I confess that until I started working in travel, I had every misconception of cruising there was! I had visions of vast iron hotels, storeys high, floating lethargically through the oceans, offering a combination of warbling songstresses, bad comedy and illuminous drinks in a variety of colours – which all changed when I began working at Silver Compass.
Put simply – I had no idea about the variety of cruises, nor the variety of ships, boats, yachts, vessels, barges and anything else that can float on water. And, I still don’t know all of them!
Being new to cruise is an education more detailed than I could have ever imagined, and one which I am grasping with both hands. With all the different cruises available, I’m very glad I have Kit, our CLIA Cruise Master, to guide me along the learning process. The more I learn, the more I want to experience cruising – and my eye is firmly on a luxury ship that comes with a magic carpet…yes, there is such a thing!
What I’ve learned so far is that the options for cruise holidays are immense. Love food? There is a cruise for that. Love the party atmosphere? There is a cruise for that. Love quiet, solitude and the peaceful tranquillity of bobbing on the ocean? There is a cruise for that. Love exploring and immersing yourself in culture? There is a cruise for that. Love Game of Thrones? There is a cruise for that too. My list could go on but there is limited space to include it in this article!
Recently I’ve been learning about multi-generational cruises and, with a young family, I have a particular interest in the variations of kid’s clubs available – science at sea, cookery classes, camping and laser quest, movie nights, discos… the fun for the under-18s is endless. The staff are child-care professionals and for families with autism, some of the cruise lines have specially trained staff on hand to ensure that the environment is autism friendly, so everyone’s needs are looked after.
Family cruising is definitely on my wish list but for now, I head back to my training – food and beverage at sea! While I dream of floating on a deep-blue ocean, with a cold crisp glass of sommelier-recommended white wine, the only question is, where do I go first?