The smaller the better
It doesn’t seem so when you have a tiny baby and are overwhelmed with the big change in your life.
But, having a toddler and having travelled with her a lot, we can assure you that the easiest age to travel with kids is till they turn 2.
Before that they don’t care, they just need their parents around, they sleep more, allowing you more time to do the activities without interruptions, and they weigh less, making it easier to carry them. A breastfed baby is the easiest – you need very little to keep them happy – just a baby carrier and clean nappies/diapers.
Toddlerhood is the most difficult age – not always it’s possible to reason with a toddler, they already have a will and they aren’t able yet to sympathize with other people’s needs.
Toddlerhood is the most difficult age for travelling as well. Toddlers don’t sleep during the day much or at all, they cannot walk a lot, which means you need to take a stroller, or a carrier, with you all the time, they aren’t interested in any attractions, except for the pools and playgrounds and they want to spend there the whole day, not caring about parents’ wish to admire architecture or nature, or other exciting things. And they are picky eaters, making it hard to try local cuisines. Since 2 years old it’s always been a struggle and looking for a compromise between a playground and sightseeing for us.
But there’s Hope
One day your toddler will grow up and appreciate all the fun the travelling brings, will visit museums, study and admire the architecture and nature with enthusiasm and will walk and carry their things by themselves. Or not. But hopefully yes.
How to Survive and not Give up
Yes, travelling with a toddler is challenging. But not impossible. You need to correct your expectations to meet the current state of things: slow down, don’t plan too much, and when you cannot stand that playground anymore, make a deal to find another one 😉 And plan your route between the playgrounds so as to squeeze as much sightseeing into it as you can.
As for the eating – take your toddler’s favourite food with you and your choice of restaurants won’t be restricted.You can also ask to bring your toddler something they would eat, but not every restaurant would make something that is not included in the menu.
And one more thing – don’t lie. If you promised to find another playground, you have to find it. Toddlers are smart and learn fast. Lie once and they won’t believe you again, and that will make things even more complicated.
Yes, travelling with a toddler is challenging. But we accept this challenge. And you?