Quick tips for traveling with your child
Created by Vandana Prakash Updated on Jul 12, 2019
When the hills beckon ...pack your bags and go
Dalai Lama famously remarked, “Once a year go someplace you've never been before”. Well, I believe one should travel once a year to a place where you feel alive. This is my first travel blog, first long car journey experience, first trip with my son to a hill station; but obviously not the last.
This journey to the hills has been soul-stirring in many ways and while I was coming back, I kept hearing a voice within myself, "If mountains are calling, you must go" and I definitely plan to listen to this inner voice more often now. I had a once in a lifetime kind of experience and I am really excited to share it with you all. If anyone is planning such a trip in the near future, I think my experience will really help, so read on.
I had promised my son last year that I will make his every summer vacation a memorable one. We thus decide to indulge our travel bug. However, to our great disappointment, we had a lot of trouble while booking. The great Delhi summer rush was on its peak and we could not get any train reservation. We tried and tried, wasted a lot of time and effort yet we had nothing to show for it. I felt terrible since it seemed my son’s hopes for a fun vacation may get dashed.
One day out of the blue, one of our couple friends told us they are going to Mussourie by car and wanted us to join them. It was a tough decision to make since both my son and I suffer from motion sickness. Thus, the thought of traveling such a long distance by car was enough to give me sleepless nights. I was in a great dilemma, while this was the last option for me to keep my promise to my son, yet my hesitation for long car travel was also quite strong. When you are not sure about your decision in any situation just look at your child and decide what is best for him. One look at my baby’s excited face was enough for me to pack my bags.
Day 1: We started with lots of hope and excitement. I was looking forward to running away from the ‘chubhti jalti garmi’ of Delhi NCR. We left early morning to avoid traffic. We reached in the afternoon and shockingly it greeted us with the same burning temperatures of Delhi. Slightly disheartened, we anyway continued our journey ahead and Mussorie cooly welcomed us with some rain the next day. Our journey into Mussoorie was a balm to the heart, with greenery everywhere and breathtaking views. When we finally reached our destination we got stuck into a huge traffic jam on the mall road. By the time we reached our hotel, we were all totally tired. The only saving grace was that the kids were well fed.
Lesson one: Keep lots of snacks and home-made food items ready with you when traveling with a child. These were lifesavers on the long journey.
After the tiring journey of the day, in the evening the only thing we could have done was shopping on mall road. We, two ladies of the group, indulged to our heart’s delight. I believe saying no to shopping is a crime for sure.
Lesson two: Mussorie Mall road is worth the hype. Go there whether or not you are interested in shopping. It has lovely jewelry as well as many other items. Roadside Golgappe, Bhutta and street food will also delight the food lovers.
Day 2: We planned to visit Kempty Falls. The journey uphill by the cable car was awesome with stunning views. However Kempty falls was a huge disappointment. It was very crowded and messy. We could not get motivated to get into the water. Thankfully there was another adventure resort in the same place which also covered a low height portion of the fall and was less crowded. Here the water was cool and refreshing and our kids enjoyed a lot.
Lesson three: If you are going as a family, especially with young kids, you can avoid Kempty falls and instead go to the Kempty adventure resort
Day 3: We started for Dhanault, leaving Mussorie and its wonderful memories behind. Dhanaulti is a place full of picturesque views, you cannot take your eyes off from those beautiful roads, full of green hills and beauty all around. We reached early but it was a little disappointing as we could not get a nice hotel. The new building of the hotel was completely occupied and we could get a room only in the old building. And just as every good wife should do, we started blaming our husbands. We started complaining about why they chose a particular hotel. But trust me we were lucky enough to get those rooms, there were people who were fighting to even get an entry into that hotel. With the summer peak and a large number of tourists, everywhere it was the same story. Thankfully we at least got a place to stay safe with our kids.
Lesson four: As humans, it is our nature to blame others for things we don't get. However, it is best to avoid this habit. During the summer vacation peak season, you will have difficulty getting good rooms in any hotel at a hill station. Do not over expect, stay happy and enjoy the view. There were two good places to visit in Dhanaulti; Sarkunda Devi temple and a beautiful park with a very nice ambiance.
Day 3 our last day of the trip and we started our journey back home on the 4th day. Again the journey back was full of traffic. We reached home completely tired but with lots of wonderful memories. Overall it was a wonderful trip and I learned a few things which I think everyone must understand.
1. A trip with a child is never easy, but for that matter, life is not always easy too. So, take the risk, go to a place you have never visited and make some memories.
2. I had reservations about the trip thinking my son would have trouble adjusting. However the fact is that a child can stay happy under any circumstances, it is us adults who get frustrated with tiny troubles in life. Even a traffic jam makes us complain while a kid will be lost in his toys and would just enjoy.
3. Never over expect from life. You may not always get what you expected, but make the most of what you get. While you will definitely struggle to find good hotels during the summertime, try to stay happy in what you get.
This travelogue turned out a bit long but it was a memory for a lifetime so I tried capturing this through my writing... Hope u liked it !!????