Delighted to have Diane Pearce guest posting this month, Diane is an entrepreneur who has been buying and letting holiday cottages for 15 years. She is passionate about providing last-minute getaways to those seeking a retreat. She now owns BimbleBox, a popular holiday cottage rental website that exists to provide beautiful and affordable escapes to remember.
The school summer holidays are fast approaching, and parents all over the country are making decisions about what to do and how to keep their children busy. Tempting though it might be to allow our children to sleep in, spend hours on their consoles and while away the days watching the latest YouTube sensations, choosing to instead travel with your children provides a whole host of advantages.
Travels and adventures don’t have to come in the form of trips abroad to see the Great Pyramids, Niagara Falls or the Great Wall of China. There are so many cities, towns and villages to explore that you will be spoiled for choice. Once you make the decision to escape on a family holiday, you can rest easy knowing that you are making a significant and positive impact on your children’s lives in the following ways.
You will increase their appreciation for the world around them
Children are naturally curious, and feeding this healthy curiosity is something we should prioritise where possible. Taking our children to new places and letting them experience new things gives them a fresh perspective on their place in the world. They begin to realise how much more there is to life, which feeds their appetite for excitement and introduces them to new forms of fun and happiness. In this way, it becomes clear that travel really does broaden the mind.
You will get them accustomed to change
When children never deviate from their daily routine, or have to forfeit control, they become completely unaccustomed to change and as such, don’t learn how to deal with it. Taking children on holidays from an early age allows them to develop coping strategies for change and stress. If their beach holiday gets ruined by rain or they don’t get their own room on their cottage holiday, they begin to learn that sometimes things don’t go exactly as planned, ultimately helping them to become more flexible, patient and easy-going adults.
You’ll help to develop their confidence
When children are continually exposed to new experiences and are encouraged to try new things, they develop a sense of accomplishment while building their independence and self-confidence. Though psychologists debate the realities of whether confidence is a result of nature or nurture, parents can certainly do what they can by providing them with opportunities to grow. Children regularly faced with changes will become confident dealing with diversity and unexpected outcomes. This will prove useful as they grow up into responsible adults, who will need this capacity in their work lives.
You’ll provide opportunities to learn and grow
When we go travelling, our minds aren’t often left unstimulated. We tend to go out, visit museums, art galleries or historic attractions, all of which provide opportunities to learn. These experiences widen children’s horizons and give education a real-world context while making them fun. For example, you could take your children out to a science museum, where they can learn about static electricity by making their hair stand on end, or you could take them to Dinosaur Adventure in Norfolk, where you can learn about dinosaurs while having an amazing time.
You’ll foster closer family bonds
Going on holiday as a family provides dedicated, quality bonding time which in turn provides memories that children carry with them forever. Psychologists have suggested that when family members spend time together and engage in mutual activities, they are building meaningful connections in the form of ‘crescive bonds’. You don’t have to spend much money to foster this bond; it can be forged by a game of football, cards or a play in the park.
This last point is undoubtedly the most important. Research from the Family Holiday Association suggests that family holidays make up most of our happiest memories. 49% of Britons stated that their happiest memory resulted from a family holiday, while 55% of adults agreed that these same family holidays provided comforting memories that would stay with them forever. 24% even went as far as saying that they would recall these family holiday moments in times of stress or difficulty, to help them get through, using them as a ‘happiness anchor’.
Holiday advice for an ideal getaway
If you’re eager to provide a childhood holiday never to be forgotten, try to make it a collaborative experience. We are lucky enough to live in a diverse country, where each town offers something unique and interesting. Consider your child’s opinion; would they prefer a bucket-and-spade beach holiday or would they prefer a countryside retreat where they can go for a family walk through the nearby woods?
Many thanks for Diane for the above.