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Last minute tips on Cruising w/ young kiddos...

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We leave in 16 days...I currently have the stomach virus and feel quite foggy & overwhelmed as I try to think through various aspects of cruising and being in ports w/ DD7 & DS3.


This is our 3rd cruise, but 1st with kids. Thankfully (I think), DH's parents are also going along so we'll have extra adult help. Its a 5 day on Carnival w/ stops in Cozumel & Progreso Mexico.


We are driving 12 hrs to NOLA, so can pack along whatever is needed, but I am trying to pack as little as possible due to storage issues in room.





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What sorts of tips are you looking for? We did that exact cruise (well, out of Galveston) three years ago. My boys were about-to-be 10; 6.5; 19 months.


With your youngest at three, I would think you could skip the stroller, or *maybe* bring an umbrella stroller. We had ours on-board (we had one inside cabin), but didn't use it in port; I used my maya wrap. With a 3 yr old, though, I'd think you'd be fine just letting him (her?) walk.


As far as packing - small first aid kit, but I take that any time I travel. Bring small toys that have lots of play value -- maybe some travel games, wipe off boards/markers, whatever small-to-pack things really keep your little ones' attention for a while. Don't over pack, as you can easily make use of the Carnival Kids Program during the day, and even can do the paid babysitting at night if you want (we did some nights).


In the ports, do kid-friendly stuff. We just toured the market in Progresso and then sat on the beach at a little restaurant; the kids played in the sand/surf right near our table. In Cozumel we went to some park/beach/thing that had "swim with the dolphins" (dh did this with our oldest two at the time) and then hung out there all day. Restaurant, playground, little cove area for the kids to swim, and then snorkeling (again, dh was able to take the 2 oldest in the water to snorkel at the steps, and he & I took turns hanging with the baby; if you fit the 3 yr old with a life vest you could tow him around while you snorkel, the one of you who is not actually snorkeling at the time).


I don't remember the name of the place, but it's very popular; you can likely find it on a google search of Cozumel with kids. Skip the dolphin encounter; our oldest remembers it, but not the middle son who was about the age of your oldest. But go to that place; so nice for kids. Lunch was mildly expensive, but not too bad.


the Kids' program is great on Carnival, and the facilities on board are good. you really won't need to pack too much. Maybe whatever "must have" snack food if you have picky eaters, but the meals were plenty kid-pleasing as I recall.


Go and have fun! It will be a great time!

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