I have seen a lot of the world, and most of it I’ve seen on a cruise ship. If you’ve never cruised, know that it’s the most bang for your buck if you want to see multiple cities and/or countries. Yes, you only get a day or sometimes only a half a day in each place, but you usually get to see the highlights of each place and it’s just enough to whet your appetite to return that that location and see more. Also, you’re on a traveling hotel so you get to see different places without having to pack and unpack every time, which I’ve also done with land tours.
Believe it or not, the cabin where you stay is just as important as the port of calls you visit. I’m NOT of the school of thought that a cabin is just for showering and sleeping. A good cabin can make really enhance your cruising experience.
The first time I went on a cruise with two of my best friends, we opted for an interior cabin. It was the cheapest room available and since we had never cruised before, we didn’t think we’d spend that much time in there. We didn’t, and I will be honest, an interior room on a cruise is completely dark when you shut off the lights; that mixed with the soft rocking of the waves, will give you one of the soundest sleeps you’ll ever have, barring you don’t get seasick. On that trip we made friends with two gentlemen from Atlanta that have since become lifelong friends. Towards the end of the cruise when we had all become BFF’s the invited us to their balcony cabin for a drink. We jumped at the invitation because we wanted to see if the balcony was really worth it, and we wanted free drinks.
WOW! Not only did we not want to go back to our shabby interior cabin, we vowed that the following year we’d get a balcony too. That night we sat on their balcony, sipped on champagne listed to the ship cut across the mighty Atlantic Ocean, looked at the moon and listed to Gwen Stefani’s first solo album (it was 2001 and I was obsessed with it). We ordered a cheese platter from room service and stayed up until the ship rolled into the Port of Miami marking the end of our maiden voyage.
Fourteen cruises later, balconies have been all I’ve had. There was that one time I won a cruise and they gave me an interior cabin, but it was a free cruise so I couldn’t really complain. However there’s nothing like opening that sliding door in the morning when the ship is in transit to the next port of call, ordering champagne and breakfast and sitting in your panties staring at the big blue ocean while the sun warms your face. Speaking of sitting outside in your panties, balconies come in extra handy on ‘sea days’ which are the days the ship is at sea the whole day in between ports. On these days it’s nearly impossible to get a pool chair. You have to get up early (who wants to do that? You’re on vacation!) drop your towel and book or beach bag and then you can’t be gone too long cause someone will just turn it into lost and found. With a balcony that’s never an issue, you can even lay out nude if you’d like.
Besides seeing different places on a traveling hotel, cruises are constantly upping their game on how to make this the best experience ever. Some offer unlimited bar packages for a fee a lot cheaper than buying booze ala carte, different dining options and tons of entertainment. There are also ways to sneak booze onto the ship, but you’ll have to email me for that golden nugget. Have a fun cruising story to share? Comment below!