Baby Friendly Cruises – How to choose a baby friendly cruise itinerary!

I love cruises but besides the restaurants, amenities and convenience what I love most about cruises is the ports! I love seeing so many places in bite sized chunks so I know where I want and where I don’t want to go back to and satisfy my wanderlust in a really easy way. When we were travelling as a couple if the itinerary had somewhere new on it we would quite happily go especially if it was good value but now we have a baby we chose our cruise itinerary more carefully. A lot of people question whether there are baby friendly cruises so here are my top tips for picking a baby friendly cruise itinerary: 

LOOK AT WHERE THE PORT IS 

Many of the ports are not actually in the city they declare in their name! For instance Rome civitavecchia is actually about 40mins to an hour away by bus! Don’t even get me started on London (Southampton).  I’m not saying don’t go to these ports but just to make sure you know. You might be willing to do the journey to Rome but probably not want do the drive to Florence from Livorno the next day.

WHATS IN PORT 

Know what is in the port or if you have to travel to get to anything of interest. For instance, most people go to Florence from Livorno but there is a great aquarium in Livorno which is great for families. On the other hand we found visiting Toulon to be be a waste of a day as if you weren’t getting the coach to Provence it really wasn’t worth getting off! If you know this in avabce you can work out if there are too many of these on one itinerary or if it breaks the holiday up nicely.

CHILDREN FRIENDLY 

Think about what family friendly activities you would like to do and see what matches your criteria. For instance we thought Valencia was perfect because of Turia Gardens a great place for families, Livorno was great because of the  aquarium and Ajaccio was great because of the beaches.

Beautiful beach in Ajaccio – walkable from port


 

PUBLIC TRANSPORT AND ACCESSIBILITY 

Find out where your ship docks (some cities have two ports depending on ship size). Find out if you will need to take a shuttle bus or tender or a taxi if you are not getting a shore excursion.

Tendering in Santorini

 

CHECK IF EXCURSIONS TAKE CHILDREN

If there is a particular place you want to visit make sure you check that your cruise will take a baby. Otherwise you are going to need to make arrangements with a local provider.

CHECK THE TEMPERATURE

My baby is use to warm weather (understatement) having been born in the MIddle East but not all children are use to these climbs. Make sure you consider the activities available in port against the temperature to make sure it is comfortable and enjoyable for all the family!

PRIVATE ISLAND OR PUBLIC BEACHES 

If you are travelling to the Caribbean consider if your cruise goes to a private island or if you will have to pay to visit beaches and resorts. It might be more cost effective to pick a cruise which stops at its own island.

Labadee royal Caribbean private island


 

OTHER TOP TIPS FOR FAMILIES 

MAKE SURE YOU BOOK THE RIGHT CABIN

Understanding the different cabin sizes and picking accordingly will help you enjoy your holiday more. You can see our cabin guide here!

ALL CRUISES ARE CHILD FRIENDLY BUT SOME ARE BETTER THAN OTHERS 

Recently I hosted a post by other family travel bloggers. While we all agreed that cruises are a great holiday with babies we found that some lines are better than others. For instance on our Royal Caribbean had some baby sitting facilities for babies where’s Sharon from Where’s Sharon found Carnival more difficult.

For more top tips to enjoy a cruise with a baby check out our guide here!

19 thoughts on “Baby Friendly Cruises – How to choose a baby friendly cruise itinerary!”

  1. Great tips. I would love to go on a cruise but my husband is in the merchant navy and spends half his life on ships so i’d never get him to take a holiday on one too. Maybe once he retires and is missing the ocean x
    #MarvMondays

  2. We just got back from our first cruise on Thursday and I can now say wholeheartedly that we are sold on cruise vacations. We went on a Disney cruise and it was so kid friendly for both our preschooler and baby. We’re already planning our next one. #mondayescapes
    Allison recently posted…Day Trip to Tillamook, OregonMy Profile

  3. These are some great tips, especially the one about the port from the actual listed city – Southampton for London is ridiculous. Its amazing how you can get to some port towns and realise how truly different they are from the shiny brochure if you aren’t willing to travel further afield!

  4. Some really could travel tips on choosing the right cruise. A good point about the port towns and the actual city. For example I live in Perth but cruises dock in Fremantle – a good 20min train ride from the city. Now Fremantle is a lovely historic town to explore – but it’s not Perth.
    Sally’s Tips 4 Trips recently posted…How to Save Money to TravelMy Profile

  5. Not having been on one, I can definitely appreciate how convenient cruising is for travelling with kids. Unfortunately, on our recent trip to Norway, the ships really spoilt the views and the crowds were a bit overwhelming. I think I’d have to go for a smaller cruise to try them out. Thanks for sharing on #farawayfiles
    Katy Clarke recently posted…Faraway Files #26My Profile

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