Surviving family holidays with teenagers
Family holidays with teenagers are often dreaded by both the parents and the teenagers. Parents hate the thought of dragging around a bored teenager who is too old to be easily amused playing on the beach or in the swing park but who is still too young to be safely left alone to holiday by themselves. Teenagers would generally prefer to be off doing their own thing rather than being stuck with mum and dad and doing boring grown-up stuff or playing with younger siblings. What’s the solution? How can you survive family holidays with teenagers without both sides ending up bored frustrated and angry?
Here are a few ideas for destinations and activities that teenagers will love and that parents will be happy to take part in as well.
If there is one phrase that describes most teenagers it is fashion-conscious. They are at the time in their lives when what they look like matters more than almost anything else. What could be better for them than a trip to one of the sophisticated urban centres of Europe. Paris, Rome, Nice, Barcelona even London have an appeal for the young and fashionable. They will be delighted to have easy access to the best shopping facilities in Europe and you should be able to fit in some of the more cultural activities on offer at the same time.
Let’s get surfing
For the more active teenager. Why not encourage them to give surfing a try? You get to relax on the beach while they have a go at riding the waves. There are popular surfing resorts across south-west France and northern Spain. San Sebastian in Spain in particular is also well known for it’s night-life so teenagers should love their time there and you will be around to keep an eye on them and make sure things don’t get too out of hand.
If surfing doesn’t appeal there are plenty more activity holidays to choose from. One area that doesn’t get the attention it deserves is the north of Spain. Here you will find stunning beaches for the adults and younger children to enjoy but also the chance to try out many other active sports including rafting and mountain biking. As an added bonus the north of Spain tends to be a little cheaper than the better known southern part of the country.
Wherever you choose remember that holidays are about fun. There is no point going away together if you don’t enjoy it. The key to surviving family holidays with teenagers is planning and accepting that you don’t need to do everything together.
Give them opportunities to be involved at every stage of the planning and while you are away but don’t force them to participate if they don’t want to. Give them space to be themselves. If they want to stay in bed all day in their own room one day then let them do that. It’s their holiday just as much as it’s yours so if they aren’t harming themselves why not let them do what they enjoy. You can go out and enjoy the time with the rest of the family and they can be happy doing their own thing.