(The following is a story from Lucy, in the Campiri team. Enjoy!) A few years ago we decided to go on a caravan holiday with our little boy, and we had no idea what would happen. Like many other parents, we felt that such a small child needed to be treated like a baby. This was strongly supported by many of our relatives, who immediately saw in our planned trip the risk of injury, cold, and even psychological damage from breaking daily routines at such a young age.
However, we ultimately believed it would be okay. After taking every precaution, we finally set off on the journey in our small caravan. It was equipped with a bed, a fridge and a small sink with a shower. We were on the road for almost two weeks, sleeping in and outside of campsites and covering almost 5000 kilometres. By the end of the trip we knew that travelling with small children didn’t need to be a painful experience. You just need to be there to help them adapt, little by little. If you can pull it off, you’ll enjoy yourselves and have a lot of unforgettable experiences.
Hygiene in the caravan
We alternated between nights "in the wild" and nights in campsites to keep things interesting. After swimming in the sea, we used our small shower to rinse off, which wasn't a problem in the summer temperatures.
Food on the go
Thanks to the miniature kitchen we had, we were always able to cook at least one hot meal every day, either from basic ingredients (because we love markets and local food) or occasionally from pre-prepared products. When we do buy these foods we try to buy the best quality we can, without heaps of preservatives. It takes a little extra time to cook in a caravan, but then again, we were confident that our little traveller would eat whatever we made, as we know what he likes (this is definitely a bonus over restaurants!).
Sleep and daytime routines
Our son was no longer sleeping in the afternoon at the age of three, but we still try to take at least an hour's siesta after lunch to have energy for the rest of the day. We've never had a problem with falling asleep and we’re lucky that our children love to sleep together. This actually means that they sleep better in the caravan glued to each other than at home in their own beds!
For children, sleeping in a caravan is an adventure!
When it’s raining
So this can be a challenge in a caravan, but really, it’s just a matter of preparation. You’ll need to plan ahead and equip yourself with books, crayons and toys, or simply whatever your child is enjoying at the time of your trip.
Long journeys by caravan
Our tactic was to plan longer trips in the evenings and if that didn't work, we made up games to pass the time. At the age of three, we still didn't want to play fairy tales and bed time stories from a mobile phone or tablet, because we know that once those devices are introduced, there’s no going back! As for the car seats, we had a 2-position seat, both for sleeping and for sitting.
To sum everything up, I have to say that it was one of the best holidays we’ve ever had, simple as that. Our son was engaged and involved every day, and fell asleep within 5 minutes in the evening. I’d urge you not to worry about travelling with small children. If you’re happy, your child will be too. Children adapt very quickly, and I’m certain that many families out there could easily manage a journey in a caravan without any issues.
Are you interested in trying out a campervan for yourself? Have a look at our full range of motorhomes and caravans here.
See you on the road!