After much thought, planning and research, our first holiday as a family was to the country of Indonesia! We decided upon this as it was only a 5 hour flight to Singapore, with a 1 hour ferry to Bintan Island. We decided that the travel time was a good test for baby A, to see how she would be on the plane and the boat. We chose the family friendly Club Med Bintan resort on recommendation from our travel agent, and we were so glad we chose here!!
The resort was amazing for families with children of all ages, especially if you have a young baby. We received the club med “baby welcome” – our room had a baby bath, baby lotion, bottle heater, bottle steriliser and cot all set up and ready for us. Perfect as we arrived way past A’s bed time.
Once there we got to explore the resort and all it had to offer. For us adults we got to try yoga, squash, fitness classes and sailing.for baby there was obviously lots of pool time, but she also enjoyed the children’s activity room, packed full of toys. The children’s area also had shallow pools and a slide. As always with our daughter though, her most favourite thing to do was to simply walk around and explore, which we could easily do as the grounds were huge. She loved walking on the grass, trying to spot the chipmunk type creatures that would eat from the coconut palms.
We had such a beautiful 7 days here, that of course it was hard to go back home! Baby A got to know quite a few of the staff, who all doted and loved her cheeky smile. We knew we would miss the never ending cocktails and drinks at the bar, and the huge buffet meals that were included in this all inclusive resort. Even the heat, which was brutal as Bintan is located on the equator would be missed. Nothing like eating and drinking like an animal and losing it all through sweat! We would definitely like to come back in a few years with baby again, so that she can join the kids club, learn trapeze at the circus school, and make friends with the many children that come here. We saw older children begging their parents not leave!
So what did we learn from our first family trip?
– bring a change or two of clothes when travelling, for all of us. Baby A was fine on the plane, but turned a bit green on the rocking ferry. She threw up everywhere. I had change of clothes for her, but poor R spent a further 45 minutes in vomity jeans and shirt. Lol
– the iPad really is a lifesaver. Her fave cartoons and activity apps helped pass the time and gave a sense of familiarity.
– 18 months old is doable for travel, but it was hard work. I wouldn’t want to do any longer until she is bit older. We will stick to shorter plane trips for another year or two.
– babies adapt well to the weather. I was worried that all that sticky humidity would affect her. Even though she was constantly dripping in sweat, she seemed to thrive still. Extra big cups of water are a must though!
– getting a seat for her on the plane was a godsend. Our daughter doesn’t like to sleep in our arms. We could lay her on her own seat and that helped. If we had to have her on our lap the whole time it would of been hell!
– finally, we learnt that we can so this, and be a travelling family! There were some sticky moments, but if you are well stocked and prepared, and take a deep breath, it all works out in the end! We look forward to many more trips in the future.