Travel with children: how and where?

Traveling with children is “for the few brave” who feel like doing it … Maybe you have heard it said many times and this has discouraged you. But it’s not true. If the little ones get used to traveling early, they will adapt immediately and traveling with them will never be traumatic whether you go to Paris or Sydney! So the sooner you start, the better! It will not be a “courage operation” at all. All you need to do is follow some practical and very simple rules, which we will try to suggest to you here. Ready to take notes?

Getting children used to traveling

Get your children used to traveling from an early age. Even if they are just a few months old, often take them to the park, at relatives’ house, to picnics. These little tests will also help you understand which means of transport the little ones will feel most comfortable in. For example, some love sleeping in the car, others suffer from it. Some can stay calm on the bus, and if they can make it there they’ll make it on the plane too. When you go to a place with the children, even if only to the park near your house, involve them and make them participate (“look how beautiful it is…”, “shall we try to follow it?”, “do you like this tree?”…etc). You will make them curious and therefore… excellent travellers.

Planning: how to travel with children?

Study carefully a trip to take with your children, starting from the location and the itinerary up to packing your suitcase and the transfer to the station or airport. The latter must be considered well in advance!

Once you leave then, depending on the means of transport, make sure that everything is always fun and reassuring. In the car – keeping the little ones safe with the appropriate seats and belts – you can sing, play, even use small toys that break the “boredom” of the moving. You can also invent games related to the panorama that surrounds them (“who spots a hill, a mountain, a horse first?”). On the train there is more possibility of movement and children are immediately involved in the charm of the vehicle: its speed, the way it “wobbles”, the tunnels…

On an airplane, apparently, it is more complicated. There are seats to book, luggage to select to take on board and not in the hold. You must be careful not to forget the containers of their food and certainly must not forget two fundamental allies: the drops against ear pain and mini toys with which to entertain them firmly in their place. Up to 2 years old, little ones sit on mum or dad’s lap. From 3 years old and up they can sit separately, but with their parents always close by. Many rules that apply to the plane also apply to traveling with children by bus.

Ideal destinations: where to travel with children?

To start, focus on safe locations and countries, where you can find many services and even itineraries suitable for children. This usually means Europe or the United States, but also Canada. The cities are certainly more recommended: Rome, Florence, New York, Paris, Berlin, Amsterdam, Madrid … Or the locations that boast attractions for the little ones: Disneyland, Gardaland, Adventure Parks. The most adventurous parents can excite their children with a trip to Venice, or Amsterdam, magical cities where instead of cars you go around by boat!

It goes without saying that the sea is the other typical alternative for families with children. Calabria, Puglia, Sardinia (Italy) are ideal for “child-proof” beaches; but also the Sicilian islands, the Greek islands, the Spanish ones. Slovenia and Albania are increasingly establishing themselves as excellent seaside destinations for children. If you prefer the mountains, the ideal destination to experience with children is the the Alps – in particular Trentino or Carinthia – but the large lakes are also good. Canada is a great experience to have, with young children.

You can find many other tips in the now numerous “blogs” dedicated specifically to traveling with children, often written by very enthusiastic mothers or fathers!