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Easy, Family Friendly Shore Excursion Options

By caseymullins |

Not entirely sure where you want to go on a cruise? Sometimes it helps to start with what you actually want to do when you’re off the ship. Norwegian Cruise Line helps you narrow your choices down based on what you most want to do, what you’re capable of doing, how much you want to spend and who you want to do it with. I searched easy family shore excursions and 200 results came back. Tours were generally the least expensive (under $50/person) while a helicopter tour over a volcano came in at just over $400/person. We decided on the Western Caribbean and will be picking and choosing a few shore excursions before we leave, and maybe as we begin to cruise more in our golden years or with our kids we’ll start booking cruises based off what we want to do on shore.

Right now the Alaskan cruises are looking pretty good for some great sightseeing and cultural experiences (Cody’s parents are currently on an Alaskan cruise, deep sea fishing and whale watching are on their itinerary.)

Curious what other kind of easy shore excursions are available for families? Check out some of the options available below!

  • Ride a glass bottom boat in Bermuda, Hawaii or Key West – This one is not for me, as the idea of a glass bottom boat gives me anxiety, but it would be a fantastic way to show kids what’s just under the surface without ever getting wet.
  • Tour the Everglades in an airboat. – I’ve heard that you can never be sure what you’ll see in the Everglades, that every moment of everyday is a new adventure. I know my husband has “see a real alligator” on his life list and I’m pretty sure this would be the excursion for him.
  • Attend a salmon bake, whale watching or crab fishing in Alaska – We’re loyal viewers of “Deadliest Catch”, we’d love the chance to see a crab boat from the show up close and personal, and the salmon bake? SIGN US ALL UP.
  • Have a dolphin encounter in Honduras, Bahamas or Puerto Vallarta – I’m pretty sure every kid at one time or another dreams of swimming with dolphins.
  • Attend a luau, take a helicopter tour of a volcano  or ride in a submarine in Hawaii – If you’ve never been to a luau? The food. GO FOR THE FOOD. (I’ll pass on the submarine though.)
  • Tour the city from a horse drawn trolley in Halifax. – Well this just sounds quaint doesn’t it? And way cooler than taking a horse drawn carriage in your own home town.
  • Sail through the canopy in a rainforest aerial tram ride in St. Lucia. – You may not be able to get me in a glass bottom boat but I’ll for sure get in a little basket high up in the trees!
  • Attend a ballet in Russia – Uh, hello life list check off item.
  • Go to an Orlando theme park. – Kids wanted to go to Universal Studios, Disneyworld or SeaWorld? On a cruise you can do both!
  • Please your inner space nerd at Kennedy Space Center. – I’m not sure if there’s a grownup or kid alive that would pass up the chance to see a real live space ship.
  • Take private or chartered tours of Stockholm, Estonia, Yukon Territory, Boston Halifax, Juneau or more. Includes museums, historical sites, city centers and countryside. – Sometimes it’s nice to just sit back and let someone else take care of all the driving and navigating while you just take in the sights

What would you be most interested in when it comes to shore excursions?


A big thanks to Norwegian Cruise Line for sponsoring this campaign. Click here to see more of the discussion.

Image Credit: Rainforest Adventure

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About caseymullins



Casey Mullins is a writer, photographer, and nice person living in Indianapolis with her two little girls, husband, and a one eyed cat. She writes regularly at her personal blog moosh in indy and can be found trolling local bakeries and napping whenever possible. Read bio and latest posts → Read Casey's latest posts →

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5 thoughts on “Easy, Family Friendly Shore Excursion Options

  1. MonicaBielanko says:

    I have always wanted to ride in a glass-bottom boat and I think my kids would really dig that too. The beauty of these options are that they really do appeal to both adults and children.

  2. dadcamp says:

    That excursion search tool looks super handy. My mom and dad have some experience with cruising and would use those excursions as a guide and then price it out on their own. They would meet people on the boat, and then hire a local guide a few blocks away from the pier and ended up saving some good money.

    Still, if you’re all about keeping together as a family and keeping on budget, this is a handy tool.

  3. mommyfriend says:

    Luau, airboat, swimming with a dolphin?!?! THOSE are memories to last a family a lifetime. I had no idea all of these options were available! My kids would die to do any of these things (except for maybe the ballet, but that’s only because they’re boys). Great infomation to know, thanks for sharing!

  4. marylweimer says:

    Fun stuff! I would love to go on a European cruise someday. Those excursions are a major perk of cruising…you really get so much variety of relaxing and exploring.

  5. Whit says:

    A chartered tour sounds fantastic. I’m putting it on my to do/dream list.

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