Back in April, we went on our first family holiday. I have to say I’d never planned to go away when Felix was so small (he’d just turned five months) and had always been daunted about the idea of travelling with a baby. However, with my maternity leave drawing to a close and sensing Felix would be on the move soon it seemed like a fairly logical idea to pack our bags for a few nights and board a plane.
Travelling to Seville with a Baby
The holiday proved to be memorable for all the right reasons. I put a lot of effort into researching and planning but I was still surprised at how swimmingly the trip went. Here are a few things I learned along the way.
City Breaks Are An Option
In the past James and I have been to Paris, Rome, Barcelona, Madrid, Lisbon to name but a few European cities. We’ve covered a lot of ground over long days and usually have a fairly packed itinerary which didn’t seem particularly conducive to travelling with a baby. However four years ago I visited Seville on a hen do and fell in love. Having swanned about the city taking in a few of the sights previously I knew I wouldn’t be fussed about cramming in all the landmarks and could take on more of a leisurely pace. The compact, flattish centre and short flight made it an ideal location and so the hunt began for an Airbnb. We booked a central apartment with great family orientated reviews for three nights.
You Don’t Have To Fork Out for Hold Baggage
As we all know, budget airlines like to suggest you’ll be paying a particular price and then load up the extras during the process. (Also aren’t under twos meant to be free? The admin charge to take an infant was higher than the cost of my outbound seat!) In an act of defiance, I refused to pay for hold luggage. A few tips for anyone else keeping their purse strings tight:
- Try to find accommodation which already has a crib. Our gorgeous Airbnb was very well equipped and alongside a travel cot, had a baby bath and bouncer.
- Most airlines allow two pieces of hold luggage for infants free of charge. It was impossible to find a taxi firm that wasn’t charging the price of a kidney for a car seat so we took our own for the transfer. As recommended by the rock my community on previous posts we bought a special carry bag from Amazon and piled it with nappies, blankets and wipes as well as the car seat.
- Use fast track security. At Stansted they were offering two free fast track passes if you spent £20 on duty-free. In my mind this made the Bobbi Brown lipstick I had my eye on practically free.
- A sling helps keep hands free when you’re ferrying the rest of the luggage through the cabin. A friend lent us a Baby Bjorn carrier and we use it all the time.
Passengers Aren’t Too Fussed About A Crying Baby
More than anything I was concerned about the flight and after a while I resigned myself to the fact that there were going to be tears. I followed all the tips (some of them below) to keep crying to a minimum but Felix let rip a couple of times. I didn’t notice any eye rolls or cross words, just sympathetic glances from other passengers.
- Feed on the way up and down to help with any pressure build up in their ears
- Pack a small non-noisy toy. These books from Jellycat are ace and seem to keep our little one entertained for a decent chunk of time.
- If you travel nearer to nap time then hopefully the baby will sleep. Felix had an epic nap in Seville airport though so was wide awake for the whole flight home.
You Can Still Go Out For Dinner
It’s been a long process to get Felix to nap in his cot and at that point he was only napping on the move. This was actually perfect for the Spanish tapas dining culture. The minute he fell asleep we’d meander to the closest bar and order a few dishes and a glass of something cold. Everything came so quickly we’d manage to refresh ourselves while Felix slept in his pram. When he woke he’d have a feed and a bit of play and then we’d do a bit more sightseeing before we repeated the whole process again! We bought a small, easy to collapse stroller and borrowed a sunshade from a friend which was perfect for the days and the night too. We stayed in the first night but on the second and third did our normal night routine; bath with lullabies, into the sleep suit followed by a long feed. Then instead of putting Felix in his cot we put him into his pram and covered him with the snooze shade. It turned out April in Seville was far from balmy but a friend had given us a pram blanket with harness holes which kept him warm as we left the apartment for dinner but was really easy to remove when we got to a restaurant. We managed to enjoy two dinners while he slept soundly beside us.
Places we really enjoyed eating:
Almazen – great little cafe for breakfasts with organic food. Not far from Pilates House where the tiles are to die for.
La Monda – The staff were so friendly, the tapas menu was really unique and there were lots of families and other sleeping babes in there.
Ovejas Negra – In the Michelin guide so this place is jam packed. Prepare to queue! The risotto was amazing.
You Will All Enjoy It
Whenever anyone said their baby loved a particular experience I was a bit sceptical. It wasn’t until I had my own child that I realised that little ones, even those under six months can have a belter of a time. Felix was in is element! He squealed with delight as we wheeled him around Seville taking in all the sights and giggled his way around various parks as we played in the afternoon sun. It was one of the best holidays we’ve had and it gave us so many gorgeous memories.
Has anybody else found travelling with a baby less daunting than they anticipated? Anyone else fallen in love with Seville or looking forward to a trip there this summer?