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Most people love the idea of family adventure travel. The notion of mother, father and the kids doing something together that is fun and adventurous would initially seem fool proof. But family adventure travel is the sort of vacation that must, perhaps more than any other adventure trip, be carefully thought out and well planned, if the vacation is to be a success.

Some families have the enviable situation in which all of the children are willing to go anywhere and do anything the parents suggest. Camping, sailing, staying at a dude ranch Ė the kids are all game. Not all families, however, have that luxury. Perhaps one or more of the children donít like the vacation the parents have suggested. In that case, it could be a good idea to have a family discussion in which all can participate. The parents could explain all the available options, and maybe a course of action satisfactory to all would develop.

In choosing a destination and activity for family adventure travel, parents must take a number of things into consideration. Is this trip really suitable for small children? If it involves long car rides, have the parents considered means of keeping the children from becoming bored? Many vehicles now have video equipment of course, but if that isnít available there are games and other diversions for childrenís entertainment during long drives.

When parents are packing childrenís clothing for the trip, they should anticipate bad weather. Itís better to have those sweaters and not need them, than to need them and not have them. What about medications? If a childís medicine should run out, will it be available where the family is going? Maybe a spare bottle would be a good idea. If a child should be hurt or become ill during family adventure travel, how readily available is good medical care, and what kind of insurance coverage do the parents have?

Imagine that you and your spouse and children are on a Caribbean cruise. The ship stops at an island port for a day of shopping and sightseeing. In the crowded marketplace one of the children becomes separated from the rest of the family. Such things do happen. Have you and your family talked about what to do in such and event? Has a meeting place been pre-arranged? Does the child have identification? Does he or she know where to go for help? Do the parents know where to go for help?

Many tour operators offer packages especially designed for family adventure travel. Their tours are kid friendly, because they want families to be repeat clients. But when it comes to family adventure travel that is both fun and safe for kids, the main responsibility lies with the parents.

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