With this in mind, I researched places on my bucket list that could offer something for Dayne, who loves the beach and would soon begin Latin as her classical language requirement for school. Dayne had already been to Rome (where the Latin language was originally spoken), so the beaches and ancient civilizations of Greece (the birthplace of democracy) and Turkey seemed a natural evolution of ancient culture. Given that Greece is comprised of 227 inhabited islands (but 1200-1600 islands in total, depending on the definition), I questioned which islands we should go to and the best mode of transportation of getting from island to island, and a cruise seemed the most seamless way to get around.
While many of the large cruise lines offer Greek itineraries, what I know for sure is that I did not want for Dayne and me to be in a cow parade of thousands of cruise-goers, and I deeply desired a more authentic experience. So after hours of research, I came across Celestyal Cruises, a Greek mid-sized cruise line that offers classic Greek islands such as Mykonos, Santorini, Crete and Milos in addition to Kusadasi, Turkey, providing the perfect blend of beaches, ancient civilizations sites, museums, local culture and of course dining and shopping.
Celestyal also sets itself apart from many of the other cruise lines with an all-inclusive pricing policy that not only includes and all meals and drinks but also select shore excursions, which really does make it worry-free for families.
Yet, irrespective of the stunning scenery of Greece, it was the unanticipated surprises of traveling solo with my daughter aboard our cruise that made our trip priceless.