Start the Car!

Posted: August 3, 2022

The weather is wonderful, and summer is in full swing. Before the season changes, plan to hit the road and get the family out of the house and visit all the wonderful places Southwestern Ontario has to offer, even if it’s just around the corner. These tips are more about the journey than the destination and how to make it memorable. Buckle up and let’s go!

I remember as a child going on lots of road trips. Back in the day there was no air conditioning in cars, and it was way before electronics. Roadside stops for picnics were great for breaks and to burn off some energy.

Sing Songs

I can’t remember where we were going but I sure can remember how we got there. Singing at the top of our voices with the windows down, warm wind blowing our hair all over. I still remember the songs we sang: Henry the 8th, Witch Doctor, She Wore an Itsy Bitsy Yellow Polka Dot Bikini, the Ontario song; A Place to Stand, A Place to Grow and of course 99 Bottles of Pop on the Wall! (Those songs might be giving away my age!)

Play Games

I remember playing punch buggy, counting different coloured cars, getting big rigs to honk their horns, waving at cars to see how many would wave back and seeing who could make someone laugh first (back seat participants only). I also remember the quiet game, seeing who could be silent the longest. Now that I’m older and wiser, I have a feeling that was my parents inviting us to play that game!

Fast forward to road trips with my own children and guess what songs they learned! We had a few new favourites like This Is the Song That Never Ends and Shoo Fly. We also packed paper and pencils for games and crayons for colouring. Felt quiet books were a favourite.

Bags were packed with snacks. Pillows and blankets were thrown in for the long trips. We played all the old games but packed some printables like Road Trip Bingo and Alphabet I Spy. When my kids were bigger, portable DVD players came out. That was exciting, until we had to strap it between the seats, try to keep it straight, plug it in, trying to make it so both children could see and then arguing about which DVD was going in first. Technology has come a long way since the 90’s!

Make Memories

Check out these links for ideas for fun road trip games that don’t involve a screen. Look on Pinterest for fun printables.




http://file:///C:/Users/ttcns/Pictures/start%20the%20car%201.webphttp://file:///C:/Users/ttcns/Pictures/start%20the%20car%201.webpSouthwestern Ontario is full of great tourism destinations and some hidden gems. What kind of traveler are you? I like beaches; the quieter the better, walking on trails, antique shops and stopping at yard sales.  The links below provide some ideas for day trips, multi-day trips, place to eat, see and lots more right here in our area. If you plan on staying somewhere for a few days make sure to take advantage of the Ontario Staycation Tax Credit.