Category Archives: Travel

Sending your kids abroad without you.

So Laney is off to Greece today. Took her to the airport and the class is off. I’ll be posting photos of her travels but first here is a re-blog of my first thoughts on her going away.

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The Wayfaring Family

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I just agreed to do it and now I’m jealous. I just signed my daughter up for a two-week “Greece” trip with her high school for next summer. After much begging and pleading (and promising to work towards some of the cost) we agreed to “allow” her to go.  Although in actuality, we could not have been more pleased she wanted to. It is a great trip with enthusiastic teachers and an amazing itinerary. Study abroad is a totally different experience from traveling with your family and something I can’t wait for her to try.  I will, however, admit – I am jealous!

 

She has been scouring “study abroad” books all semester, almost since the moment we got back from our RTW adventure.  It is funny because she is really the main reason we came back at all. She was determined to have her full high school experience and…

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#84 See The Proboscis Monkeys in Borneo: 100 family travel experience

#84 See The Proboscis Monkeys in Borneo:

Proboscis Monkeys are only found on the Island of Borneo. There are two unique ways to encounter wild proboscis monkeys in Borneo. One is by taking a jungle river tour. We had a small little boat with a driver and a guide to help point out the animals.  We  stayed in a nearby jungle lodge. The proboscis monkeys are quite easy to identify with their big noses and come to the river trees to sleep. We saw many family groups. Rainforests are fascinating ecosystems, but fragile and threatened. We felt that it was vital for our children to visit them and learn this firsthand.

You can also visit proboscis monkeys up close at Labuk Bay. Here, wild monkeys are fed several times a day and come in from the jungle canopy. You may also see some Silver Leaf monkeys. These animals are habituated to humans and quite comfortable being close to tourists. They are still wild animals so you can not touch them.  You can get close enough for some crazy and memorable photos. They are beautiful animals and after a trip to Borneo and around the world, I am more determined than ever to be good to our planet.
http://www.proboscis.cc

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#85 Vail Colorado: 100 days of family travel

#85 Vail Colorado:
After this last winter I’m not inclined to thinking about snow but I do love to ski. Family ski vacations are fabulous and Vail is the most family friendly ski area I know. With all levels of skiing available, great ski schools, wonderful instructors and plenty of family friendly activities off the slopes….vail pleases everyone! And one can argue it’s equally as exciting and beautiful in summer too!

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#86: Visit the Railway Market in Thailand: 100 Family Travel Experiences

#86: Visit the Railway Market in Thailand:
One of the most amazing markets I have seen was the daily market that is set up on the train tracks just outside of Bangkok in Maeklong. Our family was in awe of the efficiency in which this elaborate fish and fresh food market was set up and put back at each passing train. People wandered down the tracks shopping amongst the vendors but just before the train appears each market folds back or slides away to allow the train to pass and unload. As soon as it passes the market immediately emerges back into place and everything returns to business as usual. There are fresh vegetables, fruits and spices to tempt you. Eels and live fish splash in pans and a wide array of thai delicacies are available to enjoy. I am always amazed at the wealth of fresh food in some of the most poverty stricken areas of the world while in the USA we eat so much processed food and fresh food is so expensive. Markets are a great place to wander as a family. Meeting and talking with locals, discovering new foods and seeing how people earn a living is such a valuable experience. Part of the Buddhist religion is to practice “Punna” or the practice of doing a good deed. We bought some live fish at the railway market and released them back to the river as suggested by our local guide. A simple but beautiful act to make for a wonderful family experience.

Railway-Market

#87 visit the Donkey Sanctuary in Bonaire

#87 visit the Donkey Sanctuary in Bonaire
Donkeys roam free around Bonaire but a visit to the Donkey Sanctuary is must do! Aside from the great work they are doing for the feral donkeys it is truly a fun family experience! Expect to be completely surrounded by donkeys … We called it the donkeyapocolypse!

http://www.donkeysanctuary.org

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#88 Take a Rock and Roll Walking tour of London -100 Days of Family Travel Experiences

There are lots of amazing and historic things to do in London, And yes, the West End theatre district is amazing. We had a very busy and fun time in London and other adventures are on this “100 Days” list – but we can begin with a Rock and Roll Walking tour around the city that we really enjoyed. Our guide was a lifelong music fan and true Rock-n-roll historian. He took us through the streets, back alleys, and shops of London where rock history was made. We listened to the stories and visited the sites where the Beatles, the Stones, Jimi Hendrix; and The Who (and many others) played, hng out, got their start, or recorded. My husband is a music history fanatic and was very excited. The kids and I also enjoyed the tour as our guide was a great storyteller. The London streets came alive as walked Denmark Street, Carnaby Street and stood on the steps at 3 Saville Row – the location of Apple Corps Ltd. where the Beatles were headquartered and held their last live (rooftop) performance. Sometimes hearing about a city from a specific time or subculture opens your eyes to streets in a new way. We just happened to top off our day with the lucky opportunity to see Sir Paul McCartney himself. There is nothing better than going through London on a Rock and Roll Tour and then actually seeing a Beatle!

At apple studios:

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#89 Ascend to the Batu Caves: 100 Family Travel Experiences

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The beautiful and impressive Batu Caves, near the city of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia are a fabulous family experience as they have something for everyone. The Batu caves are first and for most a shrine and a place of religious importance. You will see Hindu families participating in many hindu rituals.

Guarding the caves is a giant statue of Murugan, a Hindu deity, that stands an impressive 42 meters high. The adventure lover will enjoy the hearty climb up the 272 steps leading to the cave. It’s not an easy ascent and even more daunting for those dedicated souls who have fasted and/or participated in ThaiPuSam.
http://www.fest300.com/festivals/thaipusam

For the animal lover, Macaque Monkeys line the steps and try to steal food and act silly. There are lots of photo opportunities. As a rule- never feed the monkeys!

http://www.malaysia.com/galleries-batu-caves-5.html

#90 Take a historic tour of Normandy: 100 Family Travel Experiences

#90 Take a historic tour of Normandy, France:

I’m not sure if any place impacted our entire family as much as our tour of Normandy, France.  Listening to the stories of bravery and heroism, walking the beaches and hedgerows (almost eerily similar to how they looked 70 years ago), and seeing the memorials and landmarks makes Normandy one of the best family experiences I have ever had.  I wondered if we would all appreciate it.  Would it be too much for the 12-year-old to grasp or would my daughter shy away from violent aspects of war that she despises?  In the end, we were all captured by the beautiful storytelling of our guide, the moving sight of a elderly soldier saluting at the cemetery, and the magnitude of walking through the living history of beaches, bunkers, battle fields, guns, roads, bridges, towns and landscapes impacted by  and resonating from the war.

http://www.dday1944tours.com

#91 Visit a coffee farm Guatemala: 100 Family Travel Experiences

#91 Visit a Coffee Farm in Guatemala

Any opportunity to learn how something is made is a great experience for a family. It always amazes and delights to learn the process from start to finish and somehow it makes you appreciate the products a little more. My kids feel that way about Guatemalan coffee. Taking a tour of Finca Filadelfia coffee farm is a day of fun and education. We started with an amazing zip line through the Guatemalan tree canopy. It was Fast paced and loaded with gorgeous views.

My kids were not sure they were going to like the coffee tour but they were mesmerized once it started. Coffee in Guatemala is grown on the volcanic soil and grafted from two different plants. The process is fascinating. You can see is drying in the sun and watch the hand sorting. Taste testing at the end is just as fun as the coffee is some of the best in the world. We bulk order it so we can enjoy it at home now!
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http://filadelfia.com.gt/guatemala/