With a baby on the way, this year is all about the staycation for Michelle and I. Our holiday criteria has changed from being, ‘far away for as long as possible’, to ‘not too far, no flying and only for a few days’. At the beginning of the year we were planning a romantic holiday to somewhere sunny, now we are planning a pregnancy road trip here in the UK.
Our planned two weeks in the Greek Islands has changed to four days in the Lake District and four days in Dorset with a three month gap in between, but after a fair amount of travel over the last couple of years, we’re actually pretty excited to take the opportunity for some mini-breaks exploring the UK.
We have spent plenty of time planning our road trips over the last few months, so here are our top tips for planning yours.
1 – Destination, Destination, Destination
There are a few road trips on our bucket list, one is the circular Route 1 around Iceland, and another is a road trip around the Scottish Highlands. However, when it came to planning our latest road trip those destinations were never even in the running. Where we would normally be looking to get out into the wild and as far away from civilisation as possible, this time we were looking for somewhere with good motorway links, easy access to hospitals and a variety of towns and shops to visit as well as outdoor attractions to explore.
When it comes to the destination, try and find somewhere that has a balance and offers the best of both worlds. There may be days when you’re up for adventure and will want to explore, but there may also be days when you don’t want to do too much so try and find a location that will suit both of these days.
2 – Plan Your Route
Typing an address into your phone and leaving the rest to Google Maps will not cut it for a pregnancy road trip. If your Sat Nav decides that the back country roads are the quickest route to your chosen destination then you could be making a big mistake.
A few months ago we would have completed our 3 hour journey to Dorset in one run with no stops. Put a pregnant lady in the passenger seat and that journey now needs at least an hourly pit stop. To put it bluntly, pregnant ladies need to pee, a lot.
When planning your route, make sure you are sticking to the main roads that will have plenty of service stations along the way, and also keep a pocket full of change, pregnant ladies that need to pee a lot, tend to want to buy snacks at each stop too.
3 – Adventures & Afternoon Naps
The ideal babymoon is a happy mixture of adventure and afternoon naps. There may be days when you want to get out and explore, and on other days you might just want to sleep in and enjoy a lazy breakfast.
When it comes to booking your accommodation, try and pick a place where you would both be happy to spend a whole day. If you’ve got a tiny hotel room with no TV or WIFI then you are not going to feel content having a lazy day. Look for lodges and cabins that have lots of home comforts and space. If it’s got a nice view and an outdoor seating area then it’s even better.
Spend some time researching things to do in your chosen area. If you know how long all of your planned adventures take, and how far away they are from your accommodation, you will be able to adapt your break to your energy levels and get the most out of it.
4 – Home Comfort Cooking
With an ever growing list of baby things to buy over the next few months, you may be conscious of your budget when it comes to booking your babymoon. Eating out is usually one of the biggest costs of a week away so try and eliminate some of that expense.
Choosing a lodge or cabin with a fully equipped kitchen will mean that your pregnant wife can sit with her feet up while you do your best Jamie Oliver impression in the kitchen and cook up a feast.
Not only will you be in the good books for this, but you will also be saving a fair amount of money that will inevitably be spent on cute little outfits.
5 – Life’s a Beach
Many pregnancy websites and books note that Vitamin D is particularly important during pregnancy and the best source of Vitamin D is the sun. The vitamin is produced in the body when skin is exposed to sunlight and it helps to keep bones, teeth and muscles healthy.
If that’s not a fantastic excuse to slap on some some cream and head to the beach for the day then I don’t know what is.