As a parent, I was really keen to find out how family friendly cruising is. I, unfortunately didn’t go with my two intrepid reviewers Miss A (4) and Miss N (11) but luckily I was able to chat to and see myself what the Royal Caribbean have to offer.
If you don’t want to take advantage of the onboard Adventure Ocean clubs (which I will cover later) there are activities for you and your children to enjoy together throughout the day. It does vary from ship to ship, but things such as the H2O water Zone you can see below :
Fountains, waterfalls, geysers and water-squirting cannons, where kids can splash about to their hearts content.
Ice skating (yes really, on a cruise ship) : You can have lessons, or just give it a try on your own. Skates are available, but maybe not the extra padding for your bottom 😉
Movies : Including 3D movies played in the theatre.
Dreamworks : Meeting the characters from their most favourite films, even parades!
Golf : I know Tall Dad would have loved doing this. It can be both a relaxing and frustrating sport, and both of our girls also love playing. A great family activity!
Sports court : with basket ball as just one of the things you can do in this area, great to expel a little energy whatever your age!
ENCORE : A family ice show, having seen an ice show on ship, I can highly recommend it…the head banger? WOW!
Shore Excursions : There are specific family friendly ones, great to make memories, and discover new things together as a family.
Rock Climbing Wall : This was really popular, with children and adults it looked like great fun.
Family Fun Hour : This is all about the Family dancing together. I can see a dance off occurring!
FlowRider : I had never seen one of these before, and it looked amazing. It is a surf simulator, and it really doesn’t matter how experienced or skilled you are. It is self-contained, and feels so safe.
Family Bingo : HOUSE!
There are also highly trained and experienced staff who man the Royal Babies and Tots clubs (under 3’s)and the Adventure Oceans Clubs (4-10), as well as a Teens Club (11-17)
I have never used a club such as this before, with my children, so was really intrigued to see what they were all about. I chatted to staff asked questions, and generally delved into the safety and fun factor that they offered. Believe me I don’t say this lightly when I say I was incredibly impressed and would definitely use these facilities, if we cruised as a family in the future.
All of the different age ranges, had dedicated rooms. They all offer superb security, where the child had to be signed in and out by the parent. There are however, if the child is older, opportunities (which must be prearranged) for them to sign themselves out, to explore the ship.
The security was amazing, as was the cleanliness. I loved all of the organised activities that they offered, many of which were ‘sea’ or port of call based. They get involved in science experiments, scavenger hunts, fun games and dancing. For example when we were in Italy they played a game called the Leaning tower of Pisa.
For an extra charge there are also baby sitting facilities you can book as well in your cabin. They can use the adventure clubs (depending on the port and ship) from the hours of 9.00 am to 6.00 &.00 to 10.00 with early morning and late night sessions also available.
Most of these session are completely free, and included in your holiday. There a few exceptions, the nursery (under 3’s) there is a charge of $6 or $8 in the evening. For the 3-11 year olds you do need to pay if your children want to attend the Late night Party Zone 10-2 am.
You are given details of these activities each day, along with your cruise compass magazine in your cabin. They change daily, and really can be assured that there is something to keep children entertained on a cruise.
I hope you have found this useful, as I have had so many people asking me about the facilities for children. If there is anything else anyone needs more detailed clarification on, please let me know in the comments and I will find out for you.