Hiking is a great way to spend a family vacation. Walking along rural trails allows you to create many magical moments for your family. The trips are also a great opportunity to break away from ?the everyday life in the city and to deepen the connection between parents and children and even among the children themselves. So what is the best way to prepare for this kind of trip?
Before going hiking:
- Planning the route:
- It’s important to select trails which are suited to your family in terms of the level of fitness of each member of the family and their age.
- In order to make the children committed to go to the hike, it’s recommended to involve the children in the planning of the places you are going to and what are you going to do in these places.
- Your trip should be divided into sections. So in order to excite the children, we’ll ask from each of the children, to lead in turn every part of
- the trip. This will keep them busy during the trips and will help make the trip much more interesting and enjoyable for them.
- Make sure that the route contains interesting places for children like: waterfalls, rivers, caves end ext.
- Don’t forget to check the weather forecast before going out to the trails. If the weather is not suitable for hiking it’s best to postpone the hike to another day -It’s dangerous to risk hiking in bad weather.
- And. Planning the trip schedule: what time to take a break, where to take breaks (rest stops) the trip, what time you will need to go back and how long it will take to return.
What to pack?
- A lot of water, food and snacks – it is important to drink plenty of water during the trip. It is also important to stop and eat occasionally. It does not matter whether it is a snack or a sandwich, just to fill our stomach and our children with energy for the rest of the way. For children, it is recommended to bring a bottle friendly to children which will encourage the children to drink.
- Adequate footwear: Choosing the right shoes can make your trip a success or a failure. So choose the shoes that are most comfortable for you and your children. It is not advisable to take new shoes because you are afraid they will get muddy, and a new shoe can cause wounds or pain in the legs until the foot is used to the shoe. It is also recommended to wear additional socks in the case of a track that includes mud or puddles
- Clothes: Always take a pair of changeable clothes for you and your children. The changeable clothes should be taken with you in your travel bag so that when you get wet in the middle of the trip, you will be asked to change clothes easily and continue your trip comfortably. On the other hand, if you plan to travel in a cold place, do not forget to bring in warm clothes. And of course do not forget the hats, sun glasses and sun protection
- A small backpack for each child, so that each child will have his equipment (depending on the age of the child, but even a small toddler can carry something easy in his backpack).
- Babies – It is important to put the baby in the carrier some time before the trip, to see if it is convenient for him / her and allow them to get used to the carrier.
- Basic first aid kit – Important in every trip.
- Capture camera to unique family moments as you hike.
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- What time of day do you start your trip? It is recommended to start the trip early in the morning. In the morning, the energy level is higher and the children are less tired and nervous.
- Make lots of breaks while walking – There are plenty of rest stops when you are strolling with the kids, allow the children to stretch themselves, take a break to drink water or eat a snack that will give them strength to keep moving (eg every 30 minutes or less).
- It is also important to be alert to the signs that the children get tired. If they begin to tire and complain – consider whether it is time to return.
- Put the fun in the center of the hiking experience. You can play games that will divert their attention from walking, talking to them, teaching them interesting information (you can ask them about the things they see while walking, asking them to find things, etc.).
- Make the children fill important:
a. Give each kid a role in the hike so he/she will be engaged while hiking. If they are old enough, you can let them lead some part of the trail.
b. Get them reward: get them a reward for finishing the hike
Where to hike?
Here some links for ideas for hiking with kids in various destinations around the world
Have a great hike!