With so many hurdles, it’s reasonable if you’re afraid to arrange a cruise holiday with a toddler.
Cruising with a toddler, on the other hand, is actually more enjoyable and less difficult than you may assume.
In fact, following your first family trip with your child, you’ll be itching to go on another.
Before cruising with a toddler, though, there are a few things to consider. Do they have any cabins that are suitable for children?
Or, more specifically, what aboard activities are offered for my infant?
Let’s take a look at some of the best cruise for families with toddlers, as well as some helpful hints for cruising with a toddler, to put your mind on focus.
What Should You Know Before Taking a Cruise with Toddlers?
Cruises are often marketed to adults; but, if you’re going on cruising with your baby, there are a few things to keep in mind before boarding the ship!
Most cruise lines have age restrictions, which vary from company to company. Some cruise companies require children to be at least six months old before embarking on a cruise, while others require them to be two years old or older to participate in their children’s programs without an adult.
If requested at least one week before to departure, most ships will offer cribs and Pack ‘n Plays available in their children’s centers. However, packing your own kit is strongly advised to avoid inconveniencing fellow passengers who may find it difficult to satisfy the demands of young travelers on such a long journey.
The following is a list of fun things to do on a baby/toddler time cruise:
- Play Areas: – Designed to be safe zones where parents can keep an eye on their children while also allowing them to explore on their own.
- Sensory Room: – A place where kids may enjoy a variety of features that excite their senses of taste, touch, sight, and sound without worrying about getting lost or bumping into something.
- Baby Care Centers: – With a variety of conveniences to make life easier for busy parents.
- Toddler Play Places: These are play areas that are specifically created for toddlers.
Best Cruise For Families With Toddlers
If you’re thinking about going on a cruise with your toddlers or babies, here are some of our favorite cruise lines for preschoolers:
Disney Cruises for Toddlers and Babies
Many Disney Cruise ships have been designed with families in mind. From Pirate-themed parties to Club Oceaneer assemblies and Character Greeting sessions, there’s something for everyone, including toddlers (including breakfast, lunch, dinner).
On Disney Cruise Line, babies and toddlers get their own play space with toys, books, and videos. For the little ones, there are a range of activities offered, ranging from arts and crafts to movies and swimming in children’s pools.
Toddlers can even go to Camp Mickey Mouse, where they’ll meet new people and learn about different cultures. Parents will be relieved to learn that the ship has an outside splash zone with toddler-friendly water slides and kiddie pools, such as Nemo’s Reef.
It may not provide all-day entertainment, but it allows moms to relax without having to worry about dripping wet children running amok!
Toddler Cruises on Norwegian Cruise Lines
Norwegian Cruise Lines is wonderful for kids because it has a “Nursery” service where parents can drop off up to two toddlers under the age of three while they enjoy the cruise. The Nursery is open during the same hours as the childcare on Norwegian’s other ships and offers an age-appropriate curriculum created by early childhood specialists.
This means you won’t miss out on any excursions or evening shows since your kid isn’t in daycare. If you need some alone time but still want to keep an eye on what they’re up to, ship-wide WiFi makes it simple!
Norwegian also has a range of activities for kids, including one-day permits to the supervised play area “Kids’ Crew.” Plus, through their “Family Time program,” they provide discounted pricing on babysitting services – all you have to do is book an appointment online! If you have more than one child (or two), this is a good place to start before reserving somewhere else.
Preschoolers at the Royal Caribbean
If you want to take an extended trip with your preschooler, Royal Caribbean is a terrific choice. On each of their ships, there are multiple daycare programs, the largest of which can accommodate up to 100 children at once! This cruise company also has something enjoyable planned for every family member, including daily field trips and regular special activities.
For children under the age of three, Royal Caribbean provides a complimentary “DreamWorks Experience.” Onboard, there will be a Meet and Greet with DreamWorks characters, as well as the opportunity to see The Boss Baby in theaters!
They also have a fantastic childcare service if you’re traveling alone or need some time away from your youngster. So it’s not an issue if you don’t want to leave your child in daycare at all times while on vacation.
What’s the best part? You can apply for their family discounts, which cover up to two adults and three children cruising together, allowing the complete family to come aboard without breaking the budget.
Carnival Cruise Lines
For parents with toddlers, the Carnival Cruise Line is an excellent choice. It has a special “Kids’ Crew” program, as well as kiddie pools and safety lessons for kids.
Carnival also offers a “Kids Program” for children aged one to five years old, which provides entertainment and educational activities while the parents relax or enjoy one of the cruise’s many shore excursions.
On select sailings, for example, Playtime with Pirates allows children aged three to seven to explore the ship’s decks for clues while learning about pirate life onboard. During this 90-minute activity session, there are lots of games and activities at all hours, so it doesn’t interfere with daytime naps or bedtimes as much.
And what if you require additional time away from your toddler? They provide in-cabin daycare so you can get into an adult swimsuit without worrying about toddlers all afternoon! Not only is it handy for parents, but Carnival also offers children’s pricing, meaning that two adults and three children will pay less than four people (plus upcharges) doing the same thing.
If you’re seeking to get away from it all with your young one, P&O Cruises is the place to go. They have a childcare service staffed by trained nannies on board their ships, as well as unique family rooms created just for people traveling with children under the age of four!
While this ship does not have traditional meal hours, it does offer various eateries where babies can eat at any time of day or night.
Mickey Mouse Club is an engaging activity program for children aged three months to five years old that includes arts and crafts, storytime, and activities specifically developed for them.
There’s also a “Splash Academy,” where kids may learn to use the potty and play with water in toddler-friendly pools.
One of the best cruise lines to take your kids on is Oceania Cruises. Their ships have a “Kids’ Place” where they provide activities and crafts for youngsters ranging in age from three months to twelve years old!
Their Camp Oceania area offers daily scheduled enrichment programs exclusively for children aged three and under, allowing mothers to independently tour each port of call without having to worry about childcare arrangements.
There’s also an onboard water park with miniature slides and pools for little ones who aren’t quite ready for the larger splashy rides just yet.
They also provide complimentary babysitting and have special kid-friendly dining periods where children under the age of two can dine at any time of day!
Last but not least, the Princess Crusie collection is a fantastic choice for toddlers and preschoolers! For children aged five and under, they have a unique baby club called “Club Princess.” Arts and crafts, creative playing, storytime, and cooking demonstrations are among the activities offered at “Club Princess.”
They’re well-known for their onboard water parks and kids’ clubs, which are ideal if you need some alone time! On sea days, there’s the original Oceaneers Club, which caters to babies aged three and under and offers unique and exciting activities.
They also have themed dinners like Pasta Night, which includes an arts and crafts station, and Circus Pajama Party, where kids can have pizza, hot dogs, French fries, burgers, and more while wearing their PJs and socializing with their shipmates.
Then there are the lovely princesses that come out twice a day for Princess Tea Time to meet the little ones – what could be better?
They also have a baby nursery onboard that is available 24 hours a day and provides child care services for the duration of your cruise.
How Do I Know Which Cruise Lines Are Best As A Parent Of Two Toddlers?
When it comes to cruising with toddlers, being aware is crucial! Some cruise lines provide more options for parents who want to enjoy their time at sea while keeping an eye on their children than others. But, before you decide which path is best for you and your family, consider the following suggestions:
- Think about how appropriate it is for different ages.
- Inquire about amenities appropriate for your child’s age group.
- Compare Your Child’s Age Group’s Food Options
- Double-check the ship’s dimensions.
- Think about activities that will appeal to people of various ages and interests.
- Determine if they provide programming for children.
What Can I Do to Keep My Child Amused?
How can you keep your small one engaged for the duration of your trip, with so much time spent traveling back and forth from port to port, frequently hours upon hours of waiting, which may easily lead to his attention span dwindling as quickly as his patience?
• Bring a variety of snacks and beverages, as well as any favorite toys or other gadgets.
• Bringing a tablet for the kids to watch movies that you can download ahead of time so they don’t have access to the WiFi range is a terrific way to keep them entertained. It also saves time downloading when you return to the port.
• Go outdoors onto the deck early in the morning or late in the evening when there are fewer people around, calm music playing quietly from speakers, and fewer distractions than on board the ship – just make sure the kids are dressed appropriately!
The finest cruise lines for families with toddlers are those that provide delicious cuisine, have activities appropriate for your child’s age group (e.g., children’s programs), and are ideal for children of various ages.
If you plan ahead of time, cruises can be a fantastic family vacation. While it may be tempting to sign up on the spur of the moment, make sure this is truly what you want before making any final decisions!
Now go out and find the best cruise for families with toddlers. From parents to grandparents, everyone in the family will be grateful!