Published: 7 March 2014
Family holidays are a wonderful thing, but sometimes it can be difficult to keep children entertained. Children can easily get bored on the journey, during quiet evenings, or even while seeing sights that they aren't as enthusiastic about as you are. If you want to avoid problems, there are a number of steps you can take to make sure that every member of the family is entertained throughout the trip.
Bring Their Favourite Toy
Almost every child has a favourite toy. It could be anything from a doll to a tablet computer, but they will love playing with it more than any other. It's a valuable way to keep them entertained, and making sure they bring it on the trip could avoid a lot of difficulty. Having this toy to hand will give them something to play with when they start to get bored and can avoid complaints and difficulties.
Research the Destination
If you are worried your children might get bored while sightseeing, do some research and try to find out interesting facts about the places you will be visiting. Children are more likely to engage with sightseeing if you make it interesting with some facts. If you worry you won't be able to remember all the information you uncover, print it out and bring it along.
Does your chosen resort have a kids club? It is worth doing your research before hand as having a kids club at your resort can really make a difference to your holiday for children and adults alike. Most kids clubs have a range of activities that cater for children young and old and will give them the chance to try something new and to interact with children their own age. Kids clubs also give mums and dads a much needed break, allowing them to spend some quality time together. We have a range of resorts available that include great Kids Clubs, including the Sheraton La Caleta (Tenerife, Spain), Grande Real Santa Eulalia (The Algarve, Portugal) and Outrigger Phuket (Thailand)
We recommend checking what sporting or leisure facilities are on offer at your resort, as getting children involved in a sporting activity can be a great way to keep them entertained. Playing sports can bring out a competitive side to both children and adults, and could even bring a family closer together as they share an experience of trying a sport they might not have tried before. We recommend the Martinhal and Sheraton Algarve in Portugal, both of which have some excellent sporting facilities.
Invent a Game
Inventing a game is another way to help keep children from getting bored. For example, if you want to see the sights or do some shopping and the children get bored, you may want to create a game where they have to spot certain things to earn points. You could even feed their enthusiasm by offering to buy them a toy or some sweets if they can gather enough points. Admittedly this comes close to bribery, but they still have to earn the treat by gathering points.
Give Them Something to Look Forward to
If you are going to more than one place in a single day and one of these really appeals to your child, you might want to save that one until later. If your children find they don't enjoy the other destinations so much, they are less likely to get bored if they still have something to look forward to. If, on the other hand, they have already done everything they want to, then they will just see the rest of the day as boring and be keen for it to be over.
Films and Games
Films and games can be a bit of a lazy option, but they can also be extremely useful for keeping children entertained as long as you don't overdo it. If you bring a tablet computer, make sure you have some films or games that your children like on them. Alternatively, bring a handheld games console or a portable DVD player with some of their favourite films. These things can be invaluable both on the journey and during quiet evenings in the hotel when the sightseeing has been done.