We survived our flights, including the return journey which featured a 5-hour layover, resulting in a total travel time of 22 hours.
Little one was not amused and in fact was asleep on the last leg and when he awoke to find we had boarded another flight, he lost the plot, screaming “no, not another plane!!”
Overall the flights were great and much, much better than my worst flight last year when I barely escaped with my face intact.
The must-have product turned out to be the CARES safety harness. Due to the chest clip, our toddler felt like he was travelling in the car and therefore didn’t ask to get out of his seat at all, it also prevented him from kicking the seat in front.
The only issue was once he fell asleep he was a bit uncomfortable but I managed to loosen the straps and lay him on my lap.
It turned out to be a very wise investment, especially as I purchased it from Well.ca and saved $20 on the list price with free shipping!
We travelled to London (my hometown) and then Albufeira, in Portugal. Our son loved playing in the ocean and the sand, the pool and generally being out and about.
My top picks in Albufeira for families are:
- Festa da Praia restaurant- this restaurant offers similar fare to other restaurants on the strip and surrounding area- the fresh fish being a top pick, but where this restaurant stands out is its lovely children’s play center, with a slide, play house and swings- our son took to calling it “Toy restaurant”.
- Zoo bar- this was a great place for breakfast or lunch and also had toys and a trampoline for little ones.
- The beach close to the strip, features scenic rocks and caves, we let the little one nap in the stroller with the grandparents, whilst we went exploring.
- For date night we hit up The Great Indian Tandoori restaurant and it was awesome, very authentic, delicious curries and all the extras you would expect, including poppadum’s, naan bread, chutneys and dips.
- Don’t go without downloading a free map of the area. We loved both the old and new town.
Before leaving London, and heading to the Algarve for our beach holiday, we stopped into Sainsbury’s and picked up a Gruffalo swimming suit. It’s quite simply adorable and has the added bonus of being pretty impenetrable by the sun’s harmful rays, this cut down on the dreaded sunblock application dance.
I also really recommend dragging grandparents with you on vacation, it results in at least a few date nights, which are lovely and makes some great family memories.
Another highlight of the trip was walking across the roof of the O2 building, which is not to be missed if you are making a trip to London.
There was a bit of an incident involving an intruder but I will be saving that story for another post.
On the whole, our little traveller really handled all the flying fantastically, he is 2.5 years old and so far, has travelled to:
London, UK (3 times)
This time, I was actually able to notice other people’s children crying and having tantrums, because for once my boy was sleeping and sitting serenely. I looked at those stressed parents, caught their eye and smiled warmly, I hope they got the message I was telepathically sending them “You’ll get through this!”
Now to plan our next trip…