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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.

Entries in Princess Cruise (4)


What to Pack for your kids on an Alaskan Cruise

Items to bring to Alaska to enhance your kids’ overall experience

Getting ready for upcoming Alaskan cruise with your kids this summer?  We will be sailing to Alaska for the second time in two weeks. There’s so much to look forward to and so much to pack! After you’ve finished packing the basics for your kids, check out my list below of items that will enhance your upcoming Alaskan Cruise.  


I love these binoculars for kids as you don’t have to worry about focusing, easy for them to carry, and durable. There is so much to see on an Alaskan cruise and having binoculars really gets the kids involved and interested in what is out there.


Depending on your child’s age and interests, they can write about their day or draw what they saw in a journal. It’s a great way to look back at the trip through their eyes. I take pictures of some of their drawings to add to our photo album. I plan on having my son write down the wildlife he sees in order to practice his writing skills. My three-year-old daughter will also have a journal. It will mostly be her beautiful scribbles but a fun dinner activity. When she’s done, we’ll make a note at the bottom of what she drew.

Books about Alaska

Grab some books on Alaska to read to the kids before you leave. It gives them an understanding and builds excitement. Pack their favorite ones to bring with you. It’s fun to reread after seeing many of the places in the book. Below are a few of our favorites. 

Activities for the Table

Dinners can be long on a cruise so make sure to bring different activities for them to play with between courses. Grab some new items from the toy section of a Dollar Store. Their tin puzzles, small figurines, and cars keep my kids distracted and happy.

This is our current favorite is Water Wow!

What else?

Other favorite must-haves for cruises includes: cold and warm weather clothes, sunscreen, hats, playing cards, crayons, and bathing suits.

Packing can be frustrating as you are worried about forgetting something important. Make a list and keep adding to it as you remember things that you want to bring. We use packing cubes to help keep things organized and fit everything.

FreshCruiser Tip: Don’t be afraid to get your kids involved in the packing process. Allow a little space for a few clothes or small toys they want to bring.

Note:  All the products were selected by FreshCruiser. The links contain affiliate links.


Dance like a Norwegian! Get Fit with Zumba® Fitness Classes on board Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Epic

Norwegian Cruise Line recently announced that it will add Zumba Fitness to its ships beginning this spring in a phased roll out to the entire fleet. There will be a variety of Zumba® classes on each cruise and the most popular ones will be offered at no charge.  Whether you work out regularly or not at all, Zumba® classes are for all fitness levels. You simply follow the instructor’s dance fitness moves to the upbeat music while working on your fitness and burning calories. According to LIVESTRONG.com article, Zumba Workout Benefits, you can burn 400 to 600 calories per hour.

“We are excited to bring Zumba Fitness onboard our ships and offer guests not just a new way to work out, but an exhilarating and easy-to-follow dance fitness-party,” said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line CEO.

Norwegian Cruise Line follows Princess Cruises and Celebrity Cruises which previously announced Zumba as part of their on board activities. Princess Cruises first introduced complimentary Zumba classes on their ships in December 2010 and were fleet-wide by the end of 2011. [Read my previous post on Zumba at Sea.]

Celebrity Cruises started scheduling Zumba classes on board its transatlantic voyages as part of their Celebrity Life’s special fitness programming and recently expanded the classes to its entire fleet.

I definitely recommend trying a Zumba® class when cruising on one of the cruise lines. Some cruise lines hold the classes outside, that way you can enjoy the sea air rather than being in a gym. It also makes it a lot easier to try it if you’re intimidated to walk in to the ship’s fitness room. Be careful: You may have so much fun that you decide to continue going classes when you get back home!

Read Norwegian Cruise Line's full announcement here.

Freshcruiser TIP: Give it a try and if you don’t like it, you don’t have to stay for the whole class.


Princess Cruises focuses on fitness with the announcement of the Royal Princess Fitness Facilities

With the Royal Princess debuting in June, Princess Cruises announced the sports and fitness features that will be aboard. Royal Princess’ fitness facilities will include a Jogging Track, Sports Central and Fitness Center. The ship’s fitness plans have something for all athletic abilities.  

Photo courtesy of Princess Cruises - Royal Princess Center Court

“Many of our passengers are very active on vacation,” said Jan Swartz, executive vice president for Princess Cruises. “These new facilities will offer them state-of-the-art equipment and cutting-edge classes to keep up – or even step up – their fitness routines at sea.”

Sticking with your Routine

If you work out regularly at home, you’ll probably want to keep up with your exercise routine while on vacation. I always research what type of facilities a hotel or cruise has to offer before leaving to try and create a plan so I don’t feel guilty for taking a day or two off. 

I was extremely intrigued by the plans for the Jogging Track on the Royal Princess as I enjoy working-out outside whenever I can.  In addition to a double-lane jogging track with separate paths for runners and walkers, the Royal Princess will feature a circuit program along the track.  This addition adds function and makes running around the deck less boring as you can run in intervals and stop to at the exercise stations along the track, making time fly by while burning calories.   

Trying something new

Photo courtesy of Princess Cruises

The Royal Princess will feature a private aerobics studio at the back of the gym for a variety of fitness classes.  One of the fitness classes is MyRide, which is “a new era in indoor cycling, MyRide offers the opportunity to ride through inspiring scenic landscapes from around the world, with varying levels of intensity controlled by the user.” I enjoy going to spinning classes so this is definitely something I would check out if I were a passenger.

No excuses, you have time  
You’re away from work, errands, and finally have some time for yourself.  Explore new fitness options while you have the time and a great way to find something you like and continue it after the cruise.

Princess Cruises will help lay the foundation for a successful program at home. Participants in Body Sculpt Boot Camp will receive a take-home poster/program which outlines all the exercises and breaks the program up into four manageable workouts so you can continue their workouts after the cruise. I love how the experiences can be long-lasting. Additional class options include TRX® suspension training bodyweight and Chi Ball Yoga.

Photo courtesy of Princess Cruises - Royal Princess

The other fitness facilities on Royal Princess include Princess Sports Central, which is  the multi-sport area that is designed to offer a collection of fun options, including court games, lawn activities and a lounge for virtual gaming. The Fitness Center pairs a state-of-the-art gym with spectacular ocean views.

Click here to view a video of the future activities on board the Royal Princess.

The 3,600-passenger Royal Princess is currently under construction for Princess Cruises. The ship’s 2013 maiden season will include cruises on the line’s signature Grand Mediterranean itinerary throughout the summer, followed by Eastern Caribbean cruises beginning in the fall. Click here to read the full press release from Princess Cruises.

FreshCruiser Tip: Most equipment will feature personal TV screens, which makes a big difference as why watch the morning news in bed when you can view it while getting some exercise? Start your day this way and I guarantee you’ll have more energy.


My Parents: Landlubbers turned Cruisers 

My parents will be celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary this fall and to mark the occasion, they are going on a Caribbean cruise.  It will be their 5th cruise and first time taking a Holland America cruise. After years of begging and pleading my case, I’m glad my parents are now cruisers.

Princess Sapphire Lido DeckParents have cruised on Princess Cruises' Sapphire Princess

My dad admitted to me recently how scared he was before their first cruise.  He didn’t know what to expect and although he saw pictures and heard stories from the cruises I went on, he still couldn’t fully grasp the concept.  I’ll never forget the first phone call I received when they embarked and found their cabin.  The tone was one of shock, trying to take it all in.  An hour or so later, I received my second call from them and they already sounded so relaxed after going to the buffet and walking around the Lido Deck wondering why they didn’t take a cruise before.

Holland America Line ms Eurodam Cruise ShipNew adventure awaits my parents on Holland America Line (Photo Credit: Holland America Line)

A new adventure awaits my parents as they will be visiting new ports and trying a new cruise company.  I wait with a lot of anticipation for their trip to arrive. I enjoy hearing my mom ask open-ended questions about things she’s wondering about the ship that she’ll soon find out for herself.  “What will be on the room service menu?”  “I wonder what the entertainment will be like?” are just a few of her questions.  She keeps saying that she’s going on Holland.  I nicely explained that she can use “HAL Cruise” for short.

ms Eurodam Atruim (Photo Credit: Holland American Line

Listening to her questions is why I enjoy traveling so much, the exploring aspect.  Whether it’s exploring a new hotel or cruise ship to learning about a different culture, there’s so much that awaits them. I love that after 40 years of marriage, they still have a lot of excitement and good times ahead of them.

Are you loyal to one cruise line?  Do you enjoy trying different hotels or cruises?

FreshCruiser Tip: Sometimes people need a nudge to try a new way of vacationing.  If you think a friend or family member would enjoy a cruise, don’t be afraid to give them a little push.  Encourage them to start with a 3-4 day cruise to get their feet wet!