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Florida Guide > Planning your Trip

Cruise and stay

What could be better than two weeks at Disney World Florida . . . ? Two weeks at Disney followed by a luxurious Caribbean cruise.

These are our two favourites types of holiday and we are lucky enough to be able to combine both. We spend the majority of our time in Orlando and then head off down to Miami or Fort Lauderdale for a week of relaxation after our busy time in the Disney area.

Occasionally there are cruises out of Port Canaveral and we have cruised Carnival from Canaveral once, but the majority of cruises leave from further south. It is an easy 4/5 hour drive and we arrive in plenty of time for the late afternoon sailaway.

We usually share an inside cabin, which does take some getting used to after spreading out in a spacious 4 bed villa, but as we don’ t spend much time in the cabin and there is a huge difference in the price of cabins, budget usually wins.

After all the hustle and bustle of Orlando, it is nice to spend a week relaxing, having all our meals made for us and being waited on hand and foot. The children love cruising and are spoiled by the waiters who are usually missing their own family lives.

We have cruised many lines including Royal Caribbean, Costa, Carnival, Princess and NCL. Although we have cruised the Med, we prefer the Caribbean and there is so much to see and do on the islands. The children’ s favourite is probably Labadee (Royal Caribbean’ s private island) and Cozumel where we have taken a day package to a hotel and used the beach facilities, including snorkeling equipment, water rafts and a huge inflatable ice burg in the sea. I never have enough strength in my arms to pull myself up! Close third is probably the cave tubing expedition we took in Belize where we floated on tubes in and out of caves and along a river in the middle of a forest.

The food is terrific on a cruise. You can either opt for buffet style meals or sit down waiter service (often up to 6 courses). As we tend to either cook in the villa or eat at buffet restaurants in Orlando, I prefer the dining room service on cruises and then I don’ t end up overfilling my plate and eating too much. I like lots of small, beautifully presented courses.

There is plenty to keep the children amused, from kids clubs to swimming pools and scavenger hunts to discos.

I would recommend visiting Orlando at the beginning of your holiday then cruising at the end. I think that this way round you fully appreciate both and the cruise allows you to relax after a busy time in Florida.

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