If you’re mad like us (!), then you may find that you take your little one on a ski holiday fairly early in their lives. We took our little one up the slopes when she was just 7 months old. Not skiing obviously, we’re not that mad!
Obviously being on the mountains in the snow, is probably not your everyday activity with your baby and completely alien when you’ve been used to your routine.
I for instance, spend most of my days between home, the local highstreet/cafes/pubs, baby groups and shopping centre. I either walk with the pram, or pop the car seat in and drive off to where I’m going. The most I have to think about is how cold it is and if it’s going to be raining. If so, I dress her accordingly and take a rain-cover for the pram.
So when I was faced with being in ice cold temperatures and 6 foot of snow with my baby, thousands of metres up a mountain, I realised that my usual routine might be thrown out the window and I had to prepare accordingly.
So here’s my 5 tips for taking your baby on a ski holiday…
- Invest in a good snowsuit – this is the most important thing! Your baby needs to be warm (much warmer then they probably need to be usually) and if it snows, then your baby needs to be dry. We got a faux fur snowsuit from a local baby store for when the weather was fine and dry and also a fleece-lined one from Snow and Rock for when it was snowing (as it was also waterproof).
- Take sunscreen & buy sunglasses – The sun is harsh and your baby’s skin is so delicate (far more than ours) and being on the slopes can be deceptive as it may not seem like you’re catching the sun, but you absolutely are. And what’s more, the sun reflects off the bright snow and this can quickly burn your little one’s skin and you’ll notice it’ll be too bright for them to keep their eyes open. So invest in some good sunscreen, at least factor 50 and pair of strap on sunglasses. You can usually buy special ones for your bubba. Put the cream on before you head out and top it up if you’re out for more than an hour or so. Pop the sunglasses on under their warm hat. Obviously, common sense prevails here.
- Hire a sledge – most resorts will have specialist equipment for getting your baby from a to b in the snow. We hired a plastic sledge for babies aged 6 months+, that we could strap her into securely and push along like a pram, or drag along through the snow. This really helped when the snow was fresh and there was lots of it and it was too tricky to take the pram out. Make enquiries and reserve these ahead of your trip though, as they are often in demand. I saw a lot of people carrying their babies in carriers, but I think unless you’re a pro on the snow, it can be a little dangerous if you slip or fall over. So I preferred not to.
- Know that your routine may change – travelling can often throw your routine (if you have one) out of the window anyway, but being in unfamiliar surroundings, like up a mountain almost certainly will. It takes that much longer to get to places in the snow, places to eat and drink will be different, busier and not necessarily geared-up for little babies, there may not be baby changing facilities around and your mode of travel may be different (I ended up in a gondola cabin as I wanted to take our little one up to the top of the mountain to meet with the family in the restaurant!). So just factor this is when you’re planning feeds, nappy changes and outings, as you may have to allow more time around these.
- Enjoy it – you’re away for a reason, probably to have fun, relax a a bit and enjoy something new. And there’s no reason why having a baby should change that. In fact, your baby may relish being in a new environment and be stimulated by the exciting things around her. Our little one got some real fresh air on our trip and vitamin D from the sun and it did her the world of good. We could tell, after one week, she’d had a growth spurt, her cheeks had a healthy glow and her hair had grown a bit. Yes, the first day and night was a bit tough adjusting to the new setting, sleeping arrangements and time difference. But once we’d had a full day there, we all settled-in to our new temporary home and loved it!
Have you taken your baby away yet? Do you have any tips?