Travelers: Simone, Arvind, and our kid
Type: Road tripping in South America
Budget: Spendy ($5000-$10,000)
Where did you go? Having a four-month maternity leave sounded great, but staying at home all that time was wearing me down. I am a serious travel bug/wanderlust case and by the time our child turned one month old, I was starting to get restless. So when my husband decided to quit his job a month later I told him: “If you are quitting, we are traveling!”
Five days after his last work day we were on a plane to Chile, planning on road tripping for the next 40 days through that country and Argentina. Why there? Basically the countries have reasonable infrastructure and the landscape is amazing, so why not?
What did you do?
We flew to Santiago and spent five days with friends. Then we flew to Temuco and started the actual road trip.
We saw volcanoes, hiked long and short trails, soaked in hot springs, walked on beaches, drove and drove. Our kid did great, after all he is a happy baby as long as his mom (aka milk supply) is close by. And we co-sleep, so he did not have trouble with being in different places almost every night.
After 18 days around that region we flew further South to Punta Arenas, to visit Torres del Paine National Park to see glaciers and icebergs and an amazing landscape almost as far South as possible.
Oh, and all we took with us were two backpacks, two small bags, and a stroller/car seat.
What’s your best travel advice? Traveling with a newborn was definitely a new experience. The world seems to slow down and priorities change. My husband and I had traveled extensively before (which obviously helped) but this experience was unique. Of course babies have good days and bad days, but the beauty of being on the road was that on a bad day we would all be together, maybe watching the sun set over the next snow-capped peak, and somehow in the memories the “bad” part of the day has been erased.
Also, I came to realize that usually days are not bad, usually there are some difficult hours in a day but by shifting the attention to something else perspective shifts as well, and the days were amazing.
On practical recommendations, Chile and Argentina were great destination options. We usually chose to book stays on AirBnB, or stay in cabins rather than hotels since we had more space, could cook, and did not have other guests close by.
Finally, with a baby that feeds at least every hour and a half, all that time nursing was spent watching different scenery each day.