Recently I went on my my first cruise. I sailed to the Caribbean on Royal Caribbean’s Freedom of the Seas. Since I hadn’t been on a cruise before, I wondered what kinds of things there would be for us to do on board. Thankfully, there is no short answer to this question. For adult travelers, you can visit the casino or any of the night clubs available on board. The fitness center will keep you in shape. The live shows and movies will give you some relaxing entertainment, or you can relax poolside. If you enjoy shopping, you will be kept very  busy on the Promenade deck, where you can also find fun activities like cupcake decorating or live entertainment.

It is rare that I travel without any children, so I was focused on the family activities available on board. My nine year old daughter was my travel companion, and it felt like the cruise was designed with her in mind.

avery on RC cruise

When we arrived in our Ocean View stateroom with balcony, we found a Barbie layette and invitation to a Barbie tea party waiting. Avery is a girly-girl and the gifts brought an instant smile to her face, and the tea party was the most anticipated activity during our trip. That wasn’t the end of the Barbie fun for her. She attended a Barbie design class where she created a one of a kind dress for her new doll (shown at the tea party above). She learned proper etiquette from some real live Barbies and of course she dressed in her best dress to attend the tea party.

When Avery wasn’t in Barbie mode, she enjoyed swimming and playing in the H2O Zone water park. On the top deck she was able to play some mini golf and if she wanted she could have played basketball, went rock climbing or even tried a surf simulator.

royal caribbean 3

The arcade was generally a busy spot for kids, and  the children’s programming was excellent. I registered Avery for the Kids’ Programs and she joined some children her age for some fun, crafts and a movie while I had some grown up time. I could choose if I wanted her to be able to sign herself out of the room, and I preferred not to do that, so when it was time to pick her up I went and signed her out. I like the security of knowing she couldn’t be wandering around the ship unattended.

One of the really cool features on this ship was the ice rink. You could sign out some skates and a helmet and skate on the full sized ice rink while the less adventurous watch from the stands. There was even an ice show on board.

We had so many great experiences on board and tomorrow I will tell you about our shore excursions.



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Sheri McDonald is a family lifestyle blogger who has been sharing her parenting and travel adventures online for the past eight years. You can find her discovering the world with her children when she's not at home enjoying a good book.


Lifestyle Blogger. Traveler. Writer. Social Media Marketer. @SunwingVacay #Kidcations Expert Panel. Member of ITWA @PTBAssoc IG: familyenroute
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