1. They’re sponges, and they soak up so much information!
Kids love to learn, so they listen and look at everything being said or seen, and they take it all in. They’re able to grasp bits of a local language and delight in trying to speak it. It’s the little things that they remember, that are most precious. Like the name of some fungi that grows in the jungle or the complicated name of a wild animal. The more obscure the better they remember, and remind you long after their adventure.
2. They love being around the local guides.
The kids adore their local guides and want to spend as much time as possible with them. The other beauty is that the local guides love to have kids on their adventures. Local guides are proud of their country, and love the open, honest attitude of kids, they delight in sharing their local villages with them. Watching the interaction between your child and a local guide is great to see, kids keep asking questions, and guides keep answering them.
3. They don’t think about their technology!
After the initial realisation that they won’t be able to use their technology, kids adapt and often forget about it altogether. When you’re out and about, the kids are busy taking all the new experiences in, and when back in your room/hotel there’s nothing better then watching them make up games using their experiences of the day to keep themselves amused, or spending time writing in a travel journal about their experiences. There really isn’t any substitute for travel, it beats any technology game hands down.
4. They meet kids from other countries & cultures.
Have you ever watched your kids make new friends when travelling? There’s nothing better than seeing them make friends with children of other cultures. To accept each other without any judgement or preconceived ideas is wonderful to see. Then, to start playing together as if they’ve known each other for years is priceless. This is a skill we, as adults could all learn (again!).
5. They love real life experiences!
There is nothing more amazing than watching your children’s face and excitement that first time they see an animal in the wild. Or that first time they try a new food or see something outside of their normal day to day culture. It’s infectious, why wouldn’t you want them to gain as many experiences as possible.
Don’t wait for the ‘best age’ to take them travelling, do it sooner rather than later, and give them a great appreciation of how amazing the world is.