunes, which support a diverse range of flora and fauna, including the Iberian lynx and the Spanish imperial eagle.

What makes this national park so unique is that in just one day, you can see very different ecosystems: marshland, lagoons, pine groves, aloe vera, moving dunes, cliffs, and 30 kilometres of unspoiled white beaches.

A natural spectacle that is different each season. Doñana National Park has a biodiversity that is unique in Europe. The park features a great variety of ecosystems and shelters wildlife, including thousands of European and African migratory birds.

2. Sierra Nevada National Park

This stunning park, situated in the province of Granada, is renowned for its snow-capped mountains, crystal-clear rivers, and scenic hiking trails. 

OG Best Family-Friendly Destinations in Southern Spain - Sierra Nevada National Park

It is home to more than 15 mountains with an altitude of over 3,000 meters, including Mount Mulhacén, the highest peak in the Iberian Peninsula. 

The park has a variety of climate zones and ecosystems, including lush meadows, holm oaks and pine groves, and shrubs and scrubland at higher altitudes. It is also home to a variety of wildlife, including mountain goats, wild boars, badgers, civets, golden eagles, skylarks, and griffon vultures.

Sierra Nevada National Park is an excellent destination for family travel. There are numerous paths and routes for hiking and cycling that vary in length and difficulty. There are also many activities available for families, such as off-road guided tours, bicycle tours, horse riding excursions along the beach at sunset, photography, or ornithology courses. 

One exceptional way of getting to know the Sierra Nevada is to board the tourist boat, the Real Fernando, which cruises up the last section of the Guadalquivir River. Another unique way to explore the mountains is on a bike! You can book a bike tour from Malaga that will take you to over 3000-meter altitude, and from there, you can enjoy the highest altitude bike ride in Europe. Now that’s cool enough for me!

3. Cabo de Gata-Níjar Natural Park

This park, located on the southeastern coast of Spain, is known for its arid landscapes, hidden coves, and pristine beaches. 

The park is also home to a variety of unique plant and animal species, such as the dwarf fan palm and the Audouin’s gull.

OG Best Family-Friendly Destinations in Southern Spain - Cabo de Gata-Níjar Natural Park

It has some of Spain’s most flawless and least crowded beaches. The park encompasses a dramatic cliff-bound coastline and stark semi-desert terrain.

Cabo de Gata-Níjar Natural Park is a great destination for family travel. 

There are many activities available for families, such as diving, snorkelling, kayaking, sailing, cycling, horse riding, and 4WD and boat tours. 

These activities are offered by a host of operators from the coastal villages during Easter and from July to September.

4. Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park

Do your kids love mud puddles and playing around in the water? 

Then you need to take them to this park in the province of Cádiz. It is famous for its rugged limestone peaks, lush forests, and stunning waterfalls. It’s a paradise for hikers, bird watchers, and nature enthusiasts, as it’s home to several rare species, including the Spanish ibex and the griffon vulture.

OG Best Family-Friendly Destinations in Southern Spain - Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park

It is one of the wettest places in the Iberian Peninsula and is also one of the most rugged areas in Andalucia. Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park is a great destination for family travel. There are many activities available for families, such as walking and hiking. 

The area also has much to offer gastronomically, including dishes made from thistles, trout from the Majaceite river, and the area’s signature goat’s cheese, ‘payoya’.

These are just a few of the incredible parks you’ll discover in Southern Spain, and each one offers a unique and unforgettable experience for visitors.

Famous Family Attractions in Southern Spain

Southern Spain has plenty of fun family attractions to visit. Here are a few popular options:

Bioparc Fuengirola: If you’re an animal lover, then you’ll want to check out this zoo near Malaga. Its unique layout makes you feel like you’re walking through the animals’ natural habitats. You can spot everything from tigers and gorillas to meerkats, lemurs, and many more exotic animals.

OG Best Family-Friendly Destinations in Southern Spain - Bioparc Fuengirola

Tivoli World: If you’re looking for some thrills and excitement, head over to Benalmádena, a town in the province of Málaga, to check out this amusement park. Over 40 rides and attractions include roller coasters, bumper cars, a Ferris wheel, and even a haunted house. Tivoli World is also known for its diverse live entertainment shows. In addition, Tivoli World has a variety of dining and shopping options to suit every taste and budget. {Temporarily closed}

Isla Mágica: This kid’s attraction in Seville is set in a beautiful 16th-century park and has rides and shows that transport visitors back to the Age of Discovery. There are areas dedicated to ancient civilizations, pirates, a water park, roller coasters, a Ferris wheel, and live performances to keep you entertained.

Aquópolis: Another popular water park chain spread out across Spain, well-known for its thrilling water slides, wave pools, lazy rivers, and water attractions for all ages, making it a top choice for families and water lovers. Apart from water rides, Aquopolis also provides a wide range of amenities and services, including restaurants, shops, and lockers, to make visitors’ experiences comfortable and enjoyable. Aquopolis has multiple locations throughout Spain, such as Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, and Sevilla, making it an ideal destination for a fun day out with family and friends.

Aquapark Flamingo: If you’re looking to cool off during the hot summer months, Aquapark Flamingo is an exciting water park situated in the sunny coastal town of Torremolinos on the Costa del Sol, southern Spain. It’s a well-known attraction for both locals and tourists, especially during the hot summer months. The park is equipped with numerous thrilling water slides that are over 20 meters tall, wave pools, lazy rivers, and fun-filled children’s play areas. Additionally, visitors can relax on sun loungers or chill out in the shaded areas for a break from the water activities.

Nature Sights for Families

Southern Spain has some incredible natural sights perfect for families to explore together. Here are some of the best options:

Cabo de Gata-Níjar Natural Park: This park in Almería province boasts a stunning coastline with secluded coves, rugged cliffs, and pristine beaches. You can discover the park’s diverse landscapes by hiking, cycling, or taking a boat tour to spot some marine life and dolphins. Families can enjoy a refreshing swim, snorkelling, or kayaking in crystal-clear waters.

El Torcal de Antequera Natural Area: This unique geological formation in Malaga province is home to magnificent limestone formations shaped by wind and water over millions of years. Families can go on guided tours, explore hiking trails, or even try rock climbing.

OG Best Family-Friendly Destinations in Southern Spain - El Torcal de Antequera Natural Area

The Caminito del Rey: This exciting Pathway of the King in Malaga province takes you along the edge of a steep gorge hanging over 100 meters above the ground. The path has been recently renovated and is now safe for families to walk, offering spectacular views of the surrounding landscape. Please note that it is not suitable for kids under the age of 8. 

The Rio Tinto: This river in Huelva province is famous for its striking red colour, caused by high levels of iron in the water. Families can take a boat tour or go kayaking to explore the river and learn about its geological and historical significance.

Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park: Located in Cádiz province, this park is known for its rolling hills, deep gorges, and stunning waterfalls. Families can go hiking, birdwatching, or even explore the underground caverns.

So there you have it!

A long list of family-friendly destinations and exciting places to visit with your kids! I am sure no matter which places you choose, it will be a hit for the whole family. Safe travels! 


About the Blogger

Lucia is a travel blogger living in Southern Spain, sharing her discoveries of beautiful locations, hidden gems and stunning historical sights on her travel blog Viva La Vita.

You can keep up with Lucia’s adventures here:

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With thanks to Lucia for her contribution to our guest series.  You may also like to read about Spain’s Best National Parks for Hiking or more on Tips for the Perfect Babymoon in Spain.


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