The best place for a family adventure holiday on a budget

WE'RE A FAMILY OF FIVE WITH ADULT CHILDREN LOOKING FOR AN ADVENTUROUS HOLIDAY IN EUROPE IN DECEMBER/JANUARY, WITH SOME URBAN CULTURE. WE ARE WELL TRAVELLED BUT WORK TO A STRICT BUDGET. S. GREEN, HAMPTON VIC

Mediterranean Europe might work well for you, but you'd have to lower your expectations if beaches and watersports are on the wish list.

Even in southern Spain, the coast is not that warm, and the resort areas will be largely closed for business.

However, cities such as Seville, Cordoba, Granada and Ronda are sensational and there are still plenty of walks you can do. Cicerone (cicerone.co.uk) has wonderful and meticulously detailed walking guides to this region. 

What you might do is plan a trip through Southern Spain's Andalusia and Portugal and possibly add Morocco into the mix. Morocco is a fabulous place to experience a powerful and very traditional North African Islamic culture with strong tribal elements.

You need at least 10 days to experience the cities on the north side of the Atlas Mountains and the dunes of the Sahara, villages and kasbahs on the south side. The Atlas Mountains also offer wonderful possibilities for hiking.

In Marrakesh you can expect temperatures between about 8-18 degrees celcius in December January, with cooler nights south of the Atlas.

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