I’d heard lots of nightmare stories about holidaying with a baby, but as travelling is my thing, I decided I’d just go for it and booked a 10-day road trip around Tasmania, Australia. It was our 5-month-old’s first proper vacation – we’d been away for a couple of long weekends when he was younger.
I chose Tasmania as it’s only a couple of hours flight from where we live, the island isn’t big so no full days of driving and I knew we’d have a lot of baby stuff with us so it would be handy to have a car.
Here are some of the travel items that made our trip easier. Read more about our adventures in Tasmania… with a baby – Part 1.
Travel packing cubes
These are life changing. No more messy luggage and when you’re sharing your suitcase with an infant, having different coloured cubes for his clothes really helped me locate what I needed fast. I’ve got the Amazon branded cubes but there are plenty of options out there. I never travel anywhere without them.
Car seat travel cover
You can hire car seats but as we picked our rental car up at the airport, it made sense to save some money and bring our own. He’s also really comfortable in it. One of our best travel purchases was a cover for it. It made it easy to spot at luggage collection and protected it. Car seats can be a bit awkward to carry so if you find a cover with back straps or a handle, even better.
Portable cot and sleep bags appropriate for the climate
With 5 different stops, to keep costs down and to give Charlie (our baby) a sense of familiarity, we took a portable cot with us. There are so many out there but after much research we opted for the Baby Bjorn Travel Cot Easy Go. It is super light, easy to carry and easy to put up and down. It also made a great holiday playpen. Tip: Check out multiple websites for the best price.
It was much cooler in Tassie than our sub-tropical home so we also made sure we had safe sleep bags that were thick enough for the climate.
Comfortable baby carrier
Without one we wouldn’t have been able to get to the top of Wineglass Bay Lookout or around Dove Lake at the foot of Cradle Mountain. We have the Baby Bjorn One Air. It’s well ventilated, has a hip belt to take the pressure off your shoulders and Charlie loves it. This carrier does seem to be more suitable for Dads though. We got it second hand for about a third of the cost of buying it new.
Windproof baby carrier cover
This was great. It kept the little guy dry and warm when temperatures dropped. And he just looked so damn cute in it!
Disposable nappy bags
These came in very handy when we had emergency nappy changes in locations without bins. You can buy biodegradable and scented versions. They were great for our accommodation as they kept all nappy smells contained.
We took 3 toys, a Kmart number which goes on his pram, his Country Road Bunny and a rattle which dubs as a distractor and teether. I also packed a small baby blanket which we used as a playmat.
Nappies and wipes
To save space we only packed enough for a couple of days and stocked up on arrival (and throughout the trip). It may be worth taking more if you’re heading overseas though as the brands and nappy styles can be quite different. I’ve learnt the hard way that not all nappies are equal when it comes to leakage!
Prams are a bit of a pain to cart around as they take up so much room, but we knew we’d be going ‘off road’ in Tasmania so took our Mountain Buggy Swift. It’s relatively compact (for a pram) and it’s so easy to push and versatile. We even took it on the beach! Virgin Australia also let us a check it in at the gate. Again, we found getting a bag for it really useful.
And… something I wish I’d thought of before our trip
Babies grow super fast so it’s a good idea to check that items still fit before packing them. The night before we went to Cradle Mountain we discovered his hat was way too small.