a typewriter glasses and notepad on wood with the series title in the middle
I’m A Blogging Success Because… Week #23
15th April 2017
Highlights of the Week: #34
16th April 2017

Can We Cruise with Tots?

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You must think I am obsessing posting another blog about holidays so soon this week (Have you seen “10 Must Haves for Tot Friendly Travel!”) but I can’t stop looking if I am honest and as it is my first in such a long time I really want to make sure I get it right and am not disappointed. So, something we have been thinking about is possibly going on a cruise. I have never been but have always longed for a relaxing Caribbean cruise or the fun of an Iglu Cruise which is much more practical than attempting a relaxing break with a toddler. However, I have my concerns about whether it is really practical to take a toddler or young child on a cruise and whether or not I would just be panicking the whole holiday that my adventurous, no fear child would somehow end up overboard. So, I reached out to my lovely friends in the blogging community to see if any of them had dared to cruise with tots and to hear their thoughts…

the side of a cruise liner at sunset with a palm tree to the left

  • Talya (from Motherhood The Real Deal) said: We just came back on a 7 day cruise to France, Spain and Portugal and are now hooked! The children’s facilities were amazing – night nursery, kid’s club, children’s tea and swimming pools all a big hit and we are already thinking about our next one. We also couldn’t believe how affordable it was even during the school holidays!  – Okay so this made me just a little bit excited… can I go now?!

twin beds with white linen and red pillows and throws a lamp in between and a mirror up behind them - it is a cabin on a boat

  • Emma (from Island Living 365) told me: We love going on cruises! It is perfect for the whole family, including grandparents. There really is something for everyone. I would book last minute as you can get a bargain. Also we always book an inside room as it is far cheaper. An inside room is also better if you have children as they will sleep really well! – Ooo that is a good tip I wouldn’t have thought of as I’d have probably gone automatically for outside!

on an outside cruise deck at sunset by the pool with the boat lit with blue

  • Victoria (from Mummy Times Two) said: We went on five cruises before my daughter was six. I can honestly say they were the best holidays we have ever had. My top tip, is to book an inside cabin, because it means the children can stay up later to enjoy the shows in the evening without having their sleep disturbed in the morning by the light coming through the window. – I am definitely getting the feeling I should pick an inside room!

two boys on shoulders play wrestling in a pool with others smiling around them

  • Jenny (from The Gingerbread House) made a good point: We went last year with our 4 and 6 year old. They had a great time with the children’s tea, swimming pools and kids clubs. Can I admit us adults were bored silly! – I think Jenny makes a really good point. It’s not ALL about the kids so I’d better make sure I pick a cruise that has a lot for us adults too. 

a selection of 5 different cocktails in different glasses. barman stood behind with arms folded

  • Finally, Samantha (from Home Heart Harmony) said: We took our two children aged 6 (girl) and 3 (boy) on a Celebrity cruise back in 2009 along with my whole family and my niece (8) and nephew (5). It was an amazing holiday but as a parent, very stressful! The room was extremely cramped with the four of us in it which made for a fair bit of tension! The evening meals were amazing but expecting our kids to sit and behave for such a long stretch every night was, looking back, totally unrealistic. We had to resort to DVD players and headphones for the boys who just couldn’t stay seated for so long (2-3 hours!) without mischief! There was a very stressful moment on the top deck in the evening when my 3 year old got away from me and ran full pelt up a stair case at the edge of the ship in high wind. I was terrified he would get blown overboard and still have nightmares about it to this day (he is now 11!) All in all, I would say my kids were too young at the time for any of us to appreciate the holiday fully. I would consider another cruise now that they are older as there is no doubt it’s an incredible holiday, giving you opportunities to see places you may otherwise never visit. The service was amazing and we felt we were in the lap of luxury but could not relax and make the most of it with such young children.  – I really appreciate an honest opinion and I think I would definitely be looking for a cruise that was “child-focused” with perhaps a more relaxed dining experience. Things like this will definitely take presidence over adult activities for me. To be honest with how long it’s been since my last holiday, I’d be happy with a pool and sun lounger!

a blond child smiling at the camera with food all over his face. picture in black and white

Thank you so much to all the wonderful mamas who gave me their thoughts on cruising with young children. I have to say that I am really really keen on the idea now, even more so than before. Is it strange that I think in this random head of mine that it feels safer than staying in a resort?! I think I’d be a lot happier about my little one attending clubs and activities on the boat than in a hotel where anyone could get access. I love the idea of moving from place to place and definitely think something like and Iglu Carnival Cruise would be a great idea for us. When we do decide where we are going and what we are doing, I will be sure to let you all know. Until then, keep hitting me with your holiday ideas and if you have thoughts on cruising with young children then please do leave me a comment!

a view across a blue pool on a cruise ship with a bronze dolphin statue

This is a collaborative post – all thoughts and opinions are my own

22 Comments

  1. This is really useful. I’m biting the bullet and looking for a holiday with my lot ( I’ve never dared take them away on my own before!) Cruise could definitely be an option I think!!! #ablogginggoodtime

  2. I need to do this someday. I am is desperate need of a vacation.

    #abloggingoodtime

  3. Even though I don’t have kids, I think it could be a fabulous trip! It seems like most of the cruise lines have thought of everything!
    And I like the inside rooms for that exact reason—although next time we may try a balcony…
    Jodie
    http://www.jtouchofstyle.com
    #ablogginggoodtime

  4. This sounds like a fun idea for a holiday, although since I live so far inland, a cruise is not an option for us. Perhaps in the future when we can handle the plane ride as well as the cruise option. I hope you are able to try going with your family! #ablogginggoodtime

  5. I’d love to go on a cruise but had definitely decided to wait until the kids were older (to stay with my parents) maybe I’ll rethink now… #ablogginggoodtime

  6. Stephanie says:

    I love all the travel posts. Once you start planning and thinking about vacation, it can be hard to stop. I think I’m to the point where I’m perpetually trying to plan a trip. 🙂 #ablogginggoodtime

  7. Interesting read, food for thought, never would of thought about taking children on a cruse. X #ablogginggoodtime

  8. ohmummymia says:

    having a flight with tots i’s quite challenging so cruse:D? Anyway it sounds nice so maybe we will try one day
    #ablogginggoodtime

  9. You’re brave! I don’t know if I could do a cruise with my little ones! Looks like you had fun! #ablogginggoodtime

  10. Petite Words says:

    Such an interesting idea. I get exceptionally sea sick so wouldn’t be up for that, but I know so so many families that would!#ablogginggoodtime

  11. I have never thought of taking kids on a cruise before, sounds like it could be lots of fun. Thanks for sharing. #ablogginggoodtime

  12. Rebecca says:

    I feel like this post has changed my opinion of cruises… now to convince my husband! #ablogginggoodtime

  13. Ive never been on a cruise (closest thing was a ferry to Amsterdam and I was ridiculously sea sick 🤢) but it’s something I’ve always fancied. I think we’ll probably wait until Rory’s a little old and then maybe look at a family friendly one #abloggingoodtime

  14. Jaki says:

    I’ve always fancied a cruise and would love to think we will get to go on one day! I want to even more so after reading this! #ablogginggoodtime

  15. Looks really good for the little ones. Definitely something to consider! #ablogginggoodtime

  16. I would love to go on a cruise. Unfortunately hubby works on ships for half the year so I’d never get him to holiday on one too 😩
    #Ablogginggoodtime

  17. Lots of lovely tips. Thanks for sharing. I’m not sure I would do a cruise though. I would be a nervous wreck the whole time.
    #ablogginggoodtime

  18. Emma Reed says:

    your images are lovely but I am still not sure how I would cope on a boat for so long! #ablogginggoodtime

  19. I have always wanted to go on a cruise but it never happened. Honestly, I wouldn’t do it until Peachy is old enough to really listen to me. She’s only 17 months old now and when we’re out of the house she doesnlt listen to a word I say. She’s just too distracted by everything. She’s the exploring kind and is not a clingy baby. So no boats for her until I can be sure that she will come to me when I ask every time. #ablogginggoodtime

  20. I went on a cruise when i was 13 so know as a young teen how the entertainment was key. we were lucky to have a brilliant team who were super friendly. For younger kids I’d want a kid club and something that can keep them busy. I would worry about them being sea sick but i suppose a ferry/boat trip before booking could give you the answer! #ablogginggoodtime

  21. Crummy Mummy says:

    We haven’t been on a family cruise yet but I’d love to! #ablogginggoodtime

  22. I have taken my son on cruises since he was 7 months old. The experience is clearly different to the couple’s holidays I used to enjoy, but the experience can be very rewarding. Crew love interacting with tots and toddlers, especially those that have young children at home that they haven’t seen in months. The variety of food means there’s a world of choice at mealtimes – even the fussiest kids will be happy. Finding a ship with (free) entertainment for the littlest sailors can be tricky, but there are choices out there. Once they hit the magic age of three, the world of free kid’s clubs opens up to them. A dedicated team of staff typically host sessions that span from morning to night, offering parents a little time off.

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