A City Break In London With Kids Bucket List

So I recently wrote a post with a few ideas of places to take a short break in and around the UK with kids that are on our bucket list.  I thought I would follow that up with our bucket list of things to do with the family in London.

We have never ‘done’ London with kids, and it is definitely on our to do list.   Everything about London is pretty much the opposite of everything that my kids know in their lives* and so it will be so amazing to take them there and see their little minds be blown. *Seriously we went in an elevator when we were on Mahe over the Easter Holidays and they literally could not believe it when the doors opened and we were somewhere else.

So here are a few of the things on our London Bucket List.  Hopefully it will give you some taking a trip to London with kids.

The London Eye

The London Eye is a beautiful way to have fantastic views all across London.  When going with kids, you can beat the queues by booking fast track tickets. It’s a little more pricey but saves having to wait in lines with the kids! Trip Savvy has some more great tips for going on the London Eye with Small Kids

The Theatre

Going to see a show in London is something is a truly an iconic thing to do.  Of course, the classic would be to watch The Lion King. But, there are loads of different kid friendly shows on all over London like Room On The Broom and We’re Going On A Bear Hunt (two of the boys favourite books!).  Check out Discount London for tickets.

Riding the Underground

While the underground might be a tedious part of a Londoners daily travel commute.  It would definitely be exciting for the kids to ride around on.  Hopping on and off different trains would be a total highlight for them.

a city break in london with kids bucket list

Museums

Museums make for great days out with the kids.  Most are free for under 18’s and some are free for everyone.  You can’t beat a free day out!

The boys are yet to go to a museum, we just don’t have anything like that here.  Well, we have a couple of museums but they are certainly not geared up around kids.

Freddie is totally dinosaur obsessed and so a trip to the Natural History Museum would be an absolute must for us.  I can not wait to see his face the day we take him there when he can see some real dinosaurs!

I would also love to take the boys to the Science Museum where there is loads of hands on interactive stuff for them to get involved with.

There are countless museums for all different things in London.  You’d be hard pushed not to find at least one you and the kids will love!

a city break in london with kids bucket list

Afternoon Tea

How very English!  It would definitely be cute to take the kids for afternoon tea.  There are loads of kid friendly places to choose from all offering yummy treats for kids and grown ups.

 

The Iconic Landmarks

Wandering around to visit Big Ben, Buckingham Palace and Covent Garden would all be so much fun for the kids.  To give them a glimpse of the things that are so iconic about London.

city break in London with kids bucket list

There are so many ‘pop up’ activities in and around London all year too, be sure to keep your eyes peeled for fun, and often free, activities for kids in Museums, Parks and Theatres!

Is there anything you’d add to this list?  I’d love to hear some more ‘must visit’ places in London with kids.

 

Five Fun Ways to Stay in Shape

 

Do you find yourself doing the same thing when you’re working out?  Always going for a run, or always heading to the gym? Trying out a new activity that will help you stay in shape is a great way to get out of that rut! There are plenty of great activities for you to check out that won’t feel like exercise.   Today I’m giving you five fun ideas that will help you stay in shape.  No running required!!

five fun ways to stay in shape

Zumba 

If you have not heard of Zumba, where have you been? This fitness dance class that has been taking the world by storm in recent years.  If you who love to dance, Zumba is the perfect aerobic workout that incorporates body movements from flamenco, salsa and other dances. It’s designed to sculpt your body while burning fat at the same time.   You can find Zumba classes everywhere for all ages and levels of fitness.

 

Pole Dancing 

Pole dancing is another fun way to stay in shape that has become extremely popular in recent years. Trying it out with friends will help you leave any inhibitions at the door! This is not only a great way to stay in shape, but it will also help to boost your confidence. Pole dancing is fantastic for upper body strength as you will be lifting your body off the pole, toning your arms and legs as you do so.

 

Indoor Rock Climbing 

Another exciting activity that will help to build strength and balance is rock climbing.  The easiest, and safest way to try this is at an indoor rock climbing facility.  You’ll be using your leg, arm and ab muscles throughout the workout, and you can easily burn as many as 800 calories in an hour. If you fall in love with indoor rock climbing you can then challenge yourself outdoors.

 

At Home Workout Trainers 

If you love nothing better than watching your favourite soaps in front of the television at night, then getting a piece of gym equipment for your home is the perfect way to stay in shape.  If exercise is not usually your thing, you can distract yourself with the TV!  Time will fly by much faster while watching your favourite programmes! You can research which trainer to buy here .  You can get at home gym equipment for all kinds of different things, whether its cardio, strength training or toning!  Having equipment at home allows you to fit in some exercise around kids naps or bed times.

 

Roller-skating 

If you usually like to go out for a run but are looking to do something a little bit different, why not consider going roller-skating? A great bonus is that it’s easier on your joints while still building good lower body strength.

Taking Care of Your Family’s Health Overseas

Whether you are on holiday or planning to move to a new country, one thing you need to consider is the health implications for you and your family. There are several aspects to consider if you want to have a happy trip and avoid any medical problems when you leave your home country.

These issues can be broadly defined in three categories: care of ongoing health issues, first aid and minor conditions, and emergency provision. Health problems affect the whole trip for everyone, not just the person who is sick.

We invest so much time and money into travelling, the last thing anything wants is for it to be cut short.  So, managing potential health issues is a must.

Ongoing health issues

An ongoing health issue includes any illness or problem affecting a family member’s health you are already aware of. Common examples include asthma, epilepsy, mental health conditions, genetic conditions, diabetes, high blood pressure, and allergies. You need to check with your doctor as to any advice they have for travelling.

There are restrictions on certain drugs being carried through customs in different countries.  For instance, the opioid drug Tramadol is often prescribed for chronic pain conditions, but due to its addictive properties and the problems it has caused in some parts of the world, you can face problems entering certain countries with it. If you’re planning on taking any medication with you, check whether there are any restrictions where you are going.

Make sure you get enough to last for the whole trip and a little longer, in case you get delayed. Don’t run the risk of running out of vital treatments as allergy medicine, inhalers, or epinephrine auto injectors.  It is not always easy to get medication you need abroad, especially specific prescriptions.

Changes that could affect those with chronic health conditions

When planning your trip, be aware of how changes in climate, humidity, air quality, food, and sleep may affect anyone with a health condition. An asthmatic might find their breathing affected by a big city or at a higher altitude. People with diabetes need to be able to eat and drink at the right time to avoid a hypoglycemic fluctuation. The stress of travelling could have an adverse effect on someone with high blood pressure or heart problems. There could be aspects of the new environment that could trigger allergic responses. For those with mental health issues, the entire process can be stressful and bewildering.

All these complications can be managed. You just need to make plans to accommodate everyone’s needs.

First aid

When on board an aircraft or a ship, the staff will have access to all the first aid facilities you might need if someone falls ill or gets injured.  It’s wise to let them know of any pre-existing conditions.

Once you reach your destination, you will probably have access to a first aid kit where you’re staying. But if you’re exploring somewhere off the beaten track, you will need to have some essential supplies with you.  Either way, check before you go, it’s not worth the risk of being caught out!

The advice on what to take can vary from place to place. It is also often updated, as knowledge about the best action to take improves. Check what is recommended on authoritative websites, and cross reference with any advice on extras you might need.  Also check for any local flora and fauna to be aware of, for example, jellyfish, poisonous plants, or spiders.  You don’t need to scare yourself silly,  just be aware of the main hazards to look out for.

You may feel more confident using a first aid kit if you’ve completed a first aid course. Taking a course isn’t expensive, and quite apart from being useful when you’re away, it’s also a highly valuable life skill to have. Knowing what to do if someone stops breathing, or being able to spot the signs of serious illnesses like a stroke can quite literally save lives.

Emergency treatment

The last thing you want to worry about if someone needs health care abroad is medical bills! Before you go, you should take out travel insurance that covers you for accident and illness abroad. Check the policy carefully to make sure it covers you for everything you are likely to be doing, as there can be exclusion clauses in the small print that mean certain conditions or activities aren’t covered without being added on.  Make sure you disclose any pre-existing conditions!

Make sure you’ve had all the vaccinations and any other preventative treatments required for the country you are visiting.  This advice is easily found online.

It’s good planning to find out about the health facilities where you’ll be staying. It’s handy to know where the nearest doctor or hospital is to you. The chances are slim that you will ever need this information, but just in case you do, it can save a lot of time and stress if you know what number to ring, or where you can obtain medical help.

 

If you’ve read through all this and are now thinking it sounds like you’d be safer staying at home, relax. The point of being prepared is to insure yourself against anything going wrong; it doesn’t mean that any of these problems will arise! By taking steps to be prepared for what could happen, and prevent as many problems as possible, you will have a much safer and happier trip. There’s no need to worry about what might happen because it probably won’t. Just the same as if you are at home, the key is to take the actions required to make the chances even more remote that health issues will have an impact.

Short Breaks With Kids in and around the UK

We are coming up to our next UK Trip and we are getting super excited about our visit.

As the boys are getting older we feel like we can adventure more and more and visit new places.  We have already booked a short trip to France where we will be doing Disneyland and then heading down South for my Sister in law’s wedding.

Booking that has definitely made me realise that there is so much in and around the UK that is accessible to us when we visit that we really need to take advantage of during our visits.  So I thought Id write down a few different things as a mini travel bucket list of short breaks with kids on our next few visits to the UK.

Short breaks with kids in and around the UK

Scotland

Mark and I have NEVER been to Scotland which seems crazy to us both.  We are totally desperate to go and explore such a beautiful part of the world.

short breaks with kids in and around the uk

I want to explore Edinburgh which just looks like the most picture perfect city in the world with so much history and culture and then head out to highlands where there seems to be endless adventures waiting.  CairnGorm Mountain looks amazing, especially the funicular railway.  I know the boys would love that, trains are of course a big novelty to my little island boys seeing as there are no trains here.  VisitScotland has a great itinerary for the highlands with kids

 

The Channel Islands

Geographically in-between the UK and France, The Channel islands are neither British or French. They may be small but they are steeped in history.  Guernsey is the closest to the UK and the Bailiwick* of Guernsey also covers  the islands of Alderney and Sark.  There is also of course Jersey which is it’s own Bailiwick.

I think we would make Guernsey our base and then head off to explore other islands from there.  You can reach Guernsey with Condor Ferries

short breaks with kids in and around the uk

Castle Cornet is definitely going to be a must for us.  The boys love castles and this is a whole island castle!!

Lots of little islands also means lots of coastline to explore which is definitely something Arthur and Freddie love.  The Channel islands have some seriously beautiful beaches, which means a lot coming from us!

*If you’re wondering what this word means it’s basically the ‘division of or district’…..I’d never heard of it either until I started reading more about the Channel Islands!

 

The Lake District

A walking holiday is something that really appeals to me with kids.  In the UK the Lake District is the obvious choice.  Apart from being absolutely beautiful, there are huge amounts of activities for kids of all ages – A definite bonus when the novelty of walking wears off for the kids!  The Lake District National Park website has huge amounts of information on what’s going ideas.  I love that they have a dedicated section to people walking with pushchairs too.

short breaks with kids in and around the uk

You Can Make Your Dreams Come True

It’s something a lot of people dream about, moving to paradise islands like the Seychelles.  But how many of them are prepared to do the work? To put in the effort to make that dream a reality? If you truly long for a change in lifestyle, you need to work towards your goal, not just hope you’ll win the lottery one day! It’s a big move, but if it’s what you want for your life, then the effort you put in to make your dreams come true will be well worth it.

 

What are you going to do?

If you could just fly overseas and spend your days doing whatever you wanted, then everyone would be doing it! You need to have a plan for what you’re going to do when you relocate. Then work towards getting a job lined up or setting yourself up as a freelancer. You’ll need to make sure you understand the visa requirements and the employment legislation before looking for a job. There are great websites and services available that can help you sort these technicalities out.  Some of these sites can also help you out with job hunting too.

make your dreams come true

Financing your move

You’ll need to raise some capital to ensure you have enough money to cover the relocation and setting yourself up. That might mean working for a few more years in your current job.  If you’re thinking about freelancing, say as a writer or running your own business, it’s better to start work on the project before you move, so you haven’t got everything going on at once. It’s also better to be established and bringing in work before you move, so you have a level of security. The great thing about working from home is that you can live almost anywhere you like thanks to the internet. That means it’s perfectly feasible to set your business up in one country and transfer to another with minimal disruption.

The transition period

Once you’ve committed yourself to a move, you need to be dedicated to achieving your savings goals and getting ready for your new job. If you’re going freelance, you need to get the business going before you move.  Getting your business up and running while still working is NOT going to be easy.  You could look at moving to a part-time position or more flexible working hours. This will allow you time to build up your new client list. Have a look at employment opportunities near you that could offer you the flexibility and free time you need, for example check out websites such as www Walmart com careers to find a suitable role.

Living your dream life is something that can come true, providing you are serious about making the change and putting the work in to achieve your goals. If you have the ambition and determination, you too could one day be making your dreams come true on the sun-kissed beaches of a tropical paradise.make your dreams come true

Staying Safe as a Solo Traveller

Going away with family and friends can be fun, but there’s nothing like the freedom of solo travel. Exploring a new city on your own time, with no demands to alter the route or having to sit down for a break when you are ready to go.  Read on for more about staying safe as a solo traveller.

The idea of travelling solo can scare some people, but it isn’t necessarily dangerous.  It’s all about being prepared and knowing what to do if you get yourself in a difficult situation. Knowing the better destinations to visit and how to hold yourself when you are walking around. But be realistic, there will always be risks, even staying in your own country is no guarantee of safety.  Knowing and preparing for these risks is the best action to take.

 

Plan Ahead

Your journey begins before you board the plane. From the moment you start planning your solo travel, you want to be prepared. Start with your travel insurance, providing as much information on destinations and activities as you can.

Learn about the areas you are going to visit.  Read up on other travellers who have gone either solo or as a group. Find out areas to avoid or if there are certain times of day, or even year, that are considered unsafe.

Plan your initial route to your accommodation.  Then consider planning routes between your intended destinations.  This will save you some hassle on your trip and give you more time to explore.

Learn about the local customs and cultures, for instance, common clothing found in the area. When travelling, you want to be able to blend in, rather than accidently declare yourself a naïve tourist.  Or worse, culturally offend someone!  Learning some basics in the native language will also benefit you greatly. Being able to speak a few words will almost certainly help locals warm up to you more should you need help.  Being able to read a few words will really help you too.

Familiarise yourself with the types of scams you may find in the area, this will allow you to avoid them and walk away when you suspect something isn’t right. Although you should always be aware of your surroundings, rather than expecting to be picked for a con.

Check out this Foreign Travel Checklist for some more guidance from Gov.UK

staying safe as a solo traveller

Accommodation

When choosing your accommodation, try to choose somewhere that someone you know has used and had good experiences with. If this option is not available, find somewhere with good quality reviews across a number of trusted sites.

Consider quality and safety as well as budget. Hostels can be great fun, not to mention nice and cheap, but come with increased safety risks. There are plenty of hotels, boutique and chain offering cheaper rooms for solo travellers without compromising on safety and comfort.

For example, the Crash Pad rooms in a Nottingham city centre hotel – these rooms are designed to be stylish and comfortable, but for use of solo travellers only.

Time of arrival at your accommodation is important.  Arrive as early as you can in the day.  Not only will this help you find your location easier, but you’ll get a better feel for the surrounding area. If you come to find your accommodation isn’t going to be suitable, you’ve also left yourself some time to find alternative arrangements.

Never give away your accommodation while you’re travelling, close friends and family being the exception. Your base of operation is your area of safety and given this information away could cause you trouble in the future.

While You’re Travelling

Be a smart traveller and make sure you’re prepared for when you are travelling around. Keep the number of personal items to a minimum so you have less to worry about (and check!) and make sure they are kept hidden securely on your person at all times.

Keep spare cash or an alternative credit/debit card hidden away from your main purse or pocket. If you are caught out by a pickpocket, at least you won’t be stranded with no means to pay your way.

Always be alert and aware of your surroundings.  You don’t need to be suspicious of everyone but certainly be more reserved than you would be at home. You’ll want to keep a clear head, steering away from drink and drugs – this could impair your judgement and make you an easy victim. Never give away personal information and make sure that you stay in populated areas.

Make sure you are polite while travelling but know when to make a fuss. Should you find yourself in an uncomfortable situation you shouldn’t be afraid to alert those around you.

Anywhere you travel, make sure you do so with confidence, you don’t want to make yourself look like a nervous traveller or an easy target for scams.

Before heading away, you can also register your journey with your government and/or leave your journey details with friends and family. This way if there is any unrest in a destination country you will be advised and it’s easier to track where you might be.

When you’re sufficiently prepared, travelling alone can be an enjoyable experience where you can learn a lot about yourself.

Where will your next journey take you?

staying safe as a solo traveller

Picture Perfect Proposal Spots In Seychelles

Seychelles is without doubt famous for being a honeymoon destination.  I also love to show how great it is as a family location here on my blog.

Lets just say that with or without family, Seychelles is unquestionably a place to share with loved ones.

With Proposal announcements becoming a bigger and bigger show, Seychelles can provide the ultimate in beautiful backdrops.

All of these places, unless stated are free to access.  I’m aiming to suggest some places that are perhaps a little less obvious, or a bit out of the ordinary!

So lets check out some of the best spots to propose in Seychelles to give you some inspiration!

Picture Perfect Proposal Spots In Seychelles

Step 1 – Get the ring

Okay, so this might seem obvious but if your looking for the picture perfect proposal, than you need the picture perfect ring to match!  Check out F.hinds for inspiration for all budgets.

Step 2 – Book your flights

There are numerous ways of getting to Seychelles, you can even fly direct with British Airways to the Seychelles now! I wrote a post for them all about Romantic Holidays in Seychelles if you’d like to check it out!

Step 3 – Pick your Picture Perfect Proposal Spot

At the old fire tower

The old fire tower is on Praslin.  As the name suggests, it is an out of action fire tower.  People would be based up here to look out across the island for fires!

This one is a bit of a hike but I promise it is SO worth it if your fit and healthy!

It’s one of the highest reachable points on the island and you are rewarded with this view.  Also the fire tower itself isn’t the MOST stable of structures so if you don’t want to risk the climb up it the view is still beautiful! The picture below is from the first floor of the tower, you can actually go up again….I decided against it, but mostly because the kids were with us and they wanted to climb up too!!

Best accessed from the Vallee de Mai car park.  Come out of the car park and turn right.  Walk a little up hill until you see a mud track off up to the right.  It will probably have a metal bar across it but that’s only to stop vehicles going up, walkers are allowed!

I’d recommend this as a morning visit for the best views.

 

Picture Perfect Proposal Spots In Seychelles

 

Sunset Rocks

On Praslin the best place for sunset is, looking out from Anse Kerlan towards Cousin and Cousine islands.

 

Picture Perfect Proposal Spots In Seychelles

On Mahe the best place is at Beau Vallon.  We just stayed at the H Resort which is on Beau Vallon and I can’t recommend it enough!

La Digue has to be looking out from Snack Bellevue.  Quite a walk but you can arrange transportation as there is a road that takes you all the way to the top.  A great little restaurant, that serves amazing creole food.

Picture Perfect Places to Propose in Seychelles

I could go on endlessly here, there really is countless places to watch the most stunning sunsets here in Seychelles.

On The Water

Let your budget and your imagination determine this one!  You could go all out and hire a fully staffed and catered yacht, or you could keep it super simple and hire a Kayak or a couple of paddle boards.

Both super romantic, and both definitely very special.

 

On a Hike

There are some amazing hikes to do in Seychelles, most notably on Mahe, Praslin, and Silhouette islands.  If hiking is your thing, or even if it isn’t; you’ll be sure to get some of the best panoramic views of Seychelles when you go hiking here and if that isn’t a beautiful spot to propose I don’t know what is!

To name but a few

  • Anse Major Trail (Mahe) is a gem and at the end you get beautiful Anse Major which apart from via the trail is only accessible by boat, pretty much guaranteeing you a quiet beach!
  • Anse Kerlan to Anse Georgette or Anse Lazio (Praslin) this is a BEAUTIFUL walk and has really stunning views. These start at the same place, go left for Anse Georgette and right for Anse Lazio.  Both beaches are often featured in the top beaches in the world and for good reason!

picture perfect proposal spots in seychelles

 

  • Silhouette Island isn’t really an option for a day trip but if you are staying there (the Hilton Labriz is amazing, I can totally recommend it!) it offers some fantastic trails for all abilities. *The* trail to do for experienced hikers is the hike to Grand Barbe. But perhaps the most picturesque is the trail to Anse Mondon.

 

At a Waterfall

I think this could possibly win all romance points.  Tropical island, secluded waterfall?! The waterfall near Port Glaud on Mahe is BEAUTIFUL!  Take a little picnic and spend an afternoon lazing around in the cool water.  I’d recommend getting a guide as the path is not marked out. They are unofficial but you’ll find them near the church on the road.  They have lots of information and are really friendly!  You can then make your own way back if you choose.

picture perfect proposal spots in seychelles

So there are a few ideas for inspiration!  I’d love to know if you have got engaged here and where it happened!!  Can’t beat a lovely proposal story!