Hello everyone, I am thrilled to contribute an at-home travel guide to one of my all-time favourite blog Babyccino today. Courtney, Esther and I go way back, when we were perhaps on baby #2. I stopped at #3! I am Vanessa Boz, French based in London, though I like to think of the world as my oyster. I’ve made it a mission to take my family on the road – near and far – whenever we can, including a big trip around the world a few years back.
I have been writing about family travel for over ten years on BozAround and I am also a private travel designer, i.e. I organise bespoke itineraries for curious families with sustainability and purpose in mind. Of course, the travel world came to a halt recently. Like most of the world. But we must keep spirits high – and stay home for now.
I wrote this post to ease the wait, sort of an at-home travel guide for the family, a guide for an inner journey during these difficult times. I suggest you turn on these sounds of the Amazon forest while you read it.
64 artists from around the world (including Lisa Congdon and Famille Summerbelle, whose work I love) have contributed to a colouring book around the theme of HOPE. Donate what you can starting at €10. All proceeds go to the World Health Organization Coronavirus Response Fund. The PDF Printable is available to buy on The House That Lars Built.
Have you seen this big list of podcasts for little kids from the NYT? And these audiobooks are all about Africa. They are available for free download at the moment on Audible: Stories from Africa | Monkey Madness | The White Giraffe | Good Morning Gorillas | My life with Chimpanzees | Meet a baby elephant | Animal Stories | Bug and Insect Jokes | Riley Mae and the Sole Fire safari | Counting Safari Adventure | Trivia for Smart Kids.
Get your groove back with these 20 uplifting songs from around the world.
We love these family movies with stories set around the world:
– A bigger world (set in Mongolia) – 10+ a French movie shown at the last Venice biennale
– The story of the Weeping Camel (Mongolia) – PG
– Cinema paradiso (Italy) – a heartwarming story, 13+
– Il Postino (Italy) – stunningly shot in the Aeolian islands, 14+
– Children of heaven (Iran) – an Academy award nominee back in 1999
– Queen of Katwe (Uganda) – one of my daughter Amalya’s favorite 10+
– Whale Rider (NZ / Maori culture) – 10+
– Poorna (Himalayas) – 10+ – youngest ever girl to climb Mount Everest
– Forrest Gump (around the US) – a classic which we revisited recently, 14+
– The last emperor (China) – A Bertolucci classic, 13+ but 3h long!
– Moulin Rouge Musical (France) – I still haven’t seen it! 13+
– 400 Blows (France) – we just watched it again, a masterpiece, 10+
– Cleopatra (Egypt) – but it’s almost 4h long?!
– Monkey Kingdom (Sri Lanka) – a Disney documentary
– The Climb (Nepal): A heart-warming French movie for the whole family
– 7 years in Tibet (Tibet) – 8+ and Brad Pitt super young as bonus!
– Out of Africa (Kenya) – as beautiful as always
– Greystoke Tarzan (Africa) – haven’t seen it in along time put putting it here
– Crocodile Dundee (Australia) – 13+ funny but very 1980’s unPC
– Totoro (Japan) and any Miyazaki, really – PG timeless Japanese animated movie
You might find inspiration in 30 Good Books for Kids with Wanderlust, which I wrote last year. The following are worth adding. I am not adding any url as I am hoping that your local bookshop will still be able to take orders over the phone or by email in these difficult times, so you can support them.
- Migration by Mike Unwin & Jenni Desmond (animal migrations around the world) (8 yo)
- Tiger Wars by Steve Backshall (Tibet, India and the Himalayas) (10 yo)
- Blown Away by Rob Biddulph (5 yo)
- The Land of Neverendings by Kate Saunders (8 yo)
- Ottoline and the Yellow Cat by Chris Riddell
- The Cat Who Wanted To Go Home by Jill Tomlinson (8 yo)
- The Highway Rat by Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler (4 yo)
- The Mummy’s Gold by Kristina Stephenson (7 yo)
Bookmark this if, like me, you’ve been wondering where to start your new bread making journey . I am still looking for a baguette-at-home tutorial:)
And nurture yourself with this Immune Booster smoothie recipe taken from the menu of the Six Senses hotels:
200g (2 cups) spinach, 120g (1 whole) banana, 245g (1 cup) frozen pineapple, 1 knob fresh ginger, peeled (about 2 inches ginger), 1 knob turmeric root (about 2 inches turmeric), scrubbed well – substitute ½ tsp powder if root not available , 1/8 teaspoon black peppercorn (a pinch), 150ml (1/2 cup) unsweetened plant milk (e.g., coconut, pumpkin seed). Optional super boosters: 1 tsp of any of ashwaganda powder or astragalus powder, or moringa powder. And ½ Tbsp of raw honey for sweetness if needed. All ingredients in a blender, served chilled. Et voilà.
I’ll finish with these wise words from philosopher Alain de Botton:
“The world will be ours to roam in once more. But during our collective confinements, aside from the obvious inconveniences, we might come to cherish some of what is granted to us when we lose our customary liberties. It cannot be a coincidence that many of the world’s greatest thinkers have spent unusual amounts of time alone in their rooms. Silence gives us an opportunity to appreciate a great deal of what we generally see without properly noticing, and to understand what we have felt but not yet adequately processed.
We have at present not only been locked away; we have also been granted the privilege of being able to travel around a range of unfamiliar, sometimes daunting but essentially wondrous inner continents.“
PS: I hope you enjoyed this at-home travel guide! You can also find me on instagram where I am currently featuring a series titled La Vie en Rose, with sensorial souvenirs from around the world.
PPS: Check out one of my favourite real travel destinations: Positano! Courtney’s tips:).