Life certainly does change when you have children and for the better. There are those that are able to adapt so well that they could pack their bags at short notice and have no set plans and head off on an adventure .... Then there is me , Frenchie, where the travel agent and over protective mum kicks in. Where all holidays have to be plotted by myself months in advance, all details have to be carefully planned researched. Trip advisor consulted like my life depends on it...(I do love the challenge of holiday planning and it becomes quiet addictive. BC (before children) I was far more spontaneous...ok a little more spontaneous - but to be honest I was not as concerned with the quality of a hotel or where we would eat shop etc. I could wing it way back then.. really, honest... Here is proof: I went as an 18 year old on my first trip in away from family to New Delhi India and stayed in a hostel where I was followed by a stranger whilst trying to catch a taxi - Befriended and Indian police man on the return train home (I had a 36 hour journey) as I was a little unsure of being the only female in the train compartment !
I even got myself into trouble at the American/Mexico border on a school trip as my teachers ensured I had a visa for Mexico but forgot the minor details that I needed a visa to re-enter the US - I managed my way out of that situation after getting lectured by the customs officer and a very red-faced teacher... see I was a little more adventurous BC ....
Having said that, just because you have children in your life does not mean that your entire life must be placed on hold... you can still travel and visit the most amazing places... you just have to look at it differently. There are countless great blogs and websites that list all the tips and need to know information, and lots of them have done a great job at it, so am not going to re-invent the wheel on that one. The biggest lesson I've learned whilst on travels with the kids is that you have to adapt your expectations to what the kids can actually cope with. One size does not fit all when travelling.
Here are some factors that you need to take into account when plotting your next holiday:
There are times when I am plotting my next idea for a holiday or a weekend away, that I think to myself that it was simpler to just get away. However when we are gathered at the dinner table or on the couch chatting the Frenchie kids recall their adventures in San Gimignano and Legoland Uk like it was yesterday and this makes me realise that they do appreciate their travel adventures. Their lives have been enriched by the experience of new cultures, foods. In essence travelling with children is the same as pre children but with a twist...