The former Carlton hero sports a different career since he retired from the AFL. Anthony Koutoufides has been a ballroom dancer on Dancing With The Stars, cook on Celebrity Come Dine With Me Australia and runs health clinics at Kouta Fit Club. His multi-varied career means he travels all over Australia and the globe and a few times a year he takes his kids Jamie (10), Monique (9) and Lukas (3) with him on family holiday. He tells suitcases&strollers why travelling with children (sometimes) makes them smile.
What do you enjoy about travel?
Every trip has different things you look forward to. It depends on what you are going for. Holidays are good to spend time with the family and the kids.
Where is the most surprising place you've been on holiday?
Macedonia. I didn’t know what to expect. It was a little bit different. Not a third world country, but still underdeveloped. There were lots of old traditions and the food was magnificent; really good and fresh. Their beach is a beautiful lake and it’s the second largest lake in the world with clean, fresh water. It shocked me because it’s really nice.
What do your kids enjoy about travel?
The kids love all sorts of things. The beach and the water. Theme parks and rides. Especially the big, fun rides and rollercoasters.
But sometimes they can’t wait to go home. They miss their own bed and maybe home-cooked food.
Where has been your kids' favourite place to go on holiday?
The little one won’t have an idea. For the other two it probably would be Disneyland.
Where was your favourite place to take your kids on holiday?
The Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia.
We also went to Las Vegas and Disneyland for the kids’ sakes as a family. [It was amazing] to see them being happy with smiling faces on them. It was a different experience being overseas in a different country.
Where is the one place in the world that you want to take your kids?
There’s so many places it’s hard to pin point.
My son wants to see San Francisco, USA because he’s fascinated by Alcatraz. He plays games and sees Alcatraz and he’s asked me about it a couple of times.
There’s so much history in Europe. Picturesque, beautiful places –obviously France and Spain have some immaculate areas. We’ve seen Venice, Italy because my mum’s from Italy but there are probably other parts they need to see too. Europe has got so much history. Imagine them seeing the Eifel Tower for the first time.
Where’s the one place in Australia you’d like to take the kids that they haven’t been to?
As a family we haven’t been to Perth. No particular reason, but it is a beautiful city and the beaches are wonderful there too. You’ve just gotta watch out for sharks. [To find out more about the reality of sharks on Australian beaches, see the suitcases&strollers interview with the team from Bondi Rescue here.]
Where is your next family holiday destination?
The next one we’re going to is Adelaide, South Australia. I’ve got an event there for my business so I’ll take [the family] to spend time together.
What are your top tips for organising a successful family holiday?
I leave it up to my wife!
Accommodation is important. Obviously for 3 kids we need at least 2 bedrooms. It’s always good to have something like a kitchen just in case.
[Holiday have] got to be based around the kids. They need to have access to things the kids can do but something for us [parents] too. Like the Gold Coast in Queensland, Australia. There are theme parks but other things that are also good for parents and kids. [To read more about the Gold Coast click on the suitcases&strollers story here.]
Where are your top 3 places to take your kids on holidays?
· Disneyland in America, 100%.
· France because it also has a Disneyland. [To read more about Disneyland Paris with kids, see the suitcases&strollers story here.]
· Las Vegas, USA is a bit of an eye opener. Or maybe New York City. It’s a big vibrant city with lots of hustle and bustle and I think the kids would like to see the Statue of Liberty.
If you're interested to take your kids to see an AFL football game in Australia, see the suitcases&strollers story Melbourne.