Taking the Kids Cruising
Ever thought about taking the Kids Cruising? Michelle Sutton from our Parnell Cruiseabout store shares one of her cruising experiences with the kids on P&O's Pacific Dawn...
5th October 2011 was the first time I ever cruised after many many years of wanting to experience one. I took my 3 children, one of which did not really want to go but it meant time off school so he was happy to come along. It was on the P&O Dawn, 4 night cruise , Auckland return, calling in for a day at the Bay of Islands. What a fun & fabulous experience for the four of us over those four days and nights!
I had to put the kids in their kids clubs on the first day as I was hosting a wine and cheese event. The Shark Shack for 6 to 10 year olds and HQ for 11 to 13 years. We were able to set it up that the kids could sign themselves out if they wished and I was comfortable with that once we all got to know the ship. I knew they could find their way to the cabin or more importantly the buffet! and I never worried about their safety. The 8 and 10 year old were quite happy for a couple of hours, then they did check themselves out. My 11 year constantly took himself off to HQ - he loved all the x box games and screen.
They all had their own cabin card (set-up using the main cabin account), which they could use to pay for their ice creams, drinks and mocktails and they loved being able to do this. The kids swipe cards are coloured different to adults to ensure they are not served alcohol.
I loved the fine dining room experience. One night we joined another 2 families and had 2 tables - kids and adults. The children had a kids menu, we had ours. Both delicious food and as a foodie I was very pleasantly surprised at the standard of food in both flavour and presentation. Lunch was usually a casual buffet round the pool of hot dogs, burgers, chips, salads etc - fantastic for us all.
It was a Wine and Food themed cruise and the last night offered a degustation menu in the fine dining Room. This was part of the cruise cost and I was able to have this while the kids chose from the kids menu. It was a-mazing!
Weirdly enough for October, we hit beautiful weather and all the kids wanted to do was join many other kids on the cruise in the pool. It meant I had to sit around on a deck chair reading my book and sipping a Pina Colada! At night we watched the incredible laser/trapeze show in the atrium and a couple of the productions in the Theatre. These were very entertaining for both the kids and adults. We all loved the Pirates of the Pacific show.
We had an Inside cabin and it was fine for the 4 nights with great facilities. My 11 year old who gets car sick all the time, did feel sea sick once we left dock - there was a pretty big swell the first night. I was prepared for this and gave him a Sea Leg's tablet every 12 hours for the duration of the cruise. He felt fine for the rest of the cruise.
As a single mum of three, it was a relaxing, easy and inexpensive holiday. The kids are constantly asking which cruise are we going on next. We have all got the cruise bug!