Cruising Feature

5 Things to Enjoy Onboard a Cruise Ship

Victoria - Cruise ships at Ogden Point - Norwegian Pearl, Sapphire Princess, & Holland America Line MS Oosterdam

There are many aspects of travelling by cruise ship that I enjoy. But I decided I would somehow narrow it down to five to share with you today. I have tried to pick out those things that are available on many ships. Rather than the one-off things that may only on a small number of cruise ships.

1. Specialty Dining

Every ship is going to be different with the dining experiences that are on offer. There is a good chance that you will find the regular dining room service above what you already expect. You can also find the service at the speciality restaurants another step up. But it often is not just the service that is better the food can offer some intrigue as well.

The first objection some people make is the extra cost for these venues. The price can range anywhere from $10 and up. The price is not too high though; I do suggest giving them a try at least once. However, look at the options for some of the speciality restaurants may be open at lunchtime for a lower price.

Cruise Specialty Dining

My Experience

To date, I have had an opportunity to try the restaurants on four different ships. My first two cruises on the MS Statendam and MS Volendam I visited the Canaletto and Pinnacle Grill. While on the MS Nieuw Amsterdam I tried Tamarind, Canaletto and Pinnacle Grill. My last cruise onboard the Sun Princess I visited their Stirling Steak House.

If I were to cruise on these ships again, I would most definitely revisit these restaurants. On the other hand when onboard the Sun Princess, another restaurant on offer was Share by Curtis Stone. I opted not to visit this restaurant as the price to me did seem a little high.

What Feels Good to You?

You need to be comfortable with the price you are paying for the experience. So this is something that will be different for everyone. Considering that meals are included in your cruise fare you need to see if what you are paying to visit a speciality restaurant is ok for you. Remember you want to enjoy the experience of visiting the restaurant, not feel like you are overpaying for something.

2. Check Out A Show

Through my travels, I have visited cities such as Las Vegas and New York. Cities that are renown for the shows that they have available to see, I have never been to a show in one of these cities. The reason being they are either expensive or hard to get into. Why would you want to spend half your holiday lining up to get reasonably priced tickets?

On the other hand when you are cruising it is a whole different story. Depending on the ship you are on there is a range of varied entertainment. From the musical entertainment of a solo performer right through to full Broadway-style shows. No need to book or pay for a ticket they are included in your cruise fare.

There is often some variety to the shows on offer as well. For the first half of my very first cruise, I went to the show every night and did not see the same things twice. There were musicians, comedians and magicians, combined with numerous shows by the onboard performers. Some shows were the same in the second half of the cruise. But that was because it was two separate cruises I had booked together.

The great thing about the shows on a cruise ship is that they are free to attend. So if you are not sure if you will like the show, get a seat towards the back. If you don’t like the show, you can easily leave without disturbing anyone and see what else is on around the ship.

3. Movie’s On Deck

Sun Princess - Movies Under The Stars

Movies Under The Stars

One of my favourites things to do while on my Sun Princess cruise was to watch Movies Under The Stars. Throughout the day they played a range of programming on a big screen over the pool. There was a bit of everything, including movies, concerts and sports.

Unfortunately, not all ships feature a big outdoor screen. But for those that do they can make a great chance to see a movie in a little bit different environment. You may also find that some ships have a movie theatre or at times might show a movie in their showroom.

4. Try Everything

Every ship has many different little activities and things to check out while onboard. You just have to remember that you are on holidays and take a chance to try something different. While some things will cost a small amount, there is also a lot that is free. The place to look is your daily program to see what activities are planned for the day.

But also take the time to read up on the ship you will be cruising on before leaving to see what is onboard. These can include, rock climbing, mini golf, waterslides and surfing. Many ships even have a range of classes you can take from cooking to photography, computer and arts and crafts.

5. Watch The Water

You might question me on how watching the water can be enjoyable. However, you might be surprised at how relaxing the simple nature of watching the ocean glide by can be.

Nieuw Amsterdam - Sunset at Sea

It can be somewhat challenging to keep up doing things all the time. So whether it is day or night, I do find it somewhat interesting to watch the water and the wake from the ship. At different times of day, you get a different experience of this simple activity. Even on occasion, you will see some different marine life from dolphins to flying fish in the wake.

Have A Great Cruise

In the end, it does not matter what you end up doing while onboard a cruise ship just that you enjoy the experience. Try not to let one thing or even a couple of small things impact the whole voyage. A little compassion and understanding for other guests and crew can make the whole experience better for everyone and help to improve your overall enjoyment.

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