If you are interested in hitting the open road and travelling with your family then read on… this blog post is for you:
TRAVEL AUSTRALIA WITH KIDS
If you are Travelling Australia With Kids or starting to plan a family adventure, this is the website for you. You can find travelling tips from families who have already travelled or are currently on the road. They have everything from budgeting help and a spreadsheet to track your finances.
The TAWK website also has places to share ideas if you are already travelling aus with kids (called ‘TAWKing’!) and a frequently asked questions (FAQ) page which features it all from “Tips on schooling the kids” to “how do you keep the romance alive while on the road”. All the answers are from experienced travelling families which really gives you an insight to what life on the road is like.
We love to see so many families embracing life on the road and enjoy reading their stories as we are sure you will too!Below is our TAWK Feature. Click here to read others.
We are Rob, Tracy, Marli (2.5 years) and Ziggy (4 months) also known as The Blonde Nomads. We divide our time between our home base on the Northern Beaches (Sydney) and enjoying long and short adventures throughout the year on the road (often through collaborations with caravan companies, travel destinations or resorts). We post images of our adventures and share them with our social media followers on Facebook and Instagram called @theblondenomads with over 14k followers.
As a couple we both enjoy the outdoors and grew up camping and fishing. We embrace the idea of getting away from the ‘normal 9 to 5 working routine’ and love being outside with nature, sitting under the stars and spending as much time as possible away from large city crowds. After travelling around Australia for 6 months in a campervan together in 2007 we knew this was something we would love to do again. So after we were married and started our own family we decided it was time for more adventures with our little Blondies in tow! We love our lifestyle that is now a combination of time at home and time on the road.
As we travel a lot throughout the year it varies for the amount of time we are away for and where we are heading and of course, what our ‘home away from home’ will be for each particular adventure. Last year we enjoyed a 3 month caravan trip in a 20ft New Age Caravan. With that luxury ‘penthouse’ on wheels as we called it we could pack a lot more than when we go away camping in a tent! If we travel for long periods of time we also rent out our home. Rob is a carpenter/builder by trade and sub contracts and Tracy is a full time mum at the moment so we are not tied down too much at this stage which allows us the freedom to hit the road.
Being able to spend so much time together as a family unit is invaluable. The joy of waking up together and starting a new day to explore at our own pace is something we do not take for granted. As Tracy is a photographer by trade we take loads of photos along the way to look back on especially for our kids to treasure and share with their own children one day. We also love meeting new people on the road and through our social media account we have connected with so many like minded people and made some amazing friendships.
Being together 24/7 can be hard at times. Everyone needs their space, especially as caring for a newborn and a busy toddler is non stop. We try to give each other some timeout when possible. We also pay attention to the weather forecast and try to plan our travel around good weather as camping and exploring the outdoors is no fun when you can’t go outside. We have had a few days exploring the inside of shopping centres or visiting the library while the weather has bucketed down outside!
We LOVE the East Coast of Oz. There are so many beautiful beaches and waterways and camping spots. We have not touched Western Australia so we plan to set off in a year or two and spend a good amount of time discovering all its wonders! We also loved Lawn Hill in Western Queensland as well as Wilsons Promontory in Victoria.
There is no particular spot that comes to mind. We have visited a few places when the weather has not been ideal so we were not greeted with vibrant blue water or sunny blue skies so we have a few places we would love to return to. Another let down for us (especially with the kids) is if there are sandflies about but this can all depend on the time of day and the weather etc.
We love the fact that we always pack only a few toys for our little toddler Marli but she is just so happy pottering outside in the dirt. Playing with rocks, sticks and whatever camping gear she can get her hands on. Getting back to nature and enjoying the outdoors is the best thing for her and everyone. We find when we return home we have so much ‘stuff’ we are overwhelmed. You really don’t need a lot to get by.
We also love seeing SO many people on the road enjoying the same lifestyle. Once you get out and about you will be surprised on how many people are travelling with kids, its a wonderful community out there. We love chatting to other families and Grey Nomads – everyone has great hands-on information and is so helpful.
- Life’s an adventure – do it now! Stop thinking about the possibility of doing a trip and just take the plunge – you will not regret it. If you have already started planning we’d suggest enjoying a few short weekends away to find your feet and what works for you and the kids. Create a blog or diary to complete along the way to look back on, especially for the kids to enjoy.
- Pack light – you do not need a lot and what you don’t have you can buy along the way. Pack clothes that will wash easily and not show the dirt (no bright whites etc.). We also use waterproof playwear for the kids called ‘poshgrotz’. These are breathable pants or a onesie that you put on over the top of the kids clothes to protect them. They can then play in the rain, dirt or sand – get as messy as they want then you just whip it off and their clothes are still clean and dry! Its the best invention and a camping must-have!! (www.poshgrotz.com.au)
- Prepare your vehicle – make sure you have all the equipment needed for off road 4×4 if you plan to ‘go bush’. Include solar power, recovery tracks, CB radio, 2 water containers, first aid kit, tow ropes, gps/epirb etc. to ensure the safety of your family and for peace of mind.
The more you do it, the more you crave it!! When on the road we switch off and get back to nature. We become more in tune with the kids and each other. Not listening to the news everyday or checking your phones is good for the soul. When we finish a trip we always come home and try to stay in the same headspace by not turning on the telly and staying off our phones (which is hard to do!) we light a fire in the backyard or jump in the ocean daily! We love going to bed with sun kissed skin and sandy feet as it’s a sure sign it’s been a good day!
Finally – Anything else you would like to share, that you think would help others would be great too.
We have a just written a blog post on our website www.theblondenomads.com.au about travelling with young kids - we would love you to check it out and share with others who you think may be interested. We have also shared highlights from our travels which you may be of interest. Follow us on Facebook and/or Instagram and please say hi – ask any questions or let us know if you have discovered an amazing location we need to visit – we love sharing our story to inspire others to travel and see our amazing country.