Once upon a time, a Caribbean cruise meant bathing suits, flip flops and shorts. Maybe you needed formal wear for dinner one night. Nowadays, cruises can take you from the depths of the ocean to the rainforest to a skydiving simulation and each of those activities requires the proper attire.
The key to organizing a packing list is to consider the activities rather than the number of days. Take a hard look at which clothing articles are suitable for multiple activities and which are truly specialized. Multiple days of swimming, snorkeling, SCUBA diving and stand-up paddle-boarding will require at least two swimsuits. For rain forest hiking, biking shore excursions and, at select ports of call, deep sea fishing, a pair of lightweight durable shorts or pants and a couple long and short-sleeve shirts will provide comfortable free movement and protection from the sun’s rays.
Cruisers can also spend a day sailing on a shortened America’s Cup course, so those lightweight layers will be useful protection from the wind. A day bag to hold all necessities, including sunglasses with Polarized lenses and sunscreen, will definitely make fishing and boating in the sparkling water as enjoyable and carefree as possible.
Remember that adventures happen on board as well. Modern cruise ships now feature rock climbing walls, ziplines and surfing simulators. Quantum of the Seas, Royal Caribbean’s latest ship, will even add a skydiving simulator called RipCord by iFly. Outdoor adventure attire will work for all these activities and stand up to the belts and harnesses.
Perhaps the most important tip is to pack items that can pull double duty. If that fails, however, plan to send out some laundry.
For more tips on packing for a Caribbean cruise, check out this piece by USA Today.