This is not to say that an international trip with children is all rainbows and sunshine. I can guarantee there will be your far share of kid related issues: a child projectile vomiting on an international flight, throwing a temper tantrum while visiting a wonder of the world, losing a lovey while hustling between flights, having a child strip down to their underwear on a crowded public train because they are so hot. It will happen. That is life with a child. In the same instant though they are mesmerized by everything. On my children’s first European vacation, they were completely fascinated by the toilets. From the minute we got off the plane until the minute we got on the plane to return home, it was a never-ending amusement. They even wrote in their trip journals about it. The key to an amazing international trip with kids is keeping them in mind. This is where Harrigan Holidays can help you. We realize how essential it is to allow the kids time to be kids whether it is adding in some time to swim in a hotel pool, enjoying a yummy treat between sights, giving the kids some down time to randomly play in a hotel garden, making sure they get to visit the famed dolphin in Dingle. Parents are often so intimidated at the task at hand they just push it aside. Let Harrigan Holidays help you.
The travel industry realizes families want to have those once in a lifetime experiences together. Whereas, you use to see couples traveling to take a break from their kids you now see more and more families and extended families taking trips to Europe, Asia, Africa, South America, and Australia. As a result, family international travel is an ever-growing niche that makes seeing the world possible for everyone in the family.
An option that is constantly growing in popularity with families are the guided tours that many companies offer. Think of these as all-inclusive European vacations. They include your accommodations, transportation, sightseeing, and often time meals. The trips also provide guides that can accommodate the needs of a family and often include other families that have children the same ages. For example, Adventures by Disney offers a Brave tour through Scotland that includes canoeing and boating across Loch Ness; visiting Bogbain Farm to celebrate life in the Highlands; a privately guided tour of The Palace of Holyroodhouse which is the Queen of England’s official palace in Edinburgh; riding Highland ponies and testing your archery skills at Rothiemurchus Estate; participating in a traditional working day of a Highland Shepherd; and touring Scottish Castles. This trip includes your room, most of your dining, transportation during the trip, admission costs, and the amazing Disney Guides. Tauck tours offers the South Africa Epic Family Adventure which is a 10 day trip that includes a visit to Cape Town; visiting an ostrich ranch and penguin beach; leaning about Nelson Mandela and wine; going on an elephant walk; zip lining; safari encounters; and a visit to a tribal village. Collete tours offers the Italy Family Discovery Tour that includes a visit to the Colosseum and attending Gladiator School, learning the art of pizza and gelato making, a Tuscan feast, and visiting St. Marks Square.
Another option for families traveling internationally are FIT trips. These are independent trips that allow you to choose your own itinerary or follow a preset itinerary developed by a tour operator. These often have set accommodations and activities but allow you to experience it alone as a family. In addition, Harrigan Holidays can do completely customized trips for you and your family that can include your accommodations, transportation, and sightseeing.
When most people think of cruises they picture the Caribbean cruise or the river cruise for the retired set. This is no longer the case. More and more companies are offering family cruise options to destinations like Alaska and Europe. On Disney cruises, you can take the Norwegian Fjords cruise (think Frozen) which has on ship options and excursions that appeal to everyone in the family. They start at $5,851.84 for a family of 4. Viking River Cruises have teamed up with Adventures by Disney to offer river cruises that feature on ship activities and port adventures for the entire family. Other river cruise lines are quickly following suit including Tauck River Cruises which offer family specific cruises like the Castle on the Rhine Family Riverboat Adventure that travels on the Rhine River between Basel and Amsterdam exploring Switzerland, France, Germany, and the Netherlands. The Tauck river cruises are truly all-inclusive and includes all meals, drinks, excursions, and family activities.
International Ski Trips
Families love to travel out west in the US for ski trips but lots of time it is cheaper to fly to the Alps to ski. It would be such an amazing experience to get to ski the Alps at some of the most beautiful resorts available. ClubMed (yes, that ClubMed) has realized how popular the family market is and is now offering all-inclusive ski vacations for families. These trips not only include your airfare, rooms, dining, and alcohol but they also include private ski lessons for the entire family, and participation in the kids clubs. These amazing ski trips start at $7,000.00 for a family of four and include absolutely every cost.
Why not show your kids the world. With costs comparable to a trip to Disney World or a Caribbean All-Inclusive you can give your children a once in a lifetime experience that they will never forget. My most memorable moments on trips with my children are not the big moments but the simple moments where I get to see my kids eyes open wide at another world. My son’s utter amazement at the size of a soccer department in a European sports store; my daughter’s delight in wandering through the woods in Ireland with a hawk; listening to my kids giggle in the hotel about how to flush the toilet. Though they sound like little moments these are things my kids would never have experienced without seeing the world. Let Kathy and Meghan at Harrigan Holidays help you plan a summer vacation that will not only allow you to connect as a family but to experience the world together.