I have decided to start a series called Meet Cool Family Travel Bloggers to introduce some of my favorite bloggers out there writing about discovering the world with their kids. For inspiration, fun, getting new ideas, finding new great places to visit both on-line as well as off, make sure you don’t miss Wednesdays.
The first blogger I am introducing is Mary from the blog Bohemian Travelers. Mary and her family have been traversing the globe for over 8 years now. She and her husband have always wanted to instill a worldly knowledge in their boys, ages 15,11,and 7 that could only be accomplished by heading out and exploring it. They chose to exit the rat race of life and enter a life of adventure!
Do you think traveling with kids is the best way to travel and why?
Some days I question that very strongly but yes overall it is definitely the best way to see the world. There are challenges no doubt about it but my kids have allowed me to see the world in a totally different light. When I traveled as a 20 something I just didn’t see things from the perspective of a child, that amazement, those innocent simple questions that help you to stop over thinking and simply be present to enjoy a moment, and best of all is the courage that I see in my children that I am then able to be inspired by and replicate. Not to mention the fact that they are my favorite people in the whole world! No one else I would rather do this with!
What was your first trip as a family like? Did you complicate, brought too much stuff along, chose the safest possible destination, etc?
We were always busy doing day trips and weekend getaways but I guess the first big trip was when my oldest 2 were 7 and 3 years old. We drove from CT to CA and back over thke space of a month stopping along the way to experience all the US has to offer before we moved out of the country. We were pretty decent travelers already and not prone to worry so no I don’t think we complicated or over packed. Nor do we ever take the safe route unless that is also the one with the best experiences, hehe!
What is still your favorite destination and why?
This is perhaps the toughest question. We love so many places for wildly different reasons. Right now we are really enjoying Hawaii so I suppose that needs to be at the top of the list. Oahu is an amazing place full of unique culture, beautiful beaches, and friendly people. It is a beautiful vacation destination but when you stay a bit longer you see how deep the spirit of Aloha really is!
How would you encourage other parents to travel with kids? What do they absolutely need to know?
There are 2 very important realizations that you need to get to in order to start traveling. First is to stop worrying about what others think or say. They will tell you its dangerous or irresponsible but they simply do not understand. It is hard for people to see beyond their backyards sometimes! The second thing is to know that no time will feel right! If this is your passion and your dream go for it! The worst case scenario is that you come back and live life as usual but if you take the leap you never know what will happen. So many amazing things have come from the simple decision of ours to just go for it. I have never regretted the decision to change our lives only that we didn’t do it sooner!
What makes a travel Mom?
Probably the most important characteristics are patience, perseverance, and an ability to laugh at the disasters, all things I can admit to not fully mastering. It is not really all that different than being a mom under any circumstances but there are definitely some added stressors that you just need to relax about for everyone’s sanity. The other side of the coin that is important is to have a quizzical mind! Some people just are not that interested in the world and I find that the more fascinated you are by things the more your children will be thus enhancing the entire journey!
What are your plans for 2015?
2015 will bring our biggest challenge yet! We plan (and I use that loosely as we are not very good at sticking to plans) to settle down and stop continuously traveling. We have already slowed way down but we are ready to make the commitment to stay put for a few years. That does not mean no travel however since there is no getting rid of our travel bug but it will mean a different sort of travel. We are leaning towards Oregon and are already planning road trip after road trip. I am also focusing my blog in order to take some solo trips in the next year.
What is your favorite thing to do when you travel?
It really depends on where we are but probably my favorite thing is to get to know a local, to really get a sense of what it is like to live where they are. I find the best way to accomplish this is to sit down and listen, start conversations with people, be inquisitive yet respectful, and most of all smile! The conversations we have had with local people have given us the best perspectives in all of our travel.
You can follow Mary and her family’s adventure on Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest.