Going on a cruise was the last way I wanted to travel. I have been in places like Venice where the town is crowded with cruise passengers who stay for a couple of hours in mass and leave without really experiencing Venice. Or I have been in a small towns that literally were overran with people from cruise ships and I felt my experience was ruined by those crowds. I guess you could call me an anti-cruise snob. But in the last couple of years, slowly, I have changed my mind about cruising and now I go on some cruises. Here are five reasons for going on a cruise.
1. To Relax
A lot of times when I go on vacation, at the end of the vacation I feel the need to go on a vacation to recover from my vacation. If it is driving, taking the trains, walking around a city or hiking, a lot of the time, I am exhausted from a vacation. This is not the case with cruises. When I go on a cruise, I go to relax. I don’t gamble, I don’t like the shows, but I love to read, sit out by the pool, bring games and hang out with my husband. There is nothing more relaxing than this. Not having to drive or worry about meals, or walk around a city. Within hours of getting on a boat, I am relaxed. Always a planner, I have a Kindle Paperwhite that I bring, I load it up with about ten books before I go, last seven day cruise my husband and I both read about seven books each. My trick is checking kindle books out from the library. We also bring a couple of games to play.
2. Get warm
We live in Minneapolis which gets really cold in the winter, so a main objective of going on a cruise is to get warm. Going skiing or any other winter vacation sounds horrible to us. We get to be cold every day in the winter so we go on cruises to get warm. When we plan a cruise, we usually do not care where it is going, as long as it is warm. I never had any desire to go to Belize, we just wanted to be warm and the western Caribbean sounded warm. But we loved Belize and want to go back. So there are bonuses to only traveling to get warm.
If you look online especially a month or two before you want to go on a cruise, you can get really good deals. We went on a 7 day cruise on Princess Cruises which is a really good cruise line for less than $1,000 for the two of us. That includes taxes, tips, shore excursions and drinks. Think about how much it would have cost if we went to Florida for a week. We would have spent almost that much just for a hotel room, let alone meals and renting a car. Cruises are a really good deal.
4. See things you would never get to see
This reason is two fold. The first part is going on a cruise to places that you really should be on a boat to see. Example of that would be, I went on a cruise that went 1,000 miles up the Amazon, or taking the Hurtigruten Cruise which goes up the coast of Norway. Many people cruise to Alaska and I would like to take a cruise in the South Pacific. Places that are easier to see from a cruise. However, there is a bonus part to cruises and that is going to places that you have never even thought about going to and ended up loving it. Our recent cruise stopped in Belize, a place we never thought of going to, another example is a cruise I went on stopped in Trinidad and Tobago. I fell in love with that country by stopping on both of the islands on a cruise and plan to some day go back.
5. Travel with family
My husband and I really wanted to go on vacation with my 90 year old grandma and a cruise was perfect for it. We did our own thing during the day and went on our own shore excursions but had wonderful dinners with her every night. The ship is big enough that you can do your own thing, but if you want to spend time together, you can. This is also a great option for families with children. Most cruise ships have activities for kids. Either way, it takes away all of the stress of traveling with family and makes a really special vacation.
While my husband and I will never go on cruises to see the world, we want to do that country at a time, not eight hours in a port and then move on, it is a great vacation for certain purposes. We are looking forward to going on another cruise this winter.