Last month we took a trip that will go down as one of our best vacations ever. It was a week of pure awesomeness and here’s the story in (a lot of) pictures.

We took a 7-day Greek Islands cruise on Royal Caribbean’s Splendour of the Seas. The ship departed from Venice, Italy, stopped in Dubrovnik, Croatia, Corfu, Santorini, Athens, and Katakalo, Greece before returning to Venice.

My one regret is we didn’t have time to stay a night or two in Venice. It’s such a great city. But, we did have awesome views on the sail away.

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Dubrovnik, Croatia has been on my must-visit list since the last time we lived in Germany. We actually decided to go a cruise specifically so we could conveniently travel to the city. I didn’t care much about the ship’s itinerary as long as it stopped in Dubrovnik. I wasn’t disappointed. It was beautiful. We took a taxi to the old town and “walked the wall”. The kids were great sports because it was HOT.

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During our stop in Corfu, Greece we walked Corfu town, ate delicious food and I had my first (and likely only) “fish spa” experience.

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Santorini, Greece was the big day out for my husband and me. We took a cab to Oia to see the iconic blue and white buildings and views of the caldera. Santorini is absolutely gorgeous. If we ever return to Greece, this is where I’d like to go.

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One of the main reasons we decided on a Royal Caribbean cruise is because it is one of the few cruise lines that has programming and childcare available for a baby Max’s age. While the Adventure Ocean and Royal Babies & Tots area wasn’t nearly as extensive or exciting as on the Oasis of the Seas, it was perfect for our family. My older two loved it and each morning started with the question, “When can we go to Adventure Ocean?” I was nervous about leaving the kids on board while we galavanted around by ourselves, but I was confident in the care they received and they were happily waiting for us when we returned.

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The next port of call was Piraeus (Athens), Greece. We decided to stay on the ship that day to enjoy the boat’s amenities. My husband and I had visited Athens before and, to be frank, it wasn’t one of our favorite cities so before we even got on board we decided we’d skip it. It was a great day! I had a refreshing yoga class. We took advantage of a less crowded ship and swam in the pool, lounged in the solarium, and took naps.

Our final stop was in Katakalo, Greece. The island is home to Olympia, the site of the first Olympics and beautiful beaches. We opted to visit a local beach and it turned into my favorite family day. The water was an amazingly gorgeous turquoise blue and also perfectly clear. We explored the rocky beach, saw countless fish and then ended the afternoon eating ice cream and enjoying the view.

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The cruise was a fabulous family trip that we all enjoyed. We spent valuable time together as a family with nothing to do but explore and enjoy the sites with one another. My husband and I also got to spend some time just the two of us with date nights at specialty restaurants (more on that soon) and afternoons exploring Greek beach towns. The kids made new friends, created crafts and played games in Adventure Ocean.

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It was truly a perfect vacation. In fact, we liked it so much we were thisclose to booking another cruise while on board! If we were more certain about our move dates next summer we would be the proud owners of cruise reservations.

Greek Isles Cruise Royal Caribbean



Kate started The Shopping Mama™ in January 2009 when, after graduating law school, she traded in online legal research and writing for locating the best products for children. She shops for three kids ages 8, 6 and 3 from their home in Japan. Her military family is making the most of back-to-back overseas assignments by traveling every chance they get.

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  1. 1.

    We are (stationed) in Germany now, I am bookmarking this cruise to keep in mind for the future! (I’m due with our first in 2 weeks, so it will have to be later…) It looks amazing!

  2. 2.
    April W.

    How fun! My husband and I have Greece marked as a future vacation destination, and I’d love to go on a cruise there too. Glad you enjoyed it.

  3. 3.

    Don’t worry…I think Venice is overrated;) The Greek Islands are WAY better! Looks like you had a great time! Great pics:)

  4. 4.

    *sigh* it is my dream to visit the Greek Islands one day! This post only makes me want to visit more …ONE DAY.. it will happen!

  5. 5.

    I did the 9 day version of this cruise a few years back and it was absolutely amazing! I’d love to take my kids once they’re older!

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