We often travel to Wisconsin to visit my family. It is a 4 hour drive, so are always looking for ways to keep the kids busy and entertained. Bill hates to stop, so it is a long four hours. A great item to check out for car rides, bedtime, and really any time is the Giddio Audio Adventures. We listened to the Billy Brown Goes Hiking CD on our drive home (aff), and it was a life saver for us. Will was super crabby, and the only thing that made him quit screaming was this CD. It definitely holds your children's attention. It is geared towards kids aged 3 (aff) – 7 (though it worked on my 1 year old too!) This is actually pretty cool. Instead of a narrator reading a story, there is a full cast. Everyone has their own voice. I love that it makes my kids use their imagination. I'm not the only one who likes this either — it has won several awards (Dr. Toy's Best Products 2007, several iParenting media awards, and Creative Child magazine's Seal of Excellence). We ended up having to listen to it more than once, because they like it so much (run time is between 30 – 45 minutes depending on which CD you are listening to).
I love that you can even try this out. If you go to their site, you can download Billy Brown And The Mystery Package for free! You can also print off the CD covers and have your kids color them! I highly recommend checking this out as a great alternative to TV!