We enjoy taking road trips, and learn something new each time we travel as a family. The furthest we’ve gone is from Singapore to Cameron Highlands last year, a ten-hour drive if we were to do it at one go, but we broke it up into small manageable portions seeing we have two young kids in the backseat.
Most of our trips are to nearer destinations like Port Dickson (4.5 hours), Malacca(3 hours) and Johor(ranges from 30min to an hour or so). We are headed to Desaru in Malaysia this week for the September holidays, and I’m so looking forward to a few days of break from work, and some fun time with the family. Desaru is 1.5 hours away from Singapore using the new highway, so hopefully it will be a smooth journey.
With two kids strapped in their carseats behind us, a key to a peaceful ride is finding ways to keep them entertained. After many trips, I’ve realised that having a Road Trip Activity Bag is a big help. It means that they are free to use whatever is in the bag to keep themselves happy, without having to ask: “Mummy, can I have xx or yy?” What you put in there depends on the interests of your kids. I’ve omited electronic gadgets, music and snacks. These, if available, are with me upfront! When we reach the hotel, the bag usually travels with us to the room and the kids continue to use it there. I usually change up the items from each road trip just to keep things fresh and new for them.
Here is what we will be bringing this time.
I made these art kits a while ago and the kids used it for our last road trip and enjoyed them. I’m packing them along again. Click on the art kit link to see how I made them.
2. A mini dry-erase board with dry-erase markers and a small duster.
I got the board and markers from the $2-shop Daiso and they are a handy size for bringing out. The markers come in an assortment of colours and cost just $2 for a pack of 5.
3. Paper and crayons.
Yes, I realise I have the same materials in the art kit above, but these clip-on twist crayons from Crayola are great because they stay together when clipped together and do not roll off onto the floor.
4. Travel Games
Shannon, who is almost four, is now old enough to play Scavenger Hunt games. This pack of Travel Scavenger Hunt for Kids cards is great for a road trip to Malaysia because they get to look out for car plate numbers, traffic lights, vehicles, dog in a car etc. It is great fun and keeps them busy looking out of the window, instead of chanting the “Are we there yet?” refrain. 🙂
I’ve also included a travel sized magnetic Snakes and Ladders and Ludo. Magnetic items are great because the risk of dropping items is lower!
Seven-year-old Jason has his own point-and-shoot camera and especially enjoys taking pictures of food! But on a road trip, he shoots whatever he sees outside the window, and especially when we stop at a traffic light. Shannon is using my old and battered point-and-shoot and she is thankfully not old enough to realise it no longer focuses very well. She enjoys copying her korkor in most things he does, so yes, she needs one as well. Remember to charge the batteries!
6. Battery-operated handheld fan
I had similar ones as a child and enjoyed playing with them. So I’ve added these to our activity bag in case they get hot behind.
I’ve put all the items in a old tote organiser with compartments that fits nicely between the two carseats. But. really, any bag with compartments will do.
Here is the view of the bag from the top:
So that’s it, our Road Trip Activity Bag is packed and ready to go. Will update on how the trip is when we’re back. Happy holidays!
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