When you have children, one of the things you may feel the need to sacrifice are your weekend city breaks – they’re an adult kind of holiday, heavy on museums, architecture and culture and possibly not a good fit for young children.
Today we’re looking at how you can recapture the city break and reinvent it for your young family so you can still enjoy the excitement of discovering the delights of a new city.
Getting Them Excited
If you want your kids to enjoy a sophisticated city break this summer they need to feel some personal ownership of the trip and excitement about it. The best way to do this isn’t telling them what they’re going to do, but getting them involved in the planning. Help them look at the different attractions and possibilities and pick out a few things they’ve chosen as part of the trip.
This is a great way to make it feel like their holiday – not something for you they’re getting dragged along too. And of course, you’re welcome to suggest what you think would be the best options – as long as you honour their choices where possible.
As well as picking personal favourite activities, you should also look for things you can do together and enjoy equally as a family. It’s not easy to find something that can interest you all equally – that both parents, teenagers and younger children can all get something out of, so it’s worth taking your time and planning.
A scavenger hunt might be the answer. Modern incarnations of this age-old activity, like a Treasure Trails scavenger hunt, come with a narrative to follow, clues and puzzles for different age and ability levels and hint systems so don’t don’t get stuck. A family scavenger can be a great way to kick off a city break together. Everyone gets clues to solve and you all discover the city together!
Planning for Little Legs
As you make your plans, don’t forget about the different energy levels of the different members of your family – both physical and mental. Your children have shorter legs and faster metabolisms than you. They have lots of energy, but they burn it off quickly and they’re working harder to cover the same ground as you – build in rests and snacks.
The same goes for attention. You may want nothing more than to spend the afternoon exploring the local art museum, but your kids may simply not be able to maintain focus. You can try to pick specific exhibits to see within a time span, or take breaks, allowing your children to play outside or get involved in interactive exhibits to recharge before heading back in – or you may find you’ve been raising a studious art lover all along!