I was reading David Airey’s post on his Swimming Pool Wish List and started thinking about my travel wish list for 2013. I and my wife love to travel and do so at every opportunity. In fact in the last couple of years, we have travelled to over 130 cities and there is no stopping. This year, we plan to go to Budapest, Hawai, Majorca, Aberdeen and a luxury cruise in Europe.
When I look back at the travels we have had, the one thing that stikes me the most is the fact that our children learn so much during these trips. They are exposed to various cultures, cuisines, terrain, flora, fauna and more. My elder daughter, who loves to travel as much as I do, has become a well rounded individual who is comfortable any where and in any situation. She can converse with any one of any age, race or creed. She loves different cuisines and even cooks quite well. I would attribute these skills to the extensive trips across the world that we had taken since she was a little girl. My younger daughter is now following suite.
Travel costs and not every one can afford to take the time to travel multiple times a year. I guess I am blessed in that aspect. I am an entrepreneur and I have built my several businesses in a way that allows me to take several breaks during the year to travel. My wife is a great travel planner and had honed her skills over the years. She seeks out the best places to visit and usually takes care of all the planning and booking. We do like to travel in style and we usually book 5 Star accommodation where ever we go. When we take road trips (like the epic European road trip we took in 2011), I plan the route, the stops, places to eat and stop for sightseeing enroute.
During our travels, we make it a point that we try the local cuisine and explore historic places as much as we can. We try to avoid the usual tourist paths and places. Most of the popular sightseeing areas are usually crowded and you feel like you are on a treadmill of sorts. This also gives our children an opportunity to experience some thing different from the usual touristy things. Almost always, we try to work out in advance places where we can have our children meet local artisans. I am a big fan of great craftsmanship and encourage my children to also recognise and appreciate craftsmanship!
In my opinion, the best gift you can give your children is travel. They would learn a ton of things and would thank you down the line when they become adults and use the skills they pick up during their travels.
Do you have any opinions on this topic? Share them below!