If you want to give your children an island paradise experience without it being overly commercial, the Solomon Islands is perfect. Prior to visiting at the end of 2018, I hadn’t heard much about the Solomons Islands. Now, I can’t wait to go back and it’s the top travel destination for my family.
Initially, when I looked into it, there wasn’t a lot about family travel to the Solomons. I read how Honiara has a crime issue (as does everywhere!) and it is a developing nation. It wasn’t until I arrived and travelled around quite a few islands that I realised how amazing this place is. I did a cruise with Solomon Islands Discovery Cruises which enabled me to view islands in the Florida and Russell regions, enjoy watersports, meet locals, experience the culture, see WWII history, scuba dive and truly experience what the Solomons has to offer.
So why is it the best destination for families?
You have time together
Unlike other tropical holidays, the Solomon Islands isn’t full of resorts with kids clubs. Instead, you can experience what island life has to offer (in comfort if you want) with each other. As you head to outer islands there is no reception so it is a wonderful bonding experience. Imagine seeing whales, dolphins, sharks, coral reefs, manta rays and incredible scenery instead of just watching a movie together. An active holiday where you are forming incredible memories is far more beneficial and will live on in your children’s minds forever.
They truly see how lucky they are in Australia
Even as an adult this was eye opening. The lifestyle in many parts of the Solomons is quite laid back and idyllic. People are friendly, wildlife are amazing and the scenery is incredible so it has a lot to offer. However, when you compare our lifestyle here in Australia, your kids will quickly realise how good they have it in many ways. Visiting a school will connect them with school children and what some of these kids have to do to get to school. Plus your children will see the difference in resources and opportunities.
I felt so fortunate to see how they live, how happy they are and how they manage with what they have compared to what we have. Holidays and experiences like this are eye opening for anyone, let alone enabling your children to learn that while they are young.
“Those who fail to learn from history are condemned to repeat it.” ~ Winston Churchill (based on a quote from George Santayana). Kids can get up close and personal with WWI wrecks, lookouts, Japanese u caves, bombs, memorials and other remnants from that time. While we have war memorials and shrines in Australia, along with various historical locations and artefacts, it is not the same as being right where it happened. Seeing the impact it had on the islands, where our troops were based, what they did and the wrecks in the water. It will solidify the war and that time of history in their minds. I am a big believer of experiencing and seeing things to learn more in life. The Solomon Islands has so much to offer both with WWI history and their rich cultural past.
You switch off
Not everywhere in the Solomon Islands had reception. As a result, even if you or the kids want to be connected online, you can’t. You’re forced to be present and experience all it has to offer. On my trip, it took me until about the third day to relax and be ok about not having contact with anyone back home. Once I did, the relief and whole experience was amazing.
Our kids are connected more than any generation before us. iPads are expected at school, TV is used as a babysitter and they are often disconnected from the real world. Throw them headfirst into it with you on a memorable holiday where they can truly experience all the Solomon Islands has to offer.
Have your kids dreamt of dolphins swimming up next to the boat, seeing whales in the wild, swimming with sharks (reef sharks are safe), snorkelling with Nemo and seeing coral reefs? With the clearest water I have ever seen in my life, the Solomon Islands has amazing wildlife you can see easily from the boat or up close through snorkelling and diving.
As we cruised through different areas dolphins swam up to say hello. When I dropped into the cool, clear ocean to scuba dive and snorkel the whole underwater world opened up. It is a breathtaking experience your children will never forget. And because the Solomons aren’t commercial yet, the wildlife are still wild. They aren’t trained to do tricks for tourists, you see them in their natural habitat.
For me, my trip to the Solomon Islands was the most unforgettable experience I have ever had and one we plan to repeat over and over. You can find out more about my trip here and here. I went with Solomon Island Discovery Cruises but if you want more information about the Solomon Islands itself, checkout Tourism Solomons.
What makes a holiday perfect for your family?
Images by Katrina Walsh Photography
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