A baby, two grandparents, one sister, and a husband, all make an awesome company to get to know and enjoy Portugal. Traveling with family can be both awesome and terrifying at the same time. It can turn from cute to ugly in no time. Read my 6 simple tips on how to survive and enjoy a family get together right below.
This is also a recap of our first 10 days in a country that turned out to be the oldest in Europe.
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Portugal…aaaaaah! The beauty, the ocean, the people, the architecture, the food, and anything else really. It was glorious and so affordable I might add.
During the first 10 days it was still hot during the afternoon and already chilly during the evening hours. It was so nice outside that I couldn’t resist swimming in November ocean.
We kicked off our mini family reunion stay in Albufeira because it offered a proximity to the ocean as well as good opportunities for out of town travel. I rented a villa with three bedrooms and three bathrooms, fully stocked up kitchen, and a beautiful pool with an incredible terrace. Stone bbq and parking were also included. The villa, not far from the ocean, was located on the hill comparing to the coast line. The car, that was rented prior in Lisbon, was used daily to transport less mobile relatives to and from the beach.
Albufeira is small city and represents a touristy town with all the mini bars and restaurants that come alive when British expats are present. I was really glad that the season was over so the town seemed emptier than fuller. I can only imagine how it is during the summer.
From Albufeira we took trips to the neighboring cities and monasteries, walks, and other famous locations. Check out the pics below for our closely packed itinerary.
Thank you Mr K for organizing most of it.
Gladly we managed to pull through like champions helping each other and sharing responsibilities when possible. No one slacked off or changed plans last minute. Everyone supported everyone. So proud ☺.
6 simple tips on traveling with the family:
1. Having something to do.
Going places and exploring together is a very good idea. An itinerary that we could discuss later, take multiple pictures of, and just walk around and get tired is always a good family glue. Building memories people!
2. Buffer up!
Everyone having their respective place to take a nap, work, swim, tan, and use their own bathroom or just be by themselves is an awesome buffer. Everyone needs some alone time to recharge and relax no matter the connection, relationships, and closeness.
3. Cooking together.
Planning a meal together and selecting a head chef, then selecting a sous chef. Cooking ahead is also a good idea. The amount of food for 6 people is big and everyone can participate. Whoever didn’t cook, cleans dishes. ☺ in our case it was an automatic dish washer.
4. Having a recognized authority in a group is important.
Someone will always lead and someone will follow. Once the alpha is selected do not challenge her with questions: How, what, where, when, are you sure? etc. As you probably guessed it, I was the leader, a chauffeur, the main cook, and a housekeeper, and the rest of the company were on a volunteer basis. Mr K was responsible for entertainment, maps, and addresses. Grandparents for food selection and its suggestions, sister for food prep and help, and my little niece for just being cute. I think her duties were the toughest.
5. Staying positive.
Trying to enjoy no matter what (weather, proximity to the beach, bad restaurant choice, joint pain, packing the wrong wardrobe, and even stolen GPS) the post about that is coming up.
6. Leaving everyone alone.
This one is similar to buffer but is not limited to a space alone. Letting everyone do their own thing during the designated time is the best way to get the most out of the family trip together. There is time for everything and everyone so use it wisely and don’t push your agenda if no one is ready yet.
Do you have tips on traveling with family and loved ones? Share them in the comment section! Would love to hear your ideas!