Where to go on holiday?

I’ve just been reading a copy of Conde Nast Traveller – the most aspirational travel mag on the planet. That said the April issue is full of clever ideas (and some surprisingly affordable) about how to make use of having children to entertain during the later than ever before Easter school holiday. This post is by Nicola Baird

Do you realise you could still teach the kids to ski, say at the delightfully named Yeti Club in Switzerland (reachable by train, see the man in seat 61 for journey ideas here?

Or that you could reward yourself for sitting poolside for a winter of swimming lessons by finding the warmer weather on the beaches of Cyprus and Turkey? (The feature is on p21/april 2011/Traveller).

My last published piece on travel with kids was in The Observer, see the link here if you want to know where I think the best youth hostels in the UK are. That piece was written in 2007, but I still really like the huge, family-friendly YHA at Ambleside in the Lake District – although I’m always slightly shocked by how full their car park seems to be. Taking a holiday with a car seems to me to be very similar to most people’s lives with the daily stresses of finding parking spots (and the right change), plus the heart-beating challenge of taking the third left on a busy roundabout just as your six-year-old starts asking about the facts of life.

Made your choice yet?
Of course I don’t know where you should take a holiday, but if it gives you and the family a chance to live a little differently then go for it. And by different I’m thinking downshifting choices rather than spa-chic and toddler pedicures.


My top 10 holiday pleasures
======================
1 Getting up without rushing

2 Eating breakfast much later than normal

3 Going for slow play walks in the woods, ideally with a dog and enough companions to ensure that when the kids want to build a den the rest of us can chat… or just arrange to come back

4 Trying out cafes and local specialities (laverbread is seaweed!)

5 Taking a night walk with a torch, or a mix of star and moonlight

6 Paddling in streams – getting shoes off wherever possible

7 Learning something about a place or a thing. So why are Cox’s the only apples with seeds that can be heard to rattle?

8 Painting – with anything and everything, mud, gloop, watercolours, bits of charcoal, hen feathers dipped in oils…

9 Trying out a new language, ideally one that Facebook recognises

10 Writing “wish you were here” postcards, and not actually meaning it. That does sound mean, but it’s nice to be holidaying with the people you really want to be with…

Enjoy your Easter holiday plans
As you can guess, I’m staying put because my list of 10 can be lived out very well very close to home! For other ideas about fun things to do with small children see my book Homemade Kids: thrifty, creative and eco-friendly ways to raise children. Or share your own ideas here.

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