Do Children Really Appreciate a Holiday?


Over time my opinion on travelling with children has changed. Like most of us before we become parents I always thought travelling with children would be a waste of time and money as they don’t really appreciate the effort and don’t also retain the memories. As time has passed my opinion has changed somewhat. 

This summer we choose to venture on a type of journey we hadn’t tried before. We hired a motorhome and travelled 737 miles around the UK. A journey that took us through some breathtaking sites and gave us treasured moments that I hope we won’t forget.

The thing is at the age of 5 and 1, how much will they actually remember? I would expect that our eldest would retain some of those memories but not all. I don’t expect the youngest to recall anything of this holiday once he’s older.

So why did we do it? Let me tell you it wasn’t all pictures of perfection. We had rain, lots of it. We had tantrums, many of them – mainly from the youngest. We had whining, mainly from the kids but sometimes even from me! Our living space was small so sometimes frustrations grew. Our youngest quickly learned how to open the windows in the motorhome, as a result we found him hanging out the window on a couple of occasions.

Unhappy boy

So again why did we do it? We wanted to explore and see places we hadn’t been before but mainly, we wanted to spend time with our kids without thinking about those doors that need painting, the deadline at work, the washing machine that’s on it’s way out, the overgrown garden that seriously needs sorting out. We just wanted to enjoy time away where the only focus was spending time together as a family and having fun. We also wanted a break from the usual routines.

Alnwick Castle
Alnwick Castle

Despite the frustrations and challenges of the weather and small living space we did have fun and lots of it. The pace of life slowed down whilst we took our time to explore and soak up the sights. Most of our holiday involved making use of nature’s playground. We watched on as they became absorbed in their surroundings and found excitement and pleasure in the simplest of things. Who needs toys when you have stones and leaves? With this slower pace of life we noticed more about them. We watched them more and played with them more. We noticed things we hadn’t done before like how much Pud is beginning to say and what mischievousness he’s getting up to. For them they got to run wild in beautiful landscapes, listen to new sounds and enjoy the excitement of discovery.

Before kids I used to take the point of view that taking young children away on holiday (especially abroad) was a waste of money as they don’t remember it and don’t appreciate it. So Ok, kids may not be bothered about home or abroad but if it matters to you then surely it’s still worth it. Also kids DO appreciate it. Whether it’s a weekend in Blackpool, a camping trip 10 miles from home or a week in Spain, kids really do appreciate the time you spend together as a family.

Loch Faskally, Scotland

So while a family holiday with young children is NEVER going to be like any holiday you had as a couple and it’s never going to be relaxing. Holidays with children are absolutely, always worth it.

Check out our UK Road Trip Diary

Part1: The Lake District

Part2: Loch Lomond

Part3: Pitlochry and Faskally

Part4: Alnwick Castle

This post first appeared on Meet Other Mums, a site that builds community among mums.



  1. I truly believe it is so valuable to take kids on hols, I have so many gorgeous memories of family holidays, even if I didn’t realise at the time;-) #BloggersClubUK

  2. I completely agree. I used to think it was a waste of time as they won’t remember but actually what they do somehow take on is how much fun was had. How much more chilled their parents seemed. How you do spend lots of time doing everything together whereas at home someone is always doing some form of chore. I think they pick up on the difference in mood. My son now 5 remembers really random details of past holidays we’ve had so there is some memory of them. Or he’ll ask to go back to the place that had the woman with no shoes. This was a lovely holiday we had in Winchelsea where the owner of the airbnb answered the door without her shoes on! LOL. But he for whatever reason remembers that was a fun trip and would like to go back. Also it’s not all about them. So it’s good for as a couple or a single parent to have a break from routine as well. #coolmumclub xx

  3. I think holidays can be amazingly rich experiences for children and usually when we have been away on holiday with our daughter she seems to have developed massively afterwards so I think whether they know it or not….they do appreciate them! Thanks for linking up to #coolmumclub xoxo

  4. Ours love being on holiday and taking in the new sights, especially the biggest! I totally agree that a change of scenery is one of the best things about a holiday! Thanks so much for sharing with #Blogstravaganza xx

  5. It’s all about making memories in my opinion and you are most certainly doing that! But no, they never really fell like a holiday anymore, do they?! Thanks for joining in with #TriumphantTales, hope to see you again on Tuesday.

  6. Oh wow, this sounds like so much fun! I agree – we’re taking our (then) 11 month old daughter away to Lanzarote next month for a week. I know she won’t recall her first holiday, but my husband hasn’t had time off with us for ages and we’re going with my parents, so it’ll just be a week of pure relaxing and family time, which is invaluable! #blogstravaganza


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here