One of our longest standing annual trip traditions, and one of my favorites, is “Guys Day” and “Girls Day”! One day each trip, the four dads plan a day out together; another day, it is the moms’ turn! I’m not sure of the exact origination, but we can likely credit the years where we had five kids under five.
Our trips are very family focused, but these days allow the adults to pick something that interests them! Some examples of activities we have done on these days are: shopping, wine tasting, brewery tours, scenic boat tour, white water rafting, and a NASCAR racetrack tour! These days are not always about a big activity though. One year the guys snuck (okay not really) back to the vacation rental, shot pool, and just hung out! Regardless of the activity, the day away is great for friends connecting and stepping out of parenting roles for a few hours.
While the gals are out, the guys take the kids for an activity and vice versa for the guys days! I think half the fun when the kids were little was rearranging various car seats appropriately to get everyone in; I know my kids got a huge thrill from the treat of riding in someone else’s car. It is always the simplest things, right?! The kids are always excited to tell the returning parents what they missed out on! They may try to up the ante for the next outing by bragging up what they did with the dads!
The past few years, we have added one more twist to this tradition. We have planned an adult dinner out one evening. The kids enjoy being in charge while the adults enjoy food in a restaurant that doesn’t serve happy meals. Win, win!
As you plan your group travel, think of smaller variations your group could break into for a short period of time. If you are taking an extended family trip, consider having grandparents watch the kids for a few hours so the parents can do an activity. Traveling with friends but wanting some couple time? See if you can take turns watching all the children so each couple gets some time away. Group travel presents unique chances to balance a time together and focused time away!