Newborn Pregnancy/Parenting Notes Travels

5 Tips for Traveling With a Newborn

June 18, 2024
A ride in a vintage Ambassador.

Enjoying a ride in a vintage Ambassador in Hampi.

Traveling with a newborn is an adventure.  When I fell pregnant our friends told us to travel in the first three months of the baby’s life.  They stay exactly where you left them and as long as they are fed, clean and rested – things are good.  While I agree with this, it’s not so simple.  A crying baby in the car, dirty diapers, bored baby….how do you manage all this and still enjoy the trip?

We’ve been on two trips with Kalindi (so far).  Both trips were between 2-4 nights long.  We planned these holidays such that we would have family time interspersed with some sightseeing.  Which brings me to my first tip.

1. Choose your destination wisely

For the trips that we’ve done with Kalindi, we’ve been careful to choose destinations we could easily drive to in just a few hours.  For our first trip we went to Coorg and more recently to Hampi.  Both these destinations took about 7 hours and we made it there with minimal hassles.  Yes, we even enjoyed the beautiful new Hampi highways and the scenic route to the Scotland of India (Coorg).

I can’t emphasise the importance of a good carseat.  We were particular about getting a really comfortable car seat for Kalindi and this way she slept through most of the trips.

We also chose locations that:

  1. We had already been to, or
  2. One where we weren’t too keen on going out and sightseeing.

This way we could spend quality time in the hotel and not feel like we missed out on something.  In Coorg we stayed in the entire time, reading, talking and relaxing.  In Hampi we went out for half a day and spent the rest of the time relaxing indoors.

Which brings me to my second point.

 2. Choose a family friendly property.

As you can read in this rather distressed blog – we needed to reschedule our trip, and the hotel was happy to do it.  They also had amazing staff who helped us just that little bit more during meal times so that we could actually eat in peace.  At Evolve Back, Kamalapura Palace the staff even baked a cake in honor of Kalindi’s third month on earth.  Here the rooms were large enough for us to wheel Kalindi around in her pram to entertain her or put her to sleep.  The kitchen staff brought the food to our room the one time Kalindi got fidgety mid-meal and we came back to the room to soothe her.

Dressing the part of a new mama.

I wear shirts which make nursing Kalindi easier.

I’m also nursing Kalindi, and I found the hotel staff supportive whenever I need a private nook where I could feed her.  This is really important because running back to the room every time you need to feed the baby is time consuming and exhausting.  I made sure:

  1. I had a swaddle to cover myself and
  2. I wore tops which would make it easy to breastfeed.

Which brings me to my third point.

3. Packing to travel with a newborn

Prior to having a baby we could get away with last minute packing.  But with a baby I didn’t want to risk forgetting something and decided to pack two days before leaving.  This way I was free to take care of last minute things such as a fussy baby.

I also made sure to pack toys and keep them accessible.  I put a few in my handbag, in the diaper bag and also in the snacks bag.  That said, try not to overpack!  For our Coorg trip I overpacked for all kinds of imagined emergencies.  For Hampi, I consciously packed lesser, but it was still quite a bit.  It will take some practice, but I’ll get there.


4. Pit stops.

It’s easy to breastfeed 👩‍🍼 in public in India – people are generally very supportive.

A tip for new parents: stop at the CCDs on the highways – the staff is usually accommodating and because these CCDs are on the highway, they are usually uncrowded.  During our trip to Coorg and now to Hampi, it was the CCDs where we would stop for some coffee and we usually fed and did a diaper change there too. The CCDs don’t have a dedicated diaper changing table – but they have these really long tables and they’re very nice about letting you use it to change a diaper.

Pitstop for coffee and a diaper change.

CCDs on the highway certainly make traveling with a newborn easier.

5. Travel with like minded friends.

This morning I was telling a friend that I’m planning a trip to Egypt with a girlfriend.  I trust her to understand travel with a baby and be cool about an itinerary where we factor in breastfeeding or a cranky baby, or even a tried/cranky mother!  A good girlfriend will help clear the table so you can change the baby, lug the diaper bag around if you’re tired, lull the baby to sleep with some rhymes and even bathe the baby!

Similarly, traveling with other couples who have children and know how to help or even what you might need can make your vacay memorable and more fun.

Traveling with like minded friends.

Like minded friends help you make unforgettable memories with your newborn.

Frame of mind

When we were expecting Kalindi, Animesh and I spoke about wanting to share our lives with the baby.  We didn’t want to feel ‘tied down’ by the baby.  With this clarity, we plan trips that give us time for ourselves, our baby, as well as the hotel and destinations we’re visiting.

Traveling with a baby teaches you ‘slow travel’.  You build unforgettable memories as a young couple traveling with their first baby.  They say babies grow really fast, and looking at all the clothes she’s outgrown and how she’s filling up her car seat – I don’t doubt this.  So we want to enjoy this time while it lasts.  For a couple who loves traveling and who love each other traveling with their newborn is a memory they will always treasure.

Relaxing with a cup of tea.

Our trip to Coorg was just to relax and get in touch with ourselves.

Enjoying the little things.

Traveling with a newborn is also about enjoying the little things – such as silence and a cup of tea.

Traveling with a newborn.

As a couple who likes to travel, we want to travel and make memories with our newborn.


You Might Also Like

No Comments

Leave a Reply