5 Experiences your children should have before the age of 12

You want to give your children the best start in life. You want them to grow up to be responsible citizens in this ever-shrinking world. Put two children together who have nothing in common, even language, and see how quickly they make a connection. If you’re looking for more reasons to travel with kids, then read about these 5 adventures your child should have before the age of 12.


1. Walk with Elephants Your family can walk with wild elephants at the private Ithumba Camp, where young rehabilitated elephants from the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust are returned to the wilds of Tsavo National Park.  You learn about the devastation caused by poaching, including rhinos and other species, and what you can do to help. Meeting these gentle and intelligent creatures on their own terms is a moving and often transformative experience. Kenya: Kids, Cats & A Tree House


2. Sleep in an Airplane Tree House Children and tree houses just go together.  In this case, the tree house is a quirky 727 airplane-turned-hotel nestled on a coastal rainforest bluff overlooking the Pacific beaches of Manuel Antonio National Park. It sits on a custom-built platform 15 meters/50 feet above the ground. At this height, you are likely to see your neighbors – monkeys, toucans, sloths and others. Adults and children alike enjoy lots of adventures with plenty of opportunities to get to know the rainforest and some of its people. Costa Rica Adventure for All 


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3. Spy on nocturnal animals like leopard with night-vision goggles Discover the wild world of animals at night! Watch leopards and other nocturnal creatures through special night glasses that let you see in the dark. You also go on game drives at night as well as on guided walks with camels to explore the area, go horseback riding and river fishing  Northern Kenya & The Masai Mara 


4. Save the rainforest Kids Saving the Rainforest, which was begun in 1999 by two 9-year-old girls, who wanted to save the rainforest that they saw disappearing around them. They began by making ‘monkey bridges’, ropes strung in the branches high over roadways so that monkeys had a safe transit crossing roads. Costa Rica & Nicaragua: Tarzan Swings, Aero Bunks & Monkey Bridges 


5.  Swim with dolphins Explore the world of dolphins in Kaikoura, New Zealand. Dusky dolphins inhabit the coastal waters off Kaikoura year round. This swim with dolphins is for those wishing to enhance their understanding of dolphins in their natural environment – a truly unique experience.  Natural New Zealand

Sally Winston