(Photo courtesy of @jihallinan)
Becoming a parent changes your life in pretty much every way possible. Many families with babies choose to hold off on traveling for a while because they're worried about nap schedules, feeding time and all of the extra stuff that requires packing (hello diapers!). But if you were a jet setter before giving birth, there's no reason to nip your wanderlust in the bud. Traveling with baby can be totally worth the hassle, plus most airlines won't charge for children under two years of age if they can sit on your lap. We spoke to jet-setter Zoie Kingsbery Coe, mom of three and founder of the family-friendly vacation rental site Kid & Coe, about her fave travel destinations with children.
(Photo of Zoie Kingsbery Coe and her littles is courtesy of Kid & Coe)
What are your top 5 favorite cities to visit with babies (0-3 years old)?
Sydney, Rome, New York City, Amsterdam, Los Angeles
Sydney: The kernel of the idea of Kid & Coe was born in Sydney. It was on a trip to this wonderful city when my first baby was little that I realized that once you have your own child-friendly place to stay, everything opened up. As soon as we were situated, it felt that all of Sydney was our Sydney: we had a base to find local fresh grocers, nearby playgrounds, farmers markets, and cafés. It changed our vision of what family travel could be.
Rome: I have children of different ages - from 10 through to a baby - and a trip we took to Rome last year hit the target for all of them. There’s so much to see and do, and the food is great for kids.
New York City: I lived in Manhattan for a long time (I’m now based in Ibiza) and love the energy of the city. Plus - great playgrounds, fun bookstores, world-class museums...there is so much to entertain parents and babies in the big Apple.
Amsterdam: Amsterdam is easy with kids! It’s very pedestrian, which makes it great for any size of family, and if you have young kids, taking them on a ride in a bakfiets is a really fun experience. They are adjustable for babies too!
(Photo courtesy of @cortneyeats)
Los Angeles: I’m a fan of Venice, where we stayed as a family for a spell in the last few years. The beach, the color and the scene are all great fun, and you can stroll along with a baby and take it all in together.
What are your tips when taking babies out to eat at restaurants in foreign cities?
Go with the flow! Depending on where you are in the world, it might be easier than you think. People have babies in every country in the world, and there is always a solution. You don’t have to eat out, of course - booking a vacation rental with a kitchen or hotel room with a kitchenette means you can mush up vegetables and heat up baby food at home. It’s good to have that flexibility when you’re abroad with a little one.
Why is it so beneficial to travel with baby?
The alternative to traveling with a baby is that you just stay home, and that’s no alternative to me! It’s fun to see the world through new eyes as you introduce your young children to new foods, the sea and more - it’s definitely a good thing for you as a parents, and as they say, it’s all about making memories.
Any predictions for the next up and coming best places to travel with kids?
In Europe, I would tip Portugal, especially Comporta, along with Rome and Slovenia, which is a real up and coming destination for those looking to get a little off the beaten track. Closer to home, I’d say LA, especially Santa Monica and Venice Beach, the Hudson Valley just beyond New York City, which gets rave reviews every year from Kid & Coe’s guests, and Sri Lanka, if you’re looking for a dash of the exotic.