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What Will My Boys Remember?

You may think we’ve not been to many places in 2014, after all, we’ve been exploring London in minute detail since May, but 2014 saw us visit 10 countries in total. We were pretty busy.

World Travel Family 2014

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We’ve loved what we’ve done and it’s amazing to see the changes in the boys, physically, educationally and in every which way. They’re growing up fast and I get prouder and prouder of them every minute.

I’m putting this post together for them, their memory jogger of this time in our lives. We do this thing because of them and for them, we want them to grow up with well-rounded world views, an amazing education, choices, confidence in themselves and freedom.

It seems to be working out OK so far.

Wales

Bad Wolf Bay, Southrndown Wales. World Travel Family

We spent New Year’s Eve in Cowbridge, not far from Cardiff, Wales. I think we just treated it as any other day and went to bed early, but Cowbridge is a gorgeous little town, the sort of place I could happily live. We spent time with old friends and the boys loved getting friendly with their dogs and cats.

We spent time exploring Cardiff and gorgeous Cardiff Bay, a Mecca for Doctor Who fans, along with the museums and stunning coastline of South Wales. Fellow Whovians will recognise this beach, it’s Southerndown, Bad Wolf Bay, where we found fossils newly fallen from the cliffs.

England

Sweet Shop England. Marmite Fudge

We had a week or so to pass between Wales and the start of our cruise, so we headed down to Bournemouth on England’s South Coast. We found a bargain hotel, holed up and enjoyed blustery seaside walks, huge full English breakfasts and a heated indoor pool. We had a wonderful time down there while I stressed about our first ever cruise.

At Poole harbour we followed a train of bubbles to a traditional sweet shop selling home-made Marmite fudge.

Cruise 1 on Norwegian Getaway

World Travel Family Cruise Getaway

Wow, what a ship! We were on her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York, a fantastic experience. Not much beats being in the middle of the Atlantic, in January, watching the ocean from a hot tub. We made lovely new friends and we hope our paths will cross again one day.

The boys owned the ropes course and the climbing wall and demolished their own body weights in food at every opportunity.

D developed an interest in magic after making friends with a professional magician, he still wants to learn the trade.

USA

 Central Park in snow

Hello Polar Vortex! Yes, it was cold, but it was OK. We were lucky enough to see Central Park in the snow and visit the New York Natural History Museum, one of our must-see destinations after the Night at The Museum movies.

From there we went visiting with the Amish in Pennsylvania and then, on a whim, took a side trip to Canada, because that’s just how we roll.

Canada

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Only 3 days here, but we loved it, Canadians are just so nice! A frozen Niagara Falls is something not many people have seen and to my boys, new to snow, it was quite an experience. Those little black squirrels were so cute too.

Canada, we’ll be back!

USA again

destination everest

We had to drop off our hire car in Florida, so we headed south,stopping at many and diverse towns along the way. Highlights for me would be New Orleans for Mardi Gras and Orlando. We love Florida, this was D’s 3rd visit, Boo’s 2nd. The Disney parks get better every time, this year was amazing with us all able to ride the biggest and best roller coasters.

We went back to Kennedy Space Centre for a second visit and were in the right place at the right time to see a real rocket launch.

El Salvador

Pupusas San Salvador

We had to be out of Florida and we needed a cheap flight. El Salvador was cheapest, so that’s where we went. It turned out to be a great experience visiting the smallest town in Central America, roadside pupusas, a stunning modern church and the museum of Salvadorean history were highlights while we stayed in a family home with two little girls.

The boys experienced their first ever earthquake as we lay in bed on our first night in San Salvador and together we found our way in Spanish.

Guatemala

Dancing Flores

A month in Antigua was our first stop, we rented a cute little villa and just chilled, swam and got on with some school work. A great experience, but Antigua wasn’t really for us although we loved those huge Guatemalan buffet breakfasts from the hotel on the hill while volcanoes smoked around us.When we reached Lake Atitlan and gorgeous San Pedro Laguna we finally “got” the appeal of Guatemala, love at first site!

Roaming through the sub tropical rainforest, climbing Mayan pyramids and spotting wild coatis and spider monkeys was pretty cool too. Squashed tarantulas on the street were fairly common although we didn’t bump into any live ones.

USA again

giant tarpon key largo

Our ship was sailing from Florida so we had time to hire a car and round off our USA road trip by driving all the way down to Key West.

Top highlights of these few days were taking an ai-rboat ride on the Everglades and dining on Key Largo with the giant tarpon.

Cruise Ship 2 Norwegian Epic

Norwegian epic climbing wall

She wasn’t as incredible as Getaway, we’d seen the best first, but she was still a fine ship. Another great Atlantic crossing. We finally got to try the ice bar while we lost our newly independent children to kids club. D was a karaoke demon with his team of female backing singers.

Portugal

Norwegian Eic in Madeira

Only for 1 day, a cruise ship stop off, but Madeira was pretty and seeing these huge ships in tiny ports is incredible.

This is where Chef left his clothes on the balcony to dry, not realising that the exterior of the ship gets a hose down on port days. Our cabin was just near Boo’s hat there.

Spain

Langoustines Spain

Time for me to show the boys one of my favourite places in the world, the Dali Museum in Figueres, Catalonia. Another great week and a lovely part of the world.

Lots of calamari and langoustines for the boys.

France Briefly

Octopus rock pool

We could drive freely between France and Spain and we were almost on the border, so we visited for some French food and a different experience.

We found an octopus in a rock pool. We love molluscs.

England

Playing London

Home, London. What a fantastic few months it’s been. I’m not making any secret of how much I love London or how much I long to return. But we can’t, so on we go.

We’ll take with us memories of museums, the South Bank, Paddingtons, Granny, Hamleys, a real cold Christmas, ice skating, wild deer and forest school. Add to that revisiting the house they were born in, our gorgeous little flat and new best friends and it’s been a fantastic experience. Just a shame that dad was always working.

Italy

Organic farm Umbria

We were blessed with the gift of a week in Umbria, Italy, a fantastic experience and my first real blogging job. We loved Umbria and made new friends of all ages, from all over the world.

D was fabulous with the little ones, reading them stories and generally being their hero. I was very proud of him and very proud of how they both kept the homeschooling side up with their sparkyness and knowledge.

Hunting for truffles and making their own ravioli from scratch would be the kids’ highlights.

Where Next?

The truth is, we still don’t know.

We planned on heading to Sri Lanka again, then India and Nepal, but another opportunity has come up and things still aren’t decided.

I’ll let you know as soon as we hear.

Whatever we do it will be an exciting year. We won’t have much cash to leave with this time, saving in London has been incredibly tough, but we should have enough for another 6 months on the road.

D is keen to see India, Boo just wants to be somewhere with buffets. They’re both eating like famished teenagers already.

So watch this space, next year will be a surprise to all of us.

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Caz

Friday 2nd of January 2015

What a great roundup of your year. You guys are an inspiration! I hope you don't mind if I do something similar for my kids on my blog? I'm not big on reinventing the wheel. All the best for lots of happy travels in 2015.

[email protected]

Friday 2nd of January 2015

Go for it Caz, I just go with whatever pops into my head, no blogging schedules or plans here.

Talitha

Wednesday 24th of December 2014

Gosh, not many kids can be proud of such an experience!

I am incredibily curious to hear what the futur will bring - whether it be travels ... or something completely different?!

If ever you have time to explain the advantages of pinterest, I'd be happy to learn !

Happy festive season to you and your men from France!!

[email protected]

Wednesday 24th of December 2014

And to you and yours Talitha. Thanks for your constant support, it means a lot. Advantages of Pinterest...more traffic, more new readers, bigger figures, better deals. Yes, we are on the road from Feb 4th, but will it be India or the secret plan b? We still don't know.

Kym Fullerton

Tuesday 23rd of December 2014

Whatever you decide, wherever you go, whatever you do, we look forward to keeping in touch with you.

We've had a rich and rewarding education following your blog and I thank you for providing it, knowing you have worked and slogged many long hours to keep us entertained and all 'informationed up'.

Merry Xmas to you all and a very happy and exciting, adventurous New Year. xox

Jennifer @ Emulsified Family

Tuesday 23rd of December 2014

What a great idea as a memory for all of you, not just your boys!

We loved the Night at the Museum movies too and would live to visit that museum one day too!

Looking forward to seeing where you are headed next year.

nomadic family life

Alyson is the creator of World Travel Family travel blog and is a full-time traveller, blogger and travel writer. A lifetime of wanderlust and now over 7 years on the road, 50+ countries allowed the creation of this website, for you. She has a BSc and worked in pathology before entering the travel arena and creating this website. World Travel Family Travel Blog has been helping you travel more, better and further since 2012, when Alyson and James first had this life changing idea. On this site you can find endless travel information, tips and guides plus how to travel, how to fund travel and how to start your own travel blog.