About FreshCruiser Blog

FreshCruiser blog features tips, news and insight to make the most out of a family vacation without sacrificing luxury & a healthy lifestyle. Focus on fun, active, & healthy travel. Enjoy!

Contact FreshCruiser: info@freshcruiser.com

Subscribe to RSS Feed

Welcome to FreshCruiser.com

Enjoy all the tips, news, insight, and advice on luxury family travel that highlights fun, active, and healthy vacations. Explore how to make the most out of your family vacation without sacrificing luxury.

FreshCruiser.com opens readers’ eyes to new adventures and calms any fears of traveling with children. With a special focus on family cruising, the website includes tips to staying active, eating well, and taking advantage of all the opportunities while on a family vacation.


Adventures of dealing with a Crawler in a Hotel Room

I recently spent 4 days at The Nines in Portland, Oregon with my husband and son. My son is an official crawler and it would be our first time staying in a hotel room with him on the move. When he was smaller, we would put him on the bed while we were getting ready in the room, but then he started rolling. We moved him to the floor on a blanket, next came crawling and cruising. Now, he's on 24-7 "watch" as he crawls around the room.

Click to read more ...


Heading to Hawaii on vacation with your baby? Rent a cabana. 

My family recently spent 10 nights at the Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa in Hawaii. Traveling with an infant can be challenging. However, if you make a few key decisions, traveling can be a breeze. One of those decisions was renting a cabana at the resort; I’d say that this is a must for traveling with a family as it provides many key benefits. Read about the benefits as well as insider cabana tips for Sheraton Maui at Black Rock.

Click to read more ...


In pursuit of your dream of travel, even with a family

If you recently entered into parenthood, chances are you feel your days of jet-setting to an exotic location for a quick weekend trip are over. Not only do I encourage you to bring baby along, but there is a new world of traveling open to you. Consider a cruise. Cruises are a great way for families to travel as there is such a variety of activities to do. Cruises include your food, which helps with budgeting as well and dreaded wonder of where can I find something that my kids will eat? Cruises are known for their buffets, which in the parenting world is a dream food destination as it makes even the pickiest eaters happy.

Click to read more ...


Headed to Rome on a cruise? Get off the beaten path and follow these tips from experienced tour guide & scholar, Theresa Potenza

The port of Civitavecchia outside of Rome is a popular stop for cruise ships visiting the region. Depending on the type of transportation you use to enter into the city, the ride is about an hour each way, which leaves visitors rushing around to see Rome before heading back to the ship. Many travelers have previously been to Rome, and are ready to see something new. But where to begin?

Click to read more ...


Tips for Traveling Solo with an infant

My husband and I were planning a trip from the West coast to the East coast for a few days to visit my parents. However, I decided that I wanted my 6-month old son to spend more time with his grandparents. My husband couldn’t take more time off of work, so I made a decision. I was going to fly by myself with our son. It would be my son’s third trip back East. I traveled with him before, but never on my own. I knew that once I got there, my parents would be waiting for us with open arms, ready to help. However, I wanted to get there with as little stress as possible.

Click to read more ...


Geared Up – Westin Runs with New Balance

Traveling and forgot your workout gear? No room in your suitcase to bring it? You can no longer make excuses for neglecting your fitness routine when staying at the Westin Gaslamp in San Diego. It can be difficult to keep up with your daily routine when on vacation or traveling for work. How many times during packing have you starred at your full suitcase wondering, am I really going to workout? Is it worth it to bring the shoes, socks, and outfits with me?

Click to read more ...


Best vacation songs of all time

As I sit here in non-vacation mode day dreaming about being on vacation, I often dream about sitting on my verandah looking out over the sea, fully relaxed with a my favorite drink, listening to some of my favorite music. Which then leads me to this, what IS in fact the very best music to listen to while on a cruise? What should I load my playlist up with before heading out?

Click to read more ...


Experts of the Port: The Maritime Pilot

Ever wonder about that little speed boat that pulls along your ship as you enter and depart the port?  Most of us who have been on a number of cruises know that this is the Pilot Boat which delivers and retrieves the pilot from the ship.  But, who needs a pilot anyways?

It wasn’t until I was on a cruise ship which called on Flam, Norway when my curiosity sparked surrounding the pilot.  There we were, slowly gliding through the mirrored waters between the massive and impressive fjords leading into Flam as suddenly, out of the tranquil landscape, approached the small pilot boat as if it were out of a movie.  As is normally the case, all the passengers on deck leaned over the railings to watch the pilot jump on-board.

Celebrity Century cruising into the port of Flam, Norway

Sometimes, the sea is like glass, as was the case in Flam, other times it is a far riskier boarding maneuver as the seas don’t always seem to cooperate.  One exciting time was while we were departing the beautiful and picturesque port of Cartagena, Colombia.  As we exited the port flanked by impressive forts on either side, we noticed the wind and waves really kick up. 

Exiting the port of Cartagena, Colombia

Sure enough, at that same time, we saw the pilot boat approaching to retrieve the pilot.  It’s amazing how much a little boat like that can bounce around in the swell.  Our enormous ship then took a wide turn towards port to shield the smaller pilot boat from the weather.  In doing so, the sea flattened and the pilot was then able to hop right off and head home.  Even though many of us have seen it a number of times, it’s always amazing to see the process unfold.  As conditions are never constant, it’s always fascinating to see how the two ships work in harmony.

Pilot boarding the cruise ship

Each time a ship enters and departs port, the pilot plays a vital role in the success of the journey.  While the ship’s captain has tremendous abilities and training pertaining to navigation and the function of their ship, their knowledge of specific ports cannot be compared to the port’s pilot.  The pilot is truly an expert of their home port.  They must know and memorize in great detail all of the unique features of their particular port such as water depths, tides, currents, and hazards just to name a few.  In fact, a pilot can essentially re-create an entire navigational chart for their port all from memory!  Many characteristics of an individual port must be learned over time by experience as they cannot be properly communicated by chart or book.   A ship’s staff cannot possibly acquire the enormous wealth of knowledge that a pilot has on any particular port making the role of the pilot essential.  Since pilots have so much responsibility over the lives of so many people along the enormous sum of money these vessels and their goods represent, becoming a pilot is a highly competitive process.  As a result, pilots are generally very handsomely compensated as salaries are generally well into the six figures.

Celebrity Century leaving Alesund, Norway

When I first pictured the role of a ship pilot, I imagined they boarded the ship and immediately took over the controls as an airline pilot would do.  However, in most cases, the pilot functions as an advisory role leaving the Captain of the ship with full command and responsibility over their vessel.  The crew of the ship and the pilot work in tandem to successfully navigate through the narrow, congested, and sometimes hazardous conditions that often exist at port.  On a side note, I later found out during my Panama Canal cruise that the only time that pilot actually takes control over a vessel is during the crossing of the Panama Canal.

Pilot boat leaving after picking up the pilot from the cruise ship

As in most business ventures, the primary goal is to make a profit.  Unfortunately, this profit goal is not always in harmony with safety.  Cruise and commercial shipping companies are often in a race against the clock as there is incentive to get in and out of port as quickly as possible.  By utilizing a pilot, this potential conflict of interest is immediately eliminated as the pilot, unlike the ship’s captain, is a public employee who does not report to the ship’s owner.  Safety becomes the one and only priority.  With countless ships entering and exiting ports on a daily basis around the world, it is not by luck that we rarely hear of incidents at port.

Freshcruiser Tip: Each time you leave a port, I hope you do what I do now and take a second to think about all the great and competent individuals who have dedicated their lives to ensure your safety each port at a time.

Page 1 ... 3 4 5 6 7 ... 12 Next 8 Entries »