I went on a wee cruise holiday over the weekend. I know, lucky me! I joined the Digital Parents blogging conference, which was not only mind-blowingly educational, but also the most fun I’ve had in ages.
I gleefully dumped reluctantly left the children with my fabulous Husby (who struggled to find time to shower, bless him, but now he knows what it feels like) and jetted off to Sydney where I boarded the Carnival cruise ship on the “Cruise to Nowhere”.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve always wondered if a cruise holiday might be a good option some day, so I saw this three day adventure was a great way to find out. Rather than boring you with a full account of my holiday (which would be just as tedious and annoying as turning up to Aunty Estelle’s slide night of her driving holiday to the Adelaide Hills), I’m just going to give you the pros and cons of a cruise holiday, as I see it.
- Great value for money, with most food and activities included (alcohol and wifi – my two favourite things in the world – are extra though)
- Delicious food, promptly served, and so much of it!
- All but one staff member I encountered were excellent at pretending they were super excited to be on a cruise, even though they’d all done it seventy billion times before.
- My balcony room was pretty spacious and had bath robes! (I’m a big fan of a robe – it’s the mark of true relaxation.)
- Towels shaped like cute animals.
- Crowds – I was lucky enough to be in a private room all day during the conference. But when I ventured out, I noticed a huge lack of personal space. Big crowds, everywhere. And if you wouldn’t choose to invite every single one of these strangers on your family holiday, it can get rather – ahem – confronting. We were seated at a big table of strangers for breakfast. (Small talk before coffee? Did I wake up in Guantanamo Bay?) And I did not leave my children at home just so I could go swimming in the urine of other people’s children.
- Noise – again, I was lucky because my room was quiet, but others had rooms right below where the band was playing until the wee hours of the morning, or right next to a loud hens party or crying baby.
- Wifi – if you have a wifi addiction like me, you might want to think about going cold turkey on a cruise. Lucky for me wifi was included in my conference ticket, otherwise I would have been wishing I’d brought my children to auction off. Did I say pricey? Yep, seriously pricey.
- Running – I was excited to find out the ship had a running track. Great, I thought, I don’t have to ease off my half marathon training just because I’m out at sea…Until I got to the track and found out it was a 110-metre circle. I shit you not, I got dizzy after about 20 laps and had to change direction. I gave up after 3km. But that’s okay – I know that problem may be specific to me and just a handful of other freaks. And, man, it was pretty up there – GREAT way to start the day.
Would I go on a cruise again? Hmmmmm, probably not. I’m really glad I went – it was an experience I will never forget. But I think that was largely due to the fantastic conference I was at, and the large group of like-minded gorgeous individuals I got to hang with most of the time.
For a regular holiday, I highly value my personal space and ‘me time’, so I will probably give it a swerve. The best way I can sum up the feel of the ship is like Willy Wonka vomited on a Sizzler (or other buffet family restaurant, depending on your location), and shoved it out to sea. High on novelty value, but it’s a once in a lifetime for me.
Have you been on a cruise holiday? Did you love it? Would you like to go?