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Group Travel Trips from Top Travel Bloggers: Fave Destinations

Group Travel Trips from Top Travel Bloggers: Fave Destinations

We gathered all our favorite fellow travel bloggers to ask them about their memories about being on the road with friends and family. Traveling with your squad is something special – something we’ve always celebrated here! Travel group dynamics though can be unique and often mean being flexible. Below are the best places to travel with a group, as well as some tips to keep sane in the experience!

New Zealand

Andra with friends in camper in New Zealand

New Zealand gave us the best travel group trip ever! We did a three-week tour together with my husband, my younger sister and my best friend. We decided to rent a small campervan and wander around.

For sure the campervan was the highlight of our trip. But it will also test your limits a bit. Because you share such a small space with another three people and it sometimes makes you want to dream of some privacy. In our case, the fun parts were in higher numbers than the not-so-fun ones. We cooked together, laughed a lot, got mesmerized by the stunning views, did annoying chores (like washing the dishes) with a smile on our faces, and make that tiny space our home.

I’ll have to admit it. After some days it was chaos in the campervan. Because having three girls in such a small space can lead to that. But at the end of the day, we enjoyed having some wine together with our freshly cooked curry and not care about whose clothes are hanging from the upper bed. You just need to take things easy and make sure to enjoy the moments spent together!

Andra from Our World to Wander

Ireland

My top destination recommendation for group travel would be Ireland. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great for solo travellers as well, but being in a travel group means you can afford to rent a car and that’s truly the best way to see the country. Get away from the big cities like Dublin, Belfast, and Cork and explore the nature and smaller towns and villages. That’s where the real Irish magic can be found. Plus, Ireland is fun and pretty low key which means you won’t have any drama, and if you do you can settle it over a pint of Guinness in a local pub!

Hannah from Ireland Stole My Heart

Iceland

Nellie Wild Junket with group travel family in Iceland

My husband and I have traveled with our daughter since she was just a month old, and we’ve had plenty of adventures as a family, but none compares to our summer trip to Iceland this year. We loved Iceland on our first trip there a few years ago and wanted to show Kaleya one of our favourite destinations.

Indeed, Iceland is a perfect travel destination for families, in every sense of the word. There may not be any themed parks or kids-oriented attractions in Iceland, but the whole country is an adventure on its own with its wide-open spaces, wildlife and science projects brought to life.

This time round, we spent a week driving the Iceland Ring Road, a.k.a. Route 1, that circles the entire island. Spanning 828 miles (1332 km), this route is one of world’s top road trips and it showed us the best of the island.

Nellie from Wild Junket

Diani Beach, Kenya

Stephanie with group travel family on beach in Kenya

In 2017 my parents and I took at a trip to the beautiful beach resort of Diani in Kenya. My parents had just retired and, jealous of me travelling around Africa, they decided to come and join me! We honestly could not have asked for a better travel group trip!

The stunning beach at Diani (think white sand and turquoise Indian Ocean) was accompanied by day after day of endless sunshine and blue sky.

As “beach” people, both my parents and I were in our element and it really was the perfect place to relax together and soak up paradise, filling our days with sunbathing, swimming, snorkeling and scuba diving.

While my parents opted to stay in one of the posh resorts on the beach, I actually stayed at a backpackers, just 5 minutes away from their hotel. This was perfect as it gave us our own space which is definitely my top tip when it comes to staying sane if you’re travelling with your parents!

Stephanie from Big World Small Pockets

Philippines

Kevin with group of friends in sushine closeup

It was the first time I flew to another place with my younger sister. As expected, I was the one who planned and arranged everything – from the plane tickets, accommodation, and up to the itinerary – relying only on the things that I’d read online.

We set our foot in the beautiful place of El Nido around March where we unexpectedly made new friends. It started when guests from another room of the same hotel approached us asking about the electricity. As locals, although not familiar with the place either, we served as the middlemen between the foreign tourists and the owner.

Little did we know, we booked the same package tour the next day. We talked about almost everything and they were shocked when we said that we were brother and sister. It was one of the greatest experiences to know about a place and culture from afar. The picture below shows us, me and my sister at the rightmost, and our newly found friends from Italy-A lawyer, a scientist, and a graduate student of business –

That even when we are from different races, we still have a common denominator. We are travelers by heart.

Kevin del Prado from The Outcast Journey

Israel

Group meal in israel with table full of dishes

One of the coolest trips with friends was when we took a roadtrip in Israel . We stayed overnight in a Bedouin camp somewhere off the beaten path, made a bonfire and watched shooting stars. Food sharing is part of the Israeli culture as well and food is often served in many small dishes to share, perfect if you are in a group. Another cool activity we did was a hot air balloon ride over the Negev Desert and of course also visited the lowest point on earth: The Dead Sea.

Southern Israel is so vast and deserted that exploring this part of the country is highly recommended in a group and I honestly think if you are a solo traveler here you are going to be lonely and are not even able to do most of the activities.

Tom from Traveltomtom

Koh Lanta, Thailand

Jenny from Travelynn with group travel family on beach in Koh Lanta Thailand

We recently arranged to meet some old mates we hadn’t seen in over 5 years in Ko Lanta, Thailand. Ellie and I used to go to school together in the UK and now we’re all grown up with husbands and kids, except they live in Sydney and we live in Bangalore; we figured that Thailand is (sort of) half-way.

Klong Dao beach was the perfect place for our two young families to meet; a string of kid-friendly bars along the beach (some with slides and hoppers) and a warm, shallow sea with gentle waves, perfect for little ones.

We stayed at Banana Beach Resort in two adjoining rooms (including bunk beds for the kids) with a shared balcony, overlooking the swimming pool. One of the main reason this holiday worked so well for us was that our kids are the same age – all boys, two 2 year olds and two 4 year olds.

Jenny from TraveLynn Family

Colonge, Germany

varshas little boy in front in train in germany

Cologne is a historical town on the banks of Rhein river. It makes a perfect destination for the weekend visit for groups and families. The important sites from family’s point of view, are historical Dom Cathedral, Chocolate museum, zoo and the mini road-train- Bimmelbahn.  The climb on the bell tower of the cathedral is a bit exhaustive but it is worth for the view from up there.

The chocolate museum is loved by kids as well as grown-ups as well. The Bimmelbahn is a perfect way to explore the important sites in the old city center. Cologne has a big public park for a nice leisurely evening stroll. The local public transport is very convenient for a travel group. There is a group day ticket which is very economical and it allows to use all local trains, tram, metro, and buses. That makes a complete transport option to move around the city.

Varsha from Varsha’s Travel 360

Cape Town, South Africa

Group travel trekking through South Africa near ocean

Last year my husband and I joined a travel group from Cape Town hiking club for a 2-day hike around the Cape of Good Hope  We usually hike on our own for us it was a new experience though we knew some of the people from the group. The hikers were different ages and had different hiking experience but everybody was in a great mood and enjoyed the walk. The first day route goes through fynbos area, down to the beach, along the rocky coast and ends at the overnight hut on the top of the hill.

The second day was mostly along the coast with some stunning look-outs and quite steep up and downs. We had two perfect days for hiking; sunny, warm but not too hot, no wind. The most fun of hiking in a group was at the overnight hut when we made a fire, started making food talking about different hikes you can do and everyone’s hiking plans for the coming year. It was a very nice vibe and felt like we were hiking with friends. If we have a chance again we’ll definitely do a group hike again.

Campbell & Alya from the Stingy Nomads

The Netherlands/Amsterdam

James with group travel friends in Amsterdam

My favourite (and most successful) travel group trip was a trip to Amsterdam. The people in the group definitely made it, but a big part of its success was Amsterdam itself.

Amsterdam has something for everyone: from cultural activities like visiting Anne Frank’s House or the Van Gogh Museum to more debaucherous activities like taking advantage of Holland’s relaxed drug laws. While there is plenty to see and do, it’s not the type of city where you’re overwhelmed with things you have to see and do either. There’s plenty of time to relax, wander along the canals, and stop for a coffee or beer.

Aside from Amsterdam as a location, there are two other things which made this group trip work. Firstly, our group was a fairly small one and I think that made things considerably easier. Secondly, we had one person who fell into the natural role of group leader. Any more than that and there would have been conflict, and any less and nobody would have taken the initiative to decide what we did each day.

James from the  Worldwide Shopping Guide

Indonesia

My favourite place to travel with a group of buddies has to be Indonesia.

Although I’ve headed that way multiple times to score some epic waves Indo is the perfect group destination because across the 17,000 islands there’s such a huge variety of things to do, so the whole group is happy!

Whether that’s scoring some epic surf on Lombok, swimming with manta rays on Nusa Lembongan, wandering around the rice terraces of Ubud or coming face to face with some real life dragons in Komodo National Park there’s no shortage of adventure in Indonesia!

And it’s pretty budget friendly too – so you can enjoy good company over meals, drinks and day trips without having to worry! So no matter your reason for travelling – Indonesia is somewhere you’ll all love travelling!

Chris from Backpacker Banter

Connemara, Ireland

Dave with friends on a waterfall rock in Ireland

Just on hour’s drive outside of Galway, Ireland is the Connemara region, hosting some of the most beautiful landscape that the country has to offer. Glacial-cut mountains, blue lakes, and fine beaches are all things that you will find there. It is a great place for a group road trip, especially with someone who can show all the best spots to drive to. But it is also great for just driving without knowing where you’re going because you never know what you might find way out in the rural parts of the Emerald Isle.

My tip for group travel is to do an activity that half of the travel group have never done or are a bit scared to do. It’s up to the rest of the group to encourage them to get out of their comfort zone and conquer their fear. My group of friends went canyoning in Connemara and cliff jumping was involved, which a couple of us would have never thought of doing before taking this group trip, but felt a big sense of accomplishment after they did it.

Dave from Dave on Arrival

Italy

Tuscany Italy rolling hills and disk and mist

One of our best trips with friends was when we were living in the UK a few years ago, and our friend Natalie flew over from Australia to Europe for her 40th birthday, bringing her sister, Mum and her best friend as well.

She wanted to celebrate her milestone in style, and booked the six of us into a medieval tower and house at the head of a steep, remote valley in the Mugello region of eastern Tuscany – quite different to the gentle Tuscan countryside she had envisaged.

It turned out to be an unintentional stroke of genius. The view from the tower was absolutely breathtaking, the owner wonderfully friendly, and we met all her relatives on a tour of their vineyard. We were the only tourists in the area, we shopped in the village every day and I did the cooking every night.

As well as a couple of day trips to nearby Florence, we got to make many unexpected discoveries, including the birthplace and home town of the great 14th century artist Giotto, and a remote monastery near Arezzo where St Francis of Assisi stayed.

David from Delve into Europe

Chile

CHILE-Temuco-train compartment-c2001 Carole Terwilliger Meyers-lg-watermark
When my daughter went to Santiago, Chile for her junior year abroad, we went to visit her.  That would be me, my husband, and my sister.  After exploring Santiago for a while, we all decided to take a train trip south to Pucon, where we rented a car and spent several days exploring the Lake District.  The old train with its worn-wood interior was a highlight.  We downed Pisco Sours in the bar car and spent the night in a multi-bed compartment.  Just in case, my well-prepared sister brought along a flask.  We had a great time and made many precious memories.  After, my daughter went back to school, my husband flew home and went back to work, and my sister and I flew on to Peru to visit Machu Picchu.

Carole from Travels with Carole

Slovenia

My parents and I often take road trips together. We are lucky to have similar taste in travel: not too many museums, lots of scenery, simple but clean accommodations… I believe having similar interests with your co-travelers is essential when on a road trip travel mode.

Then, the destination is secondary. But one of my favorites was Slovenia.  The country is not too big, so you can stay several days at the same spot before moving on. This allowed all of us to move at our own rhythm.

For example, when we stayed 4 days around the splendid Lake Bled and Lake Bohinj, we did many activities together. But I was able to wander on my own and go hiking at 4am without them, to watch the sun rise over Bled.

Claire from ZigZag On Earth

Stellenbosch, South Africa

family in front of helicopter in south africa

Last april we traveled to South-Africa with the entire family, i.e. our kids and my parents.  The youngest was 10 years old and the senior was 65 years old.  Three generations on one trip!

It was quiet a job to make an itinerary that fits every age, but we managed to do so.

On the first day we went to Stellenbosch, close to Cape Town.  The adults wanted to visit a wine estate.  To make it attractive for the kids too, we booked a segway tour through the vineyards.  The kids had so much fun teaching grandma how the ride the segway.   For lunch we booked a ‘boerebraai’ (African bbq).  We enjoyed the best steak ever  and the kids could grill their own marshmallows.

The most popular activity for the entire group was the helicopter flight over Cape Town.  The kids were thrilled about the flight itself and we loved to see this amazing city from above. South-Africa is the only country that I can visit over and over again and I can highly recommend it for families.

Wendy from World Wide Wendy

Baja California/Mexico

Patrick with group of friends and red car in Baja California

The best trip I ever had with friends was a road trip at the Baja California (Mexico) – from Tijuana down to Los Cabos and up again a few days later – when we had a week off from our exchange semester in San Diego. Although we spent 6 out of 8 days in a car, it never got boring – the landscape was spectacular, we did a lot of stops along the way and my friends were great company.

Before this trip, we knew each other only for a few weeks, but we obviously got very close spending so much time together and sharing our stories along the way. Road trips are probably the best way to travel with friends – just make sure to choose a bunch of fun people, download some good playlists (very important for road trips!) and enjoy the journey!

Patrick from German Backpacker

India

landscape photo with brown land and trees from India by Somanth

It was yet another accomplishment when I along with my entourage decided to make an unplanned visit to Khajjiar popularly known as the Playground of Himachal in India. Khajjiar is more popular due to its geographical position and presence of wildlife sanctuary and the grandeur of the Dhauladhar ranges adds charisma to its significance.

The treks of Chamba and Dainkund are very salient and the presence of prominent hill stations Dalhousie and Dharmashala at a miniature distance from Khajjiar makes the place very distinct and unexampled. The food has the local taste of the region and is occupied by Buddhists and tagged as the Land of Lamas.

There are opportunities of paragliding and climbing from the ground and the presence of deodar, pine trees and the lake makes it very unique and looks more like a play field for young children. It is sometimes compared with Switzerland and holds tremendous distinction from other hill stations. The presence of kalatop sanctuary makes it more popular and the winter months of December and January are best suited to visit the place with all the beauty and grandeur. I was quite fortuitous and blessed to buckle the gravity and the splendor of the Dhauladhar ranges from the hamlet and the clear weather played a crucial role in accomplishing our mind and heart.

Somnath from Travel Crusade

Tell us about your favorite trip you took with family or friends! Do you like making friends while traveling? Do you like taking vacations with your parents, your kids?

 

group of yogis at dusk standing in the water, with title best group travel tips from top travel bloggers

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Eileen Cotter Wright

Author Eileen Cotter Wright

Eileen Cotter is a freelance travel journalist and owner of Pure Wander. She's our resident expat extraordinaire and falls down a lot in yoga class. Follow her on Twitter @Crooked_Flight

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