January 2016


London – a city for fashion, celebrity spotting, sports, shopping labels and big days out. But one more thing that London can offer us is a wonderful place for kids to explore, be educated and enjoy. Children of all ages can visit London and be wowed. Here are just some ideas for keeping the kids amused in this fantastic city:

Let’s first take a trip outdoors. When the weather decides to behave, there is so much to do outside in the city.

Cycling in London

There are great areas of London available to enjoy by bike. Right in the centre of London, you’ll find lots of parks like Hyde Park. Known for roller skating especially, this park gives ample space for kids to enjoy the fresh air on wheels.

Further afield there are many other great areas for cycling. The largest green space around the area is Epping Forest, which originally served as a royal hunting ground in Tudor times. There are around nine wooded and trails for enjoying some cycling.


Enjoy London by bike

Enjoy London by bike – Image source: Flickr

Why we love it: It’s free and it gets kids off their iPads and outdoors instead

Parks in London

There are so many children parks in London that it’s hard to pinpoint one specifically. However the giant slides in Victoria Park, which are located on the east side of Victoria Park, offer amazing slides, climbing equipment and sand play (as well as a pool in the summer). There is also a skatepark there which older children might enjoy.


Parks in London

Parks in London – Image source:

Why we love it: There’s a lot to do in one place; it’s clean and well kept; it’s also free.

Pond Dipping in London

Why not consider pond dipping at Camley Street Natural Park? You’ll find two acres of countryside north of St Pancras called Camley Street Natural Park. It has been made from an old coal yard and sits on the Regent’s Canal. Not only will you spot some lovely nature here, but you can get away from the hustle and bustle of London life very quickly.


Camley Street Natural Park London

Camley Street Natural Park London – Image source:

Why we love it: It’s a piece of countryside in the middle of a busy city. And it’s free…

Next, we look at some attractions in London that are perfect for children who are animal lovers.

London Zoo

One of the most obvious places for kids to enjoy the sights and sounds of animals is ZSL London Zoo in Regent’s Park. Not only are there plenty of animals to look at, but there are also lots of daily activities which allow families to get close to the wildlife itself. It even has a Zoo Academy for the kids, which is a two-day course that involves games, as well as challenges and trails which are all supported by the educated zoo staff. It comes at a price though – around £250.


London Zoo

London Zoo – Image source:

Why we love it: It offers kids a chance to see exotic animals up close; it’s also great for adults to enjoy.

Clissold Park London

Clissord Park is great for summer days in London with the kids. You may catch a glimpse of deer, goats and chickens, as well as the cockatiels, finches, lovebirds and parakeets in the aviary.


Clissold Park London

Clissold Park London – Image source:

Why we love it: It’s free and provides all-round family fun.

See the lemurs at Golders Hill Park Zoo

At this zoo, you can meet the ring-tailed lemurs, as well as play in the safe play areas. There’s even a cafe for mum and dad to enjoy a coffee. You’ll see kookaburras, a ring-tailed coati and lemurs.

Why we love it: It doesn’t carry the zoo price tag, in fact, it’s free.

London Aquarium

More into sea creatures than land mammals? Head over to the London Aquarium and you’ll see turtles, sharks, sea dragons and even penguins. There are 14 zones, all with individual themes, for you to enjoy. There’s even a chance to feed the stingrays at certain times in the Ray Lagoon.

It is £23.50 for an adult though, £16.95 for under-16s, and free for under-3s.

Why we love it: It’s well kept and smoothly run. It’s updated each year so you can go back time and time again. It’s also perfect for all ages.

After seeing some animals, you may feel you want to experience something a bit different with the kids. Here, we look at museums and other unusual attractions which you might want to take the children to.

Warner Bros Studio

What’s great about this experience is that it was actually the studio location for a lot of the filming of the Harry Potter movies, so you can feel right in the action when you visit. Some of the sets even remain open to the public, perfect for Harry Potter fans. For the creative or technical among us, you can also have a look into the production of the films and learn a little about filmmaking. You can visit Platform 9¾, and even board the Hogwarts Express steam engine.

It comes at a price though – £33 for an adult, £25.50 for under-16s, and free for under-4s

Why we love it: Rarely are we given the opportunity to see inside a film set like this – especially on a major production like Harry Potter. Great for kids and adults alike.

The Chocolate Kitchens at Hampton Court Palace

The Chocolate Kitchens at Hampton Court Palace are great for kids to explore. You can check out recipes and even taste some of the fantastic products on offer. In fact, Hampton Court offers a lot for kids to do throughout the entire year – not just for the chocolate lovers amongst us.

Why we love it: It’s something a bit different. It’s also less than £10 each for under 16s, or under £50 for the whole family.

The Peter Harrison Planetarium

Fancy a bit of out-of-this-world fun and entertainment? This large domed cinema space uses advanced CGI and original film to produce a vivid picture of our universe. For younger children, you’ll find regular ‘Space Safari’ events and ‘Meet the Neighbours’ live shows at weekends.

Why we love it: What’s not to love about space? It’s absolutely fascinating and a great educational treat for the kids (and the grown ups.)

 This article is contributed/provided by The Montcalm Hotels

Time for a family vacation. These are the memory generating events that you’ll fondly look back on. They can also become the stuff of family legend! Whether you’re flying, cruising or hitting the open road there are several proactive steps you can take to make sure you’re ready to travel with the kids. The goal is to find ways to reduce any potential for stress. You’ll already have your hands full, so don’t add to the situation.


Are You Ready to Travel With Kids

Are You Ready to Travel With Kids?


Here are ten ways to ensure you are ready to travel with kids.

Book Ahead

Your travels can be broken down into two categories: BK and AK or “Before Kids” and “After Kids.” Before kids, you could be a lot more spontaneous. If you didn’t like the hotel when you landed, then you could easily go across the street for better accommodations. There will be none of that with the kids in tow. Look for places with deals on adjoining suites or special family rates. There is even a separate category that is dedicated to “family friendly hotels.” That’s where you need to start.

Pack Smart

Obviously, the weather at your destination is going to be the final determination as to what you should pack. There are plenty of great travel packing hacks like rolling your clothes for more space and diminishing wrinkles or using old shower caps for your shoes. Because of the kids, you should also leave extra room for the things you’re going to pick up on the trip such as T-shirts, hats and other items. You might want to invest in a small rolling suitcase for the young ones. That way they can pack up their own toys and essentials. This will make them feel fully vested in the trip.

Bring Your Own

To make sure you are guaranteed a comfortable stay, you might consider packing your own sheets, towels and pillowcases. Don’t forget that no matter where you’re going, hundreds if not thousands of people have already used those comfort items. If you take the time to research how you can find quality essential items such as towels before you go on your trip, you will feel a lot better knowing you can have some leisurely down time with items from your own home. The same can be said for bringing along your kid’s favorite pillow. That could go a long way to making them feel more at home in a strange place.

Rent Instead of Carrying  

The younger the kid, the more compound the travel issues can become. You might need a stroller, playpen, crib, car seat and highchair at your destination. The stroller and the car seat would be easy to manage and check in with baggage. As for the other items, consider renting those on the other side. Many hotels can provide cribs. There are also companies that can drop off rentals of those items to wherever you’re staying. The less you have to lug, the better off you’ll be.

Talk Through the Journey

You don’t just want to wake up one day and tell your child they’re going on a plane ride. Although you’ve might have made a trip like this before, this is going to be a huge event for them. Before the trip, try to introduce the concept of airplanes and flying to them through books and playtime. You also need to prepare them for the potential long lines and the need to sit still for several hours.

Pack for Distractions

Whether you’re traveling by plane or car, boredom is going to be an issue for your kids. Don’t depend on airline entertainment. Instead, try to load up or bring movies the kids can watch on a laptop, mini-player or pad. Let them pick the shows they want to watch even if they’ve already seen them a hundred times! Game apps are another great airplane distraction.

Have Snacks and Drinks at the Ready

For road trips, a mini-cooler stocked with juice, water and fruit is the perfect travel companion. For flights, you also need to be in charge of the snacks and drinks for your kids. In other words, don’t count on the flight attendants. This means allowing for extra time in the terminal to grab some drinks and munchies for the flight.

Allow Extra Time for Everything

Having kids means you have to factor in more time for everything. This is extremely challenging on a vacation when you have to race for a flight or check-out by a certain hour. No matter what you think you need, give yourself an extra half-hour. If you get to the airport super early, then let the kids have a good “run.” It might just get them tired enough to sleep during the flight!

Take a Backseat Ride

If you’re traveling by car, you might want to spend some time in the backseat if your young one is getting especially fussy. A little mommy/daddy time is all it should take to calm them down.

Stick to Your Routines

Not only will you get jet lagged but also so will your young ones. It is important to stick to the same routines you have at home with regard to meal times and sleep times. This might not always be possible but the closer you can get to those routines, the more comfortable everyone will be.


Travel With Kids

Travel With Kids


Finally, remember to have fun. This is what your vacation is all about. Don’t lose sight of that!

Kacey Mya Bradley is a lifestyle blogger for “The Drifter Collective.” Throughout her life, she has found excitement in the world around her. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations, cultures, and styles, while communicating these endeavors through her passion for writing and expression. Her love for the world around her is portrayed through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts.

The Drifter Collective: An eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us.

When talking about Australia, we certainly have to mention that it is one of the top countries in the world when it comes to exploring sea life and practicing extreme water sports. Millions of globetrotters visit it every year, and a large number of them come to the Land Down Under in search of new adventures that provide the ultimate adrenaline rush. No matter what, the truth is that this fantastic country is perfect for families with children. There are so many activities appropriate for the whole family that you simply have to try. Here are some of the best activities for families with children who are visiting the Gold Coast. Check out the list and enjoy!



Dreamworld Gold Coast

Dreamworld Gold Coast – Image source:

Being one of the Gold Coast’s favourite theme parks, it includes a wide range of roller coaster rides, live shows, and movie characters. However, your children will definitely be thrilled with something quite unconventional for a theme park of this kind – more than 500 native Australian animals to see! Kangaroo feeding and koala cuddling are some of the most attractive activities at Dreamworld Corroboree that offers the most amazing experience of the indigenous world in the Land Down Under.

Lamington National Park


Lamington National Park

Dreamworld Gold Coast – Image source:


Stunning rainforest scenery that includes numerous waterfalls and diverse wildlife undeniably makes Lamington National Park a perfect getaway for the whole family. Located just about an hour drive from Surfers Paradise, it lies on the remains of an ancient volcano, which is a pretty amazing fact itself. This park is extremely versatile when it comes to wildlife, especially when talking about birds – there are more than 190 species of colourful parrots which will impress everyone, particularly kids. A hilltop road leads to the guesthouse, where families can enjoy a meal at the café or a day at the spa.

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary


Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary – Image source:


Kids love hanging out with the animals here – spending time with kangaroos, cuddling koalas, and feeding hundreds of vividly coloured rainbow lorikeets are just some of activities that will bring your family’s Gold Coast experience to a completely new level. The birds in this sanctuary are so friendly that they will eat from the visitors’ hands and even perch on their heads! Your youngest ones will adore the free-flight bird show, as well as a ride on the little train. Wild Island also offers several fun activities for your youngest ones, especially since there is an outdoor playground where they can even see the vets in action within the Wildlife Hospital precinct.

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary


Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary – Image source:


Being one of the top 10 zoos in the world, it is the world’s largest and finest koala sanctuary at the same time. It features around 130 of these marvellous animals that are native only to this part of the globe. Visitors will get an opportunity to cuddle koalas and hand feed kangaroos in their natural setting. Besides this, your kids will be thrilled to see Southern Cassowary, one of the world’s biggest birds. Numerous species that are indigenous to Australia can also be seen in this sanctuary. It is located in Brisbane, only 50 minutes from the Gold Coast. This place is something you have to see.

Whale Watching


Whale Watching Australia

Whale Watching – Image source


Getting close to these fabulous sea creatures will definitely make some unforgettable memories that will last a lifetime. Whale watching while visiting the Gold Coast is an absolute must, simply because visitors will get to see the sea life at its finest. Approaching the amazing humpback whales in their natural environment is indeed a very thrilling experience that both the parents and their youngest ones will enjoy. Hanging out with whales while the beautiful Gold Coast skyline sparkles in the background is definitely something to always remember.

Surfing at Surfers Paradise


Surfing Australia

Surfing Gold Coast – Image source:


This place is, as its name states, a true paradise for surfers from all over the globe that gather here to ride the waves. Kilometres of sun-drenched beaches with four break points are a real challenge for all of the adventurers who seek that amazing adrenaline rush. Surfers Paradise is great for both professionals and beginners – just make sure that a licensed instructor is nearby if you aren’t fully comfortable surfing alone. Of course, appropriate equipment is highly required – many companies like Natural Necessity offer high-quality surfboards and other necessary and affordable equipment for the ultimate experience in this extreme sport.

Sea World


Sea World Australia

Sea World Australia – Image source:


This is the largest marine park in Australia that is equally appropriate for both children and parents. Numerous shows take place here, and some of them include performing dolphins and sea lions, as well as a water ski-ballet. This place is perfect since it contains kids’ favourite animal species like tropical fish and small sharks, and even polar bears and penguins. The park also offers sea-themed roller coaster rides, which will definitely amaze all the children out there.



SkyPoint Australia

SkyPoint Australia – Image source:


SkyPoint Observation Deck is a must-see for all tourists. The 360-degree view from the coast and surrounding areas will leave everyone breathless, especially when whales migrate along the eastern coast. On the other hand, SkyPoint Climb offers something slightly different than just merely observing the beautiful sights. It takes place on the top of the Q1 building in Surfers Paradise, at 270 meters in the air. Being one of Australia’s highest external building walks, it will definitely get everyone’s blood flowing.  Golden beaches, a stunning city skyline, and green hinterland are to be seen first-hand in this breathtaking experience.

Warner Bros Theme Park


Warner Bros Theme Park Australia

Warner Bros Theme Park Australia – Image source:


Warner Bros Movie World offers many opportunities for children. They will be able to come close to their favourite superheroes, as well as ride on numerous roller coasters, see stunt shows, and enjoy fantasylands on 3D interactive rides. Your youngest ones will be thrilled to see Looney Tunes characters parading up and down the streets of the theme park, whereas magical rides at the Kids’ Fun Zone will definitely be their cup of tea.

Visiting the Gold Coast during your trip to Australia will definitely be an experience to remember, simply because it offers so much to families with children. Besides that, it will make you appreciate nature even more. After seeing and experiencing various natural wonders and fantastic wildlife species that are native only to this part of the world, you will surely make several unforgettable memories. Visiting the Land Down Under with your kids is certainly the best thing you can do for them. You will not regret it.

It can be hard to go to the beach. Getting all the kids and all the stuff out the door and into the car, lugging it all down to mark your spot, then keeping track of everyone while you’re there, and finally loading everything back in, plus about 50 pounds of sand, can make for a less than ideal adventure. Especially if you find that your kids aren’t having fun since tantrums, skipped naps, and sugar-induced mood swings are common here too!


With kids on the beach

With kids on the beach

But it doesn’t have to be that way. It’s perfectly possible to take your kids to the beach for a day (or a week) and not have a mental breakdown in the process. All you really need to do is plan well and use some common sense.

Basic Safety Precautions

Basic safety at the beach is pretty simple. There are two main things to do – use various landmarks to orient yourself on the beach, and spend a few minutes watching the water. Show the kids where you are based on the landmarks. Especially if they’re old enough to go out swimming in the water, they’ll be dragged up or down the beach by the current. It’s an easy way to get lost, and happens to adults as easily as it does to kids. By using landmarks – a lifeguard tower, a weird rock, or even something you set up, like a brightly colored flag, the kids can find their way back to you easily.


children safety on the beach

children safety on the beach


Just as it’s important to know where you are, it’s equally important to watch the water. The ocean will always have a rhythm in the way the waves crash, and it usually only takes a few minutes of watching to figure it out. It will help when you get down to the water. You’ll be able to keep track of the waves, which makes getting past the breakers much easier. It also gives you time to look for any dangers – an outflow that could signal an under-toe, or a strange current that could be a rip current. If it looks too dangerous, pick another spot.

It’s a Great Learning Experience

Taking kids out to the beach is actually really good for them. Everyone loves routines (including kids, even if they won’t admit it), but it’s good to break out of them sometimes. They get to try new things, see different people, and learn all kinds of new stuff. After all, the beach is basically a giant science experiment with tide pools, shore birds, fishing, and new textures.

Family Experiences Trump All

It’s becoming more and more well known that experiences are better than possessions, and that holds especially true for children. A new toy will make kids happy for a while, but they get bored of it quickly. Even if you keep them in rotation, and try to bring “new” old toys out fairly often, kids are still adapted to them.


Family beach

Family beach


Experiences, however, are different. You can’t really adapt to them because they’re all different. No two days at the beach are the same, thanks to the ever changing tides and ocean currents. Dolphins might appear one day, and the next a fisherman might catch a sting ray that everyone can go see. The idea is to keep things fresh, giving your family a chance to experience new things on a regular basis.

Beach Time Does a Body Good

When was the last time you came back from the beach and you weren’t exhausted? All that sand, sun, and surf are the perfect combination to tire out even the most energetic toddlers. Even just walking in the sand is a workout since they need to focus more on keeping their balance, and watch their footing. At the end of the day, it’s always a wonderful feeling to finally fall into bed at night and still be able to feel the pull of the current and the gently bobbing of the swells.

Beach with kids

But in addition to amazing exercise, just being near the saltwater, sea air, and seaweed is really good for you. Going to the beach is a popular past time for many human beings, and also has many benefits such as the ocean water being an old-time cure for everything from stuffy noses to eczema, and its full of nutrients and vitamins. Of course they shouldn’t drink it, but some of those nutrients will be absorbed through their skin, and, let’s face it, they’re probably going to get a mouthful or two!

Relax – You’re at the Beach!

You’re at the beach, right? So play! Your kids have no problem being in the moment and getting fully invested in what they’re doing, but it’s harder for adults. We often have so many things pulling at our attention that it can be hard to simply be, but it’s vitally important to your mental wellbeing. Take that time to stop and reconnect with your family. And, if your kids happen to turn the beach into a nudist beach, just go with it! They’re only young enough to get away with it for a little while, after all.


Kids on the beach

Kids on the beach


It’s important to take your kids to the beach. You shouldn’t avoid it simply because it was hard before. Just plan well, don’t forget food, drinks, and shade, and remember why you’re there. Now go start planning your trip!

Kacey Mya Bradley is a lifestyle blogger for “The Drifter Collective.” Throughout her life, she has found excitement in the world around her. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations, cultures, and styles, while communicating these endeavors through her passion for writing and expression. Her love for the world around her is portrayed through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts.

The Drifter Collective: An eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us.

Some people would rather go to the Caribbean for a weekend and soak in the crystal clear blue ocean to relax. Others on the other hand, prefer a different kind of vacation, the adventurous kind. This “breed” of travelers has a weakness for edgy, thrilling places and the Himalayan mountain chain is one of them. Don’t you want to do something different in 2016? Something you’ve never done before but always thought of doing? Grab the kids, get in touch with your spiritual side and hit the Asian territory. You’ll come across the most amazing culture, most surreal places, and most exciting activities. Explore nature at its best and breathe in Himalaya’s all-natural surroundings.

Amazing things to do with the kids in the Himalayas

Amazing things to do with the kids in the Himalayas

For the adventurous type of traveler, exploring the ins and outs of Himalaya is a once in a lifetime opportunity. They simply can’t miss it! Stretching an astounding 2,400 km on 5 countries, the region has the incredible power of appealing to people’s sense. The locals here live the simplest lives; and yet they somehow manage to lure you in.

Mount Everest expedition

Mount Everest, the highest in the world, is no longer impossible to climb. It is the definitive border between Tibet in China and Nepal, and it comes with trekking routes for both beginners and skilled mountaineers.


Trekking is probably the best thing to do with your family in the Himalayas. There are easier routes to explore, such as the Annapurna Royal Trek in Nepal. It’s fun and enjoyable, not to mention that the sighs are breathtaking.

Himalayan River Valley

Home to several of the most important rivers in the world, the Himalayan River Valley is a place you cannot miss out on. There are many shrines and sacred places nearby; introduce the kids to the Buddhist culture and they’ll surely love it.

Valley of the Flowers

The Valley of the Flowers is one of the most alluring places to explore in the Himalayas. The scenery is absolutely superb, although to get an ample view you might want to come here in the warm season, when the flowers are in full bloom.

Great Himalayan Lakes

Himalaya’s Great Lakes are sublime. Most of them have fresh water, and they’re hidden deeply into the hills and frozen mountains. The most important are Make Rakshastal and Lake Manasarowar.

The wildlife

Most kids are fascinated by wild animals, and since there’s no zoo in the Himalayas, they’ll just have to settle for the actual surrounding; which by the way is packed with snow leopards, red pandas, and back bears.

Great Himalayan National Park

Himalaya’s National Park cannot be skipped out. This beautiful all-natural sanctuary is home to an incredible Asian fauna and flora. Your little ones will love meeting the varied bird and plant life surrounding the reserve.

Pilgrimage sites

Himalaya is packed with shrines, monasteries and pilgrimage sites. Most of them are located at high altitudes though; if you’re travelling with the kids, exploring Mount Kailash shouldn’t be an issue. The treks are easy and incredibly enjoyable.

Rafting in Manali

For the bravest adventurers, rafting in Manali is an experience you have to try out. The streams of River Beats stretch all the way to Jhri, close to Kullu town, and the experience will definitely be a memorable one, particularly for the kids.

Yak safari

This activity will definitely impress your kids. Yak safaris are exclusively done in the Ladakh region, and the experience has been driving tourists from all over the world for many years now.


Skiing in the Himalayas is generally believed to be for the most experienced. However, there are trails for beginners too. Your kids will love it, and the best weather conditions are from December through March.

Mountain biking

Pir Panjal and Zanskar are ideal spots in the Himalayas for mountain biking. Be careful though; the routes may become a bit too challenging for the inexperienced at one point. Just remember to have fun, and spend quality time with your family exploring the world’s most famous mountain range.

Gondola rides

Admire the Himalayas from 10,000 feet and dare to take a trip with the gondola. The Gulmarg Gondola in particular is the 2nd highest and longest in Asia. The scenery is breathtaking from up top. Don’t forget your camera!


India’s mountains and valleys offer the best spots for camping. There are numerous green forests you can explore with the whole family. However, the best and most accessible spots are in Nepal.

Tiger Mountain Lodge

If you’re not a fan of camping, lodging at the Tiger Mountain Lodge will make your trek through Annapurna worth the effort. The accommodation facility is simple and comfortable, and it is located at a 30-minute drive of Pokhara.


Srinagar is the capital city of Jammy & Kashmir. Famous for its beautiful canals, Srinagar is an excellent place to take the kids. They’ll be delighted to admire the Mughal Gardens and houseboats.


Srinagar- Image source:


Ladakh is unique. Secluded by two of the world’s highest mountains – Karakoram and the Great Himalayas, Ladakh is packed with spectacular sights. The ancient palaces, the surroundings, and the brilliant greenery will exceed all your expectations. Spend the most amazing Asian holiday with your loved ones, and let this place wow you with its traditional Buddhist allure.


Ladakh – Image source:


Last but not least, we have Shimla; a place blessed with natural wildlife and abundant vegetation. This superb town is located on a hill. The views from the top are mesmerizing! Shimla is surrounded by snow capped peaks and lush pastors, not to mention that the cool hills are accompanied by architectural structures from the colonial era.

 Monkey at Shimla Hindu Temple

Monkey at Shimla Hindu Temple – Image source:

There’s more to the Himalayas than just trekking. If you’re planning a vacation with the kids, then you should know that there are plenty of things you can do here with your whole family. Do something different this year, and take them on an adventure they’ll remember for a lifetime.

By William Taylor and!