Western & Oriental has launched its new Worldwide Family Holidays programme for 2012 which replaces the operator’s former Kids in the Med brochure and for the first time expands into long haul family holidays.

The new family destinations include hotels and adventure itineraries across the Indian Ocean, Arabian Gulf, Caribbean, the Far East, Africa and Latin America, designed for families who want to experience more of a country.

Established favourites in Europe have been updated with new family features plus there’s a new addition, Forte Village Resort, in Sardinia and new destination, Sicily and the Verdura Golf & Spa Resort.

To coincide with the brochure launch the new ‘families’ sub-site has just gone live – www.wandotravel.com/families with features such as a quick hotel search using criteria such as crèche, kids dining and baby-sitting services and top 10s such as ‘family beaches’ and ‘best teen travel choices’.

The brochure features 47 luxury resorts and hotels which provide professional crèches and kids’ clubs, activities for the whole family or opportunities for that much deserved ‘me time’ – for grown-ups and kids.

The operator has put together 10 Worldwide Experiences for families with older kids in mind – those ready for safari drives, cultural and historical immersion and close-up wildlife experiences.

Itineraries include Costa Rica’s beaches, wildlife and volcanoes, the Rock Art and Meerkats of South Africa, Rickshaws, Elephants & Tigers in India, Sri Lanka Culture, Wildlife & Beach and a Wild West Ranch experience with cowboy-craft, fishing, horse riding and the big skies of Montana, North America.

Head of trade sales Steve O’Loughlin said: “The family travel market is getting more and more adventurous with parents keen to travel further afield. 

“Our new itineraries give expert recommendations of experiences which will really ensure that that precious holiday is totally unforgettable.

“And the Indian Ocean is no longer a couples only enclave as there are masses of properties which now cater for children of all ages.

“Take Desroches Island, Seychelles where families can enjoy a host of environmental and ocean-based activities including fishing, kayaking and learning about research projects and the local endangered fauna and flora on guided nature walks as well as watch turtles hatching.”