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Tips for a fun and relaxed family adventure holiday

Family adventure holidays Europe

Safety tips
• Take a basic first aid kit that includes sun cream, plasters, antihistamines and diarrhoea tablets
• Don’t touch any wild animals, even dogs and cats
• Don’t eat berries or fungi
• Build up stamina beforehand with regular walks or bike rides at weekends

Here are a few handy tips from members of staff who’ve taken their families on Inntravel walking and cycling holidays.

Jacqueline Vivian

“Make sure you read through the next day’s directions the evening before and really familiarise yourself with the route on the map. Kids soon get impatient if you keep them hanging around at every junction while you read and re-read the next section of the route notes, and are even less forgiving if you take a wrong turn and have to back track! I’d recommend doing this even if you let the kids take the role of leader – it’s still useful to have a rough idea of the route.”

Simon Wrench

“It’s not easy parting kids from their mobiles, MP3 players and other devices, so we always set clear rules at the start of the holiday as to when they can and, perhaps more importantly, when they can’t, use them. That said, since they are so tech-savvy, on our most recent holiday we put our teenage boys in charge of capturing the best bits of the holiday on camera. This gave them a focus while we were away, and they also enjoyed reliving the holiday afterwards while they compiled a photo album and edited the video footage.”

Beth Hancock

“Besides the essentials – picnic, water, sun cream, waterproofs and plasters – I always carry a few ‘extras’ in my rucksack: a ball (a foam tennis-sized ball or inflatable beach ball are best in terms of weight), one of those pop-up pocket frisbees, a microfibre towel (less bulky than a normal towel, but great for drying feet after paddles), a small net (available from pet shops and aquatic centres, they’re equally good for rock-pooling as for catching grasshoppers and butterflies in meadows), wet wipes (always useful, no matter what age your kids are!), a pack of playing cards, Uno or top trumps (these were a life saver when we turned up at a cable-car station once, only to find it had just closed for lunch!), super-concentrate squash (the palm-sized containers easily fit in your rucksack, meaning you can dilute with water as you need it) and a sweet treat to boost energy and/or morale levels if needed (obviously, avoid chocolate if it’s likely to melt).”

Simon Wrench

“We make up stories as we explore – someone kicks it off, and then we take it in turns to add a sentence. Other games that can easily be played on the move are ‘who am I’, where someone thinks of a famous person and the others have to work it out by asking questions that can only be answered by yes or no, and A to Z games, such as thinking of animals, foods, countries or boys’ names for each letter of the alphabet.”

Jacqueline Vivian

“Consider adding a city break either before or after your main holiday. The buzz – and the shops! – usually appeals to teenagers, and it makes your holiday more varied.”

Beth Hancock

“One of our best buys in recent years was a basic DVD player (plus a couple of different cables so you’re not stumped if the TV has the ‘wrong’ sockets) so that the kids can flop in front of a film later in the day – it saves clogging up your tablet with huge files and means they don’t have to crowd around a small screen. What’s more, at just £30 or so it’s not the end of the world if anything happens to it.”

Simon Wrench

“It’s worth investigating geo-caching opportunities in the area you’re visiting. There are quite a few in Catalonia; we even killed a bit of time in Girona Airport looking for the one there!”

Simon Wrench

“A fold-up beach parasol comes in handy if you are holidaying on the Catalan Coast in the summer months. If you haven’t got one, you can buy one when you get there – just remember to leave space in your case when you’re packing so that you can bring it back with you for future holidays!”