(Fun) life is over once you have kids, right ? Wrong ! If you’re into nature and outdoor adventures, fun-loving Wandelgoesting will show you a whole new world of possibilities very close to home.
Forget all your frustrations about not getting to hop on a plane any time soon. Sarah and Pie, the husband-and-wife duo behind the mini travel blog Wandelgoesting, love nothing more than hiking, camping and exploring. The fact that their two baby girls Anna and Robin have been trailing along for three years or so now, doesn’t seem to bother them at all. In fact, showing them the world and all its mini miracles -we kind of forgot how exciting a leaping frog actually is…- along the way, proves to be extra gratifying in the end. They share the best spots, routes and lodgings for outdoor adventures with kids. Most of those are in and around Belgium, but they also love hanging around in the Alps -fresh air and everything…
Also, don’t trip over the “with kids” part. They’re not the kind of people that will lead you straight to a diaper-infested “family friendly” camping, including noisy pool animation and the persistent aroma of burned sausages. Peace and quiet it is, little gems in nature, topped with a natural soundtrack provided by chirping birds and the occasional screaming of your own kid. Sounds good, no? I decided to trade my little family’s typical routine and yet another weekend in for a day or two in their footsteps. Turned out to be a great idea.
Why in the world is camping with toddlers a good idea?!
Because A/ they tend to wake you up at 6am anyway, and a refreshing walk in morning’s dewy nature always beats crying silent tears of misery in front of your kid’s infuriatingly irritating morning cartoon. Also, because B/ hangovers tend to be less bad when you spend the night in the open air, which means you can indulge a bottle (minimum) of whine around the campfire without crying loud tears of despair the next morning at 6 am. Furthermore C/ hiking with a kid on your back is actually a great workout! And in the end D/ because, I said it before, nothing beats the delighted look on your child’s face upon discovering a tent/campfire/leaping frog/spiders/ river bath/etc.
Anyway, we spent the night in Kermt (Limburg) at one of the Buitengewoon Kamperen sites -an initiative that planted spacious teepee tents on beautiful nature spots all over Belgium. No canned food for us, as the Wandelgoesting duo also turns out to be passionate foodies and prepared a more than worthy meal. The tents are basically just tents, you’re supposed to bring all the stuff yourself, and overlook a sleepy little river. There are about six tents and three braziers to prepare your food. Come morning, a pretty trail starts a few kilometers further leading you straight through corn fields, orchards and heath.
And just like that, for the first time in months, I didn’t spent an entire weekend trying to get rid of that irritating morning cartoon’s tune stuck in my hungover head. Cheers to that!
Pictures by awesome Sarah Van Praag.