Haven Magazine - - Life - Words: An­thony Sher­ratt

Wise peo­ple of­ten try to pro­vide fo­cus and con­text with the quote “it’s about the jour­ney not the des­ti­na­tion”. Nowhere is that quote more relevant than when trav­el­ling with kids. Granted some of you may be look­ing for­ward to drinks at the des­ti­na­tion but the most stress­ful part of hol­i­days as a par­ent is in­evitably the get­ting-there part of the equa­tion. toi­let at home but put them in a car or plane and they will need to go ap­prox­i­mately 17 times. And that no mat­ter how many games, movies and tele­vi­sion shows they have Re­al­is­ti­cally it’s all about plan­ning and prepa­ra­tion. Work out where you want to go and how best to achieve that. Then ask your­self why? If the lat­ter an­swer doesn’t in­volve kids club and/or al­co­hol then re­peat the ques­tion. Now a lot of peo­ple rec­om­mend over­seas travel to des­ti­na­tions such as Dis­ney­land (Latin for “we have all your kids’ dreams here and we will charge you ex­or­bi­tant prices to view them”) but I think too many peo­ple over­look what is avail­able much closer to home. I say this partly be­cause Aus­tralia and New Zealand are amaz­ing and spec­tac­u­lar coun­tries fea­tur­ing ex­otic lo­cales, an­i­mals and ad­ven­tures. But mostly be­cause closer is bet­ter when it comes to trav­el­ling with chil­dren and the thought of my eyes. But if you do go to the ma­jor in­ter­na­tional theme parks, make sure you do your re­search be­fore­hand. For ex­am­ple, I spent hours work­ing out the op­ti­mal time for our Dis­ney trip. I took into ac­count lo­cal hol­i­days, more and avail­able bath­rooms – and I came to the con­clu­sion that the best time to visit was 1986. An of­ten-over­looked bit of ad­vice is parental ex­pec­ta­tions. I know we’re try­ing to broaden the hori­zons of our chil­dren but we need to re­mem­ber that our kids see con­text some­times. You may be in­cred­i­bly ex­cited to travel a thou­sand kilo­me­tres to show them an an­i­mal that is rarely seen in the wild but they will fre­quently re­ply with a cur­sory nod be­fore go­ing back to their iPad to catch Snor­lax on Poke­mon Go. You know what? I think San­dra ac­tu­ally en­joys hol­i­days with the kids just so work­ing full-time doesn’t look so bad.

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