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It goes without saying that travelling changes once you start a family.
Perhaps you were an avid climber once, or you loved camping under the stars ona whim with just a sleeping blanket and the bare necessities. Somehow, thosekinds of holidays become few and far between when you have a family.

Mindful camping tips
Photo by Benjamin Elliott on Unsplash

While more
traditional family holidays like theme parks trips are still wonderful, there
are ways to get the whole family involved in a camping holiday and get back to
the nature you miss so much. Whether it’s a short holiday weekend to the
countryside, or a long trek abroad, here are some ways to get your entire
family to love a good camping holiday.

Start small     

If it has been a while since you went camping, there’s no need to jump into the deep end right away. Take small steps so your new camping family can get used to going away without some of the things they might be used to.

This is especially true with young children and toddlers, who tend to focus on routines and familiarity in a way that older children and adults can temporarily do without.

This is the best time to hype up what you will be doing. Perhaps set up a camping evening in your garden first. If you live in a flat or simply don’t have a garden, you can even camp out in your living room or at a grandparent’s house. Tell your children how excited you are and start to get them excited about the new experience too.

Incorporate some familiarity by ensuring you pack some favourite toys or bed linens. This will provide some comfort in a new situation, helping children feel safe and secure.

Don’t fret too much if the first time out ends with a grumpy child who wants to go back to their own bed, or a night poorly slept. This is one great reason to do a bit of a test run first before you had to a campsite.

Mindful camping tips
Photo by Daiga Ellaby on Unsplash

Give glamping a try

There is nothing wrong with opting to take a milder milder approach to camping, especially when travelling with small children or when camping for the first time.

Glamping can be a great way to get closer to nature without having to stress too much about the minor details. Be kind not just to your family, but to yourself.

It’s OK if you didn’t manage to get the campfire started yourself, you forgot the marshmallows, or you didn’t pitch your own tent. Camping safely with the family takes a lot of attention to detail, so it is fine if you let someone else take care of some of those details and don’t beat yourself up for anything you might forget to take with you.

As spending more time closer to nature becomes more familiar, you will feel less pressure to watch over everything your children are doing, and you can focus on getting all the essential details ready for a serious campout.

Once the children get a bit bigger, they will delight in being able to help, and you will be spending quality time showing them all the camping tricks you know.

Incorporate mindfulness into your holiday

Travelling with the whole family can be so very rewarding, but it would be foolish to pretend that everything will go smoothly, even for seasoned family campers.

While it is great to pack in as much sightseeing, hiking, and activities into your holiday as possible, take care to also make sure that everyone is truly savouring the moment and mindfulness can be a helpful way to do that.

Emphasise taking breaks at some points throughout the day. Mornings are a great time to take a moment to sit together as a family, perhaps trying some yoga.

Yoga is an ideal activity to do as a family because every skill level can participate at the same time. Since it is also a fun activity, it is much easier for the little ones to do. It might also be a nice way to wind down in the evenings after dinner or before bed.

Another activity that works well with children is listening. While hiking, or even by the campfire, take a moment to be quiet and just focus on what you hear around you. Ask the children what they hear. Can they hear crickets, or birds chirping? Do they hear the plants rustling? This activity is a fantastic way to slow down and to focus fully on the here and now.

At the end of the holiday, or at points during your break, try asking your kids, and yourself, how they are feeling, how things are going etc. which will help build mindful communication.

Don’t get upset if the children discuss things they didn’t like. In fact, doing so allows them to learn to accept negative experiences. Taking these moments throughout a holiday to be quiet and introspective can improve everyone’s mood, ease tensions, and help children learn to communicate in a practical way.

Travel anywhere with these tips

Suddenly, after a
few trips together, camping farther away will become less of a far away dream.
Although there is no shortage of great camping spots throughout the UK,
sometimes it is nice to get out and experience something new.

If you do find yourself travelling abroad with the whole family, make sure you have the proper travel documents. For example, if you would like to take the family on a camping trip to a place like Prince Albert National Park or to Algonquin Park in Ontario, Canada, you will need an eTA. The eTA Canada is the electronic equivalent of the visa. The eTA Canada is required for all ages, even for infants.

Luckily, you can make your eTA Canada application process much easier by applying for the entire family at once. You only have to fill in certain information once, making the process much faster. Once you have applied for the eTA Canada, they will be sent to the first point of contact, which will make travelling a lot easier. You can apply online in just a few minutes, and the eTA Canada is valid for 5 years to help make family travel even easier!

DISCLOSURE | This post was written and sponsored by. eTA Canada.

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