Tips & News

3 Places to Take a Cruise With Kids in Asia

With boutique sailing like these adrift on the region’s most spectacular waters, there’s no need to hit the high seas for a family cruise.

By Duncan Forgan, Lester V. Ledesma and Bek Van Vliet Owen

Apr 27, 2020

Indonesia’s islands

With more than 17,000 islands in total, the Indonesian archipelago is ideal for family cruises. Indeed, an ocean-bound expedition within the Coral Triangle will serve up unforgettable highlights ranging from sightings of tropical fish, sea turtles, dolphins and komodo dragons, to moorings off deserted islands and beaches perfect for splashing around on. Reputable operators include Barefoot Yachts, which has experience with family travel and specializes in charters on traditional Indonesian phinisi schooners around alluring destinations such as Komodo, Raja Ampat and the Gili Islands. — D.F.

Halong Bay

When done well, a Halong Bay cruise can be a nature trip, a beach break and a cultural experience rolled into one. Avoid the crowded group tours, and instead go for a smaller, more boutique experience if you’re taking the children along. Heritage Cruises offers luxury accommodations packaged into two-, three- or four-day tours of Halong Bay and its environs. To really sail away from the busier waterways, get adventurous with a cruise to Cat Ba Island or Bai Tu Long Bay. Itineraries include cave visits, kayaking expeditions and even Vietnamese cooking classes. — L . L .

Mekong River

Southeast Asia’s longest river offers up a good range of family-friendly cruises, with luxury riverboats departing from practically every major city along it. The upper reaches of Laos to Luang Prabang mix limestone terrain with cave shrines and Buddhist temple expeditions, while farther down in Cambodia, there are Angkor visits and cycling tours through the countryside. The new Mekong Jewel just launched at the beginning of the year, upping the ante for luxury cruising between Siem Reap and Saigon. Pandaw, which has sailings along different sections of the Mekong, offers free accommodation for children on certain routes. — B.V.V.O.

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