Vacations for toddlers—doesn’t it sound something like a contradiction? Who can vacation when the toddler is around, you wonder. That’s what grandparents are for. But actually, there are such things as fun, relaxing vacations for toddlers; vacations the whole family can enjoy. The important thing is that you plan your vacation on a toddler level: nothing too overwhelming, nothing too tiring; lots of time for peaceful exploration.
Here we’ll look at some places you may want to consider when planning vacations for toddlers. Remember, though, there’s no point in breaking the bank; a toddler will enjoy a quiet close-by vacation quite as much as a fancy trip far away.
When you’re planning your travel, you’ll want to read through our tips on traveling with toddlers, and make sure you pack your handbag well!
Perhaps the most fun place to go for toddler vacations is to the beach. Toddlers love playing in the sand, in the sun, and with water; and there’s no better place to do that then at a peaceful, sandy beach. If you can afford it, find a place to stay within toddler-walking-distance of the beach; that means you’ll be able to mosey back to your lodgings for a nap, snack, or just quiet laid back time whenever either you or the toddler get too tired.
Make sure you buy plenty of waterproof, child-safe sunscreen, take several swimsuits, and pack a few comfort items: a blankie and teddy bear, perhaps, or whatever means most to your child. You may want to pack some of your toddler’s favorite snacks, too: there’s no guarantee you’ll be able to find anything that you’re comfortable giving him to eat if you wait till you’re there and he’s hungry.
What about taking your toddler to a natural park to enjoy the wildlife there? If you’re the kind that relaxes best in low tech, cooking-by-the-campfire way, there’s no reason your toddler can’t start early! Just be aware he’s not an all-capable outdoorsman quite yet, and be prepared to cover for him. If you want to hike, you’ll need to take into account his stamina: probably enough for about ten yards. Backpacks, worn by a parent, are a good way to extend the hike, but you’ll need some extra stamina for that yourself.
If your toddler is just barely potty-trained, primitive bathroom conditions could easily trigger a regress. It’s usually a good idea to take a little potty seat with you in the back of the car, and let your toddler go to the bathroom in your tent or cabin.
Take insect repellent, and teach your toddler the basics of safety in natural areas before you go—things like rules about touching snakes, rules about touching insects, and which plants shouldn’t be handled.
Disney Vacations for Tots
Can toddlers go to Disneyland? They can—but don’t expect it to be a wonderful, astounding, absolutely breathtakingly happy experience for them. If you’re going for your toddler, you may want to wait till he is at least four or five. If you want to go yourself or there are other members of the family who could really enjoy a trip, though, there’s no reason your toddler can’t go too—if you plan your time carefully, with naps at naptime and not too much stimulation on any one day.
Take the camera, though, because those toddler Disneyland pictures will be fun to look back on.