Most treks start and end in cities, or in regions with lots of sightseeing and planning. To keep the cultural tourism interesting for the kids, we break up museum visits with trips to local markets. Our boys are fascinated by open-air butcher shops, and by the local varieties of candy and comic books. They are also avid chess players, so we usually go on a hunt for interesting chess boards.
Today’s Family Adventure Travel tip: Keeping it interesting for the kids
- You can’t do enough research. We generally look through several guidebooks and scour the internet to compile a full listing of a region’s charms, including restaurants that suit our tastes and budget. Our favorite restaurant in the universe is Granja Heidi in the San Blas neighborhood of Cusco, Peru, the starting point for our trek to Machu Picchu. Run by a German couple who raise most of their food on a nearby farm, the restaurant served everything from chocolate milkshakes to excellent three-course price-fixed dinners (the cost was about $5 two years ago), and we ate every meal there that we could.
- Make sure the kids have enough breaks between sightseeing excursions. Sometimes they need an hour or so at the hotel to read, swim, or watch TV.
- Give each child his/her own camera or sketch book. We find our children stay more engaged when they are actively documenting the journey.
- Ask the kids’ help in choosing the itinerary for the day.
What are your kids’ favorite activities while traveling? Have you ever been surprised by the things they choose to do while on vacation?