Barcelona – exorcising the holiday demons

Ever since our holiday in Italy three years ago my daughter has been frightened of ‘abroad’ and other countries. Everything that could go wrong did go wrong and she was scared of the prospect of another foreign holiday. To be honest, we all were.

And then we went to Barcelona…

Finally, after three years, we exorcised our foreign holiday demons.

We did things differently this time. From the lovely departure lounge to an airport very close to our destination and a pre-booked taxi to transport us between the two, we made things easy for ourselves. Nothing went wrong on the journey, which we managed in 10 hours door-to-door, including a very long wait at Gatwick.

And my daughter smiled, laughed and bounced around through it all. Her happiness and excitement were infectious.

As soon as we touched down, she declared that she liked Spain – just from looking out of an airport window at a frankly unattractive industrial landscape. She danced, chatted and sang her way through the taxi journey – much to her eldest brother’s disgust and my immense pride and happiness.

She loved the hotel and the room. She loved the (rather chilly) swimming pool on the roof and the Spanish buildings – even the scruffy ones.

And she sat down to eat on that first night and declared ‘I like Spanish food’. It was nothing less than a miracle!

And what was she eating? Paella? Tapas?


Well, it’s a start.

Just to have her eating and happy in a foreign country really was a magic moment. I really hope this can be the start of more regular foreign holidays for our family.

Author: Sarah Mummy

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  1. Sounds like you had a lovely time. Hopefully, it’s the start of many happy, foreign travels.

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  2. So happy to hear that this was a successful trip for you all. Wishing you lots more happy holidays in the future x

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  3. Nothing wrong with chicken nuggets and chips. Despite all the food that I love, that’s still a favourite of mine. The holiday was a huge step so you can be a bit relaxed about the food. It’ll come.

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  4. Our local airport has recently started flying to Barcelona and it’s a place I’ve wanted to visit for such a long time, so knowing it’s child-friendly is great news! I’m so glad you managed to enjoy a stress-free (or at least stress-reduced!) break.

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  5. Brilliant – great it all went well this time 😉 And as for Spanish food comment – this made me laugh!x

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  6. Brilliant. We haven’t been “abroad” since having J, maybe we’ll pick up courage soon! Great idea to make things as easy as you can on yourselves. And great choice of destination. Couldn’t tell if you were eating the Big M or the Colonel, but am sure it is just one small step to calamari!

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  7. Ha ha, I love this! You can get McDonalds anywhere 🙂 I’m relating well to the older one getting embarrassed and frustrated by youngest one’s vocal enthusiasm!

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  8. It certainly sounds like you had an amazing time and the quality family time you needed. As long as they eat something I guess it is probably a lot to expect her to eat Spanish food

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  9. I love that kids just say what they feel and forget the niceties. Viva Macdonalds!

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  10. Thanks very much, everyone. You can’t beat McDonalds, it’s the same wherever you go!
    Definitely worth taking the time to plan the trip properly. We will brave another holiday now, I think! x

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  11. How absolutely lovely 🙂 A bad experience of something can put you off more when you’re a child but it sounds like your daughter certainly bounced back. Thanks for linking to Magic Moments xx

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  12. I can soo relate to the food thing, my two and my husband are so fussy that the success of a holiday can be measured by the access to ‘normal’ food. Thank Goodness for nuggets and chips! Glad you had a good time

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  13. What a lovely post – the preparation must have been so stressful! Really pleased you all had a good time 🙂

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  14. Thanks very much, everyone. It really did go well, way better than I’d imagined/ hoped, so I think we can brave it again! The nuggets and chips got us off to a very good start!

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