Contributor Spotlight: Rani Craft Robinson
In this Contributor Spotlight feature, we’ll introduce you to nugget contributor and travel expert Rani Craft Robinson. Rani not only loves traveling with her family in her free time but also explores her love of travel in her work as the Director of Convergence for Travelchannel.com. Read on to learn some of Rani’s best family travel tips, what’s on her family’s bucket list, and more!
SHE IS A MOM TO...
A 6-year-old girl, a 4-year-old boy, and a 7-month-old boy.
AND LIVES IN...
GROWING UP, DID YOU TRAVEL A LOT WITH YOUR FAMILY? WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE TRAVEL MEMORY FROM YOUR OWN CHILDHOOD?
My father grew up going to the beach and so naturally, he had his daughters going to the beach every chance we had. I have many fond memories of spending 4th of July at Topsail Beach, North Carolina: barbecues, going from beach house to beach house to visit with friends, and countless hours on the sand collecting seashells and swimming in the ocean. Some of the best moments of my childhood were spent on Topsail.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR FAMILY'S TRAVEL STYLE?
My family’s travel style would be pretty classic. We use the iPad from time-to-time but we really do a lot of singing of songs and playing games in the car during road trips, like I spy and making shapes out of clouds. We do frequent stops to stretch our legs, and it’s always a bonus when there are local farms and cows to see during those stops.
WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE TRAVEL EXPERIENCE THAT YOU'VE HAD WITH YOUR KIDS?
Anytime I can get my kids around water is a good travel experience; whether it’s the beach, a children’s museum that has a water room or even a cool hotel with a pool. I enjoy seeing the happiness and love on their faces when they get around water.
WHAT'S ON YOUR FAMILY'S TRAVEL BUCKET LIST?
Oh my goodness. This list is forever growing but my bucket list for the kids and I includes Great Barrier Reef, to see the coral before it’s gone; Botswana, to do a safari to see the Big 5 [game animals] (before they’re gone!!); Cliffs of Moher in Ireland; Redwoods in Northern California; Pacific Northwest hiking and camping; Paris; San Diego (beaches and Legoland—a must); Aspen for skiing; and Hawaii. I could keep going but that’s good for now.
...nothing makes me happier than seeing the complete joy on their faces when we are exploring a new place.
WHY DO YOU TRAVEL WITH YOUR KIDS?
I really like my kids! It makes traveling with them that much better. Plus, nothing makes me happier than seeing the complete joy on their faces when we are exploring a new place.
WHAT'S ONE NUGGET OF ADVICE THAT YOU HAVE FOR OTHER PARENTS TRAVELING WITH KIDS?
Slow down. Every day can have a loose timeline, but you don’t have to stick to it. I guarantee that something will go wrong if you rush through your day(s) sticking to a schedule. Kids can feel our angst and frustration, and that’s when their meltdowns begin.