When you’re dreaming of a holiday, does it involve lying on soft, sandy beaches, swimming in warm seas, enjoying exotic food and romantic walks or partying until dawn in the best clubs? If those things seem as though they can only ever be dreams then there’s a good chance that you’re a parent of young children. If the reality of your holidays has been sitting bolt upright in fear that you may lose one of your offspring on the beach, eating fast food because the children won’t touch anything on the menu in the nice restaurant or facing glum resignation as your little darlings roar with laughter at a clown, then it may be time you tried a new approach. You need to learn the ingredients of a truly family-friendly holiday.
Hang on! Isn’t it more expensive to go all inclusive? Haven’t you got enough trouble keeping the youngsters supplied with clothes, because they just keep growing, and toys, because it never ends well when you let them play with your phone? Well, it’s only a more expensive outlay and can actually save you quite a lot of money in the long run. The trick is to make sure that your chosen hotel has a good range of food that will appeal to the young palate, that the windows of opportunity to eat are reasonably large and that it’s situated close enough to attractions to prevent you from having to travel for too long on excursions. There’s little point in taking these deals if you’re going to have to fork out for lunch or dinner every day as well.
These are a godsend for parents. If you find a hotel with a good club for the children, they will have the time of their lives as modern facilities include physical play areas, trained entertainers and access to the electronic games that are often a favourite with children of all ages. You don’t have to book them into the kids’ club every day or even for a whole day at a time, although they might beg you to do that if you take them to visit one more Greek ruin; instead, pick the times you want to be free to try a new sport or eat some food that has flavour.
Water parks are a good idea even if you aren’t holidaying with children, but if ever there was a great excuse to do something fun, taking children to a water park because they’re ‘perfect for the kiddies’ is up there with the best. A good water park will have rides to suit different ages, sizes and tastes, such as a range of slides, different depths of water and varying wave strengths so, if you have a good look around, you can find something to entertain everybody.
If you look out for packages that contain these elements, those idyllic holidays you thought were only for the childless can be yours for the taking. Parents deserve fantastic holidays as much as anybody; maybe even a tiny bit more.