Fascinating and thrilling, India is more astounding for children than for their wide-eyed parents. The scents, sights, and sounds of the country make for an unforgettable adventure and one that most kids will take in their stride.
The picture-perfect Taj Mahal and the nearby abandoned city of Fatehpur Sikri will set young imaginations ablaze.
Rajasthan offers vibrant festivals, medieval forts, fairy-tale palaces, camel rides across desert dunes and a well-oiled tourist infrastructure for hassle-free travel. For older kids there’s the thrill of the incredible Flying Fox (zip wires) at Jodhpur.
Palm-fringed, white-sand beaches and inexpensive exotic food; Goa is an ideal choice for family holidays, whatever the budget.
Canoe and houseboat adventures, surf beaches, Arabian Sea sunsets, snake boat races, wildlife-spotting and elephant festivals.
Pony and yak rides around colonial-era hill stations, rafting, horse riding, tandem paragliding (kids can do it), walks and canyoning around Manali.
Before you go:
– Look at climate charts; choose your dates to avoid the extremes of temperature that may put younger children at risk.
– Visit your doctor to discuss vaccinations, health advisories and other health-related issues involving your children well in advance of travel.
– Long train rides are generally more comfortable, and more interesting, for children than long bus or car rides.
– Encouraging your child to keep a holiday journal/scrapbook is a great way to fill time.
What to pack:
– Disposable or washable nappies, nappy-rash cream, extra bottles, wet wipes, infant formula and canned, bottled or rehydratable food
– A fold-up baby bed or the lightest travel cot you can find. A nice option for smaller kids is a baby-carrier backpack, so the child is lifted up and out of the throng (and will have a superb view)
– Good sturdy footwear
– Insect repellent, mosquito nets, hats and sun lotion