Going on the holiday when the children are young can be the perfect occasion to have fun, unwind and make memories that will last a lifetime. However, travelling abroad with children often carries a certain amount of stress as hassled parents try to ensure that their children are enjoying themselves, are well-fed and hydrated, and keep out of trouble. Although travelling with children is not always as idyllic as playing with a bucket and spade on the beach, by pre-planning accordingly, you can help your holiday to run as smoothly as possible, regardless of your little terrors.
- Find a Family-Friendly Location
The location or country that you plan to visit can also make a large difference to the type of activities and events that you plan to do on your holiday. For instance, children may grow bored and tired if you plan to visit a large city, or somewhere with little entertainment for young children, and so finding the balance between your ideal holiday and that of your children is important.
The South of France is one of the best locations for family holidays. Not only is the travel length short compared to many other countries, but you can easily travel there through the Eurostar, avoiding the worries of the airport. Additionally, the South of France is a great place for relaxation away from the stresses of everyday life, allowing you to let your children play on the family-friendly beaches whilst you relax in the sun. Villas in South of France will allow you to set your holiday to your own pace, as well as immerse yourself within the laid-back lifestyle of the vineyards and beaches of Southern France.
The Algarve is another great place for family holidays as the pristine beaches, with their mild weather all year-round provide the best temperatures for family fun. Additionally, the coast is lined with some of the best water parks and attractions in Europe, and most of these are within easy access to the region’s many resorts.
If you are looking to experience more of city life, Barcelona is another easy retreat for families. With its architectural delights and laidback atmosphere, there is no end of amusement, especially since there are also easy day trips to a couple of entertaining theme park which all the family can enjoy.
- Choose Your Accommodation Wisely
From family hostels to lavish hotels, there are a wide range of accommodation options for those with young children, and choosing the right one for your family and your needs can make a huge amount of difference to the enjoyment of your holiday. Before booking your accommodation, you should think about what activities you intend to do on your holiday and whether you would like your accommodation to be catered or self-catered. For instance, if you intend to spend a lot of time relaxing at the beach, you may want to find accommodation close to the beach, and even book a family-friendly resort which may have its own exclusive access to a strip of beach or its own pools.
However, one of the best options for family-friendly accommodation is self-catered villas as they enable you and your children to enjoy your holiday at your own pace. Not only will they not have hotel cleaners disturbing you at the crack of dawn, but they will usually provide a kitchen and food preparation facilities in which you can cook your own food, which is especially important for fussy eaters. Villas also allow you to have your own space, and room for the children to run around in and make as much noise as they like, without worrying about your neighbours.
- Plan Entertainment for the Children
Boredom can cause children to be naughtier than they would be at home, and planning a wide range of activities for your child is essential before you visit. After all, you do not want to arrive in another country, only to find that there is little by way of attractions for families. Planning your days, and your entertainment plans will help your holiday to run smoothly and cut down chaos surrounding transport methods or other unforeseen circumstances. You should also ensure that you plan ahead in terms of necessities, such as when you will eat, and where the nearest facilities are, as this will ensure that you can maintain the happiness of your child- and hopefully reduce the number of tantrums.
- Cut Down on Transport Arrangements
While adults may love jetting off to exotic destinations, travelling for a lengthy amount of time can be stressful and overwhelming for young children, especially if they have never flown before. Elements of your journey that may cause your child stress include the flight, the airport, travelling by car in a foreign country and unfamiliar public transport. Where possible, you should ensure that none of your travel arrangements are too long, and, if they are unavoidable, you should bring ample in-flight entertainment, food and drinks for your child to keep them occupied and meet their needs throughout the length of the journey, as this will help to reduce any problems along the way.
- Pack all the Important Essentials
To keep your child happy and ensure that you have a stress-free holiday, you should ensure that you pack all of the important essentials before you travel, and each day before beginning your activities. For instance, if your child is a fussy eater, you should pack snacks and other familiar food items for them to eat if you are in a country with different and exotic cuisine. Additionally, you should also think about packing familiar items, whether that be the same toothpaste as they have at home or their favourite soft toy, as this will help to maintain their routine and feel less overwhelmed in their new environment.
Although holidays with children can be extremely stressful and overwhelming for both children and their parents, family holidays are one of the best ways to create memories which you will treasure forever, as well as allowing your children to experience new environments and cultures. By following the correct guidance, it is possible to have a relatively stress-free holiday and enable both you and your child to have an enjoyable time.