We love kids here at Backroads! It’s a joy to see them biking through the rolling hills of Tuscany with their parents, hiking around a volcano in Hawaii and ziplining through the jungles of Costa Rica. Since we see so many families on our active family vacations each year, it’s only natural that we have a few tips for active travel with kids. We want you and your family to have the best vacation possible and a little preparation can make sure it’s a trip your children will remember for the rest of their lives.
Here are our top 5 tips for the best active travel experience with kids:
1) Getting home and back can be the least fun parts of your family biking tour or family hiking tour. Make flying fun by bringing games, books, favorite snacks and a surprise for after the flight. Be sure to ask the flight attendant if they have any special packets for kids. Select pre and post hotels that cater to families and offer kid activities and amenities—our Travel Planners can help you with that. Research activities in your gateway city that the whole family can enjoy: aquariums, zoos, parks, children’s museums and theatres.
2) When packing for kids on an active family trip, be sure to include plastic bags for sticky and dirty clothes, a nightlight to brighten unfamiliar rooms, pediatrician contact information, medications, a comforting toy and addresses of their friends so they can send postcards.
3) Staying at a hotel can be an exciting experience for children. To make your family’s stay more enjoyable, give kids a tour of the property when you arrive and explain the rules regarding the minibar, in-room movies and telephone.
4) Practice hiking and biking with your kids before you arrive on your family bike tour or family walking tour. The additional time together on training rides and hikes can make great family bonding days. And not only that, the kids became familiar with what gear they need, how to layer clothing properly, and what snacks and food they like most on the trail and on the bike.
5) Have a meeting before your family adventure and agree to rules regarding the use of electronics during your trip. Consider allowing electronics during travel to and from only; a camera as the only electronic item for kids during the tour; or simply leaving phones and Gameboys at home. If parents also agree to unplug, they’ll likely get more buy-in from the kids. The rewards of real family bonding, full immersion into the culture or nature of a place, disconnecting from the distractions of daily life and home, and creating more opportunity for incredible memories far outweighs the hardship of giving up the electronics.
Come explore the world with your family on a Backroads family adventure vacation. We’re pretty sure the kids will forget about the PlayStation quickly and be ready to send off postcard after postcard to their buddies as they enjoy all our trips have to offer.
For more information about Backroads Family Trips, please visit www.Backroads.com or call us 7 a.m.-5 p.m. daily at 800-462-2848. You can also check out our online Family Trip Advisor to get help finding the perfect adventure for your family.