8 Family-Friendly Hotels for Animal Lovers


Finnish Lapland
Meet a Reindeer!


If your kids are anything like mine then animals come high on the wish list when planning a family holiday. Here then are some of our favourite family-friendly hotels for a true Dr Doolittle experience, from meeting reindeer in Finland and washing elephants in India to feeding goats in The Philippines, releasing baby turtles in Sri Lanka and riding camels along the beach in Oman. Binoculars at the ready!


1. Swim with an Elephant in India

Picnic with Tara
Kipling Camp, India

What more could a child ask for than a safari in an open jeep searching for tigers, followed by a meeting with Tara the elephant and a swim with her in the river? Scrubbing clean a docile Tara lying in the water is a priceless experience and the photo of the year for parents. See what other families are saying on TripAdvisor


2. Meet Reindeer in Lapland

Reindeer Safari with Snow Fun Saris Finland
A reindeer safari in Finnish Lapland


For a magical winter adventure like no other, head to Lapland in northern Finland. This is the place to come for a snowy wonderland filled with family-friendly activities including snowshoeing, sledging, snowman-building, santa-visiting and, meeting reindeer. One of the best ways to enjoy this frozen world is with a stay at Yllashilla, a gorgeous log cabin located on the outskirts of Akaslompolo. Take a look at our Yllashilla review.


3. Feed Baby Goats in The Philippines

goat feeding
La Cheverie


La Chevrerie is a wonderful place for families with grassy lawns, hammocks and inflatable rings for floating around the swimming pool. But possibly the best activity for kids is feeding the resident baby goats. Take a look at La Chevrerie Resort & Spa, Mabini See what other families are saying on TripAdvisor.


4. Watch Whales Breach in Mexico

Family Hotel Review: The Bungalows Hotel, Cabo San Lucas, Baja California, Mexico
Whales breaching in Los Cabos, Mexico


Forget the mega-resorts and glitzy malls of Cabo San Lucas and come here to see magnificent Humpback whales breaching the ocean waves. From late December to late March hundreds of whales migrate from the frozen waters of the Arctic for some winter sun choosing the warm, calm waters surrounding the Baja Peninsula to birth and rear their young. Take a look at The Bungalows, Cabo San Lucas, Baja California.. See what other families are saying on TripAdvisor


5. Ride a Camel in Oman

Family Hotel Review: Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa
Riding a camel at the Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort


The hotel boasts several wonderful swimming pools, a lazy river, a pirate ship and water fountains as well as a kids club. Our favourite hotel highlights, however, are the daily camel rides along the beach. Take a look at Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa, Muscat. See what other families are saying on TripAdvisor


6. Search for Rhinos in India

rhino closeup
Diphlu River Lodge, Assam India


The early morning elephant safari is a must do and suitable for the whole family. You will get within metres of the great Indian rhinos and hopefully spot some of the other 34 major mammals including wild elephants, swamp deer, wild buffalo and gaur. See what other families are saying on TripAdvisor.


7. Release Baby Turtles in Sri Lanka

baby turtle 2
Releasing baby turtles in Bentota, Sri Lanka


Near to this beautiful hotel are a handful of turtle hatcheries, established to help conserve these wonderful creatures, and visitors are more than welcome. Kids can see turtles’ eggs buried in the sand, hold baby turtles and then help release them into the ocean. See what other families are saying on TripAdvisor


8. Go on a Tiger Safari in India

Jim's Jungle Retreat Family Friendly hotels India
Spot a tiger at Jim’s Jungle Retreat in India


This eco- and family-friendly camp, run by award-winning naturalists, is truly a wonderful place for kids. The focus is on educating children to appreciate wildlife and the importance of conservation; their motto is “seek the tiger, find the jungle”. There are dozens of fun, educational activities for kids, plus, you might spot a tiger! See what other families are saying on TripAdvisor


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24 thoughts on “8 Family-Friendly Hotels for Animal Lovers”

    1. Thanks so much Tamara. My children loved their cuddle with the sloths! I just read your post on Monterey, CA and that sounds like a great destination for animal lovers too – victoria

  1. Love this article and will retweet! Doris the donkey at Fawakay Villas obviously remains a star in her own right and is very popular with the guests!

    1. Thanks! Animals are high on the list when we’re planning a trip – we’re hoping to get to the Galapagos Islands soon for the ultimate animal adventure 🙂

  2. These are such great places to stay. We will have to check out this list for our future adventures. My kids love staying places where they get to interact with animals.

    1. Thanks so much. You will have to come to Panama for your next holiday and visit this b&b. I don’t think they’ll be going anywhere for a while, apparently sloths can live for up to 40 years!

  3. Oh my, what a fantastic list – I pretty much want to experience every single one – especially the sloth and watching humpback whales in Cabo San Lucas. I can’t even imagine what a breathtaking sight that would be. Thanks so much with linking up with #MondayEscapes

    1. Thanks so much. I don’t think my children will ever forget their hug with that sloth and i know Katja feels the same about her whale watching trip. Certainly experiences that stay with you for life!

  4. We’d love to visit all of these places, our boys would be amazed. My eldest has Africa and The Galapagos Islands on the list. Hopefully one day!

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