Lisa Goodmurphy is a lawyer living near Toronto, Canada who left
the corporate world to stay home with her two daughters, Katie and
Emma (now aged 15 and 9). Badly bitten by the travel bug
years ago, Lisa considers herself fortunate that her family is
equally enthusiastic about exploring the world. Here she
tells us why she chose a cruise for her family holiday this
You can read about her family's travel adventures on her blog
There was a time when cruising was considered an adults-only
vacation but that perception is quickly changing as mainstream
cruiselines welcome families and parents discover that cruising
with kids can be quite an attractive vacation option.
Our first cruise was a multi-generational Caribbean one and I was a reluctant
participant but our entire family loved it! We have since
been on several cruises and I now believe it is one of the most
family-friendly vacations that we take.
The ease of travel is one of the greatest benefits for harried
parents who might not otherwise consider foreign travel with their
kids due to the logistics of transporting family and luggage from
point A to point B. On a cruise they can unpack once and have
the ship transport the family to several destinations.
Mainstream cruiselines also have great facilities for the kids with fun and
educational programming that provides them with an opportunity to
have social time with their peers and which allows parents to spend
some time together without the kids. Families that have
picky eaters are grateful for the familiar food choices that will
please their kids and the extensive onboard entertainment options
means that there is no chance that anyone will ever announce that
they are bored.
The hardest part of cruising is deciding where to go as the
options include a wide range of worldwide destinations and there is
no need to limit family cruising to the Caribbean. Last
summer we cruised in the Eastern
Mediterranean which is a fantastic destination
for families for several reasons.
History - Mediterranean cruises include ports that will
bring ancient history and civilizations to life for everyone in the
family. In Athens, Greece a family can visit the
Acropolis to see the Parthenon and other temples; in Kusadasi,
Turkey travel to Ephesus to experience one of the best-preserved
classical cities in the Mediterranean (or in the words of our
younger daughter "see where Cleopatra used to hang out"); and in
Rome stroll through the Forum and imagine gladiators doing battle
in the Colosseum. Seeing these ancient sites makes a far
greater impact than reading about them in a text book.
Culture - Kids on a Mediterranean cruise
will benefit from the general exposure to other languages and ways
of life while visiting countries such as Italy, Greece, Turkey,
Spain, France and Croatia. Several of the ports of call also
provide the opportunity to visit some of the world's great museums,
art galleries and cultural sites such as the Vatican, the Blue
Mosque, or the Uffizi Gallery and hiring a kid-friendly guide can
dial up the fun factor. Our family also enjoyed learning more
about local traditions at a pizza-making class in
Sorrento and a hands-on pottery
demonstration in Istanbul.
Spectacular Weather and Beautiful
Beaches - Summer time in the Mediterranean is
spectacular and there isn't the risk of hurricanes that there is in
the Caribbean. Selecting a cruise that includes stops in the
Greek Islands will pretty much guarantee some fabulous family beach
Food - There are few places in the world
where the food is as good as it is in the Mediterranean.
Pasta, pizza, gelato - it doesn't get much better than this
and even the pickiest of eaters is going to be thrilled with the
Cruising is a great way to vacation with kids and
the Mediterranean can be the perfect
place to start.
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