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1/ Midi-Pyrenees, France

The Pyrenees snake along the border between France and Spain. Base yourself in the middle and, to really get back to nature (and save some money), go glamping. Campsites provide ready-made friends for your kids and peaceful surroundings in a natural playground of mountains, pine forests and lakes. This Basque region is rich in historical sights, too, from ancient caves to stone villages, castles, monasteries and the pilgrimmage site at Lourdes. 

Where to stay

Eurocamp's Airotel Pyrénées is near Luz St Sauveur, gateway to the Pyrenees National Park. Choose from mobile homes, lodges or swish safari tents, all with beds and kitchen facilities. The site has pools, waterslides and a tennis court.

The lowdown

Price: A safari tent that sleeps up to six costs from £180 per week, excluding ferry crossings.

2/ South Tyrol, Italy

Until 1918, the South Tyrol was part of Austria, and its people are proud of their unique identity and even have their own language, Ladin, although few of them still speak it. The area has gained a reputation for its cuisine, with more Michelin-starred restaurants than you can shake a wooden spoon at. So foodie families can fill up, after working up an appetite in the Dolomite mountains.

Where to stay

Dolomit Family Resport Garberhof is a Kinderhotel, part of a consortium of hotels that provide whacked-out parents with childcare and equipment such as back carriers, bibs and baby baths.

The lowdown

Price: Starting at £75 per adult per night and £24 per child per night, including all meals, childcare, baby equipment, bike hire and use of spa.