Taking the Kids: Adventures by Disney Takes to the Seas
The Gladiators are really going at it!
They're the kids whose parents have signed on for Adventures by
In 2011, there will also be the option for a special three-day, pre-cruise "adventure" at the port of embarkation like
Most cruise lines have concierge or VIP services and you can certainly book private tours wherever you go. But Adventures by
On one Mediterranean sailing aboard the Disney Magic last summer, there were 13 families, including three grandparents and three couples without kids (yes the
The guides sweat the details and always have a joke and snack ready for the kids. They make sure you get those vacation photos too, cajoling the kids to pose. With Adventures by
This makes traveling with kids in
The families I met aboard the Magic think the price is money well spent. "I did the math," said
Then there are the friendships forged over lunches and dinners, walking around
Another plus to touring with Adventures by
In addition, we get the 411 on everything from where to find gelato to where to find the bathrooms -- much appreciated with young children in the mix. The guides think of everything --toting snacks in their backpacks, even giving us postcards with the special Vatican stamps so we don't have to stand in line to get them.
Some might turn up their noses at such handholding and not being able to choose their own itinerary. Others might not like spending their vacation with companions not of their choosing. But if you can afford it, aren't familiar with the locale, and want to keep your kids happy (those "only" children in the group were especially thrilled not to be spending all their time off the ship with mom and dad), the concept works, no matter what the kids' ages.
In this group, there were kids as young as four and as old as 18 -- 21 kids in all -- and I was impressed that the guides managed to keep them all happy -- most of the time anyway. Even when 4-year-old
"This is absolutely grandparent heaven," observed Elle's grandmother
Parents watched each other's kids; the kids formed bonds because they saw the same faces at dinner and on every excursion and at every onboard activity.
That's probably why the kids were still smiling and laughing -- though exhausted -- at the end of a long day touring a very warm
"The sites will always be there," explained guide
I don't think any of the boys and girls "fighting" each other at the Coliseum on a hot summer afternoon will have trouble remembering. Besides, they'll have the photos -- courtesy of our guides, of course -- to help.
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It's vacation and the teens are awake and ready to roll before 8 a.m.! The 22-year-old White has come down to Grand Cayman, his parents and sister in tow, to inaugurate Skate Cayman an 11-week summer program
Taking the Kids Camping & the Great Outdoors
Just being in a tent is an adventure for young kids, says Nancy Ritger, an Appalachian Mountain Club naturalist who has camped with her three teens since they were bab
Whether you want to learn to dive with your tween or snorkel with your kindergartner, teach your grade-schooler to sail or fly on a trapeze, you'll find plenty of opportunities at Caribbean resorts -- at prices that are surprisingly affordable.
Kids on a Plane! 5 Fixes for Unruly Junior Passengers
Kids on a plane. No four words incite more acrimonious debate among air travelers. On one side, you have childless customers who just want a little civility while they're locked inside a pressurized aluminum tube. Talk about oil and water.
Children in First Class: 3 Suggestions for the Kids 'Up Front'
The overwhelming number of travelers I spoke with said kids should be able to fly in first class if their parents could afford to pay the freight. But they were quick to add that they expected the children to behave.
(c) 2011 EILEEN OGINTZ DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
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