To paraphrase, a travel photo is worth a thousand words. Each month we’re diving into a recent trip from a family travel expert to discover the story behind their favourite picture and hear top tips from their trip so you can follow in their footsteps with your own kids. First up, Tasmin Waby hails from Melbourne and is currently working in London as Lonely Planet’s Destination Editor for Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific. She is mum to two lovely girls.
Tasmin with her girls in Venice. Image courtesy of Tasmin Waby
What’s the story behind this photo?
I am a bit excited as we’re in Venice, one of the world’s most remarkable cities (and a long way from Melbourne). I had been to Venice once before, in my younger backpacking days, but it was in the depths of winter. Venice is a whole different city in the summer with bright light and sun-warmed piazzas where you can spend your afternoon enjoying a long lazy lunch.
After walking here from our apartment we wandered a maze of calles heading to the (almost empty!) Gallerie dell’Accademia for some big religious art. We got lost – intentionally I promise – taking different routes, occasionally ending up back on the main signposted way from the Piazza de San Marco.
My youngest is singing here, operatic style like you do. The eldest is looking at something going on out of the shot. It’s a rare shot where my girls aren’t pulling ridiculously silly faces! When I asked them what they thought about this photo, they remembered the little things, oh and gelato (of course)…
‘That day we picked mussel shells and we chased each other with seaweed. Later, we got an ice-cream.’
Tasmin’s tips for travelling to Venice with kids
Venice is a great place to travel with kids; the lack of cars (and therefore noise), the amazing produce and the incredibly friendly locals around Castello made it a really special trip for us. Here are our top tips for a successful family trip to one of the world’s most beautiful cities:
1) Book accommodation away from the centre for all the obvious reasons: local shops, quieter streets, and a more authentic experience of the city. We were over in the Sestiere di Castello region; the Giardini Pubblici had a playground for them, and the restaurant owners were warm and embracing of kids (literally).
2) Relax! Venice is a surprisingly relaxing place to visit with children (as long as they know how to swim!).
3) Stay longer. We were only there for four days and we walked and walked all over the main islands, but it would have been good to get to Verona on a day trip and to do a Prosecco road trip (OK that would be for us not the kids, but happy parents, happy children!).
Where’s next on your family travel bucket list?
It’s a toss-up. I really want us to go hiking in the Pyrenees but if that is beyond the budget, I’d be just as happy to go camping in Dorset and catch some more sea breeze.
Lastly, complete the sentence:
When we shut the front door ready to go and travel as a family, we always…
…make sure we have put the bins out. We’ve learned from experience!
Tasmin tweets at @tasminwaby. Follow her for tips and news on travel in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific.
For inspiration on how to keep your young explorers entertained whilst on the road – or at home – check out our Lonely Planet Kids books and apps.