Family Gap Year: The Best Countries to take Your Family Abroad to Live, Work, Study, & Play

Deciding to world school with your family and kids is half the battle. Choosing the destination is the next hump, and we’re here to help you figure out where to call home during traveling edventure. Whether you want to be on the move and visiting a ton of places, or you want to sit-tight in a country or two, there’s no wrong recipe for an incredible world schooling experience with your family.

To jump start your itinerary research, here’s our list of the best countries to take your family abroad to live, work, study, and play.

The Americas

From the tip of Ushuaia to the scattered islands of the Great White North, the Americas pack a punch for families considering world schooling. We recommend the following as the best countries in the Americas for edventures:

  • Costa Rica — Potential toucan-sightings aside, Costa Rica’s beautiful coastline and developed infrastructure complement student-learning in Spanish and other subjects.
  • Mexico — Mexico is so. much. more. than a spring break destination. Decades of colonization, ancient empires, and dreamy landscapes will motivate your children. Find Mexico educational resources here.
  • Colombia — From the cool highlands of Medellin to the bustling, hot thoroughfares of Bogota, world schooling in Colombia gives your kids a chance to see redevelopment in action.

South Pacific

Island life takes on a whole new meaning when you travel with your family in the South Pacific. You don’t have to sacrifice palm trees, but you’ll gain so much more.

  • New Zealand — Show your kids what a healthy democracy and commitment to conservation on a national level can look like, then challenge them to understand how the indigenous Maori people are influential in those realms. Find New Zealand educational resources here.
  • Australia — The merry old land of Oz is adventure personified. Teach your kids about endemic species, the challenges of the Aboriginal tribes, and the rough-and-tough rules of Aussie football. Your kids’ will have never been so engulfed (and engaged!) with their schooling. Find Australia educational resources here.
  • The Philippines — With over 7,000 islands to choose from (Lord knows how many beaches that translates to!), your children will love sipping on fresh coconut between lessons on war history, exploration, and developing economies.


An off the beaten path destination for families homeschooling while traveling, Africa holds its own as an incredible place for extensive and impactful learning for adventurers of all ages.

  • Egypt — If ancient pyramids and other world treasures aren’t enticing enough, consider the opportunity to learn about world religions (like Coptic Christianity and Islam) and white water rafting the Nile as reason to travel and teach in Egypt with your kids. Find Egypt educational resources here.
  • Tanzania — From the stampeding herds of the great migration to the tippy-top of Africa’s rooftop (Mt. Kilimanjaro), Tanzania offers your family the chance to master Swahili, scuba dive in turquoise atolls, and better understand animal conservation practices.
  • Morocco — We can smell the spice markets already! Wind through souqs, witness and discuss the confluence of European and North African cultures, and treat yourself to an extra scoop of couscous. Your kids will love it! Find Morocco educational resources here.


A fan-favorite, Europe has long attracted world schooling families looking for adventures that also provide a bit of comfort and familiarity to their children. Here are some top picks:

  • Germany — As an incredibly influential country of the past century, edventuring in Germany means uncovering world and cold wars, seeing a socially progressive society in action, and ooh’ing and aah’ing at incredible public art. Find Germany educational resources here.
  • Spain — ¡Vamos! Beyond delicious paella and jamon, exploring Spain with your kids is a safe, popular, and fun option for all ages. Toss coins at the buskers, discuss colonization, and pig out on un chocolate con churros before diving into your next lesson. Find Spain educational resources here.
  • Czech Republic — If you want to try the Eurotrip but a little more far-flung, consider Eastern Europe and the fairytale city of Prague. A totally different vibe than the west, your children will love feeling (and seeing) the contrasts. Find Czech Republic educational resources here.


A behemoth of a continent, it’s tough to zero-in on only a few high-quality world schooling destinations within it. We did our best, and here are our go-to’s:

  • Japan — A completely foreign script, bullet trains, and the chance to master chopsticks. Living in and teaching your family in Japan means lessons on transcontinental wars, ancient warriors, modern development, tech, and more. This island’s intrigue knows no bounds! Find Japan educational resources here.
  • Cambodia — Often overlooked due to its wonderful neighbors, Cambodia deserves your attention. Discussing Buddhism, Hinduism, and spirituality while watching the sunrise over Angkor Wat is an experience your children won’t soon forget. Find Cambodia educational resources here.
  • India — To really challenge your family’s comfort zone and elevate their learning potential, try on India for world schooling. Beyond Himalayan vistas, the jasmine wreaths, colorful frocks, and occasional street cow will keep your kids excited about learning. Find India educational resources here.

Regardless of where you choose, one thing remains true: the world is your classroom. Enjoy!

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