Travelling West Coast Wilderness Trail with Teens
Some say, the best age to travel with kids is between 9-12 years old. At this age they are more flexible and everything is magical and exciting. With teens, however, you are lucky to get the odd one eyebrow raised as a reaction.
From our recent trip to do the West Coast Wilderness Trail in the South Island, here are some of my suggestions for pulling off an excellent vacation with teenagers and making the most of your time together.
A family holiday helps you get quality time and make good memories, so hang in there and pack a good sense of humour (even if it is secretly to yourself!).
Even though your son or daughter may not seem that engaged with the idea of an upcoming trip, it’s essential to prepare them for what will come. As the time gets closer, casually mention some of the activities that you will be considering and get their opinions and input, including them in the trip planning process. Respond to their ideas. They’re learning to be fully independent adults; let them assume that role.
The more they know what is planned for their holiday, the more they will enjoy it and pack appropriately. Make them responsible for their bag, and let them decide what to pack, which means they will be lugging their own bag around themselves.
My daughter loves checking us in at the airport and being ‘airport dad’ telling us what to do and where to go next in that exciting and sometimes confusing place—excellent life skills, right there.
Keep them active
Actively keeping your teens doing something on the trip is an excellent way of not letting them to zone out into that phone. Scenic car journeys and lengthy museum visits are not going to work.
That is why I love walking or cycling on holidays. Bring on e-bikes, I say! Besides, it takes the slog out of any cycle journey while you enjoy stopping and smelling the roses along the way. Cycle Journeys
A captivating activity was Pounamu carving, where we all learnt new skills and appreciation for skilled artisans. Bonz-n-stone
A highlight was gifting our pendants to each other during the next few days. My husband wears my daughters carving with as much pride as any adoring father. A vacation is something you should remember.
Treetops proved to be a well-worth visit with their zip-lining with a well-earned treat at their cafe afterwards. treetops
We highly recommend Scenic Waterways with their kayaking, river cruises and wonderful hosts, Cindy and Gavin. westcoastscenicwaterways
A great thing to have in your day bag is a pack of cards, we have an ongoing, trip long, game of ‘rummy’ or ‘go fish’ that is played at most meal times or airport lounges, final score is tallied at the end of the trip.
Awesome family activity and alternative to the phones.
Encourage them to find something to buy or collect as a memento that will capture their holiday. On our recent travels to the South Island, we collectively chose a pair of glass Emperor penguins after watching a glass-blowing workshop—an education in itself. hokitikaglass
An excellent outing is going to Hokitika Gorge. You found the rare native New Zeland blue mushrooms featured on our fifty-dollar note!