Last week I took my two daughters, aged 2 and 4, on a road trip to Pembrokeshire in Wales. We were heading to Bluestone National Park Resort for a mid week break and we were super excited. I had to travel alone as the trip was organised at very short notice so my husband couldn’t take time of work. My teen son is knee deep in exam revision and my sister is attending interviews on the hunt for another job. Years as a single parent has taught me that you can’t let doing things alone hold you back. Life is too short to miss out on experiences that come your way so I was quite happy to take the girls away but I knew there would be an element of pain involved.
There are so many blog posts out there that provide helpful advice about taking kids on road trips and they aren’t to be knocked. They provide great tips about how to keep children entertained when travelling in the car but no matter how many of these you do, there will always be some issues. Don’t let this put you off travelling with kids in the car, as the best advice I can give you is the more you do it, the easier it will get. However, there are some things that are going to happen while you are on the road and I think it’s best to go in for warned.
7 Truths About Road Trips with Kids
- Every inch of available car space will be crammed with stuff you think the kids need on holiday. Half of it won’t get used!
- You’ll bury the nappy bag or snack stash under all the stuff you don’t need, so when the kids start demanding something to eat, you’re not going to stand a cat in hells chance of getting to it whilst your moving.
- You were hoping to only stop once so you could get them there quicker, but it ends up being a lot more for things like finding the snack stash or digging out the nappy bag.
- You have literally driven past the services and a voice from the back declares ‘I need a wee’ and there isn’t another stop for 25 miles.
- You stack a selection of toys next to the children for them to entertain themselves whilst on the road. They then proceed to drop them all in the foot well. Someone either spends the whole journey retrieving them or they stay there. ‘I want my toy’ makes a change from ‘Are we nearly there yet?’ for a bit anyway.
- You think you’ve out foxed them buy telling them what time you are due to arrive at your destination. That’s bound to stop the ‘are we nearly there yet?’ questions. Now they ask, ‘what’s the time?’ every 5 minutes instead.
- The longer you are on the road for, the longer the kids are going to sleep. This might make the trip a lot more bearable but you know that bedtime is going to be ruined. If you were hoping for a glass of wine when they go to bed, you will probably give it a miss as you’ll all be crashing out the same time.
Taking my daughters on a road trip for the first time by myself was a challenge. I was totally out of practise when it comes to taking kids on long car journeys and it was a new experience for the girls too.
We had a great week on our holiday to Bluestone, and it was worth the 10 hour round trip from Nottingham but it was a little hard going too. I’m sure it will get easier the more we do it, and the older they get. I’m already thinking about where we can go next as there is so much of this beautiful country to explore.