Airbnb has been at the forefront of the sharing economy, yet many families are hesitant to give it a try. I certainly understand the concerns…is it safe, is it clean, what if they cancel, what if it is a scam, what if it is awful? I plan trips for families all the time and I know many feel like they are willing to take some risks when traveling solo or as a couple, but when it comes to their kids, they want something that is vetted and proven to be family friendly. So I have teamed up with my fellow travel bloggers to get their recommendations on the best Airbnbs for families around the globe. I came up with this massive list of 40 Airbnb rentals from family travelers that they know to be kid friendly.
Airbnb Tips for Families
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Even if you have used Airbnb before, there are still some tips you should keep in mind.
- Select “entire home” under room type. I’d never expect a family to want to share a home or room with strangers.
- Read the description carefully and don’t make any assumptions. Some of the gotchas to look for include:
- Stairs vs elevator
- Check in time / check out time (remember, it isn’t like you can store your bags with the bellman!)
- Cleaning fee
- Extra person fees
- Air conditioning or fans?
- Baby proof / kid proof?
- Make sure they offer all the gear you need. Do you need a baby crib, high chair, fully stocked kitchen supplies, washing machine, etc? Even if they don’t have some of the baby items, they may have a source for rentals.
- Location, location, location. Don’t accept descriptions like “steps to the beach” or “minutes from the city center.” There are over 5,000 steps in a mile and 60 minutes in an hour. Get specifics. I also like to plug the location into Google Maps to check and see what is in the neighborhood (is there a grocery store nearby, what about public transportation?) I then look on Google Earth to see what the neighborhood looks like. Is it clean, dirty, busy, quiet? This will give you a better picture of what to expect than the glamour shots that hosts sometimes use of the area.
- Read the reviews. Read them all and don’t stay at a place without reviews. Look for little things like, the Wifi was spotty, the bed was uncomfortable, the shower didn’t have enough hot water, or the hosts were hard to reach.
With that said, if you would rather follow in the footsteps of those who have gone before. Then pick one of these Airbnbs from around that world that are family-tested.
Best Airbnbs for Families Around the World
Punta Uva, Costa Rica
We spent our days in Punta Uva, near Puerto Viejo, in Costa Rica, in this awesome place. It’s simple and rustic, but we found nowhere else in the world like that. And we’ve been Airbnbing for over 18 months now. We woke up to the sound of white-faced capuchins asking for food, and they’d come really close to us to get fruit. The best part of the day was sitting on the daybed on the porch, watching toucans, sloths, hummingbirds, butterflies, lizards, and the howler monkeys in the distance. Sleeping with the sound of the frogs was relaxing and we loved the experience!
Turks & Caicos
Our Airbnb experience at Wheeland Settlement in Turks and Caicos was a memorable one. Charlene and Alanzo were more than Airbnb renters, they were gracious hosts. They helped us get an affordable car rental and gave us a tour of the area. They showed us where the locals shop and where to get the best Caribbean meals. The home was perfect for our family of five and the yard was a nice retreat that included an above ground swimming pool. The beach was just a short walk away and it was easy to drive around the island. If you are looking for an affordable Caribbean getaway, this one will work for you.
Finding a hotel room in Reykjavik can be challenging (and expensive!) Luckily, we scored a reservation at a two-bedroom apartment in downtown Reykjavik, just a block of the famous Laugavegur shopping street. Our host was kind enough to wait for our very late arrival. While it was a pain to lug our suitcases up to the third floor, we were happy to have the extra space to spread out. This is clearly still a primary residence, so we had to work around our host’s personal belongings, but it is well suited for families as it even had a toddler bed.
Ring of Beara, Ireland
We love this Airbnb just across from the Ring of Kerry on the Ring of Beara. It is a 15-minute drive to Kenmare, a cute little Irish village. The cottage is up on top of a mountain and the views were simply fantastic. At night, you have a beautiful view of the stars with no light pollution. During the day, the views over the ocean and the Ring of Kerry are outstanding. The cottage has a full kitchen, two bedrooms, one bathroom, living room, and a sun room. The owner, Martin, lives close by and has three boys who are available to play with your kids. He also has animals like ducks and goats on the property. This Airbnb is the perfect mix of a country cottage with all the privacy you could want, while being close to the conveniences of a small village. If you need a cottage that sleeps more than four, they have a larger one on the property as well.
By Nicole Debickes, Family with Latitude
Scottish Highlands, Scotland
As a family of five, our accommodation requirements include good location and great pricing. Stathmashie House in the Scottish Highlands was a winner with the children before we even got out of the car. Set in a location that literally takes your breath away, we were greeted by the properties gorgeous dog, two horses and chickens…as well as the host, Chris, of course.
The Butlers flat was rustic and cozy, with plenty of room for us. We also found out Queen Victoria once visited the Hunting Lodge! ur children panned for gold in the little stream near the property, enjoyed exploring the grounds, and spending time with all the animals. The property is slightly off the beaten track and it is a drive to nearby facilities, just the way we like it. There are plenty of beautiful walks in the area and a nearby waterfall to explore.
By Kirsty Hill, Travel with Meraki
Fountain House is a quiet, cozy place for a family stay in Scotland. Located right on the main square in the village of Falkland, the house makes a convenient base for a quiet stay in the country. Plus, “Outlander” fans will love recognizing the filming locations right outside the front door of the house! My family especially loved being able to walk out the door to miles of hiking trails, an organic farm, a playground and creek for the kids to play in, and the town’s famous Renaissance palace.
By Jenna Francisco, This is my Happiness
We stayed in a little farm outside Bordeaux. Our host had us for a real french dinner, took my kids to the dairy and helped us garden. I’m dying to go back just to visit her!
We spent a great three days in a lovely sunny apartment in Budapest. It is was a small but cosy apartment in the heart of the city, only a short walk from supermarkets, restaurants, bars, shops and public transport stops and sights. However it is located in a quiet street, away from the hustle and bustle, just around the corner from a public park with a great playground. We loved the uniqueness of the place. The entire apartment was beautifully decorated with pieces handmade by the owners. The brightly coloured tiled floor, handcrafted mirrors, homemade rolling table, and fold-away kitchen table were all very charming and made us feel home straight away. In addition, the apartment and building had all the facilities we needed for a good stay including lift, complete functioning kitchen and washing machine. The owners were great to deal with too. I would definitely recommend this apartment for a small family visiting Budapest.
From Thassia Dezan, Family Off Duty
There are so many great Airbnb options in Vienna that is was hard to choose, but we picked one in the First District, easily accessible to all the main sites. It was tucked off of Judenplatz, in a courtyard-building with a secure main entrance. The flat itself was spacious and minimalistic in design. It had more of a rental property feel than someone’s home, but I like that because it seems clean and fresh. We didn’t use the large kitchen area with so many great places to eat in Vienna, but it was the perfect size for a family of three or four. There were two large bedrooms with queen beds and one large bathroom. The layout was peculiar, but we soon got used to it. Just be prepared to carry your bags up two to three flights on a spiral staircase!
Two years ago we stayed the cutest Airbnb with our family in Lucca, Italy. We wanted a special apartment to stay over the Christmas holiday, and our rental in Lucca was just that. “Via Della Stufa” it is an old attic with charm on the top floor of a seventeenth-century building in the very heart of Lucca. To get to this apartment you must climb four sets of stairs, but the exercise is well worth what’s waiting at the top. A unique, rustic and Italian apartment suitable for a large family. We were traveling with five people and the size was perfect and intimate.
By Natasha, The World Pursuit
Porto is a unique place that combines cobblestoned alleys with steep streets, colourful houses, beautiful tiles and endless views of the sea passing by. The apartment we stayed in was perfectly located. It’s been only a short walk until we reached the center. Also, famous landmarks of Porto, such as the Clerigos Tower, the Lello Bookstore and the Virtudes Garden are basically around the corner. When arriving, we were greeted with a bottle of water and a bottle of Portuguese red wine – could arriving be any easier? The building that our apartment was located in was a typical Portuguese one: tiles that decorated the façade and huge doors. All in all we had the perfect experience here and loved starting the day by looking out of our window and watching Porto’s daily life go by.
By Clemens Sehi, Travellers Archive
We just spent a beautiful four nights in this Greek oasis, which sleeps at least six, with separate guest house and large garden grounds. It’s away from the more tourist-centric islands and provides all the authentic atmosphere you crave on a Greece getaway. It’s in the center of the island in the small village of Lefkes – all blue and whitewashed with plenty of purring, fluffy cats to befriend. The home itself is built from the original stonework more than 350 years old. Use fresh herbs from the garden for outdoor or indoor cooking and choose from four different sitting areas to soak up the sun. The hosts are incredible and left us a huge welcoming package of local beauty products, cheeses, wine and veggies to try. Our first Greek trip couldn’t have been more perfect!
By Eileen Cotter Wright, PureWander
House Verde was our first Airbnb experience of many and it was a wonderful first experience. Our hosts were welcoming with little touches such as leaving us a fruit basket on arrival and dropping in home made cookies a few days later. The home was just outside the city walls with incredible views of Dubrovnik. Our favourite part was the terrace where we spent our afternoons enjoying local food and drink, and watching the sun set over the city.
By Holly Conners, Four Around the World
The apartment is in the middle of the city centre of Ljubljana and has a secure garage. It is spacious, full of light and with a modern clean design. We walked in and felt at home immediately! We travelled with our then six-months old and the apartment came with toys and was very child friendly. Location wise it is perfect to explore Ljubljana on foot, all major sights, an abundance of restaurants and a great lively market square can be reached within less than five minutes. Ljubljana itself is an underrated destination that should be on your travel radar.
By Jules, Shades of Courage
Capetown, South Africa
This Airbnb in Capetown was fabulous. With two bedrooms, a large living room, and modern kitchen, it is perfect for families. A secure courtyard meant we could let the kids play while we relaxed on the daybed with a book. Just through the gate is the swimming pool, perfectly positioned to capture the last rays of the day and a beautiful sunset. Decorated with a coastal theme which gave a resort-like vibe, we felt immediately on holiday. The location in Seapoint is fantastic! At one end of the block there was the coastal promenade, sandy beaches and rock pools to explore, at the other end casual and fine dining restaurants, cafes and trendy coffee shops, as well as well-stocked supermarkets.
By Kaylie Lewell, Happiness Travels Here
Adelaide, South Australia
There are a lot of wonderful things about Airbnb homes, but it is rare that one place ticks all the boxes. We were in Adelaide to attend the WOMADedalaide Festival and stayed at a home in Glendora, South Australia for a week. A semi-detatched “half house”, it was cute and atmospheric, decorated in art-deco style. It provided enough space for our multigenerational family of five to sleep – and best of all – had its’ very own Secret Garden. This simple but beautiful garden was the absolute highlight. Each morning (as they do at home) the kids were up and outside playing. With three bedrooms this Airbnb had an ample kitchen and laundry – both bonuses while travelling with kids. Plus, it was located about 10 minutes walk from the Tram line (on little legs.)
By Ariana, World of Travels with Kids
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Our Airbnb in Hobart, Australia was the perfect fit for our three-generations trip. The house had four bedrooms and two bathrooms and plenty of space to spread out. Our favorite things were the playset in the backyard and the breathtaking view of the Derwent River from the deck and living space. We still talk about the night that, after a long day of sightseeing, we made steaks on the grill and drank local wine while watching the kids play in the yard. We couldn’t have had such a memorable experience at a hotel.
By Leah Yoder, Yoder Toter Blog