Travel Tips for a Worldly Family Adventure
Written by: Mandy Moise
Soooo... My kids bottle just fell on the ground in Varanasi, India- Near the Ganges River. I picked it up, licked it off, and gave it back to her. I know your cringing,.. but hey,... she’s a second child. Any you have ALL done it before, just probably in a place like Starbucks.
I just returned from a 64 day trip through China, Indonesia, Nepal and India with my husband and two little girls (2.5 and 1). WHY would anyone with small children go to such places you ask? Well.... It’s mostly because my husband and I truly enjoy world travel plus we mixed in a few days of work.
Before leaving for our trip, my kids had to have serious vaccinations, take medication, and we learned how to sterilize bath water. Things most parents would never have to deal with, or maybe want to deal with.
So again, WHY? From dancing on the marble floors of the Taj Mahal to flying kites on roof-tops in Pushkar – we got to see the world through their eyes. They have seen what poverty looks like, learned compassion, and how you can help people that are less fortunate. They will grow up with the knowledge that this is what we did together as a family. They will have a greater global perspective and I hope that they will become better humans because of that.
Just a few incredible things we did as a family...
- We trekked through an Indonesian jungle on an elephant
- We chased (with a double McClaren) a funeral procession down the streets of Varanasi, India
- We watched, from above the clouds, a sunset in the Himalaya Mountains.
- My daughter actually selected a fabric -- out of a huge market in Shaoxing, China-- for my spring/summer 2013 vfish collection! A good eye already...
- We rode camels, fed fruit bats and monkeys, and charmed snakes.
Amazing, right? Now let me tell you some of the tougher moments....
- On 14 hr flight to China, got vomited on 5 times by both kids. Neither slept for more than 2 hrs.
- After the 3rd or 4th time of someone grabbing my 2.5 yr old daughters cheeks, she started screaming "DONT TOUCH ME"
- After one week, my 2.5 year old decided she wanted me to hold her 10 hours a day, (Thank god I have a good Chiropractor)
- Stroller friendly places? Paved sidewalks? Elevators? Not so much...
- The daily stress of what to feed the girls when we were out and about was hard. I relied on a lot of pre-packaged food, and squeezy pouch foods.
My top travel trips for your worldly family adventure:
- Visit a travel clinic. They know all the CDC info, and have great tips.
- Pack medications. Especially antibiotics. Kids pick up weird stuff overseas that they wouldn’t necessarily get here in the US. Just have it with you!
- Check if places you're staying have cribs/baby beds. We used the GO cribs by Guava Family. They inflate by air and fit into a backpack. Genius!
- Have a great sense of humor. When you're outside of your comfort zone, things will happen that won’t be ideal. Roll with the punches. These moments can turn out to be most memorable (Like when the power shuts off in Nepal in the middle of the night and you cuddle up with your kids in bed so they don’t freeze to death. Not ideal, but one of the best cuddle moments!)