Grand Adventure Story

Travelling with kids – a dream or a nightmare? We believe that with the right attitude and plenty of planning travelling with kids is something to aspire to. We enjoy our holidays and weekend breaks, but we’re yearning for something more. So, once they are old enough, but before they get too old, we are planning a Grand Adventure from Alaska to Argentina. Follow our research, family travel tips, and our progress on this blog.

Changing trains in Cologne, Summer 2019

Updated October 2019: We survived our Interrail trip around Europe. We spent a total of 29 hours on trains during our two week holiday. I’ve written up our top tips of how to stave off boredom. I also learnt some lessons on packing and kit which will help us on our Grand Adventure next year.

After much research I’m sad to say that we are no longer going to go to Alaska on this trip. It will have to stay on our bucket list a while longer. Now, with only 8 months to go until we leave, and knowing that we’re travelling through North America in their high season, we’ve started booking some accommodation and transport. We’re setting ourselves a relatively tight budget. Booking flights and even hire vehicles in advance can save us some pennies. And as I research accommodation to get an idea of what’s available in our budget I’m finding some gems, so we’re going ahead and booking those too! To find out where we’re staying follow along on Instagram (@mrsdebspatters) and Facebook (@grandadventurestory) for updates while we’re on the road.

Updated July 2019: So we’re committed! 1st flight booked. Due to the weird vagaries of airmiles and availability we’re actually flying into Las Vegas to get us Stateside. Now comes the real planning time. We were planning to detour to the Grand Canyon anyway, so now should we start our trip with this natural wonder before flying up north to travel south? Exciting decisions afoot. In the meantime we’re heading off on our summer holiday to Austria and France using our Interrail passes. We’re practicing carrying all our luggage. We’re used to road trips where we throw everything into the back of the car. This could be challenging.

Updated February 2019: We’ve spent the last month really honing down the timing of our trip. I’ve even written a blog which sets out our top-line plan. Seeing it written and published on this site makes it all feel very real! In the meantime I’ve been attending Spanish classes. I believe that even though English is widely-spoken, speaking some of the local language is the best way to get to know the people and culture of the country you are travelling in. It also may come in useful getting us out of any sticky situations!

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Canoeing on the Dordogne below La Roque-Gageac

We had some lovely holidays in 2018, exploring the North Yorkshire Moors, revisiting the Dordogne and the Lot in France and discovering the Ile de Re (I know, late to the party, right?). We also took the kids on a city-break to Venice which was hugely successful. Can’t go wrong with pizza, pasta and boats.

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Heading for the Bridge of Sighs in Venice in October

This year will see us skiing in France again, and in the summer I’m excited to be travelling by train to Austria, and back via Paris. And there will be some camping, but we’re not yet sure where, when or who with!

Updated January 2018: We are well and truly in our research stage, while normal life carries on around us. I’ve had a look at Alaska, the Pacific Coast Highway and our vague plans for Mexico. Off line I’ve been continuing into Central America and even made a start on Ecuador and Peru. Our research has taken on more of a budgeting focus recently, and I’ll write a post up about that soon. Any tips gratefully received!

Meanwhile we continue to go on family holidays, and I’ve been writing some blogs about those too – from skiing to Spain! Travelling with our boys means that every trip feels like an adventure. All good practice for our big trips!