Villa Della, Kefalonia
- Where? Kefalonia, Greece
- Flight time: LGW-Kefalonia 3 hours
- When? May 2014
In May this year, Mr. Banana-pants & I decided we’d do something many other parents I’m sure would deem us truly bonkers for: we booked a last minute escape to the sun. During my research process (which by the way, is it just me or does this consume entire days, or weeks even?) I discovered that ‘last minute’ holidays now appear to cater towards those planning at least 6 weeks ahead, not a mere 6 days (incidentally our ‘6 days prior to travel’ turned into booking on a Friday afternoon & travelling on the Sunday Morning).
For many, the thought of such an unplanned adventure with your toddler in-tow, may throw you into complete panic mode. What about the copious amount of ‘stuff’ you need to travel with a child?
Ultimately my thinking is this: What do you truly need? (less is more & all that jazz). If all else fails, & lets just play devils advocate: your bags went walkies during transit *que hyperventilation* what are the bare essentials? For me simply it’s the three of us (check) Our passports (check) & some form of Money (check). Shockingly, even in foreign countries you can still buy ‘stuff’ *sorry about the sarcasm*. On a serious note: don’t forget travel insurance: & for travel within the EU get your EHIC (european health insurance card) It’s FREE & you can get it HERE. (N.B You still need travel insurance too)
My best tips are: to just stay calm & evaluate your priorities. Is it the be-all & end all if you don’t get that Kaftan or those sandals before you jet of? My guess is probably not -the chances are, you can nab a bargain in duty free at the airport.
Having said all that, we are self-confessed globetrotters & have a healthy stash of travel supplies at the ready. We’re not easily fazed, & I don’t mean to sound nonchalant about travelling (as it is most certainly is a luxury not a necessity) it’s kind of second nature to us: I grew up in South East Asia, so hopscotching around the world became frequent (I’m forever thankful for these amazing experiences) & In life before parenthood, our passports amassed an impressive stamp collection. Ultimately, we choose to live a frugal lifestyle at home to experience all the world has on offer & immerse ourselves in overseas culture.
- Our style:
I’d describe our travel style as very independent: Routinely we book flights & accommodation separately- most often this is apartment style living. What struck me as I trawled through the countless ‘package’ deals out there: was how unsuitable the rooms on offer were for a young family (unless you wanted to upgrade to a ‘suite’ for separate ‘sleeping’ & ‘living’ space). Reconfirming in my mind once again, this type of ‘package’ deal wasn’t for us. We’re very free spirited & like our space, not an ideal combination for staying in a heaving resort. Oh & we have Champagne taste….but a lemonade budget!
I looked at apartments via trip advisor, but the difficulty in this approach with our escapade being so very last minute was trying to then match up availability with flights (proving near on impossible). It then occurred to me I should have a browse on the James Villas Website. Initially I was skeptical: I’d always assumed you’d need Mega bucks to holiday with them. Not so! Pleasantly surprised by the bargains I saw on my computer screen, I made an excitable ‘squeak’ followed by a call to James Villas. After a brief discussion, outlining our requirements, the agent matched these perfectly. Conveniently James Villa has a store located within Bluewater; just a stones throw away from me, so I skedaddled off there: booked our escape & dabbled in a spot of retail therapy (well, it’d be rude not to when you’re child free in shopping heaven?)
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Katrina aka Mrs Cool Bananas blogs at www.coolbananas-blog.com and can be found tweeting @coolbananasblog she writes a very funny blog and her review of her last minute holiday with her Mini Traveller is above.