Nick and I love to travel. We haven’t been on holiday since January last year when we went to Japan. Since then I’ve been pregnant and given birth, so despite winning a holiday to Las Vegas last year, we never went away because we couldn’t afford it and the time just wasn’t right.
We’ve always been super excited about being able to travel with children and show them all the amazing things the world has to offer so we had loads of fun planning where our first holiday with Huxley should be.
All throughout my pregnancy I said that we’d use the first couple of years to explore Europe as it would mean that the flight wouldn’t be too long and we’d be close to home if we needed to come back for whatever reason.
I quite fancied doing some sort of road trip around Spain – maybe driving from Barcelona to Valencia and stopping in all the little towns along the way. It’s only a 3 hour drive in total so we wouldn’t have to worry about being cooped up in the car too long. I’ve always wanted to check out the Gaudi architecture in Barcelona and see the Sagrada Familia. Nick wanted to be a marine biologist when he was little and has always been fascinated with fish so a visit to the largest aquarium in Europe, the Valencia Oceanografic* would be a must. I’d love to see what Huxley thought of all the sharks and stuff.
My husband is a food writer and we’re both always looking out for regional foods so we’d be on the lookout for an authentic Valencia restaurant* that we can go to during the day with Huxley as eating out in the evening can sometimes be difficult with a baby. There’s a speciality in Valencia called Fartons which I’d have to try just for comedy value (#mature).
After a few weeks of discussing Spain, our attention turned to America again, as it always inevitably does. There seemed to be an influx of people on both our Instagram feeds that were in Los Angeles and it had stirred up our love for California again. I said that I didn’t want to put Huxley through a flight that long so we started thinking about the East Coast instead. We watched the whole of West Wing last year and have since become rather interested in American politics, the White House and Washington DC.
We started thinking about a visit to Washington DC as we’d be able to look around all the amazing museums with relative ease as Huxley wouldn’t be running about or whinging that he was bored yet. After a quick Google, it appears that there’s no shortage of awesome places to eat in Washington either.
Our adventurous sides then took over and combined with our desire to tick even more states off our list we went into overdrive thinking about a road trip up the coast to include Philadelphia, Baltimore, the Catskills of New York State, Providence & Boston. After a lot of research (and I really do mean A LOT) we decided that it would involve too many hours in the car and require way too much planning now we have a baby for us to pull it off successfully.
Predictably, our attention turned to our beloved San Francisco. At first I was apprehensive because of the long flight time and the fact that we’ve already been there 3 times but when Nick worked out that it was actually two whole years since our last visit I was sold. We know which areas are safe, we know that the public transport is excellent and we are both head over heels in love with it.
We managed to find some relatively cheap flights with Virgin in the January sales and we’ve booked a range of places to stay in while we’re there. For the first few days we’re staying in a budget hotel in the financial district near Union Square and all the shops, then we are heading to Yosemite for two days where we’re staying in a motel and then when we return to the city we’ll be staying in an AirBnB apartment for the last week or so. I’m so excited to try out AirBnB, it’s going to be great having our own kitchen too so we can cook up some vegetables for Huxley rather than having to buy him food while we’re out all the time. We’re going at the end of March so fingers crossed the weather will be okay and not too cold but I’m looking forward to writing about my experience of travelling with a baby – I just hope the time difference doesn’t mess up his routine too much!