Share This Article
From mini-breaks for Dads & Lads to overseas adventures for Fathers & Daughters
Dads are amazing! To children they are both Superman and Clark Kent. One minute they’re out saving the world and the next they’re playing dress-up, pulling funny faces or building puzzles on the lounge floor. Playtime is an essential part of teaching kids values and self-esteem. Whether it’s riding a bike, fishing or camping in the garden, it’s these intimate interactions that bond a father and child forever.
With Father’s Day right around the corner, it’s the ideal chance to book some well-deserved quality time with your son or daughter. Or if you’ve already left the nest, an opportunity for a special date with Dad. “Travelling is one of the best ways to get to know your kids away from everyday distractions like work, social engagements, homework or school rugby games. Travel also exposes your kids to other cultures and landscapes, which will enrich their lives forever,” says South Africa’s leading package holiday provider, Pentravel’s Sean Hough.
So whether you’re a Dad of young kids or teens, or an adult yourself, here are a few ideas on how to enjoy some quality “Dads Only” time. (Moms this is your chance to take your own well-deserved break too J).
For adventurous families: For big and small boys who love to fish, the majestic coast of Mozambique is just a short flight away (big bonus especially if your children are still little). There are several villages along the coast where one can take part in both deep sea and estuary fishing. Active adventures are endless and will keep you entertained all day long: gear up and go and catch some big fish or turn it up a notch and add some high-endurance dune-riding, wake-boarding, snorkelling and kayaking to the mix. Top tip: Live in Jo’burg or Durban? Self-drive to Mozambique instead of flying.
Dads with lads: Have you ever wanted to see Lewis Hamilton live in action at a Grand Prix? There is nothing like the thrill of watching Formula One drivers race around a course at top speeds. Or the smell of burning rubber and the sound of tyres screeching as Maseratis, Ferraris and Alfa Romeo engines roar around every bend. Why not book the Ultimate Boys Adventure and take your Dad or Lad on a trip to Malaysia or Germany to experience the Grand Prix in the flesh for three days with official grandstand tickets?
If golf is more your thing and you want to stay local, teach your little man how to play a whole in one at Fancourt in George. It offers world class golf with all three of its courses ranked among Golf Digest’s top 20 in the country. Off the green, you and the kids also have access to the hotel’s many child and Dad friendly activities like fishing, mountain biking or tennis. Top tip: Most Grand Prix packages only include a few nights in the destination; extend your stay and make the most of your airfare.
Dads with 14-going-on-20 year olds: Cycling holidays are very popular and Europe has some of the safest and most accessible routes available. It’s also the ultimate way to experience the beauty of a country and cultivate a love for travel among your teen-going-on-20 year old. Take in the sights of Tuscany in Italy, renowned for some of the world’s most recognisable Renaissance-era art and architecture and diverse natural landscapes with olive groves and vineyards. Or go wine tasting (adults only, even if she thinks she’s 18) with local meats and cheeses and sign-up for a cooking class that uses local organic produce; ideal for little ladies who have a culinary flair. Top tip: If you travel with G Adventures you can cycle through Tuscany or the Loire Valley. Ask your agent for all the info.
For nature loving families: Discover the magic of the Arctic with an otherworldly, spell-bounding trip to Finland on board a cruise liner or while exploring Iceland’s many winter wonders. Without any urban distractions, you and your kids can experience nature at its very best with a sighting of the Northern Lights, or bird, bear and reindeer spotting. You can even discover what a glacier feels like by literally walking on it! If you and your son have a need for speed, then take in the breath-taking views of the wilderness by renting cross-country skis to enjoy an epic overland rush. Top tip: You’re guaranteed to see the Northern Lights when you cruise with Hurtigruten; they’ll book you on another cruise if you miss the natural spectacular the first time around.
For bush loving families: If you love the idea of camping but don’t want to pack up the kitchen sink, cook or do your own dishes, try glamping (camping without the fuss) for a few days at a game lodge. The Kruger National Park is home to the Big Five and also thousands of bird species, insects, other mammals and reptiles; a wild classroom that is just teeming with life. There is nothing quite like looking into the eyes of a lion during a sighting with your dad close by or sitting next to the campfire at night reminiscing about the days of rare leopard sighting with your kids. And just think of all those close encounter stories you have to share when you get home! Top tip: Avoid long queues to get in and out of the park by staying close to the gate or within the reserve itself.
“Time with dad is precious, so turn off your cell phone, switch off your laptop and TV, close your book and get out there to create special memories with your kids. The world is their best university and dads have a lifetime of experience to share,” concludes Hough.
Visit www.pentravel.co.za for more information.