So many of you asked questions about travelling abroad with a young baby, so I promised to write a blog post, and of course share more about the holiday and accommodation too, so here we go…
Our first holiday as a family of three! We um-ed and argh-ed about it as Georgie was so young, four and a half weeks to be precise, but actually, it couldn’t have gone better!
The trip was for my brother-in-laws wedding and as my due date was only a week and a half before, I was always a firm no and my husband would fly out, he was best man, unless baby hadn’t been born yet. So, as Georgie was nearly three weeks early, we thought, why not, and im so glad we did!
When Georgie was only ten days old we went up to London to get her passport. To do this we had to register her birth and to make sure the passport came on time we paid extra for the fast track service which meant an appointment as the passport office in Victoria. We drove up and actually it was a lovely day out. The fast track service guaranteed the delivery of the passport within a week but it actually arrived only two days later. Now we had it could book our flights. We flew with Easy Jet from Gatwick to Nice in the South of France and paid £44 for Georgie’s return flight as you just pay the tax on children under the age of two. Easy Jet also lets you take two over sized items on board for free so we took her car seat and pram. If Easy Jet let you then surely all airlines do too?! On top of that we also had our three free hand luggage bags, although this time we did pay to check a large suitcase but considering that was the only thing we had to pay for with the amount of ‘stuff’ we took, I thought that was pretty good. We bought an XXL pram protector bag off Amazon as I couldn’t bear for the new Bugaboo to be damaged as we all know the airlines are not very careful when it comes to handling what goes in the plane hold! You can find the bag here.
We took an early flight and the taxi picked us up at 5.30 am. Half an hour later we arrived at the airport, checked the suitcase and headed for security. We could have checked the car seat and buggy but chose to keep these with us until the gate. It also meant we didn’t have to carry Georgie. We went through the special assistance security which is separate to the normal security we’re used to. This was for families with children under five and anyone else who needed special assistance as it was set up for buggies and wheelchairs. Once we were through we had breakfast and boarded the plane. Again with priority, as did all families travelling with young children. The flight was very short, just under and hour and a half and Georgie slept throughout. I tried feeding her on take off and landing incase her ears hurt but she was out for the count. Once we were through at the other side we made our way to the car rental place, with all our luggage in tow, they even gave us a free car upgrade, and off we set to the house we were staying in, which was just over an hours drive from Nice airport.
The first night we stayed in a villa with my in-laws and family friends which they had already been in for a week. As soon as we stepped through the door they took over caring for Georgie, it was great! They waited on us hand and foot and cooked us great meals, as they always do.
The next day we checked out and drove to the wedding venue where the wedding party were staying. This is where we stayed for the rest of the trip. I knew the venue was beautiful from photos but like anything, photos just didn’t do it justice.
As we drove up the very long driveway with vineyards either side, we could see this beautiful Chateau in the distance and wow is all I can say…! It really was a fairytale castle. Chateau de Robernier, dating back to the 16th Century is located just outside of Cotignac, which was voted “the most charming village in Provence”.
Exploring the Chateau. We were in second heaven!
Our room was huge, complete with two double beds and a large fireplace.
Bedroom views of the courtyard.
The views from the front of the Chateau were breathtaking. Nestled deep in olive groves and vineyards it was a secluded piece of heaven.
We enjoyed the pool a lot!
And everyone rallied round us looking after Georgie so I got a nice break!
Nearby was the stunning Vallon Gai waterfall and lagoon. A place you must visit if nearby. Nature at its best.
The evening before the wedding we hired out a full restaurant in Cotignac, there were about fifty of us. This was for the wedding party, close family and friends. It was busy!
The next morning was wedding day. The caterers and events team were busy setting up and the boys were busy practising their (triple) best man speech. The ceremony wasnt until 5pm so we had a relaxing day by the pool and helping out where we could but everything was covered.
The ceremony area was set up in front of the Chateau with the magnificent views as the backdrop.
My best man!
We not allowed to take any photos during the ceremony. It was an emotional service, both bride and groom shed tears, it was beautiful. Georgie slept through-out!
The drinks reception afterwards was in the same area with various food and drinks stands to keep people going until the evening meal.
It was a great chance to catch up with everyone who arrived for the wedding, who hadn’t been staying with us at the Chateau. Everyone loved meeting Georgie.
The meal was in the beautiful courtyard that our room looked out on to. Photo taken from our bedroom window.
Even Georgie sat at the head table. We bought a mosquito net to go over the pram which was a must!
The Totman brothers.
Aunty and uncle love.
I lasted until about 11pm until we went up to bed. I was knackered!
The next day we had a brunch where many of the guests who were staying else where came back to the Chateau. There were again fabulous food stations from hot food, cooking eggs of your choice, to cold food including lots of yummy pastries, breads, salad and fruit.
We flew home that evening at 8pm so we had the whole day to relax. We drove back to the airport and stopped in Cotignac for an early dinner. Taking the Europcar hire car back was very easy, they have a great service at Nice Airport.
The flight home was again very successful and again she was fast asleep for take off and landing so I did not need to feed her. We landed quite late UK time and thank goodness my mum was there waiting for us as we walked out at arrivals. Bed was calling!
It was an incredible wedding, every detail was absolutely perfect. It was hands down the best wedding I have been to, I will never forget the whole experience. I am so glad we were able to go (thank you Georgie for coming sixteen days early and thank you Matt and Alex for letting us still come at such late notice). We had such an amazing time and are so grateful to everyone who helped us to look after Georgie so we could both enjoy our holiday. Georgie you were an absolute dream and Alex, you looked exceptional, your dress was just perfect, you looked beautiful. Welcome to the biggest family in history…The Totmans.
Heres to the new Mr and Mrs Totman…