Traveling with babies and toddlers is one thinking, but taking them internationally is a completely different idea entirely. Traveling overseas brings its own sets of challenges when it comes to bringing your entire family with you.
On our list of tips for traveling to Europe with your baby not only will we provide you some great destinations to visit we will also accompany those destinations with tips as well. That’s a two for one deal all found all in one place!
1.Think about age – Recommended Destination: Copenhagen, Denmark
When your thinking of traveling internationally with your children you should take into consideration their age. When your traveling you have to take into account the ages of the children that you will be traveling with.
If your child is young they are the easiest travelers that you could possibly have. This is as long as you provide them with some fun and kid-friendly activities while you are visiting Europe. Once they begin to enter the early age of grade school children then you will want to turn your attention to making the trip fun while adding some educational components to it as well.
And lastly, if your children are in their tweens and teens involve them in planning some of the activities for the vacation. At this age, they are more likely to get excited about going on a trip where their opinion has been taken into account and they will really feel that the trip is about them too.
Assign each child a day or so to pick an activity or two that the family will partake in. With that being said, the perfect place to exercise this tip would be in Copenhagen, Denmark.
It has plenty of amusement parks and beautiful gardens for families to take in as they sightsee around the beautiful city. It will become like the fairytale place that jumps out of your children’s storybooks and into reality.
Another place that you can visit while there is the Blue Planet Aquarium. This aquarium is home to more than 20,000 species of aquatic life. What child doesn’t love eyeballing fish that are 50x their size face to face (safely of course).
If you walking isn’t necessarily your thing then you should consider bringing a stroller on the trip. This will alleviate your child having to walk and become fussy from walking around too much. And trust us a fussy baby on a beautiful place has a way of dulling the beauty and making you feel a tad bit embarrassed.
2. Prepare your kids – Recommended Destination: Granada, Spain
Before you go on any kind of trip the first thing you want to do is get your children as enthusiastic about the trip as possible. The best part of taking a family trip is when the whole family is excited about taking the trip meaning your kids actually are looking forward to the trip too.
It’s like a school project except for your children actually get to experience it for themselves. Have your children read articles and watch clips about all that the city you will be visiting has to offer during your trip.
Also, have them read books about the place that you will be visiting. These stories will allow them to use their imaginations and dream about the place that they will be visiting until you arrive at the destination.
Leading up to the trip try to do different activities that will lend themselves useful while you are abroad. Things like learning a few key phrases and terms that will make communicating with the local people easier to do.
There are various language forums that allow your children to pick up on a language by studying for a simple 5-10 minutes a day. The perfect place to practice all of these activities would be Granada, Spain.
Spain has tons of breathtaking architecture to look at that is straight out of the Moorish era of buildings. If your thinking about taking your children on a tour of the city think about taking the train that allows you to get on and off of the train.
This will allow you to rest your legs between stopping points on your tour of the city. There is also a wondrous Alhambra Palace that your children will think is fit for them as princesses and princes. And if they don’t exactly want to partake in history as parents you can listen to facts about the Spanish city on the tram as your going from destination to destination.
3. Take precautions – Recommended Destination: Lisbon, Portugal
Before you take any kind of trip to any place you will want to brush up on safety precautions with your children. Even children that listen well at one time or another have accidentally wandered away from their parents.
When you are traveling someplace especially overseas it is important to have an emergency plan in case you and your children get separated from each other. This will allow you and your children to calmly find each other if you get separated in a public and crowded place.
This can be done by identifying a meeting place in each building that you will be visiting. Inform your children that if it’s impossible to get to the meeting place they should find the building’s security officer and have them help your child locate you within the building.
Before you leave the hotel make sure that your children know the name and address of the place that you are staying at. Some people would recommend that you purchase cheap track phones that will allow your children to call you if they get separated from you.
And before using the phones show your children the proper way to dial a number internationally on the phone. And when you all use public transportation ensure that your whole family knows the destination stop that you will be getting off at.
A place to go where you should implement these precautions is Lisbon, Portugal. This city is based seasoned and has tons of restaurants that offer your children play areas while you and your spouse enjoy a cultured dinner.
The city is built on steep hills so walking may not be the best option when it comes to taking in all the city has to offer. Locals recommend that you take the tram so that your feet get a rest and you can still take in all the sights of the city.
4. Reflect and connect – Recommended Destination: Tuscany, Italy
After you take the trip and even during the trip make sure that you take time between activities to truly connect with your family. There is nothing worse than spending so much time with action-packed events that you and your family don’t get to check-in with each other during the trip.
And if you don’t have that much time to do this make sure that you take tons of pictures and maybe provide your children with a journal. This will allow each of you to document the trip from your point of view.
It means that you will be able to come together at the end and share things with each other that the other may not have seen. A place to reflect and connect would be Tuscany, Italy.
This is one of those countries that will male you feel as if your coming home because it is such a welcoming place. A bonus for breastfeeding moms is that nursing your child in public is allowed and encouraged.
You should drive through the countryside taking in all of the sites of Tuscany and even take your kids to see the leaning tower of Pisa.
5. Buy disposable baby gear – Recommended Destination: Munich, Germany
There is nothing worse than having to pay extra baggage fees in order to bring a baby bassinet, car seat, stroller, diapers, and any other thing that your baby will need while you are traveling. Consider purchasing disposable gear for your trip.
Check ahead with the hotel your staying at and inquire about whether they provide strollers and bassinets or extra mattresses for children to sleep on. Most hotels do offer these things to families with children, you just need to make them aware of your needs prior to arrival.
Also, you don’t need to pack a ton of wipes and diapers. Pack enough to get you through the trip as far as travel goes and then once you reach where your sleeping ask the staff where the nearest supermarket is for you to purchase extra diapers and wipes.
You definitely don’t want to be lugging lots of gear around in Munich, Germany. They have a zoo that spans a total of 89 acres. This zoo also offers camel and pony rides for your children to ride.
If you’re into purchasing souvenirs you should check out Obletter which is a multi-level toy store that has over 16,000 toys for your children to choose from. And if they can’t find a toy I don’t know where they will be able to get a toy from.
6. Don’t travel when it’s too hot – Recommended Destination: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Try not to travel when it is extremely hot or extremely cold. Babies depending on your child tend to be crankier when the climate is not at a specific temperature for comfort.
And if you are going to travel in the cold or hot months ensure that you bring the appropriate clothing for your child to wear. Whether that means bringing extra coats or a much-needed pair of shorts for your child to be comforted.
When thinking of climate think about venturing to Amsterdam, Netherlands. It’s got quite a few canals that you can take a scenic boat ride down or you can opt to have lunch at one of the small cafes that line the streets of Amsterdam.
You can either walk the streets or you can use the tram. And the city offers another means of transportation and that is traveling by boat. This may make your family vacation one that is unique from others that you all may take.
7. Wear your baby – Recommended Destination: Berlin, Germany
Wearing your baby is the most efficient way of getting around with a child. You don’t have to worry about setting up or breaking down a stroller, which can make a crowded place easily chaotic.
Another perk of wearing your child allows them to nap on you without you having to return to the place where you are staying. Wearing your child allows you to remain handsfree and take pictures or hold the hand of an older child.
Wearing your child may be a great idea if you are traveling to Berlin, Germany. It is quite the hot spot for couples traveling especially couples that have children as there seemed to be families all over the place.
They have public transportation for people to take which will reduce the amount of walking your family will do. And you can get some authentic cuisine at one of the many restaurants that Berlin has to offer.
8. Be flexible – Recommended Destination: Paris, France
When your traveling with children the biggest thing that you should do is be flexible. You never know when your child may have an accident, get ill, or have a complete meltdown while you are out and about
The ability to be flexible means not having a set schedule and leaving just enough holes between the scheduled events that you do have in case your children need a breakdown. This will ensure that your children don’t become over-stimulated which can lead to unwanted meltdowns.
And parents know that children are the masters of the unexpected so rather than being caught off-guard just be flexible. Paris, France is the best place to practice being flexible.
This is because there are so many sights to see and places to sit while your out and about that you could easily just sit down and give your child a needed break. It also allows you to grab a snack if need be.
You could even take your children on a picnic, they absolutely need some fresh air without being subjected to walking all over the place.
Hopefully, these tips and the places we paired them with will help you to plan your next family vacation abroad. Vacationing abroad doesn’t have to be scary or an experience that causes you chaos.
Plan ahead and take your time to prepare for the trip in its entirety. This will make for a vacation that is truly one for the books and will provide your children with great memories of the trip ahead.