A Vacation for Every Member of the Family
Blog - November 15, 2019

Holland America Cruise ship on water in the background
Photo by Holland America Line

Eileen Ogintz, nationally syndicated columnist and creator of “Taking the Kids,” contributed this blog post on behalf of sponsor, Holland America Line.

Here’s one vacation I’ve found that can please every member of the family. I’m talking about a cruise. Some 40 percent of grandparents are traveling with their grandchildren, AARP reports, and Holland America is a popular choice for these multigenerational groups.

Families enjoy Holland America’s upscale, mid-sized ships ranging from 1,258 to 2,666 guests — smaller than many megaships but with plenty of onboard entertainment.

photo of tiki hut on the water with Holland America cruise ship in the background
Photo by Holland America Cruise Line

Sail to the Caribbean from Fort Lauderdale or Tampa; to Mexico from San Diego this winter; Alaska or the Mediterranean next summer. Young “Frozen” lovers want to visit Norway and northern Europe. Visit the Panama Canal. Nearly all Caribbean itineraries include a stop at the private island Half Moon Cay.  Or join a bucket list sailing to Alaska, with a day in breathtaking Glacier Bay.

Holland America Cruise ship sailing in ocean
Photo by Holland America Cruise Line

Why Cruise with Holland America Cruise Line?

Holland American Line has been taking guests to Alaska for the past 70 years was just named #1 in Alaska by Cruise Critics’ Cruisers’ Destination Awards. Their ships offer especially immersive onboard activities and shore excursions and the chance to visit the Yukon as well as Denali National Park. Eight ships will sail to Alaska from Seattle and Vancouver next year, including the Koningsdam, one of the line’s newest ships.

Holland America Cruise ship docked in front of mountains
Photo of Holland America Cruise Line

Is Holland America Line Affordable?

You won’t break the bank as cruises can be had starting at $90 per person per day. If you’re traveling with the whole family, book eight or more staterooms to get the Family Reunion Package including a free cabin, upgrades and other perks. Book from December 5, 2019, start of the WAVE season, to get plenty of extras and upgrades, including onboard credits, free and reduced prices for kids, discounts on shore excursions and half off deposits.

Is There Really Something for Everyone in the Family?

Did I say something for everyone? First, there are more than 500 cruises to more than 400 ports in 98 countries to choose from.

As for life at sea, adults in your clan will appreciate the live dance and music performances ranging from chamber music to classic rock. Kids will love the new Kids Club, divided into age-appropriate groups of toddlers as young as three, grade-schoolers, teens and tweens. The Explorations Central program of onboard activities and shore excursions enables passengers of all ages to better understand and explore the ports they are visiting.

cruise ship standing in the middle of a large body of water with icebergs in the backgroud
Photo by Holland America Cruise Line

Some ships have a new High Score gaming room for when you’re back onboard. Count on scheduled cooking demonstrations (Holland America is known for its terrific food), BBC Earth concerts and films, yoga and spa treatments, casinos, wine tasting and more.   

Foodies of all ages will love menus crafted by Holland America’s Culinary Council—eight famous chefs Including recent addition and Top Chef winner Kristen Kish. Picky young eaters will love that they can always get favorites like pizza, mac and cheese and fresh fruit from the kids’ menu.  

And there’s always unlimited ice cream!

18 Comments

  1. My husband has been on a couple cruises, but I haven’t. I really want to go, but the budget-er in me balks at the cost. I definitely need to look into one for when my girls are old enough to enjoy it more.

  2. I went on a HAL cruise with my husband and two kids (they were 6 and 9 at the time). We had a great time! But they did tell me that the only reason there were any kids on board was because it was Easter week, I think if you go on a non-school break, there might not be too many other kids to hang with. But for school vacations and summer, this is a great line because there is a lot that caters to the older folks.

  3. What a perfect sounding trip for everyone in the family, there seems plenty for every age group to get involved with. It also looks like it stops off in some great locations, so many beautiful photos.

  4. I’ve only taken one cruise in my life, and that was about 25 years ago. I get a bit restless and claustrophobic on boats like that, but maybe it’s time for me to give it another go?

  5. I’ve actually never been on a cruise before, but I would love to try one. It sounds like the perfect vacation to take with a variety of family members. Holland America sounds like a great cruise line!

  6. You are so right, a cruise has something for everyone. We did a family reunion one year on a cruise ship and everyone had a blast!

  7. Great post! We love cruising and Alaska is definitely a bucket-list destination. We’ve never cruised with Holland America but will have to check this cruise line out.

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