There have been major changes at the cruise lines in recent years. Some lines have eliminated traditional formal dress in favor of casual wear; some have moved away from assigned dining times; some have more restrictive alcohol policies in place; and certainly the trend toward building larger and larger ships is continuing.
There are some people who believe the cruise lines have "lost something" during this transition, and others who believe that most changes have been positive.
Regardless of our views on the direction some cruise lines are taking, I think a cruise is still the most appealing type of vacation available. A cruise offers us so much variety all lumped into one vacation, and the value for our dollars spent cannot be equaled anywhere else.
Let's look at what you, the members of our CruiseMates community, have to say on the subject of what you love about cruising. Though I agree with all of you, you said it more eloquently than I could.
*ChrisC "I guess the best thing is just being out on the ocean - away from land, work, bills, doctors, etc."
*Raven "I love that I can do as much or as little as I want on a cruise. I love just watching the world go by, and I can pick my own speed according to the moment."
- Having the opportunity to visit exotic places all over the world and come back to a nice clean atmosphere aboard the ship where you can eat wonderful meals and not worry about getting sick.
- Recording all our visits with a camera.
- Having a good place to sleep with no worries.
- Not having to pack and unpack for the duration.
- Meeting new and lasting friends from around the world."
*Lisa "I love just being on the sea...feeling the motion of the ship, watching the wake as it goes back to the horizon, sitting in a hot tub watching the mountains or the stars, eating delicious food around the clock, making friends or being as antisocial as I want, walking the promenade at night after dinner so I don't have to worry what my hair looks like after I come back in....just getting away from it all!"
*Donna "Cruising to me is the ultimate vacation, just being away from work, stress, problems, etc. Of course, getting waited on hand and foot doesn't hurt either, and I especially love the mints on the pillow every evening. Then there are the ports and the amazing sunsets (I still have not witnessed a sunrise, but sometime I will). There is also the food, which I don't have to cook or clean up. Cruising itself is almost hassle free -- no packing, unpacking and going from place to place, deciding on when to eat and where, and last but not least all that warmth and sunshine, sitting out at the pool -- I just love it! Nothing quite compares."
*Carole Bensley "It is everything everyone else said and something else... It is the one vacation my husband truly relaxes on. He becomes a different person -- more at ease, more tender, without a worry in the world. When we cruise, it is the time we reflect on each other and get closer to God and each other. We come home with a better marriage each time."
*Kay S. "During the first 24 hours, we relax a week's worth. Everything after is heaven. This does not exist on land!"
*Rick "We love just getting away...into the beautiful fantasy world of cruising. We love the quality and romantic time that we have together on the ship. We both like meeting new people and making new friendships...some that endure long past the cruise. What I love most is the beautiful smile on my wife's face as we walk on a beautiful beach...dine on a delicious meal...or as she hits a 400-quarter jackpot."
*Audrey "I love the freedom of being able to have the run of the ship to do everything on sea days, or just sit by the pool and relax. I love the shows and the newlywed-type game shows with the people on the ship taking part. I love the idea that I get to visit new places without packing and unpacking every day, and making new friends and meeting people from the boards."
*Debbie "It's like walking into a new dream each and every time. Wonderful places to visit. Being at sea with nothing to worry about. No cooking or cleaning, just relaxing! I love the music on deck. The drinks are better when someone else is serving them. And I meet the most nicest people. I can't wait until our next cruise."
*Shar "Can I say all of the above? The big thing for me is the knowledge that I'm on the ship, and that I left all my problems behind when we set sail. I love meeting new people and being able to repeat my old stories to new ears. The motion, smell, and sounds of the ocean take away years from my age (very important). I love the food, staff, entertainment (and lack of entertainment). Sitting on a deck chair reading a book and looking up to see a whale breach or an albatross sailing by. Oh, such beauty!"
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