Another half term, another family escape.
We did the Barbie cruise and the cycling trip to Holland, both of which went on to win travel-writing awards.
Last week I took the girls to West Sweden for four nights of city-break fun coupled with some time out on the archipelago.
See a Flickr gallery of images from the trip.
The highlight of the trip was definitely the chance to spend the night on a family farm in the countryside.
The Lekander family [pictured above] made us feel really welcome.
It was a travel story for Family Traveller magazine — check out the full article in a future issue.
But it was also a chance to talk to Swedish dads about how liberal Scandinavia values the role of fathers, recently passing new legislation to increase paternity leave.
Sweden, we found, puts family first and, boldly, strives to make it easier for fathers to spend time with their children.
We spent a morning hanging out with the so-called ‘latte papas’ Gothenburg and, as Henric Stahl [pictured below with 19-month-old son Marcel], told us:
“We’ve come to the point whereby, if you’re not taking your full paternity leave, then you have to explain yourself.”
Even Caligari, a stalwart of Swedish kids’ TV, whose magic show we caught at Gothenburg’s Alfie Atkins Children’s Museum, bases his act around family values.
Watch a short Vimeo of Calgary below.
In an age of top ten lists and mindless-filler content, it was great, as a writer, to get a commission with scope to address real issues in the context of an upbeat travel story.
It has revived my writing mojo.
And, better still, the girls had a ball.
So, England 0. Sweden 1 then.
What did you think of this story? Post your comments below.
Liked this? Try also West Sweden: Folklore traditions of midsummer.