In the midst of bleak mid-winter weather, cruising to the Caribbean islands sounds like a perpetual dream stuck in all our minds, isn’t it? Escaping the bitter cold in favor of some crisp rosé on the deck during a warm, golden sunset, feeling the salty ocean air make our hair knotty and windswept, exploring the coasts of tropical islands far, far away from the troubles of day to day life… don’t make me go on!
The truth is, these daydreams we found ourselves lost in are luxurious, sure, but they are absolutely attainable with the amount of cruise lines available for every type of traveler. No longer are cruise ships following the one-size-fits-all mentality. From value ships to excursion focused adventures, foodie cruises, family focused lines and everything in between, there seems to be a type of cruise for each and every type of traveler. And that, my friends, is a glorious, glorious (yet kind of overwhelming) thing!
It’s funny, when it comes to selecting what cruise line to go with, the best comparison that comes to mind is that choosing the right cruise ship is like picking out a new pair of shoes. The selection process is filled with a dizzying amount to research to sift through: details must be vetted, comfort is key, but you also want to be dazzled nonetheless. But on the flip side, making the wrong decision could mean one hell of a time (and I mean not in a good way). Imagine walking around Manhattan sized city blocks in eight inch heels for a full week to ten days – no no no! The same goes for hunting for the right type of vacation cruise. Finding the best fit requires research and a sensible dose of practicality.
Before you start your research, check in with yourself. What do you travel for? Are you an adventure-seeking explorer who wants to see it all, do it all and spend less time onboard? Are you a luxury seeking type of gal who wants to spend some much needed time relaxing and indulging in some delicious bites? What are your schedule and budget limitations? Is there a specific location or region you’re longing to see? These are questions I asked myself before delving into my own inquiry about what cruise was best for me. Take the time to tune-in to the realities of how I travel allowed me to find the best option.
With the incredible amount of information out there on the internet, I was happy to have an organized, focused resource like Cruise Critic’s website to help me with my planning. Cruise Critic organizes everything in such user-friendly way, I had a blast sifting through each category of reviewed cruise lines. Knowing that I was dreaming of escaping to the warm tropicals seas, I loved reading their insight on finding the right Caribbean cruise for me. Seeing their pros and cons lists, as well as their handy “bottom line” feature that condenses everything down to a T while also knowing that millions of people leave honest reviews on their experiences on board ships gave me the peace of mind I was looking for. By the way, for any of you gals who are hesitant about cruise lines or haven’t cruised before, I loved reading their roundup of best cruises for first-timers!
After doing my own research on Cruise Critic, I booked a three night Carnival Victory trip to the beautiful Bahamas. Being able to explore the stunning islands with my very tight schedule was a dream come true! Our itinerary allowed us to experience vibrant Miami’s nightlife, nostalgic cars lining the streets and delicious foods as well as Nassau’s soft sand beaches and dynamic tropical energy. And not only was I able to drink in all the tropical magic of the Caribbean waters, but our time on the ship was filled with sundrenched drinks on the deck, tasty treats and lots of quality time spent with my dear mother. Quality time with momma while delighting in palm trees and open, crystal clear waters? Dream mother-daughter bonding time! Cruising together to the gorgeous Bahama islands is something I’m sure we will never forget.
If you could cruise anywhere in the world, where would you go? Are you more of a luxury cruiser, a party-loving vacationer or something else entirely? Comment below… I’d love to know!
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I was invited as guest by Cruise Critic and Carnival. As always, all opinions are my own.