Planning on taking the little ones away for their first cruise? Cruises are becoming more and more family-orientated, so it’s the perfect time to set sail. And, while each of our ships are packed out with kid-friendly features, we’d pull out the Marella Discovery and Marella Discovery 2 as the ships scoring top marks for fun. The following tips and features apply to both ships…
1. Find a ship with a free kids’ club
Each of our ships come with free kids’ clubs for little ones between 3 and 11-years-old. It’s a chance to make friends, join in with movie sing-a-longs, puzzle over quizzes and hunt for treasure in pirate workshops. There are also plenty of opportunities to get messy with arts and crafts, let out some late-night excitement with movie nights and enjoy trips up to the bridge to meet the captain– all under the supervision of our accredited staff, of course. And, best of all, this frees you up to check out other parts of the ship. Get some much needed me-time in Oceans Spa and Beauty Salon where there’s a long list of treatments including full body massages and rejuvenating facials, or stretch out with some lengths in the pool.
2. Choose baby-friendly ships
It’s not just 3 to 11-year-olds we look after, though. Make friends onboard with babytainment classes for parents and babies under three. Free sessions offer everything from nursery rhyme sing-alongs to baby ballet or educational Sign & Sign classes, where your tiny ones can learn sign language with Mr Tumble from CBeebies. There’s also a Baby Centre area for changing, food prep and playing.
3. Pick a cruise with lots to do on and off the ship
As you know, it doesn’t take long for little ones to get impatient. Pick a ship with plenty to do and you know they’ll be entertained from the moment they step onboard. Marella Discovery and Marella Discovery 2 come complete with a climbing wall – a firm favourite for kids over six. There’s also a mini golf course where they can practise their swing at nine different holes. The excitement doesn’t stop on dry land, either – we’ve got a range of family-friendly shore excursions including waterparks and aquariums.
4. Cater for the whole family
While you’ll find that the kids are keen to run off on their own, it’s always good to have some time together. The new Splash Treasure Chest Challenge is designed for the whole family. Grab an iPad and hunt for hidden logos around the ship, completing games and answering questions as you go. Meanwhile, there are Underwater-themed Splash Live shows during high season, a Neverland virtual reality experience and plenty of family-focused game shows down in Venue bar.
5. Make sure there’s plenty to do in the evenings
Snuggle up and watch a movie with your little ones and enjoy the excitement of Movies by Midnight at our open-air cinema. Enjoy classic films or the latest box office hits while munching on popcorn and sipping hot chocolate from the nearby bar. That’s not all, though. Get a front-row seat for West-End style shows and giggle at comedians, or cheer for twirling dancers in glitzy costumes.
6. Look out for fussy-eater pleasing buffets
You’re on holiday, so the last thing you want to stress about is food for fussy eaters. Buffet lunches come with favourites like spaghetti bolognaise and pizza, and our chefs cater to a number of dietary requirements – so you can leave any food-related worries at home.