If you follow me on Instagram (and watched my recent stories) you would have seen that the hubs, Jasper and I spent the last three weeks travelling to Melbourne and New Zealand. We had an awesome time, but I am very glad to be home. We also travelled to Bali early last month, just for a few days, so I thought I’d write a lil blog post on a few things that I have learnt travelling with a baby. It’s so much fun, but oh so different to travelling before we became parents.
 PLANNING IS EVERYTHING
Firstly, babies require A LOT of things, food, water, milk, toys, nappies, wipes, change of clothes, pain killers or medicine, teething toys, pram, portacots etc etc etc!!!!! It’s crazy how many things such a small human needs. Before you even leave for your holiday, I’d recommend that you start writing down things that you use regularly for you bubba, to make sure you don’t need it.
Then when you arrive at your holiday, everything you do revolves around your baby and their routine (or mood that day!). Jasper is in an awesome routine, so it was pretty easy for us to plan our days around him. After he sleeps, he’ll have some milk and then he’s awake for a good 3-3.5 hours, so we would try to go out during that time. Not super far, because when he gets tired, he is C.R.A.N.K.Y!!! But we did wonder out, and get to see heaps of cool things.
I say planning, because you have such a small window that you can actually go and do things, so if you’re organised, you can pack your diaper/nappy bag before baby goes to sleep, heck even load everything you need in the car (RENT A CAR GUYS, IT’S AMAZING AND SO MUCH EASIER!!) and that way, when baby wakes, you can feed them, and just hop in the car and go where you need to go.
Also, aside from planning everything you need to do for baby, it’s good to plan what you want to do while you’re away before you go. Seen a cool cafe on Instagram that you want to check out? Know the top touristy spots that you wanna get a pic at? Write it all down! Save the locations in Google Maps. How far is it from where you are staying? Is there parking there? What food are you going to eat? The more you can plan in advance, the easier your trip will be. Leave some room to be spontaneous, sure, but I found that with a baby, it’s a heck of a lot harder to be spontaneous.
 GO SLOW
This is something that we learnt on the road. Before Jasper came along, we road-tripped around the U.S and Europe, and we were driving 9-12 hour days, cramming in as many sights as possible! We wanted to see it all!!! And we love driving. But now that Jasper is here, we found that everything just takes longer. You have to stop to feed him, change him, you have to allow for his naps, he gets bored easily, so we needed to make sure we allocated time for him where we could play and give him attention. Everything just took longer, and we were okay with that – we got to see what we wanted to, it was just at a slower pace.
When we were in Bali, we literally did the bare minimum. We stayed at our hotel, we ordered room service, we went for mini walks, but everything was centred around going slow and just being present with Jasper. He enjoyed just swimming and playing and we enjoyed not trying to cram everything into the trip. Going slow is a way more enjoyable and less stressful way to travel. If you still want to see a bunch of things, I’d recommend that you make a list of your top 5/10 things you want to do, have a look at where they are and plan around them (see point one again!) you can still see and do everything you want to, as long as you plan accordingly and don’t try to cram it all int a short time.
 NAPS ARE THE KEY TO ROADTRIPS
We managed to drive around 2,000km in New Zealand, and the reason we were able to go so far is that we planned to do the majority of our driving during Japers naps. He sleeps for a good 90 minutes, sometimes longer in the car, so this allowed us to hit the road. We planned all of our driving around his sleeping schedule and we got pretty far! We were stoked with how much we got to see. there were times where he would wake up early out of a nap, and we would have to pull over to feed him and give him some time outside the car. If we still had some driving to do, one of us would get in the backseat with Jasper and play with him and talk to him. We’re not the biggest fan of iPads (he’s only 8 months old) so we try to entertain him ourselves, and he was pretty happy for the most part. If he did get grumpy, we’d follow his lead and pull over, eat something, have a play and a walk and then hop back in the car.
 YOU CAN’T BRING ENOUGH WET WIPES
Can we talk about how amazing wet wipes are. I don’t know how we would have travelled without them. We used them for everything, after he ate we cleaned him, we cleaned dirty surfaces with them, heck we even used them ourselves to wipe our hands and clean up messes we made. Seriously, they are the best thing that has ever been invented. I only packed 2 packs with me, and we ended up having to buy like 4 more! Lucky they’re readily available.
We also purchased some anti-bacterial wipes for the planes. We flew on 5 airplanes, and we once saw a documentary on the amount of germs that live on planes. So we were those parents that wiped down everything from the window, tray table to arm rest. Jasper still got sick after the first plane trip which was a bummer, but you can’t control everything. I’d seriously recommend that you bring some anti-bacterial wipes with you too – seriously, planes are gross. Also, at restaurants the high chairs never get wiped down, and there are a crap tonne of germs on there too – kids are grubby! So we used the wipes to clean these as well.
 BE FLEXIBLE WITH YOUR ROUTINE
okay, so I’ve basically said that Jasper is in an awesome routine and we planned everything around that – but let me tell you something, travelling can mix up a little bubs routine like nothing else. I had to learn very quickly to be flexible and change things up, because you know what, his routine became a lot less predictable while we were travelling than it is when we’re at home. He dropped a whole nap while we were away and it threw me out of sorts! But I didn’t stress too much, because hey, we’re on holiday and we were having a great time. His routine could wait and I knew that when we got home, I’d be able to get him back into good habits and back to what he’s used to pretty quickly. I’m used to Jasper sleeping through the night, maybe he wakes up once but that’s about it. While we were away, he was waking up every 3-4 hours. I was NOT used to this AT ALL! But he got a new tooth, and he went through a huge developmental leap. Instead of trying to get him to sleep through the night, I followed his lead and was flexible. If he seemed tired, I let him nap during the day (although, he was more on the wanting to stay awake side of the spectrum!)
We are home now, and the last few nights he’s been amazing. He has woken up maybe once or twice, but his sleeping habits are pretty much back to normal. I think if we went a bit earlier than 8 months, I probably would have freaked that he was getting out of routine and that I was screwing it all up. But I feel a lot more confident as a mama these days and I trust that I am doing right by Jasper, even if it means mixing things up because we’re on a holiday. Trust your gut and your instincts, you were given your baby for a reason, because you’re the best person to look after them.
Jasper had a great holiday, he was super happy chappy and loved meeting some of his second cousins. It was awesome watching him interact with extended family. I loved watching him take in new sights, he was particularly fascinated with the seagulls – it was hilarious. He wanted to chase them and watched them so intently.
While we were away, Jasper mastered crawling, he can pull himself up now, and he is just much stronger in general. He’s getting super chunky, and eating solids like a pro. I love watching him grow and develop even if it brings some challenges along with it.
Have you guys been travelling with babies? What have you learnt along the way? I’d love too hear in the comments below xx