Celebrations should be celebrated. That sounds like an obvious conclusion, but some people allow a special occasion to fly by with only an acknowledging nod or one raised toast. We are not those people. Travel lovers like us live in the moment and need only the slighted reason to call the entire family together to celebrate. The only question is how best to combine a travel experience with a diverse mix of family members. Obviously, they need a vacation that fulfills their divergent interests, a journey filled with a wide range of activities for a wide range of ages. They need a cruise vacation.
Whether it’s a yearly family vacation or an anniversary or graduation celebration, cruises are inherently designed to please the youngest, the oldest and everyone in between. This is exactly what you need for those multi-generational vacations, or those family reunions, or even for just your family of five. Because when everyone in your group has a wealth of activities, flavors and entertainment that engages their senses and makes them smile, the more they can share these authentic moments of discovery and delight with one another. Here are just some of the many reasons why cruising continues to be the ideal vacation for families big and small.
STATEROOMS FOR FAMILIES
Cruise lines are seeing a steady rise in multigenerational families onboard. As a result, they are creating new accommodations to suit everyone’s needs. For example, you can find spacious suites on ships — some as large as nearly 7,000 square feet — that can sleep up to eight guests and often come with special services, such as a dedicated concierge or exclusive restaurants.
There are also cabins that connect interiorly with a door or through a shared balcony. During the day, you can leave these open and enjoy family time together. At night, you still have the privacy of your own stateroom to relax in. Of course, the best thing about your cruise is that if everyone opts for their own cabin or suite, you’re still close by and can spend your days together enjoying all the onboard activities or shore excursions.
DINING FOR EVERYONE
Cruise vacations are perfect for picky eaters and adventurous foodies alike. Restaurants included in your fare cover a tantalizing range of options, from sushi and pizza to burgers and ice cream, along with a buffet that collects all the flavors of the world in one easy-to-taste location. The main dining room is also a delectable option each night, where you can enjoy a more formal experience.
For a unique dining adventure, aim for one of the specialty restaurants onboard. Rivaling some of the best of New York or Paris, specialty restaurants generally focus on one type of cuisine or style, elevating the meal to a culinary art. These flavor-filled journeys take you to Far East villages and Mexican fiestas, to Caribbean shores and Brazilian steakhouses. Each night is filled with new delights.
Your family members could spend the entire cruise together — racing down waterslides, solving an escape room or roaring around a racetrack — but odds are your crew will crave separate activities. It’s just a fact of life: different generations seek out different pursuits based on their interests and activity levels. Once again, cruise ships come to the rescue.
Most cruise lines come with fabulous children’s programs — ranging from toddlers to teens — that have a mix of structured and
unstructured activities, typically with a bit of education combined with the fun. At tween- and teen-focused areas, kids can play the latest video games, watch popular movies, dance to a DJ or just hang out and look angsty — if that’s their thing. Of course, all these areas are supervised by well-trained staff.
While the kids are engaged and having fun, the adults in your crew can hit the spa, sip a tropical cocktail in an adults-only area, relax in the whirlpool, learn how to salsa dance, take a wine-tasting course or attend an enrichment class to deep-dive in an interesting subject. Once again, everyone in your group has all the choices in the world to make the most of their time.
Of course, the best part of a family cruise is exploring new and exciting parts of the world together. Maybe it’s the grandparents showing their grandkids the town in Italy they grew up in, the parents returning to a favorite part of Mexico or the whole gang watching ice calve from glaciers for the first time in Alaska. Wherever in the world you explore, each locale is enriched by being there together. These destinations also offer unique ways to celebrate the reason you are all together. A vow-renewal ceremony held on a Jamaican beach is a great way to honor a 25th anniversary. Or how about letting the kids choose the shore excursion in Cozumel as a graduation or birthday gift? Whatever you are celebrating, the destinations you visit will offer new and exciting ways to make it unforgettable.