No one likes to imagine a family city stay among magnificent parks and outdoor landmarks only to end up huddled like pigeons under the eaves until dashing to the next museum or café—particularly when you’re on vacation with a small child who needs exercise, fresh air, and… adventure.
My husband still recalls the week his family spent in Kaui… holed-up in a hotel room playing cards and Connect Four instead of snorkeling and frolicking on the beach. We’ve huddled under redwoods more than once when the camping got a bit soggier than expected, and on our trip to Andalucia where they get a record number of sunny days per year… we got a couple of the other kind.
On break in glorious Spain, it was no time for moping. There was only one thing for us to do: get kid-friendly bubble umbrellas and go adventuring.
With a kids’ clear bubble umbrella, we’ve learned, your pint-sized navigator can still see the sights above and below—not to mention the taller pedestrians, including you as her guide—all while managing her own umbrella (with pride). Not to mention, the vertical shield of a bubble umbrella helps keep the wind out of her face and better protects her from rain.
- Old world adventures? Head to the park and stomp in puddles, seek out storm clouds, and behold the glory of rain shooting through the spouters of an ancient cathedral.
- Big city breaks? Go on a walking tour of intriguing hotel lobbies around the city center, and don’t miss the rides up in glass elevators where available–fun, even in rain.
- Beach vacations? Even a walk on the beach, docks, and boardwalk in the rain beats the heck out of holing-up all afternoon with a stack of DVDs, which you’ll no doubt have time to watch in the evenings.
After while, you’ll both be ready to settle into that cafe and enjoy a hot chocolate, and later a warm bath, knowing you’ve seen at least one side of your destination.
For the best kid’s travel umbrella, look for:
- A clear cover that won’t inhibit your child’s visibility
- Covered safety tips that won’t be poking hazards to your child or others
- Pinch-proof mechanisms for opening and closing
- A hook handle that is easy for your child to use and can hang from your stroller handle when desired, your hotel room’s door knob or shower rod while drying.
Most of these children’s umbrellas are very lightweight and small enough to fit length-wise in your suitcase.
For tips on family road trips in foul weather, see Best-Bet Rainy Day Road Stops in the new Take-Along Travels with Baby.