Family Travel Tips: Europe With Kids from gear to bring – to what to expect…these family travel tips for Europe will make your next trip easier! Seriously.
Family Travel Tips Europe With Kids
A stroller is a must but not all places are stroller-friendly. Yes, you will want a stroller for your baby (or toddler because a day of walking in Europe can be tiring). While major city centres will have paved sidewalks for your stroller – many villages and historical places have cobblestone or gravel (not easy to stroller upon). Also, stairs. Historical castles and such will have stairs – which again – not-so-stroller friendly. So, while you definitely will want a stroller (and make it an light weight – easily foldable stroller) perhaps plan to pack an baby carrier for infants (and bigger kids will have to make due with piggy backs).
Baby change stations can be few and far between. Many a time, I’ve been in Europe and found just a toilet and a sink in a washroom (no change table at all). So you have to be a bit creative with baby changes. Always have a large change mat in your diaper bag (so you can lay it down on a floor if need be). You can also change a diaper in your stroller (recline the seat) or in the back seat of your vehicle.
In some places in Europe, breastfeeding is more of a surprise than a natural thing. Like that time I was on the rainy island of If (it’s offshore of Marseilles, France – a super famous setting from the novel The Count of Monte Cristo). The only indoor place open to breastfeed was a bar…and the bar patrons looked at me like I was from Mars…when I covered up the babe and discreetly nursed. Breastfeeding just isn’t a trend in some countries and as such finding a place to nurse can be tricky. Options: nurse in your vehicle, in your hotel, or pack a nursing cover and to what I did – be discreet.
Meal times (and food options) are different in Europe. Take Spain where dinner is usually around 9pm. Or France where some restaurants close completely between 2-5pm (so no late lunch). And though well known chains will have kids’ menus…small and independent restaurants may not have that option. Here’s my tip…pop into a grocery store or snack stand and stock your bag with some kid-friendly snacks. That way, if they get peckish you have something on hand. Also, you can ask for an extra plate and share your meal at restaurants (rather than ordering a large portion they won’t finish).
Pack your own medicine. I once needed some child pain reliever for my daughter – only to find out in France you needed a doctor’s prescription to get it at the pharmacy. Pack the medicine you need for your kids from home. That way you know the brand and the dosage.
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