Center Parcs Europe: Great value, family-friendly European holiday villages.
Center Parcs Europe: Great value, family-friendly European holiday villages.

Center Parcs Europe

Having revolutionised the holiday market in the Netherlands more than 30 years ago and now the market leader in short breaks with kids, Center Parcs Europe offers 24 holiday villages in easily accessible locations on the Continent at competitive prices. There are 9 Parcs in the Netherlands, 6 in France, 6 in Germany and 3 in Belgium. Most are just a few hours drive from Calais. All boast natural environments and while there are man-made attractions to keep everyone entertained, the overall feeling is of being back with nature. 

Scroll down to see our hand-picked recommendations for self-catering holiday villages in some fantastic locations around Europe.

What does Center Parcs Europe Offer
Center Parcs Europe are decked out stylishly, and that includes the accommodation. Your kids will love the wooden chalets on stilts nestled around the edge of a lake, log cabins in the woods and even houseboats and jungle cabanas! On the whole, this is an eco-friendly experience with stylish accommodation but there are a few choices shamelessly hell-bent on appealing to the youngsters – and it works! New Generation Kids’ cottages are decked out in bright primary colours and have playrooms stuffed to the rafters with toys. You’ll find fenced decking to keep everyone safe and your kids can enjoy their own playhouse and slide. 

You don’t have to set a foot outside the resorts if you don’t want to. Shops and restaurants are plentiful and the huge list of activities to keep everyone busy ranges from the healthy and the wholesome to the downright peculiar. Children’s creativity and resilience is harnessed and they’ll love the challenges. Water sports abound, from banana boats to dinghy sailing and canoeing. There’s also abseiling, tennis, cycling, archery, indoor sports, horse riding as well as battling it out over the likes of Paint Ball and Aqua Battle, which takes place on a floating platform and involves swimming, diving, jumping, balancing skilfully and solving puzzles – and getting wet! All perfect for breaking the ice and making some friends. 

The Kids’ clubs pull out all the old favourites; face-painting, story-telling, painting, crafts and cooking as well as the inspiring Wannabe Programme (where dreams become reality). When it does rain, there’s still plenty to do, the most obvious one being to head to the watery sub-tropical paradise of Aqua Mundo (included) and ignore the irony. Kids and grown-ups will happily hang out here all day, trying out the slides and riding the waves. 

Which Parcs to Consider
The Parcs are generally highly rated by families. The closest ones to Calais are De Vossemeren and Erpeheide in Belgium. In the summer you can also enjoy very nearby beaches in the Netherlands at Port Zelande and Park Zaandvoort or Park Nordseekueste in Germany. Need a city fix? Combine De Eemhof with Amsterdam or Villages Natures with Paris and Disneyland. De Kempervennen (next to an indoor ski centre) and De Vossemeren are a short drive from the brilliant Efteling theme park near Eindhoven. Further afield is a recent addition, Park Allgau in the German Alps.

Accommodation provided by Center Parcs Europe

Center Parcs Park Allgäu

Germany
Self-catering holiday park in southern Germany with activities for young children through to adults plus luxury choice of accommodation according to budget.

Center Parcs Europe Les Ardennes

Belgium
Relaxing family break or action-packed fun, this self-catering holiday park in Belgium suits families whatever the budget.

Center Parcs Europe Bostalsee Saarland

Germany
Self-catering cottages set around a lake in western Germany with water sports, child-friendly activities and fun for all the family.

Center Parcs Le Bois aux Daims

Loire Valley
Spralling holiday park in the Loire where you can zip through the water rapids, horse ride, climb through the trees, and even sleep in one!

Center Parcs De Eemhof

North Holland
A classic holiday park with lake watersports, an indoor waterpark and its own farm, well placed for day trips to Amsterdam.

Center Parcs Het Heijderbos

Netherlands
A fun family holiday park in eastern Netherlands with clean and cosy self-catering accommodation and a wealth of activities for all ages.

Center Parcs Huttenheugte

North Holland
Located in rural Netherlands, with so much choice of activity and things to do to keep the whole familly busy.

Center Parcs De Kempervennen

Netherlands
A village in south-west Netherlands which offers an indoor ski centre, lake offering water sports, a pool where you can swim with fish and much more.

Center Parcs Het Meerdal

Netherlands
Fully-equipped self-catering cottages, on-site restaurants and shops, swimming pool, playgrounds and much more for an active family holiday in The Netherlands.

Center Parcs De Vossemeren Flanders

Belgium
A spacious wooded self-catering resort in northern Belgium, perfect for sports enthusiasts and ideal to try new indoor and outdoor experiences.

Center Parcs Erperheide

Limburg
A small kid-friendly Belgian holiday park with great pool complex and activities, and where you can get to look after your own pony during your stay.

Center Parcs Bispinger Heide

Niedersachsen
Stay in a boat- or tree-house at this self-catering family holiday resort in Germany with sub-tropical pool and activities for kids and adults.

Center Parcs Hochsauerland

North Rhine-Westphalia
In a mountainous area of western Germany, with skiing nearby in winter and cycle routes in the summer. Plus a fun water park for the kids.

Center Parcs Hauts Bruyeres

Centre
Surrounded by the famous Loire chateaux and a vast forest is the family friendly holiday park.

Competition of the week

Explore the world through our website and win your family a year's subscription to National Geographic Kids!

Find out more