Which River Cruises Companies Allow You To Bring Children
March 2, 2015 By Lauri Wakefield
Thinking of bringing your children on a river cruise? There are a few things you will want to consider. For starters, when compared to ocean cruise vacations, river cruises tend to be less family-friendly, particularly for families with young children. There are many reasons. Ocean liners, for example, are substantially larger than their river cruise counterparts, which means theres less space to utilize on river cruise vessels. Thats one of the reasons that river cruisers have no childrens facilities. What this means for young travelers is that there wont be a lot of entertainment thats designed just for kids. And, unless its a special family-themed cruise, there probably will not be other children onboard.
Some river cruise companies, however, are more family-friendly than others. Although, the recommended minimum age for travelers is 8 to 10 years old on most vessels, there are river cruises that allow families to travel with children under the age of 2. But while infants and toddlers may be allowed on a river cruise, there are no sleep accommodations for children this young. Families will need to provide their own portable cribs and bedding and other items that infants or toddlers require.
Listed below is a summary of each river cruise lines child policy.
For Chobe River cruises in Africa, the minimum age limit is 12 years old.
- Discounted Fares for Children: No
- Special Programs or Facilities for Children: No
Family Friendly Resorts In Ontario
We are looking for a family friendly resort/lodging type of place. We don’t want a “hotel” type place. I have been told to try Sherkston Shores…I can’t find any info on it in here?!?! Shouldn’t it be listed as a vacations spot? Also I’ve been told to consider Delawanna Inn and Kilarney resort in Algonquin. Any suggestions or comments would be greatly appreciated! We are a family of 5 and are thinking of travelling somewhere for a week in August.
Here is Sherkston’s website:
It is a huge trailer park resort with about 1500 permanent park model trailers that are owned by people throughout southern Ontario and western New York. There is also a large camping area for tents and trailers. The park owns a good number of trailers for rentals and many owners also rent, either through the park or privately.
The facilities include: approx. 2 km of beautiful sand beach plus a separate spring fed quarry, 2 pools and hot tub, water slides, 9 hole pitch & put golf course, miniature golf, arcade, restaurants and shops, tons of daily activities and entertainment, including an excellent fireworks display every Saturday night.
It is located between Fort Erie and Port Colborne and is about 1/2 hour drive to Niagara Falls.
I sound like a commercial, but I have a trailer there myself, so I know all about it.
What Luxury Cruise Itineraries Are Best For Kids
Because smaller ships dont have the activities, kids and teen clubs, and entertaining amenities of a megaship, families booking a luxury cruise need to choose an itinerary that offers onshore options appealing to junior sailors. If traveling with kids under age 10, think sun-and-sand itineraries, such as the Eastern Caribbean or Western Caribbean, to enjoy beach days, watersports, and interaction with marine life. Cruises to Alaska, Costa Rica or the Galapagos offering opportunities for nature-based adventure and wildlife-spotting are ideal for kids age 10 and above. Older teens will likely enjoy exploring the charming ports and ancient sites of the Mediterranean and Greek Islands. The key is to plan daytime shore activities around what interests your kids, since onboard life on most luxury ships is designed to indulge grown-ups.
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Tauck River Cruising For Families
Tauck is a highly regarded luxury tour operator whose Tauck Bridges division features 20 trips in Europe, North America, Africa and Latin America designed for a multigenerational audience, a loyal clientele that led them to pioneer family river cruises on the Danube in 2010. For 2017, Tauck Bridges is adding a fourth route and doubling its family cruise capacity to meet demand by offering 20 departures aboard nine vessels on Europes Danube, Rhône, Rhine, Seine, Saône, Moselle and Main Rivers.
Taucks new eight-day Family Fun Along the Seine: Paris to Normandy includes two nights in Paris with a family scavenger hunt at the Louvre, dinner inside the Eiffel Tower, and a panoramic city tour or guided bicycle tour along the Seine.
Guests then board Taucks ms Sapphire riverboat for a five-night cruise, with a guided excursion to Monets house and gardens in Giverny, and a walking tour of Les Andelys Depending on age, ability and interest, passengers can tailor their Versailles excursion to include the art and architecture of the interior, or follow a guide on foot or on bike through the palaces gardens. Families especially like the full-day excursion to the D-Day Beaches of Normandy, with stops at the American Cemetery and the multimedia museum that offers a 360-degree film of the battle plus hands-on encounters with World War II-era military vehicles, weapons, communications equipment and more.
River Cruise : River Cruising With Kids
September 30, 2018 By Ralph Grizzle
Can children go on a river cruise? It depends. Only a couple of river cruise companies allow children under the age of three, Crystal and CroisiEurope. Emerald, Riviera and Scenic require that kids be 12 or older. And one company bans kids altogether.
While, as a father, I completely understand the desire to share river vacations with children, grandchildren, or other young people, not all lines welcome children. The good news, however, is that there are many options for those looking to cruise with young travelers.
AmaWaterways partners with Adventures by Disney to offer family cruises. Photo courtesy of AmaWaterways
Historically, river cruises were never really intended for kids, families, or the like. They were targeted at a certain segment of the population, typically retired couples with a bit of cash to burn who were tired of the typical bus-around-Europe land vacation. But it turns out that families also are tired of motorcoach and do-it-yourself tours of Europe and want to get in on the river cruise craze, especially during the school holiday months.
While this article is mainly focused on cruise lines that allow young passengers, one line doesnt. Viking announced that it will no longer host those under the age on 18. This change took place on August 1, 2018, although 2019 cruises booked before that date will not enforce that rule.
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Inspired By The Destination
For 90+ years, the Tauck family has had a passion for sailing aboard small ships and yachts at sea, riverboats along great inland waterways, and at home on the rivers and lakes of Connecticut and New York. When we began blending our land experience with our strong passion for cruising in our first European river cruise back in 1992, we knew that no “ordinary” river cruise experience would do for our guests. We wanted them to travel Europe’s rivers in the same beyond-the-ordinary Tauck style they experienced on our land trips. With that in mind, we searched to find a company to partner with that would share our values and our commitment to “do the right thing” by our guests… and found it in another family-owned company, Scylla. Together, we crafted a river cruise experience that was ahead of its time and inspired by the destinations we explore.
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Princess Cruises has unveiled a world of new travel opportunities for Australians in its latest program, including the longest-ever roundtrip cruise offered from Australia – a 110-night global odyssey departing late April 2024. In a move that reflects strong demand for bucket list destinations, the cruise line today announced it will open.
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Still Want To Take A River Cruise Here Are The Best
Adventures by Disney. Cruising on AmaWaterways ships, the Adventures by Disney cruises provide bubbly, family-friendly Disney employees to serve as your own tour guides through the sites along the cruise route. Disney has set up some special excursions on each cruise , and also provides that extra-special Disney touch accounting for every last detail. But — don’t let the Disney name fool you as some Adventures by Disney are adult-only and others have a minimum age for the sailing that is much higher than say on the Disney Cruise Line.
If you really want Europe + Disney + cruising, the actual Disney Cruise Line does have some European itineraries on the large Disney Magic ship that may be better suited for young families.
Uniworld. The uber-luxurious cruises provided by Uniworld open up in the summer and holiday seasons for 10-day itineraries for families. These work well for multigenerational groups, offering a little something for everyone during excursions including cooking classes with the chef for kids. Butler service in the suites is nice, but kids probably wont appreciate the ornate, gold-leafed décor found on many ships.
Tauck. Adventure cruises by Tauck will take families to exciting destinations like the Galapagos and small boat tours of Alaska, as well as some river options. Look for Tauck Bridges sailings, which are designed specifically for families.
Reasons Adult Children Should Embark On A Viking Cruise With Parents
With just 190 passengers and around 115 crew members, a Viking river cruise on a longship guarantees a high level of service, attention, activities and culture a perfect choice for a family with adult children.
Whether a repeat river cruiser or considering your first one, here are six reasons why youll want to consider it for your next family trip:
Dining arrangements let you catch up with your family large or small or meet other ones. On a Viking cruise there is one seating for dinner, but no assigned seating. Table configurations range from four-tops and round tables for 810 guests, to long rectangular options for larger groups no matter the size of your brood, Viking longships can accommodate. If you all just returned from a bunch of different excursions, you can regroup and regale each other over appetizers and entrees with stories about your day. Inspired to meet and hang out with another family you happen upon? Feel free to share a table and get to know one another.
The included tour at each port appeals to different generations and interests.
The Viking Longship Odin near the city of Budapest on the Danube River. Photo: Viking
Optional excursions appeal to different interests.
Cuisine and wines are tailored to your destinations.
Only those over 18 are allowed on board, making for a most civilized family experience.
Onboard activities and amenities make for some great family bonding time.
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Are River Cruises Right For Kids
Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here.
While major cruise lines are wowing families with mega-ships with cool features like bumper cars, rock-climbing walls, 10-story waterslides, surf simulators, iFly skydiving and more, river cruise lines are slower to catch up in that department. Especially popular in Europe, river cruises meander slowly down rivers like the Danube and the Rhine, stopping in intimate ports as well as larger cities to offer passengers an easy way to visit multiple countries without packing up bags, dealing with train transfers, flights, etc.
Some river cruises don’t allow children at all, but a few river cruises lines such as Uniworld and AmaWaterways are teasing parents with family sailings on itineraries that take you through the fairy-tale castles of Germany or follow the “Sound of Music” in Austria. But, are river cruises actually a good vacation option for kids? Sadly — not really.
Are Viking Ocean Cruises Kid Friendly
When Viking Cruises was founded in 1997, it began with four ships. Today, the enterprise has a fleet of over 70 ships, including vessels for ocean and river cruise lines. Destinations started with European ports, expanded to North American locals, and even voyages to Antarctica.
Viking Cruises has plenty of accolades, including #1 Ocean Cruise Line in the Worlds Best Awards 2020 for the fifth year in a row and Cruisers Choice Awards 2016 through 2019.
With so much attention, praise, and destination possibilities, Viking Cruises appeals to a wide variety of vacationers and explorers. But before you set your sights on a trip with Viking Ocean Cruises, you should know the rules. For family trips, Viking Ocean Cruises has set some limits.
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More About The Sights Not On Board Entertainment
River cruising is a much more intimate experience, with unreserved seating at meal times so you get to mix and mingle with almost everyone on board by the end .
Theres less on-board entertainment but each evening people congregated in the lounge by the bar and Viking had an on-board pianist.
A couple nights during the week, Viking hosted either singers, dancers or local activities.
My favorite was the glass blowing demonstration by a glass master from Germany! He was quite an artist and had different glassblowing techniques than what I saw when I went to Venice.
Century Cruises On The Yangtze Through China
Chinas Three Gorges Dam – the worlds largest hydroelectric project when it was completed in 2012 – has spurred interest around the world in river cruising on the mighty Yangtze River , particularly around the spectacular rock formations known as the Three Gorges. Century Cruises, the only public river cruise line in China, carries thousands of passengers who have booked directly as well as those of partners Viking, Uniworld, Avalon Waterways, AHI, A & K, Kuoni, Titan, Saga on other river boats it operates.
The typical three or four night river cruise between the cities of Chongqing and Wuhan passes by the massive highrise developments built to accommodate 1.3 million citizens displaced by the 335-foot rise in the water level. A few of the archeological and cultural sights that remain on higher ground can be seen in shore excursions. The Qutang, Xiling and Wu Gorges, seemingly lower than they used to be because of the water height and wider river, remain beautiful works of nature and the highlight of a fascinating cultural cruise.
Century keeps the cruises fun for families with special onboard activities such as basic language lessons in Chinese, English and German and basic dining manners for Western and Chinese meals. Guests can tour the Pilot House with the Captain, paint T-shirts, play interactive games, practice pizza and dumpling making with the chef, or team up with the crew for kite flying from the sundeck and an evening talent show.
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Viking River Cruises Review
The entire trip was calm and relaxing and I felt like it struck the perfect balance of sightseeing and leisure!
Ive taken several European river cruises cruises with family before and immediately knew my mom would love the smaller atmosphere, quaint towns and relaxing vibe, so I brought her along for the trip!
I know river cruising is not for everyone so if youre curious about Viking specifically or more generally wondering what there is to see and do along the Rhine River, I thought Id recap our trip to show you the highlights.
I would recommend this trip if you enjoy small colorful towns, World War II history and good food.
Viking Ocean Cruises Destinations
Viking Ocean Cruises has many greatest hits destinations, appealing to any age within the eighteen-plus range. The vessels sail to six continents, with trips to Scandinavia, Northern Europe, the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, Alaska, North American, South America, and Africa.
Viking tailors onboard entertainment and onshore experiences to match their destinations, with similar exposure to lecturers, concerts, and local art. For some kids, it might feel like theyre stuck in class, but others might love the engaging approach to culture.
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Tauck Bridges/tauck River Cruising
Tauck offers four family-specific cruises: Fun Along the Seine: Paris to Normandy France Family River Cruise Blue Danube and a Castles on the Rhine cruise, which sails through Switzerland, France, Germany and the Netherlands. Kid-friendly fun includes a scavenger hunt in the Louvre, Bratislava Devin Castle Jousting in Slovakia, French cooking class in Valence, and a private dinner and tour of Reichenstein Castle on the Rhine.
Tauck has several director-level staff members on each departure, in addition to the local guides. Though there are no connecting rooms onboard, Tauck does offer family-friendly configurations with some suites that can accommodate three or four with a pullout couch. It also waives its single supplement, ideal for single parents or a single grandparent traveling with the family.
Recommended Age: The recommended age is 8 and up for enjoyment, but the minimum age is 4 on the Tauck Bridges river cruise departures.
Viking Makes It Official: Kids No Longer Welcome On Cruises
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Luxury line Viking Cruises has updated its age policy and limited river and ocean sailings to passengers who are 18 or older. Its a departure for the company that once allowed younger children onboard river cruises.
Now passengers must be at least 18 years old to sail on cruises booked after Aug. 1, the companys website says.
Vikings ocean cruises have been adult-only since the line launched in 2015. It previously accepted kids 12 and older on river cruises, media reports say.
A Viking statement sent by email said the age limit reflects what passengers wanted.
Viking has always offered experiences that are designed for travelers who are 50 and older, with interests in history, art, culture and exploration. Its what were known for. Previously, we had allowed a degree of flexibility in the minimum age for travel, but increasingly our guests have told us how much they appreciate an environment where they can travel without children.
The statement said its policy clarification began last January as part of a marketing campaign called What Viking Is Not.
No casinos, no children under 18, no photographers, no umbrella drinks … and so on, the web page says. Its a way of differentiating the luxury line from those that market family-friendly features on mega-ships.
Other river cruise lines set their own age limits for passengers that can be found in their Terms and Conditions.
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