Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Travel with Your Kids

In the height of summer, I am off to East Africa. I am traveling to Kilimanjaro, three camps in Tanzania and finishing this trip with a week in Zanzibar. I don't know of anyone who has been to Zanzibar before. As usual, I will try to blog from my destinations. Internet, electricity and running water will be scarce, but I will do the best I can to share this experience with you. The saving grace of this trip is that when it's summer in the Northern hemisphere it's winter where I am off to and that's a great relief. Temps will be moderate and little rainfall so the animal migrations should be spectacular.

My granddaughter is kind of miffed that she's missing out on this particular trip. Six years old is even too young for sleep away camp. Not this time. But I have high hopes for travel with my grandchildren, just as you should for traveling with your kids. I can't think of any better education than to immerse them in the world.

The easiest time for you to travel is with kids who aren't yet in school. No schedules and calendars to contend with. But that travel is mostly for you. When the kids get old enough, it's all about them. There are wonderful sites now that outline virtually every country and corresponding city with kid-friendly activities, lodging and food. I have a rule that none of my grands get to go anywhere until they are willing to eat more than pizza
I think I will start with NYC and then the major capitols of Western Europe. You must get your baby a passport and then you can hit some very exotic spots before you must defer to children's pleasures. Just apply for a passport at the same time you apply for a social security card and the world is the limit. Pediatricians are well versed in necessary vaccinations and destinations that are appropriate for little kids. Nothing stops my patients from returning to India and Africa with infants to show- off back home.

Please make travel a priority for your families. The world gets smaller everyday and the best way to prepare the citizens and leaders of the future is to expose them to different cultures and customs, languages and art. There is a wealth of treasures awaiting. Bon voyage!