We have just had a week of winter sun in Tenerife and as a holiday with a toddler goes, it was lovely!
We stayed with my parents which was great for Miss Belle because we don’t see them as much as I’d like, as they’re up in York. I used to be a bit sad when we saw them when she was younger and she’d be scared or unsure of them (at least for the first half an hour or so). But now she’s getting older it’s not a problem. I guess it’s hardly surprising. When she was only a few months old she didn’t have the level of understanding or memory she now has. We have photos up in the house and she’s been pointing at them and saying Nana and Grandad for a while now though. Plus, I am always talking on the phone to my Mum or we FaceTime them. Miss Belle regularly pics up my phone and puts it to her ear and says “Nana”!
It was a pretty quiet week really, but just what we needed. Daddy got a rest from work, and I got a bit of a rest from full on Mummy duties because of the extra pairs of hands. We prefer apartments to hotels when choosing a holiday with a toddler, just for the ease of attempting to keep Miss Belle in bed at a reasonable hour, and once she’s in bed we can still sit and enjoy our evening (wine).
We flew early and Miss Belle, who hadn’t been sleeping well in the run up to holiday, decided to wake at 4.30am when we were supposed to be leaving at 5.30am… not really a problem, but she was so interested in where we were going she didn’t fall asleep in the car until 20 minutes before we got to the airport! That and another 20 minute nap on the plane was all she had all day! She was amazed with the airport and the plane and was so happy, we didn’t even need to crack out the emergency toy or iPad.
We had a couple of quiet days at the apartment and even managed to catch a few rays at nap time. We went swimming every day and my daughter who used to cry at every swim class has definitely turned a corner. She was loving it! But we didn’t put her under water – that seems to be the key. How could you not love being in this pool though, seriously!?
Food wise, we ate some awesome tapas and had a couple of tasty BBQs. We attempted a dinner out one night and hoped that by setting off half an hour early she might nap on the walk there. Of course she didn’t, and then protested in the pram when the food came. I ate my gambas (prawns in filo pastry with a type of mango chutney thing – yum!) one handed with her on my lap. In the end I took her outside and rocked her to sleep as she was so tired. Once we’d brought her back inside she slept in the pram. All four of us had spectacular steak and I had a chocolate mouse for dessert. Delicious!
We had a morning at the beach and a couple of walks to the local playground and an amazing gelato place near to the apartment. One day we had Nutella and Forrero Rocher gelato… I think it was just semi frozen pure Nutella! It was the sickliest ice cream I’ve ever had in my life! We also found a shopping mall with a fantastic outdoor soft play area. Miss Belle had a whale of a time on the trampolines.
Towards the end of the week we had a day out at Jungle Park, basically a zoo. It was pretty pricey for what you got in comparison to the amazing Bio Parc in Valencia where we’ve been before. Still, it was good fun. Of course, Miss Belle decided that was a day to wake up at 5am and refuse to go back to sleep! She was tired and grumpy before we left! Once there she perked up and she loved looking at the animals.
She went into nap meltdown mode just as we were about to watch the birds of prey display. According to trip advisor, it’s the highlight of the park! So, we had to go for a walk and ended up missing it. Typical! My parents watched it though and said it was excellent.
On our way to the exit we walked through an aviary. Hilarious really, as I have a bit of a phobia of birds. I’m ok if they’re not flapping near me… I was appreciating some nice colourful ones on some branches when Matt said “Oh, look at that on the wall!” I looked down and there were two pretty big iguanas right there! Those, plus a woman in front of me with two birds landing on her hat, and I freaked right the hell out!!! I ducked down and pushed the pram quickly to the exit, leaving my Dad and Matt laughing at me. My Mum followed. Just as we were stopped in our tracks by another iguana, a bird nearly pecked at her trousers! She was wearing patterned trousers with a print which looked like leaves! All in all it provided much hilarity to finish the day!
A relaxing week with family
On the last night we had a BBQ with some family friends which was lovely, apart from Miss Belle taking ages to come round after her nap. Once she’d woken up and got used to the new people she was best buds with them though. They bought her a toy horse and she loves it, in fact I was in a dilemma about how we were going to manage not taking him on the plane, but I told her he had gone home early!
The plane journey back was harder work than going. Miss Belle had only had half an hours nap at the airport. She would have had longer if it wasn’t for a screaming small child having an epic tantrum and waking her up. I was so mad!!! But what can you do, kids scream?! This time the emergency toy and iPad came out. Even that didn’t really work. Ah well, the pain you must endure when going on holiday with a toddler! Everything seemed to take longer at the airport too and we finally got home about 10.15pm.
It was a lovely week and despite a four hour plane journey, Tenerife was a great holiday with a toddler. As you can gather Miss Belle didn’t sleep or nap that well and is completely shattered. But that tends to happen on holiday. Today has been grey, wet and miserable, and man do I miss that sunshine! I am a big fan of getting some winter sun, if we can.
I loved the warmer weather and seeing Miss Belle playing with her Nana and Grandad. She is completely obsessed with planes. She spent many many hours looking at planes and boats from the balcony. (And the moon and stars at 5am – yawn.) Oh and my Dad and I whooped my Mum and Matt at a game of canasta one night. Great memories 🙂
If you’re looking for a winter holiday with a toddler then I can recommend Tenerife at this time of year. It was mid twenties, not too hot or humid for toddlers. Perfect!