We did it!
Climbed to the top of the Dome at the Florence Cathedral.
And boy oh boy it was a glorious and exciting feeling, seeing the city of Florence at golden hour from the highest point, in all its glory, as the church bells were ringing! Weaving our way up the narrow steps, a steep (but alluring) climb, especially for little legs and a baby on your back, but we made it.
We booked an incredible home, perched on a valley and over looking the Tuscan Hills about 40 minutes out of Florence. The thing we have learnt is this: ‘Slow Travel is the best Travel’. None of this ‘visit a city and pump out the sites in 2 days..’ its not realistic with kids, and you wont end up enjoying any of it (or remembering any of it).
If you have limited time, pick one place, and do it well. Seriously, the amount of times I’ve heard ‘I need a holiday after my holiday’.. Why? Because you spent your time filling your precious days with things you can now only remember by scrolling through your insta feed.
Take a breath and enjoy the notion of slow travel. Don’t get a take away coffee, sit down and drink it. Don’t drag the kids through the 5 top museums, pick one, and soak it in. Luckily for us, time is on our side, so we are embracing it, and making sure we get to do and see all the things, but at the pace that works for us all.
For example, we stayed in Florence for 7 Nights.. and this is how our days went.
Wake Up. Breakfast. Family play in the garden.
Around 11am. Oak to bed. Joel to work. Poppy and Wren home- schooling.
Around 1pm. We prepare and eat lunch all together.
Around 2pm. Head in to Florence, for ONE activity. Museum or a Church, Walking the Streets. Etc.
Dinner in Florence.
Home to Bed.
The kids need time to play, they need time to work and they need time to explore. Three key ingredients to making a day on the road flow.
Tick all these things in the day, and we are pretty much guaranteed energetic, happy kids.. who are willing to walk and adventure (without pressure) around new cities and places.
Try to do a city all in one day, and we can pretty much guarantee by lunch they are exhausted. We lose our travel flow and they don’t want to visit another attraction or wander down another cobbled street, and the weight of their little hand in ours is heavier than carrying 5 bags of oranges, as they pull us towards home.
So take your time, travel slowly, and focus each day on QUALITY over QUANTIY.
And when all else fails EAT GELATO Joel and Rach xx