The blog for inspired travel with children

Friday, July 6, 2012

A Great City Map

This might be the perfect map for a kid - the "Crumpled Map" by Palomar.  The mind reels at the range and variety of damage that might conceivably be inflicted by a young child on an ordinary paper map. Banish those thoughts - this map would seem to be safe for even the most reckless and messy tot.  You can crumple it up and jam it into your pocket, and spend hours playing in a "water feature" or creek, and it won't disintegrate. Choose either the conventional map or the more colorful, simplified (and at this point, limited to five cities) edition for kids - the "Crumpled City Junior."

Of course, lots of kids might prefer the grown-up version, and vice-versa! Palomar offers a boxed set of any three or five maps for a discounted price. The graphic design is delightful with either version - have a look at their range of conventional maps:

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Backpacks, backpacks, backpacks!

Every traveling tot needs a good backpack.  They make it easy for a little person to carry their own things on airplane trips, of course, but they are also useful throughout a trip, whether you are hiking in the countryside, exploring a new city, or anything else.  My own son has used his trusty Fjallraven for two years now and it is still in perfect shape!  Little wheeled suitcases don’t quite cut it once you’ve left the airport.  Here are some appealing backpacks I’ve found; they come in various sizes so be sure to check the details for each pack.

The classic child's backpack by Fjallraven (the Kanken) comes in lots of colors (they make a mini version too, for very tiny tots).  Available from Fjallraven's website, Crewcuts, and various independent retailers.

Another basic but smart-looking pack by Herschel, also sold through Crewcuts

And one more from Herschel - cheery yet smart!

This canvas one's by Baggu and comes in a variety of solid colors as well

I love this cute print; the pack is by Little Ella James

A basic yet cheery Lacoste pack

Ooh, shiny!  This one is from Porter

I can barely stand this little adorable one.

This pack by Laura Spring is adult-sized, but would look so cute on the right teen...

And back to Fjallraven - this one would be great for an older child

Monday, July 2, 2012

Stay: Hotel Kakslauttanen

My son has told me several times that he’d like to visit the North Pole (partly in order to verify Santa’s existence, but also just because it sounds exotic…).  Now that the heat of summer is bearing down upon us, this idea is becoming increasingly appealing.  I think we’d stay here:

These are glass-roofed igloos, part of the Hotel Kakslauttanen. The hotel is located 250 kilometers north of the Arctic Circle in Finland. Log cabins are also available, but why would you do that? Among the on-site restaurants is a Kota (a traditional Lapp teepee) and a Snow igloo; there are also more conventional options.

The remote resort offers all sorts of activities all year-round, including berry-picking, hiking, reindeer or husky "safaris," various sports, and much more. 

Reindeer Safari!

Ice Karting

While I would assume that Santa Claus was, er, busy at the moment (he is just so, so busy), I would desperately hope to catch a glimpse of Aurora Borealis.

You may also take cultural excursions among the Sami people, who are indigenous to the region, Excursions include visits to a reindeer farm and other significant sites, as well as a special Lappish dinner in the Kota, featuring - what else - reindeer.  And ice cream.  Count me in.