A REAL-WORLD EDUCATION
The late Keith Bellows, Emeritus Editor-inChief of ‘National Geographic Travel’, sought to make family travel an accepted form of education. Its wonders and challenges, he believed, are essential to understanding the world and our place in it.
“Any adult who gives a child the gift of travel bestows the gift that keeps on giving,” he wrote. “The value of lifelong learning, the ability to teach yourself, is incalculable. You get your most important diploma in life from travel.”
Cathy Wagstaff, founder and publishing editor of Holidays with Kids and Five Star Kids, says, “Travel is the key to enlightening, engaging and teaching children about the world. This can’t be taught in the classroom and is essential for the growth and empathy of our future leaders. Travel broadens young minds and can inspire them to help those less fortunate, to appreciate what they have and show them what they can aspire to.”
Five Star Kids’ own editor, Hilary Doling, has seen similar attributes in her son. “He’s been lucky enough to grow up travelling in style but, far from spoiling him, it means he treats the general manager of a five star hotel and the guy who sweeps the streets in Bangkok just the same. He’s met so many different kinds of people that that’s all they are to him: just people. He doesn’t judge by clothes, colour, creed or class. To me, that’s a real achievement of travel.”
Heidi Lakani, the jet-setting owner of Lakani World Tours, is of the same opinion. She has seen the transformative powers of travel in young guests on her privatejet journeys. As a result, she believes all children should see the world as part of their