We drove Townsville to Sydney (looooong drive ) with a 16 month old and have done Brisbane to Townsville several times (about 16 hours) with two kids at different ages, and several other driving trips. We also recently drove throughout Italy with them both, aged 13 months & 3 (almost). I have lots of experience in this area
We have tried driving throughout both the night and day in Aus, but we prefer day. You have to make sure that you take turns driving/sleeping if you do a night trip, as it can be very dangerous otherwise. I don't sleep well in the car, so I did the first leg while I was alert and then DH did the second leg (we drove Brisbane to Townsville overnight...left 6pm and arrived midday). The kids slept majority of the journey and it was great...however, both of my children sleep well in the car, we wouldn't have tried it otherwise. A negative was that the road is FULL of trucks at night, so we were constantly being tail-gated by crazy semi-trailer drivers and at one point were almost driven off of the road. For that reason alone, we won't drive through the night again.
For trips during the day, you need plenty of stops and PLENTY of activities. We use a combination of books, new toys, portable DVD player, iPad and car games (things like "Spot the..." & "What sound does a ______ make"?). We also have lots of children's CD's and regular CD's. You can also get some crafty items from the craft/art store which are easy and not very messy, so great for car trips - DS loved the blank cardboard masks that I bought, we drew animal masks and monster masks with crayons and then held them up to our faces and made the associated noise. He might be a little young for that, but you could do it and let him hold it up. Other toys that were a big hit - doodle drawing and the crayola wonder colouring books (the pens only draw in the book it comes with, but can't draw on other surfaces).
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02-08-2012 13:40 #11
Last edited by Witwicky; 02-08-2012 at 13:43.
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02-08-2012 18:10 #12
Thanks very much for the tips =) All this advice is fantastic!
02-08-2012 18:19 #13Senior Member
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- Mar 2008
We've done a similar trip many, many times.
I totally agree with day time driving. We have found that leaving very early (5amish) is good though. The more kms we have behind us before midday the smoother the trip seems to go.
Lots of stops are so important.
We try to take a 'no stress' attitude with us. Makes being cooped up in the car all day with potentially cranky kids so much easier.
I actually think less toys is better personally. I don't know why exactly, but they seem to play better that way.
McDonalds is a handy stop if it's raining because the kids can stretch their legs in their play areas.
Enjoy your holiday!
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02-08-2012 19:49 #14Member
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- Jan 2012
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02-08-2012 19:58 #15
Great advice here.
We've planned driving melbourne to sydney when I'm 34 weeks pregnant.
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