Ten Things Kids Can Do on a Cruise
active family travel,  family,  parenting,  Travel

Ten Things Kids Can Do on a Cruise #TravelTuesday

Ten Things Kids Can Do on a Cruise
Ten Things Kids Can Do on a Cruise


Are there things for kids to do on a cruise?
Are there things for kids to do on a cruise?

Before we left for our cruise late last year we had many armchair travellers weigh in on whether we were making the right choice with our travel budget. We heard from some who said the cruise would cost us a lot more than we intended to spend. (It didn’t really.) We also heard from many who hinted it was crazy to take kids on a cruise. We heard from even more who said a cruise is a big party. One told me: “You are going on the party boat? You don’t take kids on that cruise.”

Well happily here I am to say that none of that was true. Glad I sometimes ignore the naysayers and do my own thing. This was our first cruise and I’d be a liar if I said I wasn’t apprehensive at first. Everyone and their uncle had some opinion about kids and cruises. But we are a family that travels and I choose my travel often for the value I get. I also choose it for the activities we can all do together. But I’d be a total liar if I said I didn’t LOVE it when my kids suddenly hit that sweet spot on a trip when they feel at home and happy enough to explore on their own. My oldest found a couple of kids her age and they interacted mostly when she went to the teen lounge area of the boat. My youngest, well she never stopped moving and she loved the entire cruise so much partly because she found friends everywhere, every single day at every floor, inside every pool and at every activity scheduled. I love that.

[tweetthis]Cruises are not hard on the budget and there’s a lot for kids to do. #travel[/tweetthis]

Anyways for those who are not familiar with cruises – the value is better than you can imagine. The service is exceptional and, while each cruise line is very specific we found that on this mode of travel there was NO shortage of activity for kids. For the record we travelled on the Carnival Pride. There was so much to do for everyone.

Ten Things Kids Can Do on a Cruise:

1. Pools: Check how many pools there are on board before you leave. Swimming is the easiest place to start. I don’t know many kids who can’t find fun inside a pool.

2. Water slides: When I booked this trip I booked it with watersides in mind. Water slides are a massive passion for us. We love active family travel and water parks so we made sure the Carnival Cruise we went on had water slides. WE all enjoyed the water slides. The Carnival Pride had some great watersides.

[tweetthis]The Carnival Pride has some great water slides #travel[/tweetthis]

3. Kid’s club or teen lounge: The kids each took turns going to different kid’s clubs. They were split up this time because Payton is a teenager and Ainsley is not. Although Ainsley felt a tiny bit ripped off that she didn’t get the room with the Wii and all the computers, she easily made friends and had a blast at her kid camp. I, as a parent, loved this. I also enjoyed that they were separated this time. Why? Because a 10 year old and a 13 year old have different interests and this let them explore some different interests while making friends in their own age group.

[tweetthis]The Kid’s club & teen lounge are great ways for tweens & teens to assert independence on a cruise.[/tweetthis]

4. After hours at the Kid’s Clubs: For a few extra dollars we were able to have the kids do a couple of late nights at the after hours kid’s clubs. One night was New Year’s Eve and the other night was a late movie that Ainsley wanted to see so it gave her the chance to hang out with some new friends. Plus Dad and I had free time to go visit the casino for a bit.

5. Splash area: On days at sea there’s nothing more fun than pool time and hanging in the splash area cooling off. There was a giant water bucket and all the various other water play activities you might find at a small water park.

6. Ping Pong (Table tennis) Whatever you call it, kids love it. If I ever didn’t know where to find Ainsley, I went to the ping pong table and low and behold there she was! She had many many games with her friend, a boy her age she met on the cruise ship.

7. The excursions are non stop awesome. Budget for one or two and let the kids have input. My girls got to snorkel and that was an amazing opportunity and they also had the chance to hold and feed small hatchling sea turtles. We did a stop in Belize. Read more about that here: https://www.thriftymommastips.com/wordless-wednesday-ready-dive-family-travel-belize/So much fun!

8. Soccer. There was soccer on our ship. It was very often busy with older boys but when it wasn’t the kids were able to go to the very top deck and play soccer (yes there is a net that enclosed the area so the soccer balls don’t go flying off the boat.

9. Mini Golf: The Carnival Pride had a mini golf course. We all played that several times. Ainsley also sped through it with her friends many times.

10. Take in One of the shows: The Carnival Pride had a family game show, and dance shows. We went to in the family game show night and enjoyed that. You can read more about why we are now huge fans of cruising. It’s a great revelation for us that we loved this form of active family travel so much. It’s a great chance to explore various destinations.

So who still thinks there’s nothing for kids to do on a cruise?

This is a Travel Tuesday Post with Linky. Link Up your favourite Travel posts and I will visit each of them and leave a comment. Happy Travels! This was our family trip. It was not sponsored.

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Mom of two beautiful active girls, traveller, fitness junkie, social media consultant, and keeper of the sanity.


  • Amanda Stovall

    Wow, great article! Thanks for sharing all this helpful info!!!! A family cruise vacation would sure help out the rut we’re in, that’s for sure!!! 🙂

  • Trish F

    You know years ago people rarely took kids on cruises or unless they were on there to get someplace. But, now there are so many cruise lines catering to families that most are welcome. I guess people were saying these things about not taking kids on cruises because of old beliefs. Great post.

  • sandy weinstein

    i dont have kids, but have been on a cruise a long time ago. there are so many things kids can do these days,,,,family cruises and even ones just for kids-specialty cruises. disney has cruises, art and crafts, trips, games, etc.

  • Emily Endrizzi

    I went on a short cruise with my parents as a child. My kids have never been on one. They didn’t have all that kind of stuff on my cruise! Pout. Lol.

  • Kathy Lane

    I have never been on a cruise before and didn’t know there was so much that kids could do on one.This would be nice for the whole family.

  • jennifer corrado

    I went on a Cruise to the Bahamas with my family when I was 12. It was amazing! I would love to take my 2 daughters on one.

    • Paula

      I like it for that age group 10 and up to teenage years. There’s a lot to do and I felt safe giving my kids some independence too.


    thanks for this . I will share this with my boss who enjoys going on trips and I know the kids will enjoy it

  • Wendy Pence

    Wish I could get my husband to go on a cruise. I’ve always wanted to take one and I know my kids would love it!

  • lisa

    I have never been on a cruise. When I got married, my father in law offered to send us on one. I’m terrified of the ocean so we declined. I never knew that there was so much to do on a ship. It much be much larger than I have imagined.

  • Sue M.

    I’ve never been on a cruise, but always thought they didn’t have a lot of things for kids to do, it’s nice to know there are actually lots of family friendly activities.

  • Tiffany Rotulo

    I’ve never been on a cruise before. Never really interested in being confine to a boat but after reading you article it seems like a really fun trip. I hadn’t realized there was so much to on a cruise. I will probably consider it now.

  • vickie couturier

    the youngest kid ive taken on a cruise was 12,,and they had plenty of activites for her to do,,dont know if I would take younger kids,,ive been on a lot of cruises in my life,and honestly have never seen the appeal of taking a infant or toddler ,just my opinion,,Disney cruise is made for kids

  • Holly Thomas

    I have never been on a cruise before but have been dying to go on one! I am glad to know that my kids would have a blast if they came with.

  • Joy McFalls

    Would love to go on a cruise and i know my daughter would love it. Maybe one day we will be able to afford to take one

  • Jeanine

    We’ve cruised 15 times now and many of them included our kidlet.She’s been on 5 cruises now and she loves it. I’m curious- where did you go for the turtle feeding? I’d like to add that to our future cruise list of things to do.

  • Trish F

    All great things for the kiddies to do. The excursions are so numerous there is usually a few that the kids like and want to do. Thanks!

  • Heather Garcia

    I never realized that there were so many different activities available on a cruise ship. I would love to go on a cruise but have never looked into it because of the kids. I thought a cruise ship is no place for a 5 and 7 year old. Looks like I have some vacation planning to do.

  • terry myers

    Love the way kids have a lot of things they can do my grandkids would love them I w tell my son and my daughter

  • Katie Ellis

    I’ve never been on a cruise but have heard they are really great. It is awesome that cruises have activities for children of all ages so families can go on them together. The different activities allow parents and their kids to have time to themselves which is important and you can also do things together as a family.

  • Marnie G (Derrick Todd)

    I really like that most cruises now have so many activities for kids. There are even some cruises in which all activities are family / kid focused.

  • Heidi Embrey

    Glad you and your family had fun on your cruise. I think its awesome the people on here saying they went on a cruise as a child and never forgot it 🙂

  • Stacy

    I have been on many cruises, but never with children. Another fun activity would be to splurge on some virgin tropical drinks in fancy glasses! You can keep the glass as a souvenir.

  • Lisa Kerr

    We have never been on a cruise before, but I would love to take my family on one before I get to old to enjoy one! LOL.

  • debbie

    I love the fact that some cruises put a lot of stock effort energy and fun into having kids on the cruise. Sure going on holiday is nice but I love having my kids around and couldnt imagine going on a long trip with out them and they can have so much fun too!

  • Dani H

    I’ve never been on a cruise though I have seen cruise ships in port and they are huge! It never occurred to me that they could have soccer on board though! It sounds like your whole family had a great vacation.

  • Evelyn Chuter

    I would not go on a cruise unless I could take my grandchildren with me. I would not have much fun on a cruise without them. I’m happy to hear about the activities for childrens. And that they can make friends so easily. I really want to go on a cruise with the kids and I just might do it for our next vacation. Thanks.

  • Lee Pearson

    I’ve never been on a cruise before. Those ships are huge! I’ve heard that there is so many activities to do and you are constantly entertained. Thanks for the info and pics. It looks like so much fun

  • Pam V H

    I’ve never been, but would love to go on a cruise. Except my daughters are teenagers, so it might end up being the Love Boat if they meet a nice boy!

  • Jodi Mitrovic

    We’ve never been on a cruise but I keep whispering it into my Husband’s ear. I too have heard they’re expensive so it’s great to know that even with a budget you can enjoy a ton of activities! We too are a family and we too travel as a family. I can’t imagine a cruise not catering to children and am shocked you had so many naysayers. So happy you and yours had a great time!

  • chris

    I’m impressed at how much on the cruise is geared toward kids. The waterslides alone was a great idea, I always loved waterslides as a kid. And the kids club is smart too!

  • Rosie

    I never thought of kids on a cruise – I know there are some cruises specially for families with kids – I can now see why they are so popular – and fun!!! even for fussy teens!

  • Carol L

    I’ve never been on a cruise and I’m in awe that they have water slides. 🙂 That ks for your post. And good for you you follow your own instincts. Sounds like you had a great time.I’m sure the kids win’t forget it for a long time. 🙂
    Carol L

  • kathryn estler

    I wish we could go on a cruse. But my daughter has severe motion sickness on any thing that moves.

  • cami v

    we have been thinking about taking a cruise. We decided to take a cruise later though. This article makes me want to go now 🙂

  • Anne Marie Carter

    I have only been on an over-night cruise and it was too dark (and cold) to do anything. I was in Denmark and it wasn’t spring there yet.

    I would love to take my family on a cruise!

  • Nena Sinclair

    I’ve heard that cruises offer a lot for children to do and that’s so awesome! I’d love to take my grandchildren!

  • Happy Seller

    I have never been able to go on a cruise but my granddaughter and her family go frequently so I am going to pass the info on to them.

  • Christine A

    I’ve never been on a cruise before. The family game show sounds like a very fun experience and I’d want my family to take part.

  • Christie Robinson

    I’ve never been on a cruise before, so I can only assume what it would be like with or without a kid on a cruise but, I think that parents should always be prepared for bored children on an trip but, with this cruise, they have many activities for children of different ages & since they are with you on this vacation, it’s a must to keep them happy or the rest of the family & the trip could turn out to be terrible & miserable.

  • Sue E

    I have never been on a cruise, so reading this, I would have considered taking my kids when they were young. I can’t believe all there is to do on a boat. Maybe one day, my cruise dream will come true for me & my hubby!!

  • Lisa Coomer Queen

    I’m glad to read this. We have been talking about a family cruise and I wasn’t sure about the grandchildren. Good information.

  • Elizabeth Stacy

    Look amazing sound wonderful but I never been on a cruise. Someday I would love go on a cruise before I die.