The idea of going to Disney during Jersey Week was well....the thing of nightmares. I knew better after all I am surrounded by travel agents. So, when the idea of making the trip presented itself as a last minute idea...I was totally against it, but it was Disney. Eventually I caved to family pressure and we hit the open road. Flying was out of our budget for this time around.
What follows is my trip journal and the best Disney trip we have had. NO FastPass+, NO Dining Plans, NO Autograph Books just living in the moment knowing there would be lines, crowds and GREAT TIMES!
To book your next Jersey Week adventure, road trip, or family getaway, reach out to a Starstuff Travel Planner here!
Traveling together as a mom and daughter duo can enhance your relationship when it is stuck in a rut. It can put you both in unique situations where you have the ability to possibly spark once-in-a-lifetime conversations that you do not have on an everyday basis. The pictures and stories you’ll share will be with you forever and will be heart warming to look back on. This past month I was lucky enough to have traveled to Las Vegas with my teenage daughter where we enjoyed the spa, shopping, shows and dining together for a few days. Then the following week I headed down to National Harbor, Maryland with my own mother for a Christmas holiday tradition at the Gaylord National Resort. I typically attend the ICE event here with my own children, but this year I was the daughter part of the mother/daughter trip. Below you will find the four most important reasons I believe Mother/Daughter trips are so important!
1. You can learn things you never knew about each other
As the daughter part of this traveling duo, you have surpassed those horrible teenage years where most of your conversations are just arguments about your choice in friends, your body piercings, or your lack of judgement when it comes to boys. At this point your closer to being peers and have way more in common to chit chat about. As the mother portion of the trip you are building a stronger bond with your daughter and setting the foundation of a lifelong friendship together. You will have more time to spend spoiling her without the other kids getting jealous.
2. You will create lifelong memories to look back on
It is not always easy to think about the unknown and how tomorrow is never promised, but tomorrow is really never promised. You will never regret the time you spend traveling together. It gives us the chance to create those memories, grow our scrap book with photos and take lots of video to watch down the road in future, maybe even to share with those new future bundles of joy that are later welcomed into the family.
3. You will make great travel companions
As the daughter, you most likely learned everything you knew about traveling from doing so with your mom when you were little. As the mother, you can share your love of travel with your daughter. The great thing about traveling together is there is never a need to be anything but yourself and it should be easy to figure out a comfortable balance between the two of you while away. Chances are you have more of the same likes than dislikes when it comes to things like food and hotel amenities.
4. Mother/Daughter trips can boost your health
It is a known fact that working on your relationships can help relieve stress that can otherwise adversely affect your physical and emotional health. Spending the alone time together during travel you are less likely to fight while you are away from home. It is a time you can also use to bury the hatchet if there is one.
Getting to enjoy both sides as a mother one week and a daughter the next gave me great insight into why traveling together is so important. I loved learning new things about my daughter but I also loved hearing old stories from my mom. I look forward to making these types of trips a tradition in our house for years to come!
When you are ready to book your Mother/Daughter travel reach out to one of our Starstuff Travel Planners by visiting here!
Don’t miss your chance to make history as we proudly present the first ever Epic Character Race weekend with a 5K Saturday February 1, 2020 through Universal Studios Florida. Take home brag-worthy swag as you join your favorite characters from Illumination’s Minions, Jurassic World, DreamWorks Animation's Shrek, Transformers and more. After the race, relax and refresh at your hotel and then hit the parks to enjoy all your favorite rides and attractions.
Universal Orlando’s 5K Epic Character Race takes place February 1, 2020. Travel period must include this date in order to enjoy all package inclusions. Package payment is required in full at time of booking and is non-refundable.
For more information on booking the race, reach out to a Starstuff Travel Planner today by clicking here!
Norwegian Encore is the fourth and final ship in Norwegian Cruise Line's Breakaway Plus Class, joining it's sister ships the Norwegian Escape, Norwegian Joy and Norwegian Bliss. With a capacity to hold almost 4,000 passengers and so much to do on board, it is basically like a floating destination. We were lucky enough to enjoy two nights on the NCL Encore Inaugural event held at Pier 90 in Manhattan and were very impressed by what this ship offers those traveling with children.
This ship is a perfect choice for families traveling with children as well as teens since the list of groundbreaking entertainment and attractions is very long. The NCL Encore Speedway is the largest race track at sea and is only offered on select Norwegian ships. You are able to zoom around high-speed curves suspended 13 feet off the side of the ship with over 1100 feet of action perfect for your little dare devils. There are height requirements and both this and the laser tag are additional fees to participate.
They also offer a really neat laser tag area that is enjoyable for the whole family. It is themed after Atlantis ruins with a monstrous sea creature you must fight to get passed. With long lost treasures that virtually come to life with cutting-edge technology, this is an epic battle for the whole family to enjoy. There is no age restriction or height requirement at this time, you just need to be able to hold the equipment.
The Galaxy Pavilion is a virtual reality world that offers immersive VR experiences and thrilling simulator rides. You can work on solving the puzzles of an escape room, drive in a NASCAR race, shoot a laser gun at onscreen zombies running a muck on a mini movie theater screen, ride a jeep through scenery similar to Jurassic Park, and so much more! Like Laser Tag and the Speedway, this also does have an extra cost.
Norwegian Encore is home to two multistory waterslides on board, as well as an Aqua Racer tandem water slide. With the option of whooshing over the side of the ship on Ocean Loops or being able to enjoy a lazy day by the pool with a frozen beverage, this is the perfect activity for both parents and children alike on a warm sunny day at sea!
The NCL Guppies program is a nursery for children 6 months to under 3 years old that does require a fee to be paid. The Guppies Nursery requires registration and reservations are available throughout the sailing. The program is attended by certified Nursery Attendants and offers babies and toddlers a wide range of activities. This area also offers the River Rose Reading Room by Kelly Clarkson (who is also the godmother of this ship). This is a darling room that requires parent participation where you can read books with your child inspired by Kelly Clarkson.
From theme night activities to cool parties, the NCL youth staff is fully trained to create some really amazing times for your children. The Splash Academy youth program is split into three groups according to age. The Turtles are ages 3 to 5 years old, the Seals are 6 to 9 years old, and the Dolphins are 10 to 12 years old. Splash Academy is typically open from 9 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., (though timing varies based on itinerary). On sea days, it closes for lunch and dinner, but on port days, it remains open (though fees apply for parents who want youth staff to supervise their kids during mealtimes). Splash Academy also hosts the Late Night Fun Zone until 1:30 a.m. Hourly fees apply for enrolling kids in this after-hours group babysitting program. Just make sure to always check upon boarding since info. is subject to change.
As you can see there is no shortage of fun on this ship for everyone to enjoy. We did not even mention all there is for the adults to do while the kiddos are taken care of. With the spa, nightly shows, the casino, fine dining and more you will be just as well taken care of as your children will be. Vacationing should be fun for everyone and on the NCL Encore it will be!
To book your next sailing reach out to a Starstuff Travel Planner today!