Tried and True and Something New: Family Travel Traditions You Can Start Today
Family vacations are a special time for everyone to relax, explore new places and spend time together. The fun and memories don’t have to stop once you get back home, though. You can create travel traditions during your trip and upon your return, triggering fond memories of your experiences throughout the year.
Try Something New
Vacations (both big and small) are a perfect time to try new things with your family. You are already out of your natural element, so sampling new activities or foods will fit right in with the experience. It could be as simple as trying a famous dish in the city you’re visiting, learning to snorkel in a tropical destination or even trying out a few words of the local language in a foreign country.
Start out small and slow if your kids are hesitant to try new things, but help them focus on how that food or activity is unique to that area while learning about the history, too.
Amp Up Your Family Photos
Your studio-shot family photos might be beautiful, but can often miss the true essence of your family’s vibe. During your travels, mix up the photo shoot and opt for something a bit more fun or spontaneous. Do the same silly pose in front of every restaurant you visit, for example, or take a five-second clip from every day to compile into a video, or spell out the year with your bodies.
Send Yourself a Post Card
It can be just as much fun to receive postcards as to send them. With each new city visited, spend a moment reflecting on the best part of the day on a postcard, then send it back home. You can pin them on a map to keep track of where your family has been or collect them in an album.
Start a Collection from Your Travels
Collect something from every destination, so that you and the kids can revisit favorite places back at home. If you often head to ski resorts, buy a wacky hat each year to sport throughout the winter. If you are heading to the beach, search for the best themed bracelet or other piece of jewelry. Buy a cookbook from your favorite restaurant or region visited. Other affordable collectible ideas include mugs, key chains, patches for hats or jackets, currency or ornaments.
Pack a Picnic
Choose one day during each vacation to ditch the restaurants and picnic outside. Opt for fare that you won’t find at home, and ask locals for the best park or picnic recommendation. If your family is interested in regional cooking, you can also sign up for a cooking class that is kid-friendly.
Quote of the Day
Keep track of hilarious quotes for every day of your trek. Maybe someone in the family said it, or maybe it was overheard. Overlay the text on a photo to make an interesting joke book.
Create a Travel Wall
When you return home, designate a space to commemorate your family’s adventures. Using picture frames, shelves and photo lines and clips, start stocking the space with images and souvenirs. Add quotes, postcards and maps, along with anything else that will remind your family of the fun you had together. As your family evolves, so will the travel wall.