Tag Archives: Recreation

When you’re planning for some extended travel, for taking time off and going out into the world, one of the things you’ll want to look into is the way to travel – the actual “how to transport yourself”.
How would you really like your traveling to be? Which way to travel would suite you and your situation?

It’s easy just to suppose that when you go away for an extended time, you travel somewhere far away and you go by plane. It’s convenient and it’s the most common way.

As for us, we have made a lot of traveling by car and by campervan. The first years when we traveled as a family, we did most of our trips in Europe, or rather; we went from Sweden to Southern Spain for the winter. This trip could take everything from a week up to over two months, depending on how many friends we visited along the way and how many interesting things there were to do.

Traveling by campervan or a car with a trailer suited us very well at that time. It’s very convenient with small kids. You can stop whenever you want to take a break and you always have your own food and stuff. Besides, I refused to fly for many years because I thought it was the most frightening thing I could do.

Our campervan in New Zealand where we followed in the footsteps of the Lord of the Rings. Here in the middle of “Mordor”

Our campervan in New Zealand where we followed in the footsteps of the Lord of the Rings. Here in the middle of “Mordor”

When we decided to do longer trips (and I had handled my fear of flying, read more about that hear), to places like the USA, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and India for example, we chose to fly. Flying is the natural option for most people, especially when the destination is the goal.

We’ve also traveled quite a lot by train which we love. You just sit there and relax, read, talk to people, Aeat, sleep and watch the landscape passing by.

These are the most common ways to take yourself from one point to another. There are lots of other possibilities of course. We have friends who have cycled around Europe. They’re from Vancouver Island, BC Canada, a family of six, and they chose to take their bikes for this six month European tour.

Some of our other friends, a Swedish family with five kids, chose another option. They put everything they needed (included the two youngest children) into a couple of bike trailers and then walked from Sweden to England and back. We assume that the journey really was their goal and we’re certain they never suffered from jet lag.
We have some other friends who are planning to travel around Europe by horse and carriage. They will then solve many problems in one go; what to do with their horses while away, where to sleep, how to make as little imprint on the environment as possible, to name some of them.

We also know of many people who have sailed around the world and we have fantasized about this ourselves many times. We haven’t traveled a lot by boat though (except ferries) – YET!

Focusing on how to travel, on how to transport yourself, can be one way to start reflecting on what you’ll want your dream trip to be like.

• So, what kind of person are you? Does putting on a backpack and just walk away sound like the most horrid nightmare you can imagine, or does it awaken a feeling of freedom and excitement within you?
• Could taking your bike be the perfect way for you to get in shape at the same time as you practice living your life at a slower pace?
• Does putting your family into a campervan and just start driving sound like a dream come true, or would this be one of the worst scenarios you could imagine?

Thinking and fantasizing about these things can help you get a clearer picture of what kind of person you are and what would be the perfect way for you to travel. For some more input, take a look at our How to travel pages

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Have Kids Will Travel BookSo many people we meet want to travel the world with their family and so many just don’t take this desire seriously because they think it would be too costly. A few years ago, we came across this very interesting book called “Have Kids – Will Travel”. It’s written by Dale and Michelle Bartlett, the parents in a family of six who have traveled the world extensively for many years.

How can a family with four children just travel around in the world several times a year, staying in hotels, renting cars, visiting interesting sites and just have a great time without being multi millionaires, you may wonder.

Well, I guess you could say that they have used a variety of very simple and conscious ways of traveling. They have thoroughly researched ways to travel inexpensively and have then implemented these ideas and refined them through their own traveling life.

The family has (so far) mainly focused on shorter trips like days and weeks. Even so many of the ways they have used to lower, and even eliminate, travel costs are of course valid even for extended traveling.

The Bartlett’s have many examples of extremely inexpensive trips they have made. A two and a half week trip to the East coast of the USA (from Utah) for example cost as little as 700 dollar for the entire family! That included airfare, hotels, car rental, food and more!

They have visited Europe several times. Some of these trips have been with both free airfare as well as free accommodation, paying just for their food.

As Dale Bartlett says:

“I believe that with the proper planning and knowing the right travel secrets, any family could travel anywhere in the world for less than it costs to go camping, definitely much less than going to Disneyworld.”

If you’re interested in knowing more about them and to learn about how you too can travel inexpensively, visit their website: www.havekids-willtravel.com where their book also is available. They do ship worldwide.

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We went on a long hike yesterday. We didn’t hike far away, just around the corner from where we live. We put on our hiking shoes, threw some food into our backpacks and took off. The weather was perfect, sunny but not too hot.

Studying the map before taking off for the hike

Studying the map before taking off for the hike

A virgin forest is not totally easy to walk around in, many “obstacles” to pass

Old-growth forest is not totally easy to walk around in, many “obstacles” to pass

Both big and small enjoyed balancing on the many old fallen trees

Both big and small enjoyed balancing on the many old fallen trees

Part of the hike went through a forest which was protected and hadn’t been cut during the last 300 years. There’s a very special feeling walking in an “old” forest like that, solemn. It makes you quiet and reflective and also amazed over the wonders of nature. Over how well everything fits together. How the big, old fallen trees just lies there, transforming themselves into an abundance of new life. How nothing just stands or lies there by itself but is connected to the whole in some way.

Under the surface in the "Coca Cola" water
Above the surface with a water lilly

Above the surface with a Water Lily - The Swedish Lotus flower

We went swimming in a small forest lake. It had this dark brown water, “coca cola water”, as the kids call it. Swimming around there, with no buildings anywhere around, no cars, no roads, no sounds except the sounds of nature, it felt like it could have been any age: “ let’s see, where are we now, yes 2009, well what does it matter…”

We had a picnic up on a small hill overlooking another bigger lake than the one we went swimming in. Already we were starting to talk about going on a longer hike soon. Maybe for a couple of days? Maybe for a week?

We were two families, eight people, hiking together, and we all seemed to appreciate a lot this time away from “civilization” for a while. No stuff, no computers, no telephones (no connection in the old forest, of course). Just to practice “mindfulness” in the most natural way.

We came back after this one day experience a bit different persons from the ones who earlier that day set off. A bit more relaxed, happy and with a few new insights into things we had had time to reflect upon during our walk.

Time for reflection

Time for reflection

We realized again how much traveling can change you, how much it helps you to grow as a person and to see things more clearly. We were reminded of how profoundly life transformative long term travel can be. Just to leave things behind, not only for a day but maybe for three, six or nine months. Maybe even for a year or more. Here you can really talk about coming back as a different person.

This short hike really opened our eyes and let us see even more clearly how all our traveling has contributed to making us to the people we are today and taking us to the place we are at the moment.

So, to summarize: take some time off and go traveling! A day or a year, whatever you choose it will affect your life in many ways and take you to new places, physically and especially mentally.

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Travel can give you a perspective on life and help you to see all the amazing things that surround you. Viktoria found this video and we think it reflects (in a fun way) rather well this issue of taking things for granted.

In our everyday lives, we take so many things for granted. We stop recognizing all the fantastic things that surround us, everyday, everywhere, all the time.

That’s one of the reasons we think that travel is so amazing. Traveling gives you the opportunity to let go of all the well known things in your life, job, school, home, activities, friends, habits, and gives you the chance to get a new perspective.

Experiencing life in new ways is usually so much easier when you take some steps away from everything you are used to having around you.

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