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Tips For Hiking With Children

Tips For Hiking With Children

A pleasant walk is often the perfect way to see the sights on vacation, and most kids will enjoy the journey.  Just remember to keep the kids and their needs in mind while out for your stroll.

Toddlers will enjoy exploring at their level--poking in the dirt, pointing out flowers and spider webs, basically getting muddy and having a blast.  Don't pressure them into hurrying up, just try to move along at their speed.  They'll tire soon enough, and when that happens, a good baby carrier--especially a comfortable backpack--will almost be a necessity.

Preschoolers will also enjoy exploring at their own wandering pace, though some will balk if the path gets too rough.  Encourage them to find their own way over rocks and trees, and they'll feel right at home. 

They might even want to stop and splash through streams or rain, or collect leaves or pine cones.  A diaper bag with a change of clothes or ponchos might come in handy on these trips.

As kids tire, and grumble about sore feet, it might help to remind them of the cafe or ice cream shop at the end of the hike.

Be mindful of wildlife.  Insects might not appreciate the visitors, and larger animals might challenge the family for entering their territory.

Walks in town have their own dangers. In some countries, the crosswalk doesn't carry the same stopping power that it does in the United States, and pedestrians are expected to watch out for cars, not the other way around. 

Make sure the kids are safely contained to the sidewalk and don't dash into roads.

Sometimes, depending on the traffic or the local wildlife, the safest place for a kid is up off the ground, in a backpack or daddy's arms, where they can't get hurt or lost.

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