These cruise lines are catering to their smallest clients with kid-approved activities the whole family can get involved in.
Paul Gauguin Cruises Announces New Kids Program
In partnership with the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), Paul Gauguin Cruises is launching the Stewards of Nature program aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin during the summer months and holiday season. Created for children and teens ages 7 to 17, as well as their family members, the program invites guests to discover and value nature through hands-on, interactive learning. Every day of the voyage, there is a combination of naturalist-led island and/or beach excursions, science activities, crafts, games, and other adventures. Depending on their itinerary, children might learn about underwater life during a snorkeling excursion, observe the ocean or the stars through binoculars or an onboard telescope, learn about different kinds of marine life and their habitats, reinforce their discoveries by playing Ocean Trivia or Oceanopoly, go on a dolphin-watching expedition, swim with sharks and rays, play beach games and race hermit crabs, enjoy a dance performance or a movie and a pizza party on board, and learn what it means to be a Steward of Nature.
While all of the activities on the itinerary are included for children and teens through the a fee that reserves the program for them, family members are invited and encouraged to participate in most activities for the additional cost of the shore excursions. The Stewards of Nature program is available on the 7-night Tahiti & the Society Islands itinerary, departing Dec. 23 and 30, 2017, June 16 and 23, 2018, July 28, 2018; and Dec. 22 and 29, 2018; the 11-night Cook Islands & Society Islands itinerary, departing July 15, 2017 and July 7, 2018; and the 10-night Society Islands & Tuamotus, departing July 5, 2017, June 6, 2018, and July 18, 2018. For more information, call (800) 848-6172 or visit pgcruises.com.
Adventures by Disney Introduces Iceland Vacation
New for next year will be Adventures by Disney’s first-ever trip to the red hot (and often ice cold) destination of Iceland. Here, Adventures by Disney travelers will navigate the diverse landscapes of this land on an 8-day itinerary exploring the natural wonders of waterfalls, glaciers and volcanos, in addition to learning about the rich Icelandic culture. Highlights include visits to the iconic Thingvellir National Park, Gooafoss waterfall and Kerio crater in Iceland’s Golden Circle, a trot through the scenic countryside on Icelandic horses, and a whitewater rafting adventure through the glacial river of Skagafjorour. There will also be the opportunity to unwind at the soothing Blue Lagoon and Myvatn Nature Baths, embark on a humpback whale-watching expedition, and come face-to-face with glaciers on a scenic cruise, and hike on the massive icecaps themselves. In addition, guests can learn about the Icelandic Viking heritage while exploring traditional turf houses and savoring unique culinary experiences and the stories behind them, such as learning to bake bread using geothermal heat, and discovering the secret to Iceland’s traditional smoking process.
Other popular Adventures by Disney vacations, including trips to Germany, Costa Rica and Ireland, have also undergone itinerary revisions for 2018. For example, the reimagined Germany itinerary introduces first-ever experiences in Berlin; Ireland adds cultural activities such as learning the ancient sport of hurling; and Costa Rica takes travelers on explorations through the hidden gem of Cano Negro. Bookings for 2018 vacations are now open. For more information, call (800) 543-0865 or visit adventuresbydisney.com.
Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic Launches Family Program
In celebration of 50 years of exploring the Galapagos, Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic has launched National Geographic Global Explorers, an exploration-based family program designed in conjunction with National Geographic Education. From earning their Zodiac “driver’s license” to “Spot It” infield activities to locate and observe wildlife, and storytelling challenges where children learn how to create slow motion and time lapse videos with a National Geographic certified photo instructor, all activities have been planned to develop the skills, attitudes and knowledge of explorers age 18 and under.
National Geographic Global Explorers will be organized into two phases: independent experiences and group experiences with a Field Educator. In the first phase, young explorers will be encouraged to utilize “field notebooks” to mimic the research scientists conduct in the field, use maps to keep track of the itinerary, make wildlife checklists and more. During this phase, “storytelling challenges” will help them share their experiences from the day via different mediums including photos, videos, journaling, music and maps. The group experiences, on the other hand, will allow young travelers to actively participate in discussions with naturalists, and work on science projects such as helping to count sea turtles during nesting season. While on board, they will work with field educators on group projects, such as creating a short film of their adventures, or participating in “mapping” to determine who traveled the farthest, and what are the challenges of being in such a remote place.
Timed to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first citizen explorer expedition to Galapagos led by Lars-Eric Lindblad in 1967, the program will launch in Galapagos this June aboard Lindblad’s new 96-guest National Geographic Endeavour ll and the 48-guest National Geographic Islander. For more information, call (800) 397-3348 or visit expeditions.com.