As a kid, you probably have memories of your family vacations when you all used to pack up and go somewhere together. Not everyone’s vacations were great, but they usually weren’t as bad as those you see in the movies. One of the problems with a family vacation is that the kids can be difficult to keep entertained, or they miss their home comforts. That is why it is so important that you get the most from any family vacation you take. Here are some tips to make your vacation something to remember in a good way.
Planning as a Family
When you are thinking about where you want to go, it can be easy to go ahead and book something you like without thinking about the kids. To make it a better experience for all of you, include your children in the planning of the holiday. Ask them if there is anywhere they especially want to see or do, and also what type of holiday they want. Would they like to go camping, or stay in a hotel or resort? If you have young children and older teens, it can be difficult to find somewhere that will please them all, but if some type of compromise can be reached, then it’s better than not having them involved.
Look at Your Budget
Many holiday destinations are determined by budget; if you have a lot saved, then you can fly anywhere you wish, but if your budget is tight, there are other options. For those with big budgets, the world is your oyster; there are many amazing locations out there that you can all explore as a family. You can also call in companies online to help you plan your vacation, such as one you can view here, that can assist with your luxury getaway. If you’re on a tight budget, then you need to think about where you can go that will offer the best value and still have plenty to do for the kids. Camping is always a good option because it is cheap, but you can still take the whole family. Find a location that has plenty of activities for the kids to do. For example, some campsites are in parks where you can sail, fish and trek around the area.
Keep it, Family, Only
Sometimes you might be tempted to bring a friend along for your older child to hang out with. Though you might think this will solve a problem, it can make the situation worse. One of the best parts of a family vacation is the bonding process that you as a family can have. It can be tough to be apart with work and other commitments getting in the way, so time as a family is important. If you invite a friend, you will be creating a group within a group that could undermine the family time and bonding you were looking to have. However, other family members can be a good idea, such as grandparents, because they will often help to look after younger kids if you want to be adventurous.
Plan Activities Around Peak Times
It doesn’t mean peak times for attractions; it’s all about your kid’s peak activity levels. Young children are usually more active early in the day, but they can become grumpy and tired later in the day. Older kids and teens especially, will usually not be awake until the late morning, but will often stay up late into the evening. If you have planned trips or activities in mind, then it is best to find a time when all of your children are awake and functioning well. If this isn’t possible, then plan things in the morning for the younger kids, and other activities in the afternoon for the teens. That can be why having grandparents around can be helpful, as they can always remain behind and come out later for the afternoon fun.
Consider a Media Blackout
For most adults and children, the internet has become a lifeline and one that can be hard to leave even for a moment. However, what you don’t want is everyone sitting, clinging to their phones or tablets for the whole vacation. That is why implementing some type of media detox can be hugely beneficial. It won’t be easy on your kids or on you, but it will hopefully make them enjoy the trip more. If you don’t want to have a total ban on media, then restrict it to set times of the day when you are resting or not engaged in any activities. However, you do want to make sure that you take a camera with you, so you can take pictures, and at least one mobile phone, especially if you are trekking in case of emergency.
When you are traveling with children, it can seem logical that you need to plan your trip in detail, so you can keep them amused. Although this is a good idea for general parts of the holiday such as accommodation and travel, you should also try to build in some spontaneity as well. If you are traveling and you see something that interests you, then you should be able to stop and check it out. It can be these unplanned moments that give you the best experiences and the most treasured memories. It can be a good idea to have some surplus in the budget for these moments, especially if they are activities that everyone can take part.
Try to Keep the Fun Going
Even when you aren’t doing anything in particular, try to keep it fun and light-hearted. For example, if you are in a city and you want to see the sights, why not take an open top bus, or perhaps a river ferry if there is one? Not only will it allow you to see parts of the city you might not find any other way, but it will also stop the kids from getting bored. The same applies to other parts of the trip as well, try and find a themed restaurant for dinner and also see if you can find some of the more unusual sights that other tourists miss. It will be great for the kids, and also something that they can talk about when they get home.
Discover important lessons for the kids
Although holidays are designed to be fun and relaxing, you can also throw in some educational elements as well. It will keep your kid’s minds active and also teach them important life lessons. For example, there might be a museum you could visit. Or, you might see an event celebrating the end of the war that could be educational. Some museums also now have interactive displays that your children can use to learn about certain topics. You don’t want to have educational experiences every day, but a couple during the trip will be good for them.
A lot of people and their families will try to pack a huge amount into their vacations that they don’t have time to explore. Although you want to see as much as you can, you won’t get a nice experience if you have to rush around before the next stop on your journey. Plan to spend at least a day if not more at each location so you can fully experience the sights. You should also be flexible in your plans so that you can stay a little longer in one location if there is something you want to do. If you are staying at a resort, then take time to relax as well as do all of the activities. Plan to spend a few more days at the resort to cater for any additional activities or to chill out.
Make the Vacation Last
Once you return home, there can be a lull because you have had such as good time. However, you can try to keep the spirit of the vacation going by making one of your favourite meals while you were there. You can also have fun putting together a photo with all of your best moments from the trip. These can be especially good if your children have to do a project on their holidays.
The best way to overcome the blues of coming back from a vacation is to plan your next one. You can start this process as soon as you get home, even if you aren’t planning to go for a year. If you can, try to choose somewhere new instead of going back to the same places every year. You never know what you will discover, and it might become your new favourite place.
Whether you can go on a family vacation every year, or only once in a while, you can still have a great time and learn new things along the way. The important thing to remember is to keep your kids involved in the planning of your trip.