Travels With My Father: Tales from Around the Globe

Travels With My Father: Tales from Around the Globe

Recently I’ve been watching Jack Whitehall: Travels With My Father on Netflix, if you don’t already watch it, you should definitely check it out as it’s both hilarious and cringe-worthy in equal measures. Thankfully my Dad is nothing like Jack Whitehall’s father and is the reason for both my wanderlust and the fact that I have seen so much of this wonderful world we live in. Watching the Travels With My Father on Netflix, however, got me thinking about some of my favourite memories from travelling with my parents and brother growing up. For context, my parents took us on holiday every Summer and my Dad doesn’t believe in short holidays so all our getaways were between four and five weeks long. To this day I still don’t know how my Mum, who is now retired, managed to get her place of work to approve her time off!

So, in no particular order, here is a collection of my favourite travel memories with my Dad:


That time we got ‘mock’ charged by an elephant

Here’s a thing you need to know about my Dad, he loves photography and video and therefore is constantly photographing or filming whilst on holiday. So we were in Kruger National Park in South Africa and my Dad was driving the rental car down the road and there was an elephant ahead. Awesome, right? Except my Dad wanted to get a good photo so parked the car across the road blocking it and I’m guessing the elephant saw that as a threat because it definitely began charging towards us. A guide later said it was probably mock charging but either way, my Dad moved the car pretty fast.


When the rickshaw left without him in China

I think this was in China but either way, we were in rickshaws with the rest of the tour group and since they only held two people per vehicle, I was sat in one with my Dad. The rickshaw stopped and we all waited in a line most probably for a car to pass or something and my Dad thought he’d get out quickly to take a photo of the rest of us in the rickshaw – are you sensing a pattern here? Except the problem was the cyclist driving our rickshaw didn’t see my Dad get out and moved off leaving my Dad to run a couple of feet to catch up and get back in the rickshaw…


When he tried to get closer to wild rhinos and walked out from where we were all hiding behind the trees and bushes

Again, this was in Kruger National Park and we’d gone on this amazing walking tour and found a herd of rhinos. Our guide was telling everyone that rhinos are pretty blind so as we were a little way away, we would be fine if we stayed hidden behind the bush. We could still see but my dad wanted great photos so he kept wandering out into the open and we had to keep calling him back.

Rhino in South Africa

Photo by joel herzog on Unsplash

That time I got a massive bruise from falling off a toboggan

Ok, so this isn’t specifically my Dad but we were in China and you could chose to take a metal toboggan slide down a mountain or walk so obviously, I chose the toboggan along with my brother and a couple of other members of the tour group – my parents decided to walk. I was going at a moderate pace and another person in our tour group was behind me and told me to take the brake off entirely and just go. So I did and then I flew off and scrapped my arm all along the metal toboggan shoot resulting in a huge glorious bruise that features in all our photos on the Great Wall of China. My parents weren’t that sympathetic..


That time a car hit our bus in China so he ‘interviewed’ my mum and another person on our trip

We were in a mini van from one destination to another in China with our tour group among lots of traffic. A car hit the side of our van but thankfully it wasn’t serious at all. No one was injured and the van was completely fine but my Dad thought it would be funny to pretend to interview my Mum and a couple of other people who were sitting on the side the car hit whilst videoing them.


When we all climbed the Sydney Harbour Bridge and it was the best thing ever

Enough said really. I absolutely loved the five weeks we spend travelling in Australia and climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge was just amazing, scary but amazing.

Sydney Harbour Bridge

Photo by Paul Carmona on Unsplash

When we stayed in a ryokan in Japan and I didn’t eat anything

I used to be way more fussy with food than I am now. I wouldn’t touch sushi and I am still not the biggest fan of rice. Staying in a ryokan for one night, however, was an enlightening experience and I’m glad we got to do it, even if I didn’t eat much at all!


And Mount Fuji was covered in cloud so we never really saw it

My Mum was super upset that we couldn’t see the peak or really much of it at all. Oops.


That time we rode horses on a gaucho ranch in Argentina and his horse went the opposite way whilst he was trying to film us

Everyone on the tour of the gaucho ranch got to ride the horses. It was only a short ride round the paddock but for some reason my Dad’s horse wanted to go the absolute opposite way to everyone else’s horses. It resulted in his horse facing one way whilst he twisted round to video the rest of us on our horses that were going in the exact opposite direction!


When we were in Typhoon Lagoon and he absolutely didn’t like the rubber rings river ride

When we were little, my parents took us to Walt Disney World and it was obviously amazing. We spent a day at Typhoon Lagoon, going on the zip line into the water and the slides. We also went on the rubber rings where it was one to a person, it was pretty tame as we were kids and it didn’t have any massive drops or anything, just a rubber ring down a water run. My Dad doesn’t really do swimming or snorkeling or any other water based activities but somehow we convinced him he should come on the ride. It ended badly. He was way behind us and he fell out of the ring and absolutely hated it. #fail

Walt Disney World castle, Magic Kingdom

Photo by Thomas Kelley on Unsplash

When he made my mum put chicken wire in her bag in Johannesburg so we wouldn’t get mugged

In theory, it was a great idea. We were walking around Johannesburg and he’d heard it can be a bit rough so as we were on our own without a guide or anything, he put chicken wire in my Mum’s backpack so even if it got slashed by a pickpocket, they wouldn’t get our valuables. It worked, we didn’t get robbed or even threatened but what did happen was that we were all on high alert the entire time and therefore didn’t enjoy the experience at all (the rest of South Africa was amazing!).


When we all went piranha fishing in the Amazon and my brother and dad caught one and me and my mum didn’t because them piranha’s be quick yo.

We were on a canoe, sitting pretty low in the water, just us and our Amazon guide and we were piranha fishing. As soon as I felt the string pull, I yanked it up but I was never quick enough – my Dad and brother were though!


That time somewhere in Europe, possibly in Brugge where he tripped over a cat and twisted his ankle

I have vague recollections of staying in a house for part of our holiday where there was a pet cat. My Dad isn’t really an animal person and we never had a pet growing up. He was carrying stuff out to the car and the cat ran between his feet and he tripped down the step and injured his ankle. He hated the cat even more after that.


When he had awful sandals that somehow got left behind in Brazil

They were these cream sandals, kinda like jelly shoes. They were awful! He thought they were amazing. Somehow they didn’t make it out of Brazil, I’m not actually sure what happened, whether they were accidentally left behind or what, but that was the end of those. He still doesn’t let us forget. RIP shoes.


When we made him order pigeon in a 3 Michellin star restaurant in Paris

For my 21st birthday my Mum and Dad generously took my best mate and myself on a trip to Paris for a couple of days and we went to a 3 Michellin star restaurant for a meal that consisted of so many courses including clensers in between courses! For our mains, we were trying to decide what to have and since we hadn’t tried pigeon before (obviously this was before I went vegan!) so we convinced my Dad to order pigeon and then tried his from his plate. He eats most things so actually didn’t mind!

Paris Eiffel Tower

Photo by Chris Karidis on Unsplash

When he got a speeding ticket in Swaziland

My Dad has been driving for forever and he has never got a speeding ticket, except when he drove the hire car in Swaziland… In his defence, the police car was waiting at the bottom of the hill so it was basically a trap and no amount of my Dad telling them he was already giving the country money as a tourist would convince them to waive the ticket.


When we nearly got locked in the Cape of Good Hope National Park

My Mum isn’t the best at navigating and this was back when we still mostly used paper maps and didn’t have phones with GPS so my Mum was a bit apprehensive about navigating us from Cape Town down to the Cape of Good Hope whilst my Dad drove, so my brother and I did it from the back seat. The thing is we were planning on doing this in a day and we stopped at Boulder Beach on the way so by the time we got to the Cape of Good Hope to take photos by the sign, it was nearly dusk. My Dad drove pretty fast to get us to the gate of the National Park so we didn’t get locked in – eek!


So there you have it, some of my favourite travel memories with my Dad, Have you ever done a trip with your family? What are your favourite memories? Let me know in the comments below.


Pin this for later:

Travels With My Father: Tales from Around The Globe All my favourite memories and things that almost went wrong when I was growing up including travelling to South Africa, Australia and South America!


  1. October 14, 2017 / 4:20 pm

    This is so funny!! For some reason I just imagine your dad as Nigel Thornberry from the Wild Thornberrys 😛 My husband and I are trying to create a life where we’ll be able to take long summer trips with our kids as well – he’s a teacher, and I’m working my butt off to be at a point where I have that kind of flexibility during the summers too. So I’m hoping in 30 years or so, our kids will have a bunch of stories about all of our travel fails together <3 Thanks for sharing!

    • Nicole
      October 14, 2017 / 6:04 pm

      Haha I love the Wild Thornberrys! I’m sure you’ll manage it, though I can only imagine the disasters that will occur with you two plus kids!! 😉 It will definitely give them loads of stories lol. Thanks for commenting x

  2. October 14, 2017 / 5:34 pm

    this is both hilarious and adorable! so nice that you wrote all these down – it will be great to reflect on these and add more to the list year after year!

    • Nicole
      October 14, 2017 / 6:08 pm

      I’m glad you enjoyed it Gabby! Unfortunately now my Mum and Dad travel without us pesky kids but I do love listening to my Mum’s tales 😉

  3. October 14, 2017 / 5:39 pm

    Haha I would love to be able to travel with my dad, I get a bit jealous reading a story like this:) Seems you have a great relationship and are good travel partners!

    • Nicole
      October 14, 2017 / 6:57 pm

      Awww sorry! My Dad and I are very similar so it’s great and no so great sometimes but travelling as a family growing up has created so many amazing memories for which I will always be grateful.

  4. October 15, 2017 / 12:20 pm

    Sounds exciting! You have awesome memories from around the world. Looks like a life well traveled. 🙂

    • Nicole
      October 15, 2017 / 4:37 pm

      Thanks Raksha, I am super grateful I got to visit these wonderful places and have silly memories to remember them too! 🙂

  5. October 15, 2017 / 4:22 pm

    Wow, you’ve been on some amazing travels with your family!

    I think everyone has a dad/family member who likes to embarrass everyone else.

    • Nicole
      October 15, 2017 / 4:44 pm

      Haha yeah probably! I think half this stuff just happened to my Dad rather than him going out of his way to be embarassing lol.

  6. October 16, 2017 / 8:08 pm

    Wow you have really experienced so much with your family, lots of great stories to tell! I have always wanted to climb Sydney Harbour Bridge by the way.

    • Nicole
      October 16, 2017 / 8:12 pm

      Haha yeah it’s resulted in lots of stories. Climbing Sydney Harbour Bridge was absolutely amazing, scary at times because you are so high up but so worth doing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.