Travelling with a +1y old

We often got amazed/surprised comments on the fact that we had dared to travel with a 7 month old to the other side of the world and do a lengthy road trip   (cf. our vacation in California previous May). I always replied that then was the moment to do it,...that it would only become more difficult in the coming months and years.

Indeed, I was already a lot more nervous to travel this time with Kabouter, now that he is much more active and in constant discovery and very conscious what he wants and doesn't want...yet while he cannot be explained yet what is going on and why.  On the plane he doesn't fit in the crib anymore (max 70cm), what had been his bed and playground on the trans-atlantic  flight a few months ago.

So we had searched a long time for flights and finally chosen for 2 consecutive scheduled flights with a stop in Madrid, which was a better price option and seemed better to cut the length of the flight in 2 with some time for Kabouter to race around in the Madrid terminal.

During each of the flights he slept on our lap for about an hour, but then we had to keep him busy & happy for another 1-2 hours each time with varying succes going up.  The fact that he was teething and was in pain didn't help but despite some crying for a bit on each flight he did quite well, considering the pain and lack of sleep.  We read some books, walked through the isle, watched a bit of movie, had a tickle fight, etc... Each time I was quite relieved though when we landed as I felt out of inspiration to keep him entertained much longer .  And he explored the terminal in Madrid extensively. Not sure if it would have been easier or harder if it had been one long flight instead of 2 shorter ones with twice as much buckle up time.

I had expected that he'd sleep like a rock that first night after our arrival but nothing was more true:  a new unknown room shared with us, teething fever and pain, ...  Despite the fatigue of all three of us, none of us got much sleep that first night and we fear that our new neighbors in the hotel might have cursed at us as well.

Fortunately the next day, the napping rhythm returned, fever disappeared and we were getting our happy baby back, ready for a fun week on vacation.  The very pleasant surprise that our hotel room
turned out to be a small apartment turned the stay with a small baby very easy. I had not anticipated such an ease of movement through the room during the +4 hours of napping  that Kabouter needs each day + the early bedtime. We had brought the baby monitor and I had assumed that we'd either be locked on a small balcony to stay there during the entire nap or outside but very nearby the room with the monitor  but now he could sleep in the bedroom while we still had access to our big balcony with sun beds / living room + kitchenette and bathroom.  Well, that sure makes travel a lot easier.

Since we had a small kitchenette, we enquired whether there was any possibility to have a high chair in the room....and ha, 5 min later there was one in our room.   Yeay.  
The rest of the hotel was also well suited for small children, with high chairs everywhere and baby loving personnel.

The trip back was similar as the way up without the teething pain, so without crying.  All in all, it went very well.


yab said…
Kabouter is already a well-versed traveller at his age!

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