A few weeks before you hit the road, try to get your little adventurers excited about the place you're about to visit. Check out documentaries, maps, books, newspapers, folk tales, advertisements, music; whatever is appropriate. Try not to make it seem like a chore, but rather a journey of it's own that will give them a chance to determine what they'd like to see or do when they actually arrive!
Picture books or videos can offer a world of information about your vacation destination, as can magazine or Internet photos of local sights they may see! If your children are old enough you can even make a game of looking at the images - asking questions such as "what do you think you can hear (or see or smell) from this spot?" If you can acquire images of actual places you are visiting, it can be great fun to bring them and try to navigate to the exact spot to experience it as a family!
A little planning can truly make a big difference when it comes to travelling with children. The few extra minutes you devote to introducing them to what they will be experiencing can help prevent meltdowns, panic, and worry, and the time spent exploring your vacation destination beforehand can enrich the exploration upon arrival!
Safe and happy travels!
- Destination Mom