Cruise holidays: Experts reveals the very best activities on cruise ships- full list here

Cruise holidays offer a plethora of onboard entertainment to their passengers. There’s always plenty to keep holidaymakers occupied whether it’s tucking into diverse cuisine or attending spectacular performances – and cruise lines are often keen to out-do each other. But what are the best things of all you do on cruises? Ahead of this year’s Wave Awards, which annually honours companies leading the charge in innovation in cruising, the experts have compiled just a snippet of the coolest things to do onboard a cruise ship and shared their top activities with Express.co.uk. Royal Caribbean, MSC Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line are just some of the major cruise lines offering incredible activities. 

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Best food on a cruise

Food is an integral part of any cruiser’s adventure with cruise-goers enjoying anything from cookery classes to celebrity chefs serving up gourmet cuisine.

Many travellers will seek out a ship solely on its vast culinary offering and one-of-a-kind experience – often a cruise can offer the opportunity to try a world-famous restaurant that you’d have to book months ahead on dry land.

– Seadream Yacht Club offers the only “Raw Food” menu at sea, promoting the health benefits of a raw, organic and vegan diet to passengers

– Seabourn serves house-made artisanal gelati, using locally sourced ingredients, such as lemons from the Amalfi Coast

– Crystal Cruises can lay claim to working with Chef Nobu Matsuhisa, renowned for his Japanese-Peruvian cuisine, making it the only Nobu restaurant at sea

Best cruise entertainment

Arguably the biggest part of a cruise holiday is the onboard entertainment. Cruise ship entertainment has sometimes been seen as old-fashioned in the past, but those days are long gone with each cruise line jumping at the opportunity to give passengers of all ages, a spectacular holiday they won’t ever forget.

– Norwegian Cruise Line boasts Happy Hour Prohibition – The Musical, an interactive cocktails and theatre show

– Onboard MSC ships, guests can thrill to the acrobatic arts of Cirque du Soleil

– Norwegian Cruise Line serves up sassy music show Kinky Boots

– Royal Caribbean offers a host of big-name shows including Cats, Mamma Mia and Saturday Night Fever

Best educational cruises

Today’s traveller longs for more than just glitzy shows and impressive dishes, with many looking to expand their horizons with hands-on learning experiences. Whether on-board or in port, a wide variety of interests are catered for.

– Celestyal Cruises employs traditional Greek folklore dance groups to perform authentic music and dance for guests to enjoy and interact with.

– Holland America offers its passengers the chance to study Alaska’s Glaciers, create tapas with a top chef in Barcelona and learn about the history of the Panama Canal on a daylight transit.

– Saga has come up with art appreciation cruises to celebrate Michelangelo, Caravaggio and Picasso, as well as presentations from ORCA, Europe’s top marine conservation charity. Guests have helped them record thousands of whales, dolphins and seabirds.

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Best wellness cruises

Whether passengers seek relaxation, rejuvenation or an all-round feel-good atmosphere, the concept of wellness on board is gaining plenty of traction. Cruises can be nourishing for the mind, body and soul, and a haven for those wishing to escape it all.

– AmaWaterways is the first river cruise line to carry an entire fleet of bicycles on board for more active passengers

– Seabourn presents the Motion Studio, staffed by professional fitness trainers offering complimentary yoga, tai chi and mediation

– Viking offers the Liv Nordic Spa & Wellness centre, featuring three different types of traditional Scandinavian massages

– Scenic has a Salt Therapy lounge that is said to boost passengers’ immune systems and ease skin conditions – available on eight of the line’s 12 European ships

Colette Doyle, Group Editor of Real Response Media, the organiser of the Wave Awards,  told Express.co.uk: “Cruise holidays are the perfect option for all types of travellers, whether your dream holiday includes dining with celebrities, getting up close to local cultures, learning a fun new skill, or cycling alongside the Danube.

“With such a great variety of things to enjoy on cruise lines already, and a constant pressure to be ‘the coolest’ ship at sea, it’s set to be an exciting year for cruising. We look forward to celebrating the industry at the Wave Awards next month.”

The Wave Awards are the UK cruise industry’s premier awards ceremony. The awards offer cruise lines, travel agents, tourist boards, ports and anyone else involved in the UK cruise industry the chance to showcase their brand, expertise and contribution to cruising.

The fifth edition of the Wave Awards will take place on 2 April 2020 in London.

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