Be a Pirate for a Day on a Family Cruise

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PirateCruise1Ahoy, me hearties!  International Talk Like A Pirate Day is Sept. 19 and to celebrate, we’re thinking about going on a pirate cruise! How would I know about International Talk Like A Pirate Day? I’m not just a mommy to a toddler, I’m also a mom to a 4-year-old boy who loves to read and has a wild and fun imagination. It all started by reading one single book checked out at our local library: “How I Became A Pirate” by Melinda Long and David Shannon. From that point, a pirate obsession was born.



While we still have seven months before we are thinking about setting sail, after researching some possible pirate ship cruises, we have to narrow it down to just one. And we’ve discovered that that is going to be pretty hard to do. I had no idea there were so many pirate cruises out there. I guess it all boils down to what will suit my family the best. Is the cruise located in a destination where we could make the trip a decent vacation and visit other nearby attractions? What does the cruise offer? Is it budget friendly? After some extensive research, I’ve narrowed our list down to these family-fun pirate voyages:

Captain Memo’s Pirate Cruise in Clearwater Beach, FL
Captain Memo passed away almost two years ago but his legacy and dream lives on. While on board you can listen to cool reggae island & steel band music playing throughout the rigging of the ship.  Every passenger will enjoy their choice of free soft drinks, beer, wine, and champagne, while searching for the bountiful dolphins. I think this one had me at reggae island music and “free wine.” On the 2-hour cruise, kids will get lost in the pirate antics of treasure hunts, face painting, water gun games, stories, and dancing.

Disney Pirate Cruise at Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL
Now this is one I am highly considering! Mom & Dad get to do their own thing at WDW while my mini gets to be a pirate for a couple hours. While the kiddos may not set sail on an actual pirate ship … it’s Disney, and Disney will make sure that the PirateCruise6 Mickeywee lad feels like a pirate. Children ages 4-12 are fitted with a red & white striped pirate Mickey hat (or a bandanna) and board their pirate ship (a pontoon boat) under the supervision of a “pirate” crew.  At each port of call a new treasure awaits.  At the final stop, they can share their booty (pirate lingo) while enjoying lunch. At least two Cast Members accompany the children.
Or
Pirates and Pals Fireworks Voyage at WDW in Orlando, FL
This 1-3 hour family adventure begins at WDW’s Contemporary Resort where Captain Hook and Mr. Smee await to give you the proper send-off. During the cruise, passengers will experience comedy from a pirate host named Patch, complete with pirate songs and Disney trivia. You’ll watch the beautiful Magic Kingdom fireworks from the water accompanied by extravagant music from the theme park. As you start to head back, Patch tells the story of Peter Pan and gives you a clue to one final surprise waiting for you at the shore.

Pirates of Lewes Expeditions in Lewes, DE
A 70-minute pirate adventure of fantasy and fun complete with water cannons, face painting (you can’t be a pirate without a pirate beard, y’know?), sailor sashes, treasure maps, temporary tattoos, a pirate pledge, and dancing. Captain Crunch will be on board to tell you about Lewes Pirate History and the legends of Black Beard, Blue Skin, and Captain Kidd’s buried treasure.

Captain Jack’s Pirate Ship Adventures in Virginia Beach, VAPirateCruise4
Enjoy the pirate’s life and learn the sweet trade aboard Captain Jack’s Lost Pearl – a perfect replica of a 65’ Spanish Galleon complete with a 20’ beam. All hands on deck will help search for a treasure stolen by that scurvy dog Blackbeard. A fierce water cannon battle is bound to happen and Captain Jack is going to need all the help he can get. During the 1.5-hour cruise, lads will learn pirate songs, limbo, catch a pirate show, and get a glimpse of the dolphins swimming next to the vessel.

Jersey Shore Pirates in Brick, NJ
Pirates prowl the waters of the Metedeconk River for a 1-hour 45-minute voyage aboard The Sea Gypsy II. The pirate adventure begins even before boarding. Passengers are given a name-tag with their pirate name and fitted with pirate clothes.  They then get mustaches and tattoos to complete their pirate look. Kids are taught the pirate lingo, the flag is raised, and the adventure begins. Passengers will take part in a treasure hunt and a sneaky attack by Pirate Pete in which kids can repel water cannons at the nearby boat. After cannon balling that sneaky Pirate Pete, passengers then celebrate by drinking pirate grog, singing pirate songs, and doing the limbo. Children get to take home their very own piece of the loot as well.

Black Dragon Pirate Cruise in Port Isabel, TX
The Black Dragon is a modern day replica of an 17th Century Galleon. During the 2-hour cruise, professional pirates will entertain the wee little lads with stories, face painting, a treasure hunt, water pistol battle, sword fighting, booty, games, music, and dancing. Voted one of the best sunset cruises in the U.S. by Coastal Living Magazine, the Black Dragon Pirate Cruise sounds like loads of family fun for all ages!

PirateCruise2Well shiver me timbers … after writing about these pirate cruises, I’m stuck in a rut and back to square one. I just don’t know which one we’ll decide on. But whatever one gets our vote – I’m sure my little matey’s and I will embark on an adventure that we’re sure to remember for years to come!  It’s not everyday you get to be a pirate, y’know?!

If you’ve ever been on a pirate cruise, let me know about it by commenting below.

Now off ye go, lad. The plank’s not gettin’ any longer!!

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Follow me on Twitter for more tips and techniques on traveling with a toddler as well as my personal rants and raves at: @Amanda_AKA_Mom