Fun travel games & holiday activities for kids during the school summer break

If you're travelling with children over the school summer holidays, here are some ideas for compact games that you can take with you to play while you're waiting for transport or when you arrive at your destination...

Some items have been gifted

When you’re travelling by train, plane or even by car with kids, it’s a good idea to keep something entertaining on hand to pass the time while you’re waiting to travel. Many of these options are small enough to fit into handbags or pockets so you’ll always have something to play with when little ones start to get fidgety.

Plus, when you arrive on your holiday, these games will give you something fun to do while you’re spending time in your accommodation. I’ve also included some games for ‘at home’ breaks to keep kids learning and engaged during the school holidays.

Here are a few fun games to keep youngsters entertained…

Travel games

If you’re going to be playing a travel game it not only needs to be compact so that it fits in your travel bag, it also needs to be easy to understand so that you’re not having to learn countless rules before you can start entertaining bored little ones.

Just because you’re playing a game it doesn’t mean it can’t be educational too. This tiny Wild Guess game contains cards that are packed full of interesting number-based facts, and the winner of each round is the person who can guess the closest answer. Because it’s a guessing game, no-one feels left out by not knowing the answers to the questions, and the whole family can learn new facts while you play.

For slightly older teens or even adults, a trivia quiz is a good idea for some quick entertainment to pass the time while waiting for buses, trains or planes to arrive. This pack-of-card-sized Gamer trivia tin could easily fit into a pocket and contains a whole retro gaming quiz that any number of players can participate in.

If you’ve got a table seat on a train or aeroplane, you can give kids this Superblocco set of small blocks and challenge them to create the animals on the cards. It’s like a puzzle where you don’t need the pieces to fit together and it’s a quiet task for little ones to complete while you travel.

Accommodation activities

Another compact game is Gabble. This is more of a ‘saying the answers’ game so is best suited to playing in your holiday accommodation rather than on public transport. The small size is ideal for stowing in your suitcase, ready to pull out for an evening of family fun.

If you have a rainy day during your summer holiday, don’t despair. You can easily keep young children entertained with this 3D safari animal set where kids can make, colour and play with the animals in the kit. The animal sheets are flat and the whole box is compact enough to pop in a bag, ready for kids to get crafty while they’re away – just be sure to lay out some newspaper to protect the surfaces in your holiday cottage!

Educational toys

Even if you’re enjoying a break at home during the school summer holidays, why not keep the learning going with some educational toys? I’ve often mentioned Geomag as a great STEM activity because it helps children to learn about forces and engineering, as well as encouraging imaginative play.

If your children are very young, Magicube sets are suitable for ages 1-5 years and offer the same magnetic building potential as Geomag but without the small parts. These sets are easy to store and are made from 100% recycled plastic in lovely vibrant colours to help engage youngsters.

A travel-inspired building set like a rainbow Connetix transport pack can also help to keep kids interested in the travelling you’ll be doing during the school holidays by making trains, cars and buses. Connetix tiles are award-winning creative and educational toys that help with STEM learning.

What other activities would you suggest for travelling with kids? Let me know if you’ve got any ideas for compact, pocket-sized games that can be played on transport or in your holiday accommodation in the comments below.

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Some items in this blog post have been gifted to me and the pink links indicate a gifted product, affiliate link or information source. All thoughts and opinions in this post are based on my own experience and I am not responsible for your experience 🙂

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Cassie is a freelance writer with a Masters degree in Lifestyle Promotion Studies and is trained in Personal Money Management. She loves to ‘get the look for less’ so regularly shares thrifty-living advice, DIY interior design ideas and low-cost recipes on her blog.

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