Taking the whole family out for a vacation is fun. The city of Branson, MO is a great place to visit, with Table Rock Lake and many family-friendly theaters, not to mention the fabulous “rustic luxury” cabins to stay in.
One thing to think about, though, is the road trip. With a long ride, kids can get bored. The problem escalates when one kid throws a tantrum. It can set an uncomfortable tone, right at the beginning of your vacation, and it may even distract the driver, endangering your trip.
So, here are 10 things you can do to keep the kids occupied for the long ride. Note for the driver: Keep your eyes on the road!
What’s Up Fagans recommend the alphabet game and explains how to play it. In this game, you make the children find the letters of the alphabet on things that you pass by – only things outside the car allowed. Participants shout out the word they find the letter on. One who finds the most wins the game.
Movie on the Go
Load up the tablet with your kids’ favorite movies and mount it on the headrest or back of the car seat in front of them. You get something to hold their attention while you focus on driving.
Children’s Books or Comics
Except when you have a child or children who get dizzy when reading in a moving vehicle, keep them occupied with a couple of comics or illustrated books.
Name That Tune
Edmunds.com recommends a song title guessing game to play with kids. Of course, the songs should be ones that everyone in the car knows.
Pack some finger foods for kids to munch on. Make sure they’re nutritious.
Game Consoles/Smartphone Games
For the older kids, a handheld game console can distract them for a long time. Just make sure it won’t cause a conflict if you have more than one kid.
Give each child a list of items to watch out for on your trip. You can make the list before leaving.
Busy with Art
Ideal for younger children – give them some cling sets and washable markers. They can play games or have fun with art and you don’t have to worry about your car windows (or seats).
Print out some instructions of child-friendly card games and bring a deck of cards. It’ll surely keep them busy.
With these activities, you can ensure a safe, fun, and peaceful journey. If your kids were energetic enough to try out all the activities above, the nice Branson Regal cabins will be perfect for them to take a good rest before you start your great family vacation.
(HOW TO PLAY THE ALPHABET CAR GAME, What’s Up, Fagans?, Aug. 19, 2013)
(Top 10 Road Trip Games, Edmunds.com, Jul. 9, 2007)