For great toddler holidays, see things their way
We all want to come back from our holidays feeling refreshed and having had a memorable time away with our family. Many of us feel a little anxious about achieving this when we are holidaying with our toddlers. You can prepare for all their day-to-day needs easily enough but how can you be sure that they will have a really good time? Trying to see things their way is a good place to start and this article tries to help you do that.
“I’m only little”
Being small is great for playing but really quite scary when you are in amongst large crowds of giant adults. Being hip height means that your toddler can see nothing in a crowd except for grown-up frames towering above them. Try to avoid the worst crowds by:
- Holidaying during the low season or shoulder seasons when there are fewer people holidaying;
- Travelling outside of local rush hours so that both your family and the local workforce have more space to breath; and
- Standing back from the biggest crowds at the most popular tourist sites or popping them up on your shoulders so that they can see what everyone is looking at.
It is worth remembering that holidaying outside the peak season means that you can often secure great deals for your family holiday and can take advantage of cooler weather more suitable for your toddler’s comfort.
“I want my teddy”
Your toddler has certain routines that you ignore at your peril. If they have a favourite teddy or dolly that goes everywhere with them you probably won’t have to remember to take it with you because your child will be clutching onto it as you get in the taxi to the airport – it’s the other routines you need to remember:
- The special teddy comfort blanket or night light that your toddler has to have with them for a successful bedtime;
- The sippy cup that they simply cannot do without because other drinking vessels are no good; and
- That particular breakfast cereal that is as important to their temperament for the rest of the day as your cup of coffee is to yours.
All mealtime routines will remain important to your toddler – it’s not so much where you eat as when you eat but do avoid restaurants that only serve “yucky” food (so that world famous seafood restaurant may be off the agenda this time around).
“That’s boring I want to do something”
The curator in the museum or guide in the art gallery may be excellent but that will not hold much sway with your toddler who will soon loudly declare that they are bored and lay down on the floor in front of everyone. This doesn’t mean that you have to spend your entire holiday in playgrounds and theme parks think ‘interaction’ and look for:
- Child friendly museums that have display areas with plenty of buttons to push and leavers to pull;
- Zoos and aquaria that have petting areas so that your toddler can feel what a sheep’s wool coat is like or that a snakes skin isn’t slimy or can feed a ray; and
- Art galleries or restaurants that have cater for children making their own artistic or culinary creations.
You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how many tourist attractions go out of their way to make sure that your toddlers don’t get bored – other articles about making the most of toddler and family holidays on this blog will give you more ideas.
“Oooh that’s pretty”
You might well enjoy the fineries of an old master’s brush strokes and use of light to create an atmospheric rendition of an 18th century artisan at work. Your toddler on the other hand needs bright colours and sounds to win them round (just think about those garish repetitive pre-school TV programmes they watch). So make some time in your toddler holiday for:
- Fun fairs and amusement parks that have gone that extra mile to light up the faces of their smallest visitors;
- Street performers fountains and parks that have plenty of ducks and geese; and;
- Carnivals feasts or Christmas markets that are full of vitality laughter and colour.
So for that perfect toddler holiday rediscover your inner child and see things their way.