Baby on board

You’re never too young to travel. That’s what Kiri­anna, Lach­lan and their now-18-month-old son have been prov­ing with the in­spir­ing jour­neys shared on Ri­ley’s Trav­els. Hol­i­days with Kids catches up with Kiri­anna to hear how they do it.

Holiday with Kids - - Cover Star -

How did trav­el­ling reg­u­larly with Ri­ley start?

My hus­band Lach­lan, a pi­lot, and I, a for­mer flight at­ten­dant, are both ex­pats. He’s an Aussie and I’m orig­i­nally from New Zealand, and we now call Tokyo home. We trav­elled to Syd­ney for the birth of Ri­ley and, when he was four weeks old, went back to New Zealand to meet my fam­ily be­fore re­turn­ing to Ja­pan.

It was im­por­tant to us that our fam­i­lies and Ri­ley were able to spend time to­gether and this meant reg­u­lar in­ter­na­tional travel. It was es­sen­tial that he was com­fort­able on these long trips and ev­ery­thing that comes with them: the jet lag, the hus­tle and bus­tle and be­ing on the move.

We also wanted to travel for travel’s sake. Quite a few peo­ple had told us, “You won’t be able to keep this up after baby is born,” but we didn’t want to hear that. Of course, we were a lit­tle bit ap­pre­hen­sive at first, but we soon dis­cov­ered that ba­bies could in fact be the best travel com­pan­ions!

What has been the most mem­o­rable ex­pe­ri­ence you’ve had while trav­el­ling, and why?

There have been so many! But I will never for­get our trip to Cap­pado­cia, Turkey. At sun­rise, a mul­ti­tude of colour­ful hot-air bal­loons rises up above the rugged land­scape. But what made it even more spe­cial was that Ri­ley was ap­proach­ing his first birth­day and he was just start­ing to take a few un­aided steps. These are pre­cious mem­o­ries for all of us.

Why is trav­el­ling as a fam­ily so im­por­tant to you?

We are strong be­liev­ers in the power of travel to ed­u­cate. The ex­pe­ri­ences Ri­ley has had in his short 18 months of life are truly amaz­ing. You might think he’s too young to un­der­stand what he’s see­ing, but we can see the ben­e­fits. He is so open and friendly with peo­ple of all cul­tures, he is kind and pa­tient and al­ways cheeky and play­ing with ev­ery­one he meets.

How many coun­tries has Ri­ley been to now?

Ri­ley is now 18 months old. He’s al­ready vis­ited 32 coun­tries and over 80 des­ti­na­tions. He’s been to Cuba and Turkey, vis­ited the Mo­roc­can desert and seen the awe­some wa­ter­falls of Ice­land. We’ve been ski­ing at Whistler in Canada and sail­ing on the Amalfi Coast of Italy. It’s hard to be­lieve we’ve re­ally done all that.

What un­ex­pected things have hap­pened to you when you’ve trav­elled as a fam­ily?

Oh gee, so much! There are, of course, oc­ca­sional de­lays and can­celled flights and, once, we were stuck due to a hur­ri­cane. Things go wrong but we have learned to never get stressed and to just go with the flow be­cause no mat­ter what, it al­ways works out and some­times for the bet­ter.

What are your top tips for trav­el­ling with a baby?

Just do it! If Ri­ley is any­thing to go by, your baby will be able to en­joy travel right from the be­gin­ning. There’s no rea­son to put it off.

By trav­el­ling to­gether, both par­ents are also able to form this in­cred­i­ble bond with baby and share mag­i­cal mo­ments to­gether in won­drous and mes­meris­ing places.

When we can, we try to book night flights; hav­ing Ri­ley sleep for the ma­jor­ity of the flight is less stress­ful for ev­ery­one. We avoid the bassinet seats and opt for the back rows. I like to pop Ri­ley into his PJS and rub some Vicks on his skin, which helps with the changes in cabin pres­sure dur­ing the flight. I also wipe down the area for germs.

In­vest in a good travel stroller and baby car­rier; they will both be of great use. My last tip: al­ways carry a well­stocked med­i­cal kit for baby. Be­ing stuck in a for­eign coun­try where you can’t speak the lan­guage can be re­ally dif­fi­cult with a baby that needs medicine. How can we fol­low Ri­ley’s Trav­els? ri­leystrav­


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