Thinking about taking a cruise anytime soon? We highly encourage you to do it this summer! Whether you're a first time cruiser or a cruising veteran, there's always going to be a cruise tailored to your needs. We know there have been stories in the news about cruise ships breaking down or crashing, but let's be real here… there are thousands and thousands of cruise ships leaving port around the world everyday. There are bound to be a few negative stories here and there. Cruising has been one of the best types of vacations for us, and we'd recommend it to anyone. Here's why:
You Get to See Multiple Cities or Countries in One Trip
We can't explain how awesome it is to wake up in a new location each morning! Not having to unpack at each destination is a godsend in itself. Cruising is a great way to see different cities and countries in one trip. We love this aspect because there are some places we know we'll want to plan an entire return vacation to, and then there are some places we can go “yup, we made it” and know we won't return. We like to look at cruising as a buffet of cities; some we'll come back for more and other we can at least say we tried it.
Can You Say ‘All Inclusive'?
I mean, need I say more than you get access to pizza 24 hours a day? If I do then I'd like to add how great it is to go out to dinner and not worry about the bill. Or grab lunch and a drink by the pool and not stress about carrying cash. It's so handy to just bring your personal cruise card around the boat. I do want to add that alcohol isn't typically included unless you purchase a package prior. We've done one cruise where we charged drinks to the room and another where the drink package came included due to the timing when we booked the cruise. We have to say, having the drink package was much better, and it is something we will be paying for in future cruises if we don't get it thrown in as a bonus.
Even if your route doesn't have you stopping at a port everyday, there are still plenty of activities to participate in on board. Cruise companies really do want you to have a great time on your vacation and it shows. Every cruise has an Activities Director and you get an itinerary under your door each morning with the schedule of activities taking place throughout the day. They have morning yoga, games by the pool, hairy chest contest, dance parties, bingo, performances, comedy clubs, night clubs, formal night… the list is never ending. Trust us, you will never get bored on a cruise ship.
Adventure or Relaxation… or Both
On our cruise in the Eastern Mediterranean, we spent one day sightseeing and walking for 6+ hours all over Athens. When we returned to the boat we were so beat that we decided to go get a couples massage. It was a great day of exploring a new city and then getting to come “home” and de-stress. Normally our adventures are themed around relaxation or adventure, never both (not quite sure why we do that); but being on a cruise is the perfect combination of both. We often find ourselves so tired from exploring that we never find the energy to then go out at night as well. It's quite the process of figuring out where to eat and then where to go after, but on a cruise ship you just have to shower and go!
Trying New Things
Due to the multitude of shore excursions (what they call any activity off the boat), we've found ourselves trying activities we normally wouldn't do on a regular vacation. They have excursions tailored for every type of traveler as well; so whether you are more of a lounging on beach type of person or more of a thrill seeker, they've got you covered! You can book shore excursions directly through the cruise ship's activity center; this guarantees if any planning goes wrong and you miss the boat, they'll get you to the next port at no cost to you. You could also book directly through the company offering the adventure of your choice (sometimes it's cheaper this way), just make sure they guarantee getting you back to the ship on time.
Sense of Comfort in New Areas
We recognize that some people are nervous to travel due to language barriers, unfamiliar customs, or even a negative stigma regarding a certain area due to the media. A cruise is a great way to feel comfortable in your surroundings and get out to experience the local culture. You're normally only venturing off the ship for 4-8 hours, which is just enough time to get a taste of the area. Even if you're still not comfortable exploring an area then you can always book a shore excursion which guarantees you a guide and group. There's nothing more comforting than that, meaning you have no excuse to not explore!
These are our main reasons to take a cruise and we'd love to hear yours. Did we miss anything? I have to admit, after writing this I'm feeling inspired to book our next cruise!