It’s by this time of year that the internet and media have become full of articles on the subject of travelling abroad with your baby. When I sat down to write this article, I did think very hard about whether or not the world really needed any more. However, I also remember that when I was a new mother, I didn’t read just one or two of these articles, but devoured as many as I could find. I tried to extract every last ounce of help and advice I could before risking a holiday abroad. Here at Bookings For You, we specialise in Italian villa holidays, and my first trip abroad with our baby over 9 years ago, was indeed, to an Italian villa.
I don’t want to sound biased but Italy is a fantastic destination for a holiday with a baby or young children. It’s not too far, so much of the food is familiar and as a country, Italy is known for welcoming children. If you are travelling with a young baby, an Italian villa holiday is ideal.
On our first trip as a family, we had just started to wean our son, and I have to confess that I was one of those mothers who travelled on holiday with a hand blender in my luggage. I did even consider bringing my entire microwave sterilising system as well, but regretfully, after loading up our suitcases with enough formula powder to last the week (not to mention the other things I might need for any conceivable emergency situation as well as a few inconceivable ones), there was just no room.
If you are using formula to feed your baby, then it is so much easier doing the preparation, washing and sterilising in your own villa, rather than trying to manage it within the limited space of a hotel room. For the early stages of weaning, having a kitchen is also essential. But don’t take that to mean you have to stay at home. Booking a self catering villa in Italy can provide you with all the home comforts you need even when abroad. And, if you have a little one, speak to Bookings For You about which properties are best for those with children. Many of the villas and apartments in their portfolio have well equipped kitchens with all the appliances and equipment you could need with a little one in tow, whether it’s a blender, microwave or other such gadget. Other baby equipment is also on hand from baby baths to travel cots. But don’t feel the need to be as obsessive as I was either! A good masher or even a fork can work wonders in place of a blender, particularly once they are on lumpier food.
The one thing I would recommend is taking some kind of app for translating the names of your child’s favourite fruit and vegetables. The tendency in Italian supermarkets to stick a random part of a vegetable (and also meat) into a styrofoam container and cover it with clingfilm can be quite baffling. Before the advent of smartphones being in common usage, I would stare in terror at some vague orange object, wondering if it was in fact, a variety of squash, and whether it was or was not, my son’s current favourite.
Another advantage of a villa holiday is that if your baby wakes early or cries in the night (and whose doesn’t), you don’t feel uncomfortable about waking the people in the room next door as you would in a hotel. What is more, having your own private villa or apartment affords you the luxury of just getting up and wandering around in, or even without, your night attire!
Despite all the angst that can be involved in the preparation for travelling with a baby, I would definitely say to go for it. You will experience a whole new world with a baby and travelling abroad is no exception. Even familiar countries and places take on a whole new perspective. My three children are all now well travelled in both Italy and further afield, and all have managed to survive perfectly well on strange vegetables and bottles sterilised in microwave bags. And no… I never came even remotely close to running out of formula!
If you have any questions about travelling with a baby or young children, and how we can help, please do contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, as we are here to help make your holiday as relaxing and enjoyable as possible.