BACKPACKING AROUND SOUTH AFRICA WITH A BABY

BACKPACKING AROUND SOUTH AFRICA WITH A BABY

My husband Sam and I did a lot of travelling in our twenties and neither of us saw it as something we necessarily needed to give up once Jack came along. Exploring the world, meeting people from different cultures, hiking (and getting lost) through forests and up mountains, lying in hammocks, trying new foods were all experiences that made us who we are and ones that we wanted to continue to build on. It’s just that this time we would have a third team member: our baby.

“Ah South Africa – no time difference so that’s perfect!” friends with babies exclaimed when we told them we were going there. To be honest it hadn’t even occurred to us. A good friend was getting married in South Africa which we seized as an opportunity to start embarking on some proper travelling just the three of us. And with Jack approaching 1 and a free flight under his belt, we felt he was old enough (and innoculated enough) to get his teeth into some travelling. Suffice to say it was by far the happiest trip we have ever had and one that we will forever remember.  Jack’s squeals as he sat in the jeep in the game reserve, bobbing up and down on Sam’s knee whilst the wind rippled through his curls, is a scene I will never forget.

When it came to packing, I tried to take the bare essentials. I took only a few nappies (I quickly reasoned with myself that babies in foreign countries wear nappies too), a few emergency baby food jars, a huge bag of toys, sunhat, sunscreen. The two most useful items we brought along though were a fabric highchair in the photo at the bottom and a snoozeshade – mainly for when we took Jack out at night so that he could get some shut eye in the buggy whilst we enjoyed a glass of riesling.

There was really nothing we couldn’t get out there – in fact, call me a geek but I find visiting foreign supermarkets a fun pastime. Accommodation wise, we stayed in a combination of hotels, hostels, cabins and air b n bs. My preference were the small b n bs, who were relaxed about having a young child crawl around and personable enough to have time to coo over him and bring him a little foreign treat.

The best thing about travelling with a baby? Everyone is so darn nice to you. Oh, and you have an excuse to politely move away from the guy around the campfire who is playing ‘Imagine’ badly on his sitar. So if you and / or your partner have ever been travelling, and you have a baby in tow, I massively encourage you to dust off those backpacks and get out there – this time as a family – and I promise you, your adventures will get even better.

Here’s a video I made from our time there – take a look:

8 Comments

  1. July 13, 2015 / 7:39 pm

    I’ve never really been one for traveling however Ii’m sure your little boy is going to love it and grow up with amazing memories 🙂

    • emma ross
      Author
      February 20, 2016 / 10:43 am

      firstly, so sorry for the slow reply! ah well lets hope so re the memories and that he too will love it. thanks for reading and dropping by 🙂

  2. July 13, 2015 / 10:00 am

    Oh wow, I love this post and it’s one I really needed to read today. I’ve just written a blog post about having itchy feet and how I’ve been feeling a bit trapped in the house (I have a 15 month year old).

    This is very inspiring. 🙂

    Jenna at http://www.tinyfootsteps.co.uk

    • emma ross
      Author
      July 13, 2015 / 10:42 am

      Ah thanks Jenna. I just read your post.. it can all feel quite claustrophobic and overwhelming can’t it… Really hope you get a break soon, or how about just a day trip somewhere? I find even that lightens me 🙂

  3. Emma C.
    July 13, 2015 / 9:05 am

    I’ve added a link to this post to the Tots100 inspiring blog posts – hope that’s ok!

    • emma ross
      Author
      July 13, 2015 / 10:41 am

      Ah that’s awesome, thanks so much!

  4. July 12, 2015 / 11:04 pm

    I loved this! We have one of those fabric high chairs but we haven’t used it yet. We’re away for s while this month so I’ll definitely take it along.

    • emma ross
      Author
      July 13, 2015 / 10:41 am

      Ah I am such a fan of those fabric high chairs, love how they fold up so small too. Def would take it away if I were you!

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