Exploring the town of Les Baux de Provence | Philip Wyndham
As parents, we understandably worry about the 'what ifs', especially when we are travelling away from home exploring the great outdoors. What happens if someone injures themselves? What if we can't keep up with the group? What if there's no downtime for us to relax?
In reality, active family holidays are unforgettable for all the right reasons, with plenty of unique opportunities to play and learn with your children along the way. So, instead of booking a stay in a campsite or holiday resort for your next family holiday, why not opt for a more adventurous, exploratory, engaging and educational kind of holiday that will allow your kids to immerse themselves in nature. Here are seven of the most common myths about active family holidays, debunked.
#1 My kids only like water parks
When the sun is shining and the weather is warm it may seem that there is nothing better for kids than to spend the day at a water park, but there are many more water-based activities out there. What could be more exciting, for example, than a bike ride to a cool mountain lake or waterfall. If your kids are comfortable swimmers, why not consider a bike or boat holiday on one of Europe's famous waterways or in the Mediterranean. On one of these trips, your kids will enjoy a winning combination of walking or cycling and swimming during the day, and sleeping in a floating hotel at night.
#2 Active holidays are expensive
Active holidays are man-powered, and involve hiking or cycling from place to place without much need for expensive equipment or inclusions. Because our trips only include what you really need - a range of accommodation to suit your budget, most meals, luggage transfers, maps and guidebooks for self guided trips and bikes for cycling trips - they truly represent great value. On guided trips you also have the added benefit of an experienced guide who takes pride in keeping the kids engaged and interested in the region they are walking or cycling through.
#3 Active holidays are dangerous
Cycling or walking on busy roads or along narrow lane-ways can seem a tad daunting with kids in tow. This is exactly why we have dedicated active family holidays, which keep the use of busy tracks and trails to a minimum. Where possible, all of the tours in our family range use quieter routes so you can get on with enjoying the views without having to worry about traffic. If you are already comfortable with active holidays but want the peace of mind that comes with booking a fully supported trip, we have trips designed to suit families with children as young as two. Or, if you're looking to test the waters, why not try one of our centre-based tours, which will see you return to the same accommodation each night so you only have to unpack once?
#4 Active trips take a lot of planning
We take care of the nitty gritty for you, making all arrangements and organising the finer details so you can concentrate on the fun stuff, like looking forward to your upcoming trip and getting fit for it. With 10+ years of experience in tailoring unforgettable active trips, we've adopted some of our favourite and most popular itineraries to suit families. We're happy to assist with any queries you may have in the lead up to your trip because we've sent the parents in our global team to test them. The time you will save by not having to research and plan your trip can be redirected towards taking your family out on some day walks or cycling trips in preparation for your upcoming holiday.
#5 I won’t have any quality time with my partner
With all the cycling, walking and other activities going on, you may be worried that there won't be much time left over to spend with your partner. However, this is not generally the case on a UTracks active family trip. With your offspring busy playing with other children, you will have plenty of time to relax together and enjoy watching them grow and change. Also, after an exciting day of exploring nature and learning about native flora and fauna and new cultures, you won't have much trouble getting your kids to bed at a reasonable hour, leaving you more time to enjoy the local wine and delicacies with your partner and other like-minded parents on the same trip or in the same handpicked accommodation.
#6 Active holidays are too inaccessible
Some may think that a holiday in the outdoors means venturing to the remoter parts of Europe. But you don’t need to travel very far from civilisation to appreciate some of the most stunning mountain vistas, forests and rivers that Europe has to offer. Often, good road connections are closer than you might think in case of an emergency. All of our self guided trips come with a local support number that you can call 24/7, and the guides on our small group tours have been trained to handle emergencies and will look after you from start to finish.
#7 There won't be any other kids for my kids to play with
A traditional holiday in a hotel or campsite often comes with lots of opportunities for your children to make new friends, whether it's by the pool, at the ping pong table, or during organised activities. Active family holidays come with just as many opportunities for your kids to make new friends. From taking turns leading donkeys on our Mont Blanc Family walks
, to learning about food and cultural traditions on the Sardinia Family Cycle Adventure
or playing a board game on a boat on the Croatia Family Adventure
. What better way to bond and make new friends?