Traveling with children is viewed by most modern parents as a chore that is best avoided, a necessity that is endured and not relished. However, traveling with kids is a wonder and a source of sheer joy.
After a long debate, endless hours of preparing list after list, and countless arguments later, we have managed to zero in on these seven places around the world that any traveling parent should add to their list of “must-visit” places.
1. Greek Islands
The Greek Islands offer a great choice of activities to choose from that can not only keep your kids engaged but also entertained – with pristine beaches and fun countryside activities.
All the islands, of course, have excellent beaches, but some are so huge that you need to dedicate at least a few days to explore each properly.
Show your kids tourism, the free image of local life in Greece with a trip to Naxos. Visit Crete to savor some of the best dishes made from fresh and raw ingredients.
Get on a ferry ride to Folegandros to look at some of the cliff-top houses and to Paros for kite boarding and surfing – something your kids might enjoy.
The diversity, the vastness, the cacophony of colors, smells, sights and sounds that India offers is not something you and your kids will forget in a hurry.
Each part of India is surprisingly and distinctly different from the other – with the language spoken, the cuisine and the costume entirely different.
If you start your journey from the southern part of India, your kids will enjoy visiting the many temples of Tamil Nadu – Madurai, Trichi and Chennai.
Crossover to Kerala and enjoy a boat ride on the backwaters of Cochin. Visit Goa to get a glimpse of the Portugal influence on the city, Delhi and Agra for their many forts and monuments, Rajasthan for the royal palaces, and Kashmir for being the paradise on earth – each place perfect for kids.
3. The USA
The USA offers so many places that your kids would certainly enjoy visiting – more than just once. Of course, Disneyland is a must.
The Grand Canyon will give your kids a chance to get acquainted with nature. Niagara Falls for a spellbinding experience, and New York – well, who doesn’t like to visit the Big Apple?
Take them to the San Diego Zoo for an up-close and personal experience with pandas, cats and even gorillas or better still, the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC for a look into space.
You will be shocked to find that almost everyone you meet – from tuk-tuk drivers to vendors in the local market – go gaga over your kids.
Pampering kids comes naturally to the people of Thailand – and it is best to let your children enjoy it while they can.
Moreover, Thailand has so many temples, beaches, excellent cuisine and culture that your kids might not have enough time to explore the many sites of this Buddhist country.
Bangkok is a must-visit place for its enjoyable boat trips, and don’t forget to check out Ko Chang for its elephant camps – the perfect place for kids.
Your family will certainly love Italy. However, you will notice that Italy also loves your family.
From breathtaking historical sites such as the Colosseum, Pantheon, Sistine Chapel and Leaning Tower of Pisa – Italy has no dearth for places to educate and entertain. Hit the many markets and restaurants for Italian pizza and world-class gelato.
Get on the many boat rides, enjoy the lush green countryside, scale the many mountains, visit the now-in-ruins Pompeii on the foothills of Mount Vesuvius.
A holiday in Italy has something for everyone in your family and is a favorite of baby specialists Baby Friendly Boltholes.
Africa has an enviable number of game parks, zoos, and animal reserves, and it is time your children enjoyed the animal kingdom as well.
The Kwandwe Ecca Lodge in South Africa is the perfect place to start your journey. This lodge allows your kids to go on a supervised game drive to look at some of the non-ferocious animals. They also organize fishing trips.
The Kalahari’s Tswalu Motse Lodge’s sand dunes are the place for your kids to practice cartwheels.
A trip to the Masai Mara National Park in Kenya is a must-visit place – for it offers the opportunity to witness the famous river crossing of animals. Kids can also visit Maasai traditional village and learn the ancient art of making rope.
7. The UK
The UK, unlike many other places, has so many parks, museums, restaurants, hotels, theme parks, adventure playgrounds, and monuments that your kids won’t have much time to get distracted.
The UK offers enough outdoor activities and events to keep your children engaged – always.
If your kid is a Harry Potter fan – as I am – then tracing Potter’s footsteps across London is a fun thing to do. Start from Warner Bros Studio Tour, Kings Cross Station, Piccadilly Circus, and Leadenhall Market.
Visit the London Transport Museum to unravel the history of London’s transport system. Take your kids to the Buckingham Palace just to look at their wonder-filled face.
Once you make traveling with children a habit, you will be able to better appreciate that a child who is surprised by a foreign land or who is gazing intently at a historic monument with wonder will manage to bring back a bit of your childhood to you.
Travel, in itself, helps us trace a few steps back to our childhood, and traveling with kids will help us connect with our children in a better way.
This post was brought to you by Tom at Backpackerboy.com.