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As most of you are aware I have recently been on a 19 day cruise out of New Orleans, USA to the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean. It was a holiday to treasure and it certainly changed my preconceived notions of what I thought a ship cruise holiday would be like.
Getting away from it all isn’t as easy as it used to be, thanks to today’s ever-connected society. The non-stop barrage or emails and texts and our pre-occupation with posting constant photos or updates via social media, is making us more stressed than ever before.
A cruise was the perfect much-needed break, particularly when it involved a total ‘digital detox’ and breathing in the fresh ocean air. It not only gave me the opportunity to reconnect with myself and my partner, but it provided the opportunity to share time with good friends, meet new people from different countries, engage in new activities, socialize and live in the moment!
Additionally it involved visiting four great stops in Central America and four in the Caribbean Islands, where we had an entire day to explore these island paradises or do nothing at all but lie on a white sandy beach.
My opinion of cruising previously was that it was for the elderly and the incapacitated, for people who were inactive and wanted a lazy lay-about holiday. It was never my thing to undertake a holiday that involved inactivity. I have always enjoyed holidays that consist of non-stop activities, tours and adventures. I guess that may be partly due to my hyperactive make-up.
Ok so the cruise ship was predominately full of the over 65 set and many people who needed to spend more time in the Gym rather than at the Buffet! However we managed to meet many like-minded people that loved to take advantage of the ship’s full scope of daily physical activities and healthy food options. Although I must confess to over-indulging in the restaurants because the food really was too good to resist!
So what did I do all day you might ask? Apart from dining in the ship’s 17 different restaurants, drinking cocktails in the 12 various bars, swimming in the swimming pool or lazing in one of the hot tubs, attending classes at the Gym, having a massage and facial in the Day Spa, watching a variety of shows at the Theatre, shopping in the Duty Free Shops, playing Trivia and learning how to play Bridge, I guess that left relaxing on a sun lounge with a good book from the ship’s Library.
So after cruising the tranquil seas in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean, I have changed my opinion of cruising. I am now a cruise-convert!
Stay tuned for more blogs about the places we visited during our cruise or check out my previous blog on Mexico & Caribbean Cruising
Oh yes and I did do some of this!!
Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 6 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now in her early 60s. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Tweed Coast of New South Wales, Australia. Kathy enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, photography, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.
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Marisol@TravelingSolematesMay 22, 2015
Wow, 19 days!!! That sounds like a lot of ocean to cover and a lot of exotic places , too. It’s great to know that enjoyed it. Interesting to hear insights from a reluctant cruiser who just converted:) My husband still has to shake off our reluctance to ocean cruises. You’re making it sound tempting.
KathyMay 22, 2015
Yes 19 days!! I was a very reluctant cruiser, but as my blog reported, I really enjoyed the experience. We did go to some fabulous destinations in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean so that helped tremendously. :)
BonnyMay 23, 2015
Hi Kathy, looking forward to your articles on the tropical paradises you visited! I would love to explore that part of the world, but dream of sailing a small yacht instead! A cruise could be fun, but wasn’t it really crowded? Or is that what makes it fun? The pool looks really nice, I love the idea of swimming in a pool surrounded by ocean from horizon-to-horizon, especially at sunset.
KathyMay 23, 2015
The cruise ship had around 2,300 guests, but it never seemed that crowded believe it or not. Some days it was difficult to get a sun lounge around the pool area but it was just a matter of waiting around for awhile. It was a little bit like a floating resort. I found the experience to be very relaxing and re-invigorating. It beats lugging a suitcase around from city to city as you have your own comfy cabin with all the trimmings and most of the sailing is done overnight. So you wind up in a new country almost every day!
Michelle Weaver (@pinkypoinker)May 24, 2015
The only thing that puts me off is sea sickness. I know I’d get it for sure. Apart from that I adore the idea of a cruise. I’m looking forward to all your posts Kathy.
KathyMay 24, 2015
I am the most ‘seasicky’ person out but I didn’t have a problem as long as I took my meds. I have spent most of today writing about New Orleans so stay tuned!! :)
Red Nomad OZMay 24, 2015
That’s an interesting perspective on cruising, Kathy! I’ve been on a couple of cruises when I was a kid, but never as an adult. Like you, the thought of lazing around all day, eating and drinking isn’t what I’d normally choose to do (for more than a day or so) on a holiday. But it looks like it depends where the cruise goes, and what sort of activities there are – and although I’m devoted to my camper trailer, you’ve really made me think twice!
KathyMay 25, 2015
Yes I think you are right. If you choose the right cruise it can be activity packed and involve getting of the ship each day and exploring a new place. That was definitely our case, as we got to go ashore every second day or so. I did change my mind entirely about cruising as a holiday option. :)
Janet Camilleri (@middleagedmama1)June 2, 2015
Love that first pic Kathy! I worried that I would gain weight on our Mediterranean cruise (all that food!) but walked it off sight seeing at each port of call … in fact I lost a kilo or two in the month we were away. Now to keep it off!
KathyJune 3, 2015
You are lucky! I think what you lost, I gained. I am definitely a lot heavier and I could barely fit into my jeans when we hit Boston. However, like you we walked it off in Boston and New York. I’m glad you enjoyed your holiday. I will look forward to hearing more about it. :)
JohannaNovember 2, 2015
I really like the thought of waking up every morning in a different country! We haven’t been on a cruise yet, although we did do a 9 day tour on a dive boat around the Philippines islands which was basic but exotic. This 19 day cruise looks my kind of leisurely :)
KathyNovember 2, 2015
Yes that is definitely the advantage of a cruise holiday. You don’t have to lug your luggage around from place to place or book into a new hotel. There is a new place awaiting you every day that you wake up. :)
Life Images by JillNovember 2, 2015
We are yet to try cruising. Those big ships and being herded around like cattle (my sister’s comment) put me off. But I do like the idea of only having to unpack once! We would love to do a Kimberly cruise one day. Thanks Kathy
KathyNovember 2, 2015
The Kimberley cruise would be fantastic Jill. Apart from boarding and disembarking the ship we never really felt like we were being herded around, even though there were 2400 guests aboard the ship. It exceeded my expectations entirely. :)
budgettraveltalkNovember 2, 2015
I’ve not been on a cruise but I’m sure I will one day. I really like the idea of getting off the ship every day and exploring a different place. I too worry about sea sickness but as you say the meds work then I needn’t worry about that. The only other thing I can think that I wouldn’t like is that we like to stay in each destination for at least three days. I suppose that wouldn’t matter so much if the places were small and you didn’t have the hassle of packing and moving. I like the sound of that New Orleans post.
KathyNovember 2, 2015
I have to admit that there were a couple of places I would have liked to explore a lot more. Like you say, the islands were very small and you could see everything in one day, but you could spend a lot more time in Mexico. :)