10 ways to entertain kids on a road trip

10 tips to entertain kids on a road trip

We are always looking for tips to entertain kids on a road trip. We never think twice about jumping in the campervan and heading off on a three hour journey for a weekend of camping, fresh air, and outdoor fun. We are very lucky that our kids travel pretty well, and rarely do we have the repeated sounds of ‘ are we nearly there yet ?’ echoing throughout the journey. I think a huge part of this is the fact that we have always travelled from when our little ones were just weeks old. We do follow our own tips for travelling by road, and try to keep travel times to a minimum and travel around nap times, which all help to make the journey peaceful and less stressful.

Before a road trip I always pack the children a travel bag. I don’t involve them in the packing process, partly because I find the surprise of what’s in their bag helps to entertain them alone.

I have put together a few ideas to entertain kids on a road trip. Our children are three, six, and nine months old.


I always put in a book or two and find it keeps the kids entertained no matter what their age. They are also well used during the camping trip as all my children still love their bed time stories before they close their eyes and enter the land of nod.

2)Arts and Crafts – Travel Mosaics

We came across these wonderful mosaics by Brainstorm Ltd, and they are a great size for travelling. My girls LOVE them. The smaller size easily packs into a kid’s rucksack or travel bag, and I find that they not only keep the girls entertained for a good part of a journey, they also entertain them during our camping trips.

ways to entertain kids on a road trip


I know camping is all about the fresh air, beautiful scenery, great outdoors and time with the family away from screens, but I also know that adding a movie into a road trip can definitely pass an hour or two. We really try to limit the screens to just the car journeys, but we have found them invaluable on those long journeys where we have been stuck on a gridlocked motorway. We love this tablet holder by Koo-di to keep the little ones entertained whilst travelling.

*image courtesy of Koo-di

4)Free printables

There are so many free printables on the internet nowadays, and they are a great and cost efficient way for entertaining kids during mealtimes in restaurants or on a car journey. I print out a few colouring pages and travel games such as dot to dot, word searches and spot the difference.  It always helps to entertain the older children both on the road and once you get to your destination.

5)Travel games

The classic travel games of ‘i-spy’…. Count the coloured cars…making shapes out of the clouds….you name it we have done it. It always helps to pass a precious fifteen minutes or even longer during the car journey.


I never go anywhere without a few snacks in the rucksack. Stopping off for many drinks, toilets and food stops can add hours on to a journey, which is soul destroying..particularly if traffic is bad. I always pack a little selection of healthy snacks and fruit, and milk and water. Hungry little ones does not make for a pleasant ride.

7)Colouring/ crafting

We have started a travel journal, and I actively try to involve the girls. My little man is a bit too young, but we try to add photographs and anything that we collect along the way. My eldest loves scrapbooks, so she really enjoys this ongoing project. We take the scrapbook on our car journeys and the girls take it in turns to draw pictures, write lists, note the road signs..anything that reminds them of their travels.


Music can be a great distraction for kids (and adults!). Mr S usually downloads a fab playlist prior to a journey, with a few of the kids favourite tunes thrown in to the mix.

9)Magazines/sticker books

If I am feeling generous I add a couple of magazines into the girls’ bags. I find the magazines entertain them during the car journey, and the freebies that come with a magazine entertains them throughout the holiday.

10) Toys

I always pack a selection of toys to entertain our little man. He is still at the age where he sleeps for much of a journey but I try to have an emergency supply to keep him busy in between his naps.

We are lucky that our children are good travellers but it is always good to have a few things up your sleeve to entertain them for those long unexpected traffic jams.

What do you do to make for a pleasant car journey with the kids? Have you any more ideas to add to this list?

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Pop over to Emmys mummy for more tips for keeping kids entertained on a road trip!

*Disclosure – We were gifted some of these items for a mention on the blog. All opinions and thoughts are my own *

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  1. July 12, 2017 / 9:22 pm

    I agree about starting the travelling young so that it’s just a part of life. My boys are pretty good in the car too although I do need to broaden their music tastes a bit. I might try making a playlist with a mix of their music and ours. I’m so backward with technology so your post has reminded me I need to get into the 21st century! #familytraveltips

  2. July 13, 2017 / 9:56 pm

    My girls are pretty good so far. My eldest is 4 and struggles to stay awake! If she doesn’t fall asleep she is still happy just to watch out of the window. It’s like the car deeply relaxes her! Lots of great ideas here though for children who might need it. #familytraveltips

  3. We love the mosaics too! It can occupy my eldest for quite some time – so handy for longer car journeys. She does get frustrated though if she puts one slightly wrong! Thanks for linking up to #familytraveltips

  4. July 23, 2017 / 8:54 pm

    Brilliant tips thank you! We are heading off on a roadtrip later this week so this is perfect timing for us too! My girls love those mosaics, I’m going to invest in a couple before we go. Thanks for the reminder about travel games too, I have one waiting to go! Thanks for linking up to #familytraveltips

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