Who says that family holidays have to be all about the beach? Today’s getaway itineraries offer more tailor-made options than ever before so you can mix things up with equal parts relaxation, active fun, city touring and helping out in the local community. We reached out to bespoke travel specialists, Lightfoot Travel, to investigate volunteer activities that we could do with the kids – a fine way to bring home some travel mementos of the worthy kind. Here are some of our favourite ideas for you to explore.
The One Where They Can Help Protect Turtles
Pulah Tengah, Malaysia
Take your tots to Batu Batu, a private resort that’s home to coconut groves, white sandy beaches and Hawksbill turtles. After spending the day swimming, snorkelling and enjoying blissed-out beach time, your children can join Batu Batu’s conservation team at the Turtle Watch Camp. From March until December, adults and adolescents can sign up for a week as volunteers at TWC and become fully immersed in the conservation process – from checking the hatchery at night to helping with beach and underwater clean ups and data collection.
The One Where They Can Plant Coral
Help your tots build a home for Nemo and friends at Anantara Dhigu in the Maldives. This luxury island retreat offers a Coral Adoption Programme run by its resident marine biologist. Children will learn about how corals grow, and then will be given the chance to attach their own coral nub to a frame, which will be planted in the sea. Once they return home they will be able to track the growth of their coral using the Anantara Dhigu website that places regular updates.
The One Where They Can Be A Rainforest Ranger
Kota Kinabalu, Borneo
Animal fans and mini adventurers will love the Ranger For The Day programme at the Shangri-La Rasa Ria in Borneo. Kids will be able to join the rangers for a trip into the jungle where they can help them with their daily chores and learn about the rainforest. And after they have helped feed the ducks, goats and checked in on the orangutans, they will be treated to a mountain-top brekkie for all their hard work. For children aged five to 12 years. It has to be one of the best family minibreaks in Asia.
The One Where They Can Support Other Kids
Cape Town, South Africa
Breathtaking Cape Town in South Africa is one of those holiday destinations that will stay with you forever. But there’s a dramatically different side to the metropolis, one that visitors rarely see. The vibrant townships are home to many who are living on the poverty line and it’s here that help and community support is most needed. As a family you can arrange to visit and volunteer at a number of places in the Townships. Families with older kids might want to visit the SA Children’s Home in Gardens where they can help them out with school work, mealtimes and take part in activities that are centered on building essential life skills.
The One Where They Think Of Others
Eco-friendly Song Saa resort encourages kids to start thinking of others even before they leave home. Tots who take part in its Pack for a Purpose scheme, are encouraged to pack stationery, sports equipment, books or toys they no longer need and donate them as soon as they land. Your tot’s parcel of goodies will then go to The Preks Svay School, where many low-income families send their children and struggle to find funds for school supplies. It gives the tiny ones in your family the chance to do their bit as well.
For more information and to book your next trip go to www.lightfoottravel.com