Over the school holidays, we headed to the Whitsundays for a bit of a family vacay. This isn’t unusual. We were there last year and the year before that and the year before that we moved away from this little piece of paradise.
But this time, it was all new.
Coming from a career in travel and tourism I got used to a (cough) certain standard of travel, at a certain rate. Industry discount was the hardest thing I have ever had to quit! When the Mr and I travel we were used to all the stars and all the service, with all our money still in our pocket.
Though due to working in travel, there wasn’t so much money in said pocket anyway.
Our style did adjust slightly when the kids come along.
There was the moment when we realised hotel rooms are a no go for our happiness. One night is fine but anything longer, forget it.
Then we decided that having activities for the kids was kind of essential as trying to drag them to things that we wanted to go to always dulled the excitement for everyone.
That is when we realised staying at one place and then spending money to go off and do all these kids activities really hurt the bank balance.
It was time to get a grip on life as we knew it. We are a family with two small, active kids. It was time to embrace the holiday park!
It was an adjustment but I was very excited to book a 2 bedroom cabin at Big4 Adventure Whitsunday. As time carried us closer to our stay I downloaded the jam-packed activity sheet, got out my trusty highlighter and proceeded to plan our days out. Ari and I watched YouTube videos of the park’s mascot, Gavin The Frog (yep!) running around all the activities and the park quickly got the name of “Gavin’s Place”.
We packed differently. We took bikes and towels and any little creature comfort that would fit in the back of the Triton. It wasn’t just a stuffy suitcase each, we took our life up there to the Whitsundays.
Even for the road trip, I scanned the web for a heap of activities to occupy the kids. Prize parenting!
Our drive was a good 11 hours so we smartly broke it up (something we had never done because “let’s just get there”) with a stay in a holiday park cabin in Rockhampton. Just this little taster had the kids excited and this park had nothing on the super child-friendly Adventure Whitsunday.
Knocking off the last few hours of driving we were all happy to see the gates to the park. Let the holiday begin!
On our honeymoon, we went to Fiji and planned to lay beside the pool for eight days. It took me a good two before I could just be still and let the world pass me by.
Just the world, the bar staff could never pass me by, we made a pact.
This holiday was exactly like that. But with kids!
Initially, I wanted to do all the things, all the time. Pool, farm, put-put, movie, pool, bike ride, treasure hunt, pool again. But after a day of that, I cruised happily in slow-mo and surprisingly so did the kids.
Ok, there may have been an extra day or two of pestering to get to the pool three times a day, but it was hot so why not.
Besides our day out with Cruise Whitsundays and a trip to play with a friend’s horse, I never felt the need to do anything more than lay around the pool… then the deck… then the cabin.
Here we were on a family holiday in a holiday park in the school holidays (mad house!) and we were all relaxed!
I think it was just simply embracing the family holiday. The hard-core, let the kids go nuts in their own little paradise, holiday park. I didn’t think it could ever be like this!
No more trying to fit the kids into the bubble we had created. This is the new way we holiday!
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This pic just looks like I am pulling random faces and imitating Spiderman on my t-shirt but I was getting some serious air I promise. The kids got some serious air when I landed properly too… 😬 Nothing like a jumping pillow to make you question your continence level! #jumpingpillow #roadtrip #schoolholidays #readyforlaunch #whyamiputtingthisphotoonsocialmedia #belikespiderman
Have you had a holiday that changed EVERYTHING?