This is a guest post by Nicole Noel
Don’t worry, travelling with family isn’t as hard as you may think it is. Sometimes, those trips can become the most wonderful memories. Sure, it can seem very difficult to look after a toddler on a trip, but if you read this article carefully, your only trouble will be deciding what to eat.
Things you would like to know about New Caledonia
New Caledonia, or in French Nouvelle Caledonie, is the perfect mixture of European chic and Pacific beauty. It is like you are visiting France, but the France magically turned into a beautiful tropical island inside of the biggest lagoon in the world. Located 1210 km east of Australia, this place is known as the “Heart of the Pacific”. The capital city is Noumea and the population is around 280 000. Now that you know the basics (the rest is up to you to explore), let’s get to some general tips, shall we?
First of all, the transport. It will be cheaper and easier if you, instead of using airport coach transfers, hire a car for a week. Besides the fact that it will be cheaper, it will be a lot easier for you to get around. When it comes to money, you have an ATM at the airport and you will need XPF 150 for the toll road to and from the airport. Avoid paying with credit cards if you can because sometimes you may have troubles with them. As for the costs, croissants are around XPF 100, cheese is around 70 at the Noumea Market, ham, cheese and tomato baguette is usually 500, six-pack of beer around 600 and if you want to buy fruits and veggies go to the market rather than the supermarkets, since it’s cheaper.
Attractions and activities for children
We don’t know what is it with small children and aquariums, but they just love it. That is why you could consider bringing your toddlers to see the Noumea Aquarium at Anse Vata. It costs XPF 2000 for a family. The same goes for the zoo, where the family ticket is XPF 800. Next, near Le Meridien you will find a great children’s playground (for the kids from 2 to 12 years old). It will be an amazing opportunity for your little ones to meet other local children and potential play buddies. Also, sometimes even the Circus visits Noumea. If you explore a little bit you will find other great New Caledonia packages and discover tons of fun activities.
Eating out with kids
Noumea is filled with tons of great restaurants such as La Paparazzi, Rimba cafe, Le Bellagio, Duke etc. Le Bellagio has menus with English translations, Rimba cafe is the cheapest, and other ones have huge meals where you can easily divide one meal between two children. La Paparazzi and Duke are super friendly towards children and provide you with crayons and paper.
If your children are fussy eaters, don’t despair – you will easily find a lot of popular food brands in the supermarkets.
Other fun activities
One thing that you must not miss is the tourist train ride around Noumea. Enjoy amazing city views and see some beautiful beaches and local life. Next, if you and your family are into exploring, consider island discovery tours with local guides. You will be happy to hear that all the stops have huge spaces for children to run around and meet the locals.
When you finish with all the exploring, spend the rest of your day on the white-sand Kuto Beach where your children can play with coconuts, swim and snorkel in the beautiful turquoise water, while you are keeping an eye on them from the beach bar. Later, take some plastic shovels and cannikin and help them make some sand castles and forts.
That would be it. Work on your French a little bit before starting your trip, just in case and enjoy your beautiful family tropical vacation. Bon voyage!
If you would like to write a guest post for Toddlers on Tour sharing your experiences, photos and tips for travel with kids in your favourite destination please send me an email to toddlersontour (at) gmail (dot) com or go to my Contact Page. You can view my Guest Post Guidelines HERE.