The Top Five Choices For Family Cruises:
Family cruises are gaining in popularity. Once considered the province of honeymooners and retirees, cruise lines are experiencing a veritable renaissance in family vacation bookings. Statistics now show that over one and a half million children 18 years of age and younger are participating in family cruises annually. Why not join the fun. Here are our five favorite cruise lines for family adventures.
1. Carnival – Exhilarating Family Cruises
A 320 foot long water slide? A Sky Course ropes course? The Carnival Breeze offers these activities, and many more. Whether you are traveling with teens seeking to socialize with friends, or younger children who merely want to splash and play in the sun, this Carnival ship is designed to accommodate. A limitless a variety of escapes for both children and adults ensures that your vacation will please the entire family. The Carnival Breeze sails the Eastern and Southern Caribbean.
2. Holland America – An Unexpected Family Alternative
Family cruises are a new focus here. Once associated primarily with an older crowd, Holland America’s venerable brand has undergone a shift as of late. Now boasting Broadway-style shows, state-of-the-art fitness centers, dedicated “Oasis” and “The Loft” facilities for teens, and “Club HAL” programs for the little ones, Holland America has reinvented itself as the cruise line for sailors of all ages. Its ships cruise to exotic destinations, while offering a wide variety of activities designed to please everyone, from the very young to the young at heart. Offering everything from hip cybercafes to trendy culinary centers, this cruise line is in the vanguard of family-friendly sailing. Holland America’s family cruises offer worldwide itineraries which include visits to Alaska, Asia and the South Pacific.
3. Disney Magic – The Definition of Family Fun
Disney Cruise Line is, and will always be, the ultimate destination for family magic designed to bring fairy tales to life. From the Disney Wonder to the Disney Dream, the line’s cruise ships continue to be on the cutting edge of family-centric cruise experiences. For fans of Disney characters from Cinderella to Goofy, meet and greet events are schedule throughout each cruise. With whole decks dedicated to activities for every age group, and an on-board paging system allowing adults and children to keep in touch, it is easy for families to travel together. While children are being entertained, adults can enjoy a myriad of activities such as wine tastings, cooking classes, dancing, and much more. Disney’s family cruises travel everywhere from the Caribbean to the California coast, and sailings originating in South Florida and Europe have recently been added.
4. Royal Caribbean – Family Fun In The City At Sea
Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas is the largest cruise ship ever built. At 225,282 gross tons it can carry up to 5,400 guests, and nearly 3,000 crew members. It is creatively designed for family cruises. Its large outdoor green spaces create a unique cruising experience, giving new meaning to the concept of a seaside vacation. Its boardwalk area features carousel rides, while the Youth Zone has activities for children of all ages. Included are a theater for kid-produced shows, a children’s gym area, an adventure science lab, and much more. As one of the most innovative resorts at sea, Royal Caribbean is a top choice for family fun seekers. Its family cruises sail to many destinations worldwide, including the Eastern Pacific, the Atlantic coast of North America, the Caribbean and Europe.
5. Princess Cruises – Family Cruises For Sailors Of All Ages
Known for their great value and casual atmosphere, Princess cruise ships provide a full slate of activities for sailors of every age group. They offer the ever popular Movies Under the Stars, an opportunity for families to enjoy films while luxuriating in the open air. According to Princess, the goal of the family vacation is simple — to find that elusive experience that allows both parents and kids to each enjoy their favorite activities, and to spend quality time together. Guests have discovered that family cruises are an ideal way to escape, providing a venue that caters to the individual interests and needs of both adults and children. Aboard Princess ships, the respected Youth and Teen Programs provide state-of-the-art youth center facilities and an array of activities that will keep junior cruisers entertained, allowing parents to relax knowing their children are nearby, well-supervised, and having fun. Princess family cruises sail to many destinations throughout the world.
With so many fantastic cruise lines vying for your family’s vacation dollar this year, one thing is certain. Whichever cruise you book, your family is sure to experience the adventure of a lifetime. Don’t forget to add cruise insurance. It can save your vacation when unexpected problems arise.
We thank Rob Toledo for contributing this post.
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Cruise ship photo courtesy of Shutterstock