How to slow travel with kids – By Linda Enoh

Zastanawiacie się dlaczego nagle zaczęłam pisać bloga po angielsku? Przez ostatni tydzień podróżowałam po Włoszech. Dostęp do sieci miałam ograniczony. Cieszyłam się pięknem wokół i karmiłam swojego ducha.  Obiecuję napisze o tym już wkrótce!

W czasie mojej nieobecności  Linda Enoh, którą poznałam w sieci dzięki Karoline Kornell założycielce Online Entreprenista, napisała dla Was gościnny post o podróżowaniu slow z dziećmi.

Linda jest entuzjastką podróżowania, mamą dwóch synów, którzy jeszcze nie skończyli 2 lat, ponadto blogerką i wykładowcą akademickim. Uwielbia uczyć się języków i spędzać wolny czas podróżując. Na swoim blogu www.tokende.com inspiruje i zachęca do podróżowania z dziećmi, zwłaszcza tymi najmniejszymi.

Zbliża się najpiękniejsza pora roku, a z nią wakacje. Niech ten wpis zainspiruje Was do ruszenia w świat w towarzystwie najmłodszych.

Feel invited to read!

Traveling with kids is not for the faint of heart. Indeed, for many parents, the thought of traveling with babies and toddlers is synonymous with stress. I have two under two (Baby J and Baby S) and I love traveling with them so this means that I know a thing or two about stressful travel. With some practice, I have figured out what works for us and I can say with confidence that the key to traveling stress-free with kids is a good level of preparation.

Nonetheless fear not, my dear readers, because in this post, I am going to show you how, ironically, you can slow travel with kids, whether you plan it or not.

  • Be prepared, so the trip can be enjoyable

FOOD: The best way to prepare for a trip with children is to start thinking of it early enough. Think of the food and snacks you will need on the road for your little ones but also for the adults traveling. Not all airlines provide food and snacks on the plane so remember to bring your own food. Small children won’t be as patient as adults when it comes to hunger, so for your own sake and that of fellow passengers, make sure you have enough food on the plane.

ACCOMODATION: When it comes to your accommodation, choosing an apartment or booking a hotel room with a kitchenette may help with bottle washing, storing food and drinks that need to stay cool, or even fixing up quick meals. Also, kids seem to enjoy haven’t that extra space to play hide and seek. Although be careful not to let the kids play around the kitchenette when the stove is on. Be safe!

 

Our  sons, Baby J and Baby S, enjoying the kitchenette in Montreal and in Toronto

ACCESSORIES: Decide if bringing a stroller is necessary or is a baby carrier will suffice. If you are going to a very crowded space, the latter cold be a better option. On a recent Thanksgiving trip to New York City we decided to take the double stroller with us. It made more sense to use because the boys could rest in the stroller while staying warm. When visiting a city like Seattle that is very walkable, bringing a stroller along can help as well because you may get tired very quick when carrying your kids up and down the city hills.

3 Linda

Baby S enjoying the lights of New York City

SLEEPING ARRANGEMENT: When we were still rookies at traveling with our kids, we used to take everything but the house on our trips. With more practice (and baggage fees!), we’ve learned that some items were worth leaving at home. This is particularly the case with pack and plays. We used to bring this heavy piece of equipment everywhere and it was quite miserable. Now, we just call the hotel ahead of time of put a note in the booking requesting a pack and play (or crib) for our kids. These are free and all hotels should have them. It is a great feeling to come in your hotel room and see the pack and plays already set up for your kids. This makes bedtime smooth and stress-free.

 4 Linda

Two pack and plays set up for Baby J and Baby S at the Double Tree in New York

  • Remember to put their comfort first

Travel can be straining on small children so it’s important to put their health and wellbeing first. As adult travelers we tend to rush into our travel, trying to hit as many destinations and attractions as possible. When you travel with young kids, you need to approach your timing differently: it’s not about the quantity but the quality. In other words, it’s much better to enjoy a few days in a city to settle a little bit than to rush in and out of suitcases to keep up with a set itinerary.

Another thing you can do to keep your children comfortable during your travel, is to try to include a sense of familiarity. For that, try to follow the same schedule or routine as the one at home: morning nap, lunch together, bath time, bedtime stories, etc. You can also bring along their favorite toy/blankie to put them at ease, and of course, food and snacks from home that like in case they don’t like the ones at your destination.

  • Relax: kids will teach you to slow down and smell the roses

Avoid the crowded touristic spots and go where the local families hang out. Having a picnic in the park is more valuable that standing in line at a museum.

5 Linda

Baby J running around at the Botanical Garden in Seattle

Focus on the simple things that will create long-lasting memories: seeing the glow in their eyes as they chase pigeons in the park, or capturing their reaction when they try a local food for the first time. It is more about appreciating the little things and not wanting everything to be scheduled to a T.

My last words on slow traveling with kids would be these: have fun and enjoy the journey, they won’t be that age for long!

 

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