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If even the thought of herding up your brood for a holiday is enough to give you a headache, we’ve done some homework for you that might help.

Plan, plan, plan…

When booking the hotel, find out what they can provide so you don’t lug anything unnecessarily. Some hotels provide sterilisers and monitors, and even nappies. We recommend some stylish family stays in our Smith & Kids selection child-friendly hotels and holiday houses.

Barn CottageBarn Cottage in Devon, right, is one of our favourite Smith & Friends countryside properties that is fully kitted out to welcome your wee ones with open arms (and toys and equipment) and rolling grounds. All the hardware such as high chair, cot, steriliser and even a stairgate or a car seat available. Kids’ toys, games and books on tap too if you want them. There are plenty of grounds right on your lap for them to explore, but coast lovers are a short drive from surfing, rockpooling and sand-castle building. Or hire a bike and hit the Camel or Tarka trails.

Rates £400–£900 a week; long weekends available except in summer.

Europa House ApartmentsEuropa House Apartments, left, in West London provides all that paraphernalia too at your own chic self-catering stay as well as green, grassy grounds. The gardens at the back are completely enclosed, providing privacy and peace of mind for parents. As for equipment, kindly staff is on-hand to provide travel cots, high chairs, baby bath, changing mats, DVDs, board games, books, toys, potties, toilet steps, socket covers, baby cutlery and plates.

Rates One-bedroom suites start at £180 a night excluding VAT, two-bedroom suites from £260, and deluxe two-bedroom suites from £310.

What to pack?

The subject of nappies isn’t the most glamorous, admittedly, however any mums out there who mourn the days of carefree luxury travel will rejoice at this sleek nappy wallet and changing mat from Melobaby. It’s a particular godsend when flying. Wedging into a tiny airplane toilet cubicle to change a little one is chore enough as it is, so anything that saves negotiating those narrow aisles with bulky diaper-bag cargo we declare an in-flight delight. Now, to invent the self-changing nappies… Priced £29.95;, see images below.


For more suggestions, see our article on family travel accessories, click here.

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