When you go on a family holiday you always end up taking so much paraphernalia with you, you don’t want to take tonnes of toys. The hope is that you’ll have good weather and the children will just spend all day playing outside. But there’s the journey, early mornings, evenings and of course the rain, that means taking some toys with you is a sensible idea.
6 eays to keep kids entertained on holiday
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1, Arts and crafts supplies
We tend to take a colouring pad, sticker pad, plain notepad and pens. Then there’s a variety and I can try and encourage writing as well as just drawing tractors or colouring in. You can get really small postcard sized colouring books which are great for keeping luggage to a minimum.
Craft packs are also a great item to take on holiday. Last year camping I took a mosaic picture pack with us, and all the kids from age 4 to 11 spent a good hour sticking their mosaic pictures. This year we took a smaller pack again, and N several times had other children coming over to help him out. If you want some quiet time, something crafty but simple is great entertainment and helps calm down hyper children.
Ok, so taking lots of little pieces away on holiday might be your worst nightmare, but take a little box of odds and sods with you to get their brain working creatively, or take a treat box for them to make up while away. It will keep them entertained and they can build something different each day. We take a small ice cream tub that shuts securely – it doesn’t take up much room in a trunki case.
3, Teddy bear
N would take all of his soft toys on holiday given the chance, but we limit it to 2 if we’re staycationing, or one if we’re flying somewhere. If the toys help them sleep then it’s a nobrainer. Just don’t lose the teddy while away.
4, Puzzle toy
I’m not talking a jigsaw puzzle but a little toy that keeps the child thinking to reach a solution. It could be a Rubik’s cube for older children, or N has a Rubik’s magic that I loved in my childhood…they’re also good for us parents once the kids go to bed. Or what about those little block games with ball-bearings you have to tip and roll to get the balls into the right holes or slots. Hours of entertainment and no mess.
5, Top trumps
We love a game of Top Trumps, and most children can get the hang of playing once they can read numbers (or with a little help from an adult). We have a farming version of Top Trumps, but a Despicable Me 3 version went down well (Santa may also be bringing a Horrible Histories version). An alternative to Top Trumps if you’ve younger children is UNO or Dobble. And they’re slightly educational as well, so children are learning at the same time as playing!
We have so many pocket kites in our house (from leftover party bags a couple of years ago), and they’re brilliant. Even 4/5 year olds can cope with them, and they can be flown in fairly strong winds. Great for the beach, a hotel garden or camp site. They don’t take up much space in luggage either because there’s no sticks and the come in their own little bag.
What kind of toys get packed for holiday and how do you keep kids entertained?
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