Tag Archive | carnival

Carnival Cruise With Teens

Article By:  Claudia Laroye

Our teenage son lobbied to choose our family’s vacation for this year’s spring break. He had two proposals: go on a cruise or visit the Caribbean. Since my husband and I loved our Alaskan cruise and we had always wanted to visit the Caribbean, our teen didn’t have to do too much convincing. Much to our son’s delight, we booked an Eastern Caribbean cruise with Carnival Cruise Lines for our family holiday. Here’s what to expect when you embark on a Carnival Cruise with teens.

Carnival Cruise with Teens

Fun ships, indeed!

Carnival Cruise has a reputation for fun and free-spirited adventures. Our ship departed Miami packed with families, college students and young people. It was a ‘carnival-like’ atmosphere, celebrating the Caribbean sun and spring break. It’s a popular cruise line with families, young adults, and the young at heart. They have FunPoints to collect, FunShops on board, and offer a Great Vacation Guarantee. Carnival is that sure you’ll have fun and enjoy your cruise holiday, and they really want you to come back again.

Carnival's Teen Hangout: Club O2 (Photo Credit: Carnival Cruise Lines)

At Sea teen clubs

Our teenager was able to cut loose, relax, and socialize with the many other teens on board. As with other age groups, Carnival offers an activity club for teenagers – Club O2 – on all of their ships. For the 15-17 year old set, Club O2 is a teen-only hang out space; no adults allowed. It’s a great place for kids to break the ice and meet each other, without any parental pressure or interference. Parents have to sign a consent form to allow their teens to come and go as they please, but once they’re in the Club, you may not see them for several hours, or until the next morning.

There is a daily itinerary for Club O2, ranging from Karaoke and dance and trivia-themed parties to island excursions. Kids can join in as they wish; the structure is loose and just hanging out is encouraged. The Club was a hit with our teen, who met some great new friends with whom he spent time exploring the ship when they weren’t doing specific activities.

For the younger teen set (ages 12-14), there is the Circle C club. The C stands for ‘chill’ or ‘cool’ and the club includes activities such as dance and pizza parties, games, outdoor movies, and scavenger hunts. The Circle C is supervised by fun-loving counselors who want to ensure that the kids have an awesome time.

Teen-pleasing dining options abound aboard a Carnival ship

Teen-pleasing dining options

Teens will find plenty of totes tasty dining choices on board a Carnival ship. Our ship, the Carnival Liberty, boasted Guy’s Burger Joint (fabulous fries), the Blue Iguana Cantina (delish fish tacos), a 24-hour pizzeria (with surprisingly tasty pies), self-serve ice cream, a late-night deli, Cherry on Top candy store, daily buffets at breakfast and lunch, and several dining rooms for more formal or anytime dining. Our casually formal dinner time offered the chance to connect with our teen over a family meal together before he headed out for a night of fun and adventure.

Waterslide fun on Carnival Liberty (Photo: Claudia Laroye)

Other Carnival fun for teens

Many Carnival ships have a wide variety of teen-friendly activities to pump up the fun. Our ship offered a water slide, while other ships have a more extensive Carnival Waterworks, such as the Speedway Splash on the Carnival Sunshine.

There Seaside Theatre is where to go to watch cartoons, classic TV shows plus comedies and action movies—complete with free popcorn and blankets. Or watch movies from the pool or one of two hot tubs in the middle of the ship!

The Punchliner Comedy Club offers a rotating roster of comics that perform several shows nightly, including at least one ‘family-friendly’ show in the early evening that teens would definitely enjoy. The big stage shows by on-board entertainers and special performers may also be a teen draw. Ours wasn’t keen on the musicals as much as he was spellbound by the hypnotist, who showed off his skills at getting people to do anything and everything.

Caribbean Carnival cruise with teens

Why cruise with teens

Traveling with teens presents challenges that are very different from when you traveled with little ones to grandma’s house. They like to eat a lot more (cha-ching), sleep in, share strong opinions, and can be…shall we say…surly and not the most talkative traveling companions. All-included food aboard a cruise ship presents a definite budget bonus to parents of teens. If you and your spouse and younger children want to sit by the pool or hit the breakfast buffet, you can sneak out of the stateroom without having to wake a cranky teen. The ability to split up and pursue varying activities and come together over a family meal in the evenings may prove a good way to keep the eye-rolling to a minimum too.

Teens are able to explore a contained environment while cruising. Our teen really enjoyed that sense of freedom, even to just eat pizza at midnight while trading jokes with friends (and keeping an eye out for young ladies too, I’m sure).

Traveling with happy teenagers is much preferred to the alternative; it’s worth the time and effort to work with them and plan out a holiday that will meet their needs, as much as your own. Who knows? Away from the pressures of school and work, a relaxed cruise vacation just might draw you and your teen closer together!

Have you ever taken a cruise with teens? What did they enjoy the most? Share your comments below!

Source: Claudia Laroye from TravelMamas.com

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20 Places You Have to See!

20. Lantern Festival, Taiwan

Here’s a photo you’ve likely seen doing the endless rounds on social media – and it’s little wonder due to the spectacular nature of the photograph, which encapsulates the spirit and wonder of the Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival in Taiwan.

19. Great Wall of China

Unless you’ve been living under a rock since you were born, you would have a preconceived notion of what these series of fortifications made out of stone, brick, wood and other materials look like. Sure, it’s not your usual ‘see it in your 20s’ destination, but at some point you’ve gotta wear thin of partying til the sun rises, so go on – get cultured…

18. Santorini, Greece

Here’s one of the most over-photographed little seaside towns the world has to offer. Regardless of how many times snaps like this have made it to instagram, this would still have to be one of the ‘must see’ travel destinations for 20-somethings.

17. Half Dome, Yosemite National Park, USA

If you think it’s beautiful in the heat of summer, then try visiting Yosemite in a thick layer of snow in winter – words just can’t describe.


16. Tiger’s Nest Monastery in Bhutan

Here’s one you probably haven’t heard of and neither had I when writing this article, so you should probably do a quick copy+paste and check it out if you’re looking for something seriously off the beaten path…


15. XS Nightclub, Las Vegas

Okay so it wouldn’t be a list for 20-somethings if it didn’t include Vegas – and what better inclusion than that of Vegas’ arguably most happening club – XS. The only problem is getting in…. be prepared for guest lists, long lines, and crowds to leave even VIPs feeling smothered.


14. Havana, Cuba

Now here’s an unsung hero lying quietly and waiting for the world to discover her. Havana is indeed a time warp and the central hub of Cuba. It’s progressively gaining popularity for travelers seeking adventure beyond the confines of a contiki bus tour, so be sure to get in before it’s too late.


13. Petra, Jordan

For a reason that is beyond me, Jordan remains one of the less celebrated destinations to visit for travelers seeking out-of-this-world experiences and unbeatable history/culture. The photo speaks for itself…

12. New York City, New York, USA

It’s an oldie but a goodie – New York, New York. You should definitely try to make it here in your 20s and soak up the underground bars and clubs, bustling streets above ground, and the peaceful oasis that is central park. It’s a concrete jungle, sure… but it’s where dreams are made of – right Jay Z?


11. Lapland, Finland

If you haven’t seen photos of the northern lights – one of the world’s most astounding natural beauties – then be sure to throw the term ‘Lapland Finland northern lights’ into Google. Lapland is a great place to base yourself for some serious star-gazing in the winter months. Expect to be sitting in permanent darkness without a clue as to the time, but its an unrivaled experience you won’t get elsewhere.


10. Death Valley, USA

Okay, so there’s not much there….. and people that have been will probably tell you not to go (probably being the key word here). But it’s a great place to visit if you’re doing the Coast to Coast road trip or on your way through to Vegas for Los Angeles.

death valley

9. Mount Fitz Roy, on the border of Chile and Argentina

This one’s much more of a challenge and probably one to keep on the dreamlist rather than the bucketlist – but nonetheless, we have one of the world’s hardest climbs situated on the border between Chile and Argentina…. The photo certainly does it justice.


8. Bodø, Norway

Scandinavian countries are sometime viewed as a distant dream to 20-somethings visiting Europe. But if you’re looking for something slightly (as in a lot) more fulfilling than the usual booze cruise bus that darts its way from one central European country to the next, then check out the likes of Norway, Sweden, and even Denmark. These countries are culturally rich, and a complete different experience to anywhere else in Europe. Here we have a quaint seaside town in Norway named ‘Bodo’…


7. Carnival, Rio di Janeiro, Brazil

South America isn’t quite as popular among 20-somethings as the likes of Europe or the USA – but there’s no reason why it shouldn’t be! So if you’re going to go, why not go all out!!!!


6. Drake Passage, Antarctica

Probably not what you had in mind for a trip in your twenties, but if you ever got the chance, you would surely take it. Antarctica is probably the only place on this earth that you can guarantee won’t have a McDonald’s by 2020. So go on, look into it.

drake passage

5. The Inca Trail, Peru

Another highly celebrated image on social media is the Inca Trail in Peru. For active travelers this is the perfect opening into altitude treks and is a great bucketlist destination to hit up in your 20′s.


4. Salt Flats, Bolivia

The picture just says it all…..

3. The Rhino Charge, Nairobi, Kenya

An African safari is probably the highest ‘must do in my 20s’ on my list. I’ve still got a few years left yet so I’m sure I’ll get there one day – but if you ask me, the sooner the better!

rhino charge kenya

2. Disneyworld, Orlando, Florida

You’re probably thinking ‘uh…what?’, but let’s think about this for a moment – it’s better late than never, and if you ask me, growing up is overrated anyway. This is one of my MUST SEE destinations before I climb my way into the 30′s, and it should surely be on your list too.


1. Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic

Finally, a hidden gem in central Europe – Cesky Krumlov. It’s just a short 2 hour bus ride into southern Bohemia from Prague, and would have to be one of my favorite finds in Europe. If you can help it, try to visit during the summer for rafting down the vlatva river with various camping spots along the way.

Article written by Wonderful World of Wanderlust.. Thanks Guy!!

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Ms Johnnie Wright
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