It might seem that cruising is just about sitting by the pool, drinking cocktails and soaking up the sun, but it is so much more than that.
Here are some activities you might not associate with cruising that some cruise lines offer to spice up your sailing experience.
1. Gaze at the stars
This is something you can do on all cruise ships and you would certainly expect to do it at some point during most normal cruises, but Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 takes it to a whole new level with an onboard planetarium. The astronomically-minded can watch shows explaining what you can see in the night sky at different times of the year.
2. Hit the snow
All cruise ships offer a spa option, but Viking Cruises offers passengers the opportunity to switch between the hot treatments of a spa and sauna and a snow grotto, a glass-encased room filled with snow.
3. Blend wine
Wine connoisseurs and novices alike can experience the art of winemaking aboard Holland America Line’s ms Koningsdam. The intimate venue enables guests to blend their own wine and enjoy it at dinner or in the privacy of their room. The venue has a tasting table that accommodates 10 guests who can create their own blend from a selection of five barrels of single-vineyard red wine. In addition to participating in the blending process, guests also will learn about wine from the ship’s wine expert, who leads the blending session.
4. Cook a barbeque
You usually go on a cruise to escape from cooking, but barbeques are a different beast. Celebrity Cruises allow you to experience the thrill of grilling near a lawn of fresh-cut grass while surrounded by an endless view of the sea. Act as your table’s grill master and enjoy a one-on-one interaction with the chefs, receiving a lesson in proper grilling techniques and learning other tricks of the trade.
5. Drink at an ice bar
Want to drink in below zero temperatures? Inspired by the original ice hotels in Scandinavia, Norwegian Cruise Lines offers you the chance to chill out in an arctic chamber where the bars, walls, seats and glasses are all made from ice.
6. Drive on a race track
You don’t see many cars on cruise ships, but MSC Cruises offers world class Formula One simulators to get your heart racing.
7. Go ice skating
You may not expect to wrap up a sunny day with figure eights on the ice rink. But onboard, excitement like this comes standard on some Royal Caribbean cruises.
8. Choose your own adventure
Norwegian Cruise Line has debuted an all-new entertainment experience on board several of the line’s ships that will surprise and challenge guests: Escape The Big Top. Guests can experience the magic of an escape room with a twist, as they put their critical thinking skills to the test in a physical adventure game to solve challenges and beat the clock. This complimentary event, which can run up to one hour, is the ultimate combination of intellect and urgency.
9. Flying fox ride
For the thrill seekers, Royal Caribbean offers a nine-storey high flying fox across the boardwalk free for all passengers.
10. Sky dive
Experience the exhilaration of skydiving without ever leaving the deck. Royal Caribbean’s Anthem of the Seas allows you to feel what it’s like to fly, as you float on air within the safe confines of a ground-breaking simulator. It’s a whole new thrill for thrill seekers of all kinds.