Independent travel and the spirit of adventure can often be quashed once children come along, as many families succumb to the archetypal ‘family holiday’ full of sandcastles and ice lollies and while there’s a certain appeal to that, it’s by no means the only option available.
While adventure travel for kids is an enjoyable prospect, there are some simple ways to ensure the trip runs smoothly and with as little stress as possible. Travelling with children requires a certain amount of advance planning, especially if the children are very young and dependant. Start by doing plenty of research on possible destinations, considering their relevance to kids, then narrow down the options by matching them up with personal criteria and individual preferences.
Expect your children to get bored easily, especially during long periods of being stuck aboard a vehicle, so make sure you are well prepared for this and have thought it through prior to travel. Pack plenty of snacks, books and entertainment devices and consider wrapping small, individual toys so that they can be opened at regular intervals when a distraction is needed.
Think about where you are going and have a detailed itinerary as well as lists of essential phone numbers and plenty of ideas of things to do, including back-up options. Facilities for children will need to be considered.
Tailor made holidays come with a certain sense of satisfaction, especially as they are usually planned following much discussion and are suited to the needs of everyone traveling. There is nothing better than taking to the road, knowing your trip is exactly what you wanted it to be, with none of the compromises that come from booking a standard package holiday.
Where to go.
There are lots of great places to go and the world really is your oyster, but failsafe hits with children include walking or hiking holidays, cycling trips or water-based activities. If the travel is off-putting, set a time limit for acceptable distances and perhaps consider flight times of no more than four hours or similar.
National parks offer countless opportunities for adventure and children are always fascinated by the great outdoors. Search for minibeasts, trample through leaves or paddle in streams, making the most of the fresh air and freedom.
Camping is another exciting prospect and there can be nothing better than sitting out under the stars, satisfying rumbling tummies on barbequed sausages, while planning the next day’s activities in earnest.
Most children like to be active and by indulging in sporty activities, everyone has the chance to spend quality time together. Watersports such as sailing, surfing or swimming are things that work on different levels regardless of age or ability.
Where to stay.
Children can be exuberant at best and noisy at worst, so to allow them to let of steam without you getting stressed, self catering accommodations is ideal. By hiring a cabin or cottage, everyone has some space and privacy and the environment can be a home from home with no fear of disturbing anyone else.
Another fantastic family friendly alternative is to travel in a camper van or motor home and this can be lots of fun for everyone and allow for plenty of flexibility. The same goes for hiring a narrowboat and taking it for a leisurely trip down winding canals steeped in tradition and promoting a relaxed pace of life.
There are many different types of holiday available to families with children and each one can be an adventure in itself, prompting the formation of precious lifelong memories. While adventure travel is certainly challenging with children in tow, its also incredibly rewarding and great fun too!