“I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list”
– Susan Songtag
I caught the travel bug many years ago.
At the age of five my parents took my brother and I travelling in a bright red Commer van with a caravan in tow.
We travelled through France and Spain and flirted with the top of Africa and I came home with a wanderlust.
Now I’m a parent I feel a great weight of responsibility to show my children the world.
To show them how different the world is, how beautiful, how big, how inspiring.
Before children I travelled a lot.
I’ve had lunch in the mountains above Budapest. I’ve been skiing in Austria. I’ve travelled on horse and cart through Germany, sat with villagers on the island of Skiathos, attended a wedding in Florence, Italy.
I’ve travelled to Thailand, Canada, America, the Caribbean, Lapland.
I’ve travelled to villages very few people get to see let alone visit in Papua, Indonesia.
And all the time I wonder, will I be passing on that wanderlust to my children? Will they crave what I craved?
And how the heck does all of that translate into a family holiday?
To us the perfect family holiday is one where we’re having experiences together.
It’s about looking back and thinking ‘wow, we did that. That was pretty awesome’.
For a family who loves to veg out on the sofa with a good movie on we do love our adventure.
Dolphin watching, horse riding in the sea, snorkelling, scuba diving, we’ll give them all a go!
To me travel is about having write home moments. Moments that when the pictures pop up on the digital photo frame in the lounge someone asks “WHEN did you guys do that?!”
Ah and the photos. I LOVE taking travel photos. Like posing in snorkels and the 10 year old pulls her grumpy face because it’s time to go home and she wants to keep her mask forever.
So what makes a perfect family holiday for you?
I turned to Twitter and Facebook to ask and got some fabulous answers. I specifically asked: What do you consider THE most important thing when going on a family holiday?
(Very few people managed to answer with one thing!)
A surprising number of people said WiFi was on their list, showing a real sign of the times!
And this was followed by a resounding ‘FOOD’!
Erica has a great list (I said ONE thing Erica!): “1. Stuff for an only child to enjoy 2. Food. 3. Things for us all to do together 4. Wee bit of luxury 5. Value (all the above at an affordable price!)
I also love Liz’s reply: “A really comfortable bed, seriously I check reviews for info. Nothing worse than spending a fortunes on a holiday and then not sleeping or having back pain for 2 weeks. After that facilities, food, wifi, stuff for us to do. These days we tend to try and get an apartment rather than a hotel room so we can self cater and have a little privacy now L is 13.”
Over to Kylie: “Museums. We booked a week in Majorca last year. Kids facilities including a kids club galore. Day 2 Joseph said, this is all very nice but where are the museums? There were none nearby at all. This year we’ve booked Normandy. It won’t be as warm but there’s a lot more to do.”
Seriously, this stuff is golden; these are all families who travel who know exactly what they need from their family holidays. And it’s really interesting to see how things change as our children get older.
Except for Kerry; I’m pretty sure she’s always going to have food at the top of her list!
And what did Twitter have to say? Here are just a few of their answers:
I’m crowd sourcing for a blog post I’m writing: what’s THE most important thing for you when going on a #familyholiday?
Fun? Sun? Beach?
— Sticky Fingers blog (@tara_cain) February 18, 2016
And finally, this is how we do family holidays!
This post is for the Mark Warner Holidays’ Family Ambassador Programme (they’re asking what your perfect holiday is).
Thanks to everyone who joined in and answered the questions and gave such honest and interesting answers.
What I take from all of this is that people love to travel, love to take their kids and are passing on that wanderlust as best they can!