Planning a family vacation can be very dounting and overwheming and if you have little kids, lets just say that things get worse.
Iand I hail from the land down under where it is literally freezing. We are in the throes of an Icelandic winter and DH and I have decided to book a holiday somewhere warm to escape the cold.
The Australian Dollar is pretty crap so if we were to travel to The States or to Europe it would cost us an absolute fortune and we would lose too much money in conversion.
Over the years we have learned quite a bit about holidaying, especially with children, but we really learned a few lessons this year.
We took all four kids to Hanoi in Vietnam earlier this year, and although it is an awesome holiday destination, we didn’t find it to be a family friendly destination.
Every time you cross the road you literally take your life and your kids lives in your hands, and being a capital city, it really wasn’t family friendly.
It catered more to the experienced and conscientious traveller (which I used to be before kids!!).
It also took two flights to get there, firstly we flew Melbourne to Singapore which was 8 hours, then we had a 3 hour layover and then a further 3 hour flight to Hanoi.
Our kids are pretty good but travelling 14 hours is just too much for kids (and for their parents!!).
The icing on the cake was the accommodation. We were under the impression that we had booked really lovely accommodation but we soon discovered that the standards are much different.
We were originally booked into two separate rooms without interconnection (although we had asked for interconnecting rooms) but couldn’t stay in two separated rooms with young children so we were moved into a family room where we barely had enough room to bring our suitcases in, we had one bathroom for all six of us and one tv also. We were cooped up into a tiny room and all on top of each other.
It was definitely not the relaxing and enjoying break I was after.
The year before last we travelled to Bali, Indonesia and we absolutely loved it. The people are just beautiful, the shopping is amazing, the food and entertainment is also out of this world and it is only a 5-hour flight which is definitely manageable with kids.
We stayed in a lovely resort that was very family friendly with a kids playground, swimming pool, waterslide and best of all, kids club!. The kids absolutely loved it as did the adults 😊.
The only downside to the holiday was that we were staying in two interconnecting hotel rooms that were not self-contained.
The resort provided an amazing breakfast, but we were not able to make lunch in our rooms due to lack of a dining table and we only had a tiny fridge so couldn’t buy many groceries.
We had to eat out for lunch and dinner every day and this because tiresome dragging four hungry kids out in search of food.
We have all agreed that of all the family holidays we have taken, Bali was our favourite destination so we decided to go in search of different accommodation.
I have been told by many friends that they have stayed in villas and it is absolute luxury at an affordable price, how can you go wrong?.
We decided to search in popular Seminyak which is famous for it’s beaches, restaurants and shopping. I stumbled across this website and was beyond impressed!!.
After reading this amazing introduction I was hooked, this is where we are going!!!!. ‘Our villas are inspected and handpicked to ensure they are of high quality.
We also have a concierge team to take care of our clients from the moment they look for a villa (we help them search for the right villas that meet their requirements), to the moment they leave the villa (we can arrange anything from stocking the fridge, booking a dinner, planning a party, tour activities, etc.).
Our tagline is “Your Happiness Guaranteed” – We make sure that our clients don’t have to worry about a thing’.
The website also stated that they have professional staff present to cater to your needs and requirements and ensuring the villa is in great condition. They offer the services of housekeeping, pool/garden maintenance, security (charged additionally) and no detail is overlooked.
You had me at child-friendly, babysitters, massages and private chef. I’m already in holiday heaven!!!.
I wanted to do some additional research to make sure everything was legitimate and came across some truly glowing reviews from previous guests.
Okay so I am sold and we are definitely going to Bali, I’m looking forward to a week of heat, sun, swimming and most importantly, a week off from housework and responsibility.
What more could I ask for?, someone to cook and shop for us, if we have to pay to eat out anyway, I would rather pay someone to cook us a traditional meal in the comfort of our villa where we can eat poolside.
Seeing as we are not paying kids club fees, I’m more than happy to pay for a trusted person with references to babysit so DH and I can have some time alone.
Our very own pool for the kids and ourselves is a huge selling point, I don’t want to be comparing myself to tanned 21-year olds in their bikinis who are getting annoyed at my kids who are running around yelling and screaming in excitement. I just want to be able to relax.
There is so much to keep everyone busy. If you would like to have a look at the villas available in Seminyak then click here. There are also other properties in Bali that promise to be as beautiful and as luxurious.
If you would like to visit elsewhere, you can also search for properties in Vietnam, Myanmar, Australia, New Zealand, The Maldives, India, Cambodia & Japan.
When planning a holiday with kids, my top tips include:
1. Always stay in self-contained. This way you don’t need to eat out three meals a day and if you have babies, you can heat and sterilise bottles, cook baby food etc.
2. Always stay somewhere that has activities for children. Pools, DVD’s, kids TV channels, nearby playgrounds, beaches or shopping malls.
3. Try to stay somewhere that has a kids club or offers a reputable babysitting service. After all you and DH want to have some relaxing time away from the children. Its not just a holiday for the kids, it’s a holiday for you too.
4. If you have a large family (we have two sets of twins) try to stay in accommodation that has more than one bathroom. We have had many an argument over kids busting to go to the toilet or demanding a shower NOW
5. Find accommodation who has friendly staff who want to make your vacation a success. After all, they are locals and know where all the best bars and restaurants are and get paid to help you.
6. If your budget allows (and you’re money goes so much further in Asia as previously mentioned) why not stay somewhere luxurious that has staff on hand to improve your experience and set your free from the day to day mundane tasks that are part and parcel of having a family?.
I hope I have provided you with enough pros and cons about holidaying with family and advice to ensure that the next holiday you plan is affordable, enjoyable, relaxing and enjoyable.