It’s often thought that once you have children your opportunities to travel suddenly become limited to European holiday resorts with high-rise hotels and a Kids’ Club run by a sweaty man in a giant purple dolphin suit.
But why should the exploring stop when you’re a parent? Having children with you on your travels can be an enriching experience, opening all kinds of doors no matter where you choose to go.
A new perspective
Even if you’ve travelled the world twice over, having your children with you will present it in a whole different light. Kids give us an entirely different perspective on places, pointing out the smallest things and allowing you to experience them afresh each time. Whether you’re combing the beach for seashells, buying fruit at a market or searching for souvenirs, your children will make every time feel like the first.
Travellers are never afraid to try new things, but having your children with you will make you go on trips that you’d never normally consider. It could be a voyage on a pirate ship or a donkey trek through the mountains, but the knowledge that you and your little ones experienced it together is the one you’ll keep.
Experience the best of people
Travelling with kids always brings out the best in those you meet. Many restaurant waiters will be happy to seat you in the most convenient place, passersby will help you if you are struggling to juggle a toddler and luggage, and many people will give up their seats on public transport to let a weary parent sit with a child on their lap.
If you travel with children you will probably notice that they talk to everyone, old or young, English-speaking or not. Kids can always find ways to communicate, and you never know, their new best friend may just be the owner of a boutique hotel!
The little perks
There are many perks available when you travel with kids – particularly under 5s. Many airlines allow priority boarding, and some airports even have a queue jump policy for parents travelling with very little ones. Kids can also get discounts on everything from hotel rooms to restaurants, so make sure to always ask for the little perks.
Some countries are more child-friendly than others – for example, people in Portugal and Spain have some of the best reputations for their willingness to help out families on holiday – but having your child with you means that you’re never far from another amazing experience!
About the author: Gavin Harvey is a personal trainer with an insatiable case of wanderlust! He loves to wander off the beaten track and discover those hidden gems that most tourists don’t see. He blogs about his travels for School Stickers and you can keep up with his latest adventures by following him on twitter.
Find out more about our great range of Culture Adventures and see how the world can open up when you travel with kids.