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Cruise ideas for single parent with biggish age gap between children

(6 Posts)
oliviabenson2 Mon 28-Mar-16 15:48:47

My husband died last year and I want to get away on the anniversary of his death so thought it would be a good chance to go on my first holiday abroad solo with my two daughters - aged 9 and 2. It has been hard to think of a holiday which works for us all (our last UK holiday was a bit of a disaster with me getting stressed, the 9 year old bored and the 2 year old just running around, like toddlers do. ) The toddler is very very active (aren't they all) and to be honest very fussy with food and meal times. Not sure if I would find it all very hard work and too formal? However i like the idea of not flying, and the idea of a European cruise. The toddler likes nursery and clubs and I had the thought that i could leave her in the toddler club, if it was good and could take the 9 year old out to explore some of the Cities where we stop for a day e.g Rome etc (she loves the idea of getting me on my own and to be honest I think she really needs some time with just me) Am hoping that the childcare is good, English speaking etc so i wouldn't be worried about leaving the toddler when we were in port.
Also in the evenings, I can see the toddler collapsing early and the 9 year old wanted to see the shows and not sure how I would manage both these aspects?!
Just wanted any recommendations really!

westcountrywoman Mon 28-Mar-16 20:01:20

When I went on a cruise (P & O, 4 years ago) you weren't allowed to leave the kids in kids' club unless you were staying on board. So check your ship's policy first.

westcountrywoman Mon 28-Mar-16 20:03:01

But regarding evenings, there was a night créche for under 5s. You take your sleepy toddler and settle them in the cots / beds and they are watched by the night staff. They will try to settle your LO if they wake, and page you if they won't go back to sleep.

iklboo Mon 28-Mar-16 20:06:32

Most cruises won't let you leave your children onboard while you get off I'm afraid.

elastamum Mon 28-Mar-16 20:15:47

I recommend Royal Caribbean. they have some fantastic family ships, which are like cities on the sea, with loads of entertainment and activities, good kids clubs for all ages and great shows etc. I took my 2 DC away on a cruise on my own when they were 8 and 10. You cant leave your children on board when you are not there, but there are lots of things you can do with them in the cities you visit.

I used to take my DC to a formal dinner with me every night and we were really well looked after, the waiter used to bring me a G&T, immediately I sat down in the evening grin.

t was a great holiday and the staff were lovely

oliviabenson2 Mon 28-Mar-16 23:02:29

Thank you so much. for all your thoughts. I hadn't appreciated the port policy and childcare but completely understand it.
elastamum - I so like the idea of the G&T in the evening.....
I think I will have to judge the list of ports/ excursions carefully as dragging my two year old round museums/ sites would be just terrible for us all. I will take a look at the Royal Caribbean in depth to find out what's on offer.

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