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11 Things You Didn't Think You Could Do While Cruising

By Janice Wald Henderson

Wild excursions, on-board activities, and remote destinations.

Just when you think you've seen it all on the rivers and high seas, a new ship or line (or a major vessel makeover) dangles an irresistible opportunity. Perhaps you dream of living like a rock star, diving deep into polar waters, discovering a new hobby, or making a wish – such as meeting Broadway stars – come true. We scanned the horizon to find out what’s next at sea. For veteran cruisers and newcomers alike, here are 13 things that have us excited to hit the gangway and set sail.

1. Heli-Hike in Antarctica

“Heli-hiking gives adventurers two experiences in one,” says Virtuoso travel advisor Samuel Spencer. “First, the flight provides spectacular coastal and mountain views. Next, you get to trek or snowshoe in remote areas with glaciers and pure snowfields.” Departures: Multiple dates through February 2024.

2. Move Like Jagger

Crank the fun up to 11 in the 2,147- square-foot Massive Suite – the largest of the 24/7 butler-serviced RockStar Quarters – on the new Scarlet Lady. Would-be celebs can sip bubbly from a bottomless bar in the terrace hot tub, dance atop the alfresco runway/dining table, jam with electric guitars in the music room, and party in the rooftop private club (the guest list is exclusive to those in RockStar suites). The 2,770-passenger, adults-only ship debuts with a five-day voyage to Key West and the Bahamas, round-trip from Miami. Departures: Multiple dates through December 2023.

3. Polar Dive

Divers can slip into dry suits to explore Antarctic icebergs and search for polar marine life. “Imagine spotting penguins doing acrobatics underwater with the backdrop of an iceberg,” says Virtuoso advisor John Upchurch, who sailed to the White Continent with the line. Departures: Multiple dates through December 23, 2023.

4. Dinner and a Virtual Show

An animated take on dinner theater, in which 3D hologram characters sing, dance, cook, and spin tales on guests’ tables during four-course meals designed by a Michelin-starred chef. Departures: Multiple dates.

5. Build a Buoy

Work with resident scientists on Viking’s new expedition ship and research vessel, the 378-passenger Viking Octantis, to build a current-tracking buoy during an eight-day Great Lakes cruise from Milwaukee to Thunder Bay, Canada. “Viking attracts guests who care more about learning and adventure than glitzy productions,” says Linda Allen-Speer, Virtuoso advisor. Departures: Multiple dates, May 19 through July 7, 2023.

6. Sip Champagne in a Sub

Raise a glass of bubbly to exploring the ocean’s depths during the 264-passenger Venture’s season in Norway. Video cameras inside and out record the entire experience for viewing at home. “What a way to see underwater beauty in style, without getting wet and salty,” says advisor Alyse Cori. Departures: Multiple dates.

7. Keep Them in Stitches

Guest experts lead hands-on sessions for quilters of all levels during a cruise from Saint Louis to Memphis. Excursions on the nine-day voyage include a visit to the National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Kentucky. Departures: Multiple dates, June 24 through September 29, 2024.

8. Steam Room Ritual

“Look for the hammam excursion in Málaga, Spain, on numerous Med sailings aboard Oceania’s Riviera – it’s a historical sensory experience,” says travel advisor Victoria Hardison-Sterry. “Age-old Arab bathhouse traditions prevail, including candlelit soaks in thermal baths and an authentic massage.” Departures: Multiple dates.

9. Private-Balcony Blowout

Live life outdoors in one of the two Sky Suites on the new, 3,560-passenger Enchanted Princess. The five-person suite has the largest balcony in Princess Cruises’ fleet – more than 1,000 square feet, with a 270-degree view. Balcony perks include a daybed, bar, and fridge; a dining table; and seats overlooking the pool deck and its big screen for movies under the stars. Departures: Multiple dates.

10. Spa without Borders

Relax with a 15-day Atlantic crossing from Lisbon to Fort Lauderdale. “This ship breaks the boundaries of shipboard pampering with Otium, a novel, Med-inspired spa concept. Guests can get treatments in the spa, in their suite, or in other ship venues,” says Ruth Turpin, a Virtuoso advisor. “A couples massage set to live music, poolside canapés – the sky’s the limit.” Departure: December 3, 2022.

11. Voyage between Poles

Sail from the Arctic to Antarctica. The 66-day voyage cruises from Canadas Baffin Bay to the Maritimes and Greenland, traverses the Panama Canal, then traces South America’s west coast en route to Antarctica. Excursions lean into adventure and eco-touring; passengers can unwind with yoga and meditation classes on deck. Departure: September 2, 2022.

As always, I hope your interest is piqued! I hope to hear from you soon to see how we can get you booked on your dream voyage.

Hugs and Passport Stamps,

Lisa xx

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