The Travel Bug: Nature versus Nurture

Baby Steps First

At a guesthouse in India I talked with a Swiss couple traveling with children, aged seven and three. They'd already driven their Land Rover the length of Africa and were now chugging their way across Asia. In Chile, I met a young woman on a very low-budget pan-South American trip. She had her four-year-old daughter on her hip.

If those trips were successful, they probably prepared the kids on a lifetime of travel. To me, both seemed to be overly risky in terms of potential health problems and other misadventures.

In almost everything we do, success is the parent of success. That principle certainly applies to exploration of our planet. Since early success is important, I think parents are wise to introduce kids to the world in a gentle way. There's no need to jump into the water like Olympic swimmers. Test with a toe.

Published: 30 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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