You may remember that last summer we went on a dream holiday of ours - we went on a cruise around the Mediterranean with the whole family in tow. I know that some people must have thought we were mad, taking four young children on a cruise ship but honestly it was the best holiday, there is something on a cruise holiday for everyone and since coming back we have booked another cruise holiday for 2021. This will be our third cruise holiday with children so I wanted to share with you some top tips on how to plan a family cruise holiday.
Think about your destination
The first thing you will want to think about is your destination. We chose the Mediterranean as the weather wouldn't be too warm but we would still be able to sunbathe and use the pool on sea days. I also really wanted to show the children around Europe and this seemed like a great way to do it. We managed to see Rome, Florence, Pisa, Gibraltar, Barcelona amongst others, which is great for one two week holiday! The ease at getting on and off the ship in each destination is great for families too.
On our next cruise we are doing something different and going for some winter sun in December so we are headed to the Caribbean. There will be less sightseeing and more relaxing I think but we plan to see some beautiful places and get some much needed rest and sun on our bones at what is usually a really stressful time of year.
Research different cruise lines and ships
There are so many different cruise lines you can choose from, and within each cruise line there are different ships so this needs some planning. For our last cruise as we had a small baby at the time it was important for us that we didn't need to fly and that we went straight from the UK so I started to research cruises from Southampton straight away.
When I was looking at different cruise lines and ships I would consider what the cabins looked like, what facilities were on board for the children and whether there was a kids club that they could use. There is quite a variation in price between different cruise liners and cabins so it is worth spending a bit of time looking at different options so you can find the most cost effective.
Plan an itinerary for each port
Once we had booked our cruise I found it absolutely essential to make a plan for each port, even if that plan was just to wander around the town I would look up things to head towards such as parks and beaches, and look up nice restaurants and cafes to go to. We also booked onto a few organised tours which we looked into beforehand. On a cruise you are only in port for a few hours so it pays to be organised and plan ahead so that you make the most of the time that you have there.
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