First family holiday
The ideal destination
Having a baby means that it's a good idea to avoid destinations where the temperature is over 85°F – as well as countries for which special vaccinations are required or where hygiene conditions are not that good: wait a few years before going to Africa, Amazonia or trekking in the Himalayas.
You can go to the mountains, but no higher than 1500 m altitude: any higher and your baby's eardrums will have difficulties coping with the low pressure. You can also go to the beach – but be careful of the UV rays: you should never expose your baby directly to sunlight!
In actual fact, the countryside is often the ideal destination for your baby: it's calm, the climate is temperate and there is a great deal of shade – everything you need for enjoying a peaceful holiday with your family.
By car, by train, by plane!
You can use any means of transportation with a baby, provided you take a few precautions. If you go by car, your baby should be in a car seat that is compliant with the standards in force in your country, and which is suitable for his age. The seat should be inclined, and your baby should be sitting back to front for the first few months. Never transport your baby in an unsecured cradle, even if he is asleep when you get going! During the trip, keep all the essentials within easy reach: nappies, wet wipes, bottles (if you're not breastfeeding), changes of clothes and little biscuits if your baby is older than 9 months. And make sure you stop every 2 hours – to give the driver a break and so that you can entertain your baby!
Once your baby is one month old, you can also travel by plane: just remember to make sure your baby is drinking (breastfeeding or bottle-feeding) during take-off and landing – otherwise they may get an earache. And watch out for the air conditioning – which can dry out the air or make the temperature too cold. Keep your baby covered and make sure he is well-hydrated.
Essentials to take with you
Very often, going on holiday with a baby can be like moving house. Make sure you can do laundry at your destination – several times if necessary. That way, you can avoid taking your child's entire wardrobe with you. Leave superfluous items at home and make the right choices so that you can travel light: if possible, take your scarf or baby carrier instead of the pushchair. Get an inflatable bath for bathing your baby, have him sleep in a cradle or a foldable bed, etc.
As far as toiletries are concerned, take your child's usual hygiene and washing products with you, but in smaller formats. And don't forget wet wipes, which are very practical when you're travelling. Remember to bring a very high-protection sunscreen with you in the summer – one that is specifically formulated for babies – as well as a cap or cotton sun hat and sunglasses.