One of the trickiest parts of a family holiday is finding things to do that please everybody. The kids want beaches, water flumes and ice-cream, and the grown-ups wants scenic views, culture, and a reasonably priced gin and tonic. Balancing everyone’s needs and wants and making sure everyone has a good time then can be difficult, but it can be done – all you need is a little bit of planning and a big dollop of compromise.
Here are some tips to help you get the best out of your family holiday:
It’s good to talk
Before you go, sit down as a family to discuss what you’re looking forward to, giving each person chance to talk about the things that they would really like to do. This is your opportunity to manage expectations, so get the kids used to the idea from the start that the holiday isn’t all about them and a definite visit to Eurodisney – better they realise this not to avoid disappointment later!
Once you have an idea of what everyone hopes to get out of the holiday, do your research and work out the best way to fit in as many different ideas as possible. For example, if one of you wants to enjoy a coastal walk and another has a passion for castles, could you find a castle on the coast that you could take a hike to?
Hit the road
One good way to get the most out of an activity is to incorporate travel as part of the experience. If you’ve not got your own car with you take a look into car hire in France and don’t be afraid to explore outside the local area. Perhaps there is a fantastic water park a picturesque two hour drive from your base? Getting there can be all part of the fun!
Make it a game
If your children are old enough to handle a competitive element, how about having some days where you take a lucky dip approach? Each family member writes down an idea for a full or half day activity (vetted beforehand just in case the kids come up with something like ‘trip to the moon’) and then you simply pick one out of a hat. Everyone has to agree beforehand to not complain though if they don’t win!
Find common ground
As well as catering for individuals within the family, do try to come up with as many things as possibly that everyone enjoys. This might be eating out at a favourite restaurant, swimming, walking – whatever it is, try to incorporate as much of this as possible into your break – holidays are about spending time together as a family after all.
This was a guest post, all photos by me from our most recent holiday to France!