The best way to truly celebrate a big birthday, anniversary or reunion is to spend time with your loved ones on a large family holiday… Whether you decide to do this with a few close friends or your entire extended family (including kids, pets, partners, and that aunt you forgot you had) it always takes more searching, arranging and calendar-checking than you had anticipated.
But, despite the stress of planning, these getaways result in joyful gatherings of long-lost family and friends reconnecting with one another and building memories.
At Oliver’s Travels, we specialise in doing the tough bits of planning a big get-together so our experts have picked these 20 large houses, chateaux and villas to help you whittle down the options. Have a leisurely scroll through, or click one of these links to be taken straight to your perfect holiday home:
The beach is always a hit when it comes to large family holidays and group trips – there’s something for everyone. And who can resist the sun-kissed allure of picnics at the beach, afternoon dips in your private pool, and plenty of water adventures for the young and young at heart?! Your whole family will find something to love about these fabulous estates.
1. Head to Brittany for beaches and culture
Brittany, with its Celtic past and abundant cultural appeal, is the perfect place for a family holiday—and you’ll love the perks at Chateau Lignol, a 14th-century hunting lodge. Imagine lounging in your private garden (you’ve got 4-acres of land) or going for a dip in the pool. You’re only 5-minutes by car to the nearest bustling town, so you can soak up the local culture.
Bonus Feature: This gorgeous property can even be used as a wedding venue! Or be booked as a Vill’Otel – all the convenience of a hotel (breakfast, maid service, etc.) plus the privacy of your own holiday home.
2. Corfu offers swimming for all
What’s not to love about Corfu – the beaches, the sapphire sky, the chic Mediterranean vibe. And Ikos Kerkyra is perfectly situated for holidays with kids, just a short drive to calm Nissaki beach, with coves ideal for snorkelling. Plus, it sleeps up to 12 meaning it’s just the right size for your large family holiday!
Bonus Feature: The hilltop position gives breath-taking views of the Ionian Sea.
3. Relax on golden beaches in Portugal
Located in Vilamoura, you can spend your afternoons in the villa lounging next to the infinity pool, or head to one of the golden beaches, before heading into the buzzing town centre for a wander around the cosmopolitan marina.
Bonus Feature: The golf course is just off the garden—you’ll love the views from the pool and sun terrace.
4. Experience the crystal-clear waters of Sorrento & the Amalfi Coast
There’s nothing like the dramatic beachscape and picturesque views along Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast—there’s scuba diving, sailing, tennis, and even horseback riding to tempt the outdoor enthusiast.
Experience all this and more at Villa Bahia – this beauty is perfectly positioned on the hillside overlooking the Bay of Naples, so you benefit from some seriously amazing coastal views. Take a private boat trip to one of the nearby islands for a spot of snorkelling or scuba diving, or head to the charming towns of Positano, Sorrento or Amalfi!
Bonus Feature: Your family will never get bored at Villa Bahia. There’s an amazing private pool, reading corner, BBQ area, pizza oven and it’s only 2km from the nearby village, Sant’Agata Sui Due Golfi.
Exploring Charming Towns and Villages
Some families crave more than just a week of luxuriating at the beach and pool – exploring local architecture, sampling regional cuisines, immersing themselves in new cultural experiences.
5. Discover Medieval relics in Tuscany
Nestled next to the quaint village of Anghiari with its farmer’s markets, restaurants, shops, and medieval relics, Villa Il Gufo exudes Tuscan charm. Wander through the estate’s olive groves, nap in the hammocks, and watch the kids tumble on the playground or swim in the private pool.
Bonus Feature: Spend your evenings drinking Chianti and sampling local produce in front of the villa’s huge fireplace.
6. Go to Andalusia for beauty and history
If the gorgeous pool and drop-dead gorgeous views aren’t enough to thrill, the friendly farm animals roaming the grounds might do the trick.
Bonus Feature: The projector screen for movie night and inviting jacuzzi will keep everyone in your group entertained and relaxed.
7. Dordogne is languid and laid back
Just five minutes from the picturesque village of Carlux, Château Les Tourelles sits in the heart of all the major Quercy and Perigord areas of interest. It’s the perfect location for experiencing French culture and get up to some leisure activities, such as boat cruises on the Dordogne, hot-air ballooning, canoeing and golf.
Bonus Feature: Perched high above the surrounding countryside, you’ll see for miles from the towers of this chateau.
8. Stay in a traditional home in Surrey
Comforts Place is a stunning 15th-century manor house that has been brought lovingly up to date and includes an awesome pool, tennis court, games room and sauna, so the whole family is well-catered for. With room for 20 guests, this place is an obvious choice in which to celebrate special occasions and reunions!
9. Ireland is a quiet retreat
Ireland’s appeal is legendary and County Kerry’s Beaufort Manor captures it in spades. Plush and sophisticated interiors offer guests a preserved slice of history and the rural location offers exceptional views in every direction.
Outdoor Adventure Holidays
For some families, only the most action-packed, adrenaline-drenched holidays will do – whitewater rafting, canyoning, mountain climbing, hiking, you need it all. If your family group needs to be always on the go, check out these adventure friendly estates.
10. Stay in a chateau with plenty to occupy the kids
The Rhone-Alps region is a well-known hotspot for outdoor enthusiasts – riding, canyoning on the river, every type of water sport, and even fishing.
A protected Historic Monument, Chateau de Baloigne offers plenty of space for relaxation, as well as a river where guests can swim just 100m down from the chateau and table tennis to keep the kids entertained.
Bonus Feature: There’s also a ground floor double room ensuite for your family members who might have trouble navigating the castle stairs.
11. Head north for tartan and tradition
With its stunning location on the shores of West Lock Tarbert, the turreted baronial Tarbert Country Manor is an impressive place to host a shindig. Up to 17 people can enjoy playing lord of the manor for a few days and delight in superb ground with gorgeous views before retiring to the house with its plush furnishings to relax amongst. Even four-legged friends are welcome to join the fun!
12. Argyll has myriad activities for the family to enjoy
Excellent fishing, biking trails, golf, water sports, swimming, canoeing, caving – it’s all waiting for you at Old Argyll House. You’ll never have a dull moment here.
Bonus Feature: The house offers some wonderful treats including the sauna, the hot tub with loch views and the billiard table for some friendly competition
13. The Pyrenees aren’t just about skiing
Adventure is what it’s all about when you holiday in the Pyrenees – whitewater rafting, paragliding, mountain climbing, hunting and fishing, even skiing in winter.
Chateau de l’Histoire is a stunning castle sleeping up to 28 guests has acres of grounds to enjoy in summer, or in the winter months you can take to the slopes just half an hour away at the resort of Guzet.
Bonus Feature: You’ve seen the pool, right? Just try to resist plunging into it after a day exploring the Pyreneean foothills!
Large Family Gatherings and Party Places
Celebrating a major event or family milestone? Looking for a memorable place for an engagement party or 50th wedding anniversary? These villas and chateaux have everything your family could want – picturesque scenery for arresting family photos, luxe accommodation, and party-friendly extras to make your holiday a lifetime event.
14. Celebrate with family in sunny Spain
Hacienda Buena Vista is a magical place for up to 34 friends and family members to make their own on a trip to beautiful Andalusia. As well as enjoying the pretty pool area, your party will enjoy the sauna, jacuzzi, pool table and more, keeping everyone entertained.
15. Edinburgh is the place to party
Just a stone’s throw outside of the city, the magnificent residence that is Kirkliston Castle is a seriously memorable stay for your whole party. It’s classic fairytale exterior will not prepare you for the contemporary style inside. Up to 18 friends can call this place home for a weekend, and you even get to enjoy 36 acres of parkland… all just 20 minutes from Edinburgh!
16. Take a relaxing break in a Grade II listed property
With space for up to 18 guests, Colleton Hall & East Wing has a rich and fascinating history, which you can feel as you wander its rooms. It’s the perfect retreat for a multi-family getaway, with the Hall able to sleep 12 guests and the East Wing accommodating 6.
And there’s tons to keep everybody – at every age – happy. All the kitchen mod-cons to help prepare delightful feasts, a pantry with a wine chiller, 18-seater dining table, log burner and open fireplace, a games room with a quarter size snooker table, board games, a library and even a baby grand piano!
Bonus Feature: Colleton Hall & East Wing is set amongst 25-acres of private woodland, with 3-acres of gardens, picnic areas, a lake and a stream. Go for winter wanders, summer strolls, and even take the canoe out onto the lake!
Finally, for the foodie family gathering…
We’d be remiss if we didn’t offer something for the truly food-oriented family who lives for authentic foodie experiences.
17. Try proper Devonshire cream tea
If you want to explore the roots of Devon food culture, this former dairy farm is calling your name.
Featured in our Best Foodie Breaks in the UK article, Landscove House offers a huge range of catered options. It’s also perfectly situated in an area famed for the Ashburton Delicatessen and of course, Devon cream teas.
Bonus Feature: Rent the Landscove Barns, too, and you can delight up to 36 guests with the finest foodie holiday.
18. Try wild boar in Languedoc
The Cevennes mountains are famed for wild boar, chestnuts, and mushrooms, which can be bought locally at the amazing Chamborigaud market every Sunday in the summer months – truly a foodie haven.
Chateau Chamborigaud itself is a Disney-style castle with impressive turrets and a large heated outdoor swimming pool. It’s set in 5 acres of parkland where you can spend an hour or two building up a hearty appetite.
Bonus Feature: There’s a poolside kitchen with a covered eating area – perfect for a large family gathering or even an intimate wedding.
19. Umbria is full of gastronomic delights.
Umbria is the place to be if you’re looking for gastronomic delights. From wine tours and truffle hunting to fantastic restaurants and courses where you can learn to cook your own pasta, it should be on every foodie’s destination bucket-list.
And the best place to stay? Villa Francis offers everything you need for a big family celebration; a large swimming pool with hillside views, beautiful gardens, and even a hot tub. It’s a 12th-century monastery which has been renovated yet still includes original features such as stone walls and wooden beams.
Bonus Feature: The villa consists of 7 apartments which each have their own entrance and en-suite, so there’s plenty of privacy.
20. And lastly, Mallorca’s seafood is worth a party.
The undiscovered gem that is Mallorca’s wine industry is a must-visit for oenophiles everywhere. Callet and Mantonegro are made with grapes unique to the island, and they’re pretty wallet-friendly too!
The seafood is as fresh as it gets, and the lobster stew known as calderata is one of best ways to get a taste of the ocean and the modern kitchen at Puerto Ponente is a fantastic place to cook up a storm.
If you feel like heading out to eat, we have plenty of recommendations. Top of our list is the Michelin-starred restaurant Stay, which is only 7km from the property and has a fantastic view overlooking the bay.
Bonus Features: The villa has a large swimming pool and a jacuzzi, with a short 2.3km distance to the nearest beach – a great way to please the water babies of your family!
Ready to Get the Planning Started?
So there we have it, Oliver’s Travels top 20 large holiday homes; stunning villas, houses, and chateaux fit for any type of large family holiday, reunion, gathering or party. So if you’re ready to get the planning started, just fill in this quick form and we’ll help find the perfect place for your next big holiday.