Planning a multigenerational trip is daunting. The idea of pleasing everyone from grandma to the littlest grandchild… well, it’s almost enough to make you stay home.
But before you change your mind, consider how a cruise can come to your rescue—and not just any cruise. With so many activity and excursion options, both onboard and in port, a Uniworld Generations family river cruise is tailor-made for extended family travel.
Some may be doubtful that a cruise can really be customized and appropriate enough for all ages. Will the itinerary deliver the richness of culinary and cultural experiences that adults expect? Will there be enough physical activity to keep kids and teens from getting antsy or bored?
Uniworld’s European itineraries happily erase those doubts. Italy is a good place to start, because it’s instantly immersive. The country is a living museum, and the same Italian atmospherics that seduce first-time adult visitors will also enchant younger guests. Take the “Splendors of Italy” 15-day itinerary. It begins in Milan, where the expansive and majestic Piazza del Duomo attracts local teens and college students. You can wander the piazza with a cone from ODEON, one of the best gelaterias. And teens and tweens will have the energy to make it to the Duomo’s rooftop to behold the city between the cathedral’s famous gothic spires, known as guglie.
Once in Venice, a glassmaking demonstration in Murano is a singular blend of local culture and craftsmanship that mesmerizes guests of all ages. It’s the kind of hands-on activity perfect for inspiring creativity, as is the Venetian mask-making workshop also on offer. Plus, getting around Venice by vaporetto and gondola will fascinate kids probably more accustomed to the interior of an SUV.
Culinary-minded kids who think they know Parmesan and pasta Bolognese from Italian restaurants in America will learn about the real thing in the culinary touchstone that is Bologna. Back onboard, families will appreciate Uniworld’s kid-friendly menus as well as more hands-on experiences like learning to bake strudel.
And in Rome, the iconic ancient sights, within walking distance from one another, will make the whole gang feel as if they have reached the center of the world. To get their adrenaline going, sign the kids up for Roman gladiator school for some “ancient” jousting. Romantics, young and old, throw coins in the Trevi Fountain and flirt on the Spanish Steps, while others will be smitten with the architectural achievement that is the nearly 2,000-year-old Pantheon.
Whatever European cruise you select, the day-to-day agenda can be geared toward the creative kid or the athletic kid; the brainy or the historically minded. For those who crave adventure, there’s the hot-air balloon ride over Paris on the eight-day “Paris and Normandy” cruise; the cable-car ride high over the vineyards of Rüdesheim on the eight-day “Castles along the Rhine” cruise; or a range of active pursuits—biking, hiking, whitewater rafting on the Bavarian River Ilz, plus Segway riding in Vienna’s Prater Park—all on the 10-day “Danube Discovery & Prague” itinerary.
In short, Uniworld has carefully curated European itineraries that provide a range of options for any type of child, tween, or tween—and their relieved parents.
© 2016 AFAR Media