Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

The Trials of Travel with Teenagers

Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

The Trials of Travel with Teenagers

Article excerpt

Byline: Merryl Miller

IT WOULDN'T matter if all Seven Wonders of the World were outside the hotel window, teenagers would still rather stare at their Facebook screen and begrudge missing the sleepover their bestie is throwing back home.

Work with that, and you have a fair shot of enjoying an overseas trip with teenagers.

Ignore it, and they'll ruin your life.

My husband and I recently embarked on athe last family holiday'' with our teenagers before the nest starts to empty.

We chose Thailand. Harry and I had spent our honeymoon there 21 years ago and we loved the beaches, food and people.

But we warned the kids a right before we left to avoid months of whingeing a we'd be roughing it. A very limited budget and a desire to experience real Thai life meant bungalows with squat loos, islands without electricity or hot water, local food from roadside stalls, and Singha beer instead of Heineken.

For a generation seemingly inured to pain a they listen to the music of Rebecca Black for heaven's sake a teenagers can be precious about home comforts.

Luckily they are also quite resilient.

Striking the right balance proved to be the key a so here are my tips for those travelling with teenagers in the Land of Smiles.

You might dream of lying on a beach for hours, the only deadline being happy hour. Teenagers will not like this. They are good at sleeping but not simply relaxing. aDoa at least one thing every day in exchange for being left in peace on your deck chair.

You might consider yourself scintillating company but, to your teenager, you warrant little more than an eye roll. Allow them plenty of alone time.

Don't kill them with local culture. Some teenagers may have intense anthropological interests but most can only handle a limited dose of temples. Break up the cultural feast with a round of mini-golf (try the Dino course in Kata Beach a it even has waiters dressed as the Flintstones to serve a cold beer afterwards) or a jet-ski ride. …

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