Last month we were lucky enough to go to Thailand and Vietnam with preschoolers (our two boys, aged 2 and 4). They both had a wonderful time, so although this may be a bit of an unusual post for a craft blog, I wanted to share some pictures with you.
And if you’re planning a similar trip, I’ve also included some ideas of activities and links to excursions and experiences that we enjoyed as a family.
Thailand and Vietnam with preschoolers
- Chilling out and watching cartoons with friends
- Splashing about in the local outdoor swimming pool
- Eating at the BEST cafe in town (pasta with the D-family)
- Checking in at the airport with Nonno bear (allowed BEHIND the desk)!
- Soft play (giant slides, bouncy things etc, plus magic sand) at Fashion Island mall.
- Hanoi kids free tour (try street food and egg coffee, hear the legend about the lake, see local crafts & visit a traditional ‘tube’ house – your tour will be tailored to suit you and your family)
- Visiting the park (opposite the museum of Ethnology) for climbing frames, see-saws shady benches and hoards of girls with selfie sticks wanting a photo with your cute little kids (they loved it)!
- Seeing a water puppet show (short performances of Vietnamese legends to traditional music, hence no language barrier). Who wouldn’t want to see fire-breathing dragons and water-squirting fish puppets?
- Visiting the Museum of Ethnology – I loved learning about silk weaving and batik, but the boys preferred the gnarly tree roots and figures of fertility outside the tomb house (“look at his willy mummy!”)
- Eating a scrummy chocolate pie at Dingo Deli (a restaurant with great coffee and a cool garden out back with a giant trampoline and sand pit)!
- Taking a boat ride along the river and floating some paper candle lanterns – just magical.
- Strolling across the Japanese bridge and checking out the colourful silk lanterns in the old town.
- Scaling Marble Mountain (in an elevator!) to see the cool caves and giant carved Buddha.
- Taking a mud bath at Thap Ba Hot Springs Spa (well, most of us enjoyed it)!
- Underwater swimming practice.
- Visiting Vinpearl Land (a huge theme & water park on an island with slides, rides, shows, an aquarium, soft play, 4D cinema, free play arcade and cable cars).
Saigon / Ho Chi Minh
- Cyclo touring with Urban Adventures.
- Looking at tanks in the grounds of the War Remnants Museum (the exhibitions inside were too harrowing for kids, so we took it in turns to go inside without them).
- Holding a bunch of (live) frogs at the market.
- Playing at one of the city parks (we liked the play area at Cong Vien 23 Thang 9 & the huge sand pit with pirate ship climbing frame at Tao Dan park).
- Taking a tour on the Mekong Delta with our wonderful guide Mary (karaoke on the boat, sampling tropical fruits, eating coconut sweets, drinking honey tea and floating through the water coconut groves).
- Double pony rides up and down the beach.
- Cuddling a baby elephant at the Hutsadin elephant foundation.
- Naughty monkeys at Chopsticks hill (monkey mountain, near the temple), who stole our sun cream!
- Settling down for an ice-cream on the sea front.
- Visiting the old train station with disused engines and carriages including a library and kids toy area.
- Sunset dancing at Fizz bar, Sairee beach (friendly staff and yummy food, both Thai and International).
- Enjoying a view of the local night life from our jungle apartment high in the hills.
- Building sand castles and swimming in the sea and our own mini pool at our final (big treat) Haad Tien resort.
- Waving at the longtail boats who will take you out for a snorkelling or island-hopping trip.