When Paris was 1-year-old and my friends Aimee and Nate invited me to their wedding in Mexico, I immediately said, "Of course, we'll all go!"
I always assumed I would be the adventurous type and tote my kids everywhere and anywhere. Istanbul? Sure. The Amazon? No problem. Mexico? A cinch.
I went through all the motions of planning our trip without any second thoughts—until a week before our departure when a friend asked, "Have you gotten shots?"
"What shots? No! Are you kidding? Do you really need special vaccinations for Mexico?"
I hadn't even talked to our pediatrician about the trip. Stupid me!
This led me to the Internet where I read a blog written by a mom whose infant nearly died from a strange bug picked up in Oaxaca. And then I visited the Center for Disease Control's site that recommended seeing a health-care professional four to six weeks before the trip.
I flipped! I called our pediatrician, Dr. Udovic, who by then was used to my freak outs. We talked about where I was taking Paris—Zihuatanejo and a small town called Troncones 30 minutes north—and determined that our family was headed for safe ground. No shots needed. In fact, the standard vaccinations are all that's recommended for most travel in Mexico.
As soon as I stepped off the plane into the warm, soft air, I kicked myself for worrying. Our trip was smooth, easy, and relaxing. We spent our days lounging in the pool and playing in the surf. Of course, we took precautions and drank only bottled water and we carefully selected restaurants, but my initial anxieties were unfounded.
Mexico is a great place for families—especially those living on the West Coast. The plane flight is short and accommodations are reasonably priced—compared to Hawaii. Our beachside hotel with two swimming pools was $100 a night. Best of all, the Mexicans adore children. At dinner, the waitstaff would take turns holding Paris while we ate. Once a waitress even rocked her to sleep.
Ever traveled with kids to Mexico? Please share your stories.