On this installment of the Traveling Mom Spotlight, I talk with traveling mom, Christa from The Traveling Hamiltons.
I always like to start with introductions, can you introduce yourself and your family?
Hi, I’m Christa, Stay at home mama to two wild boys- Oliver, 3.5 and Jasper, 2. My husband, Ryan is a VP for Global Supply Chain. This often takes him around Asia and the world on business, and we happily tag along. We are currently based in Iowa, USA.
Christa, you’re British and your husband is American. How did the two of you meet?
I was born in England, but moved to Hong Kong when I was 4 years old and was mainly raised there. My husband was over working in Hong Kong out of his company’s China office when we met. We were introduced through mutual friends in my small hometown of Sai Kung.
How did your passion for travel get started?
Growing up in Hong Kong, there are so many interesting and unique countries just a stones throw away. When I was younger, my family and I would travel as much as we could and I fell in love with exploring new places and seeing different cultures. My husband shared my love for travel and prior to children we traveled extensively around Asia together, taking advantage of the cheap airfares available.
What has been the most rewarding part of traveling with your sons?
I love that our boys get to experience different cultures, cuisines and ways of doing things. I believe travel broadens the mind and we are trying to raise our children to see the world and the uniqueness of all individuals living in it. We have a lot of friends and family living overseas so it’s always an added bonus to tie in visits to our loved ones.
I always like to ask this question, because a lot of people are told that traveling is too dangerous for families. Are your friends and family supportive of you and the travel lifestyle you live?
Yes, everyone is very supportive. Our friends and family miss us when we go on month long trips, but we are always able to keep in contact with video chatting and messaging.
How have your kids benefited most from traveling?
They have become pretty adaptable to change which is a lovely bonus! I am always surprised with how well they travel between various time zones. They adapt far quicker than my husband and myself. They also have no hesitation when trying new foods; they have developed a love of all food, which makes life so much easier.
What travel destination that you’ve visited had the friendliest people?
We have always found, traveling with kids, that people are so helpful and friendly. We have met amazing people in every place we have traveled to. When we visited Sri Lanka, we were just wandering along a beach and a group of young local boys came up to us, they were besotted with our son and loved interacting with him, of course he also adored the attention. They were so incredibly friendly and excitedly took us on a little ‘jungle walk’ to a small secluded beach with rock pools which was perfect for our then 14 month old to paddle in.
What has been your favorites activity you’ve done with your kids while traveling?
We love being outdoors in nature and hiking, and our boys adore exploring with us. In Hong Kong, last year, we took the boys on one of our favourite hiking trails to a beautiful untouched beach called Tai Long Wan. The views along the trail are stunning and we were able to see lots of wildlife such as monkey’s and wild boars along the way.
When you think of Hong Kong, most will think of a thriving metropolitan city, however the majority of Hong Kong consists of over 200 little islands, mountains and country parks/nature reserves. There are some fantastic hiking trails and isolated beaches all over the country.
What’s the biggest criticism you’ve received about your travel lifestyle?
Fortunately, we haven’t really received any criticism thus far. Sometimes there have been concerns about our safety, particularly when I have been alone with my boys, however we always take every precaution to stay safe.
A lot of family travelers choose homeschooling over traditional schools so they can continue traveling. Have you made any plans for your kids future education?
As of right now, we haven’t made any definitive decisions about their future education. We still have a couple years until our oldest will be school age. I do see huge benefits to homeschooling if we continue to travel; as I would love our children to continue experiencing things first hand around the world.
How many countries have you been to with your children?
The boys have been to 7 countries so far. USA, Thailand, India, Sri Lanka, England, Hong Kong and China.
What if your ultimate dream destination to visit with your kids?
Oh there are so many places on our list! We would love to visit New Zealand & Fiji. I also hope an extended Europe trip will also been on the books sometime soon.
You run an Instagram account where you share your family travels. How do you hope your followers benefit from following you?
I hope our followers enjoy seeing our journey and know that traveling with kids is not only do-able, its exciting and so much more fun when you get to experience things through their eyes. We hope to inspire other families with small children to give it a go and travel as much as possible.
You can follow along with Christa and her family on Instagram.
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