With so many cruise lines offering a variety of entertainment for all ages, it’s no wonder a cruise is a great gift for the whole family! During the festive season there’s no need for the chaos of preparing an extensive dinner, or battling to put up the decorations. On a Christmas cruise, the details are taken care of for you.

Family on the beach

From the moment you step onboard you’ll find your favourite ship has been enhanced into a festive wonderland. Cunard Queen Mary is a real sight to see especially, with awe-inspiring gingerbread models and Hans Christian Andersen -esque displays. With a huge programme of activities, many of which are Christmas themed, you can be rest assured that the whole family will find entertainment they love this winter. Below are just some of the highlights.


Movies and Shows

Cruise lines are constantly going above and beyond to offer a huge range of shows onboard. From theatrical shows and comedy to the latest movies and live music, you are spoilt for choice across all venues. Our favourites include MSC Cruises’ exclusive Cirque Du Soleil shows, as well as Disney Cruise Line’s magical Tangled: The Musical! Of course at Christmas time, make sure to look out for the festive classics showcased in theatres and outdoor screens.


Pools and Spas

All the family will enjoy the range of pools that can be found onboard the majority of cruise ships. Meanwhile, you will often find adult-only spaces including relaxing spa facilities, pools, and whirlpools, as well as areas designed especially for kids. Carnival Cruises’ Dr Seuss-themed water park has some brilliant features including a tipping bucket and splash zone, while MSC Cruises ships MSC Preziosa and MSC Seaside have some incredible water slides.

Carnival Cruises Waterpark


Dining Options

You’ll be thrilled to find that you won’t be missing out on a traditional turkey dinner with all the trimmings, as well as all your favourite festive sweet treats! With many restaurants serving mince pies, yule log and Christmas cookies, you’ll feel right at home (without all the cleaning up afterwards!). For those looking to break tradition though, opt for a speciality restaurant such as Johnny Rockets with Royal Caribbean, or pile your plate with all your favourites at the informal buffet restaurants.


Action-Packed Fun

As well as the swimming pools, many ships are home to rock-climbing walls, surf-simulators, zip-lines and even go-kart tracks, with much more in the works. Norwegian Cruise Line have excitingly revealed upcoming plans for laser tag venues as well as the largest at-sea racetrack! From meeting their favourite TV and film characters to climbing high above the top deck, kids of all ages will be spoilt for choice during sea days.

As well as all this, don’t forget to check out the programme of activities onboard. Many cruise lines will offer seasonal extras which are great for the whole family. Expect visits from Santa or maybe even a Santa’s grotto, Christmas craft workshops, spell-binding carol singers, and beautiful gingerbread villages.


Kids Clubs

Don’t forget that parents can still enjoy a special evening together too! Thanks to onboard Kids Clubs offered on many larger cruise ships, you and your partner will be able to relax knowing that the little ones are in good hands. These clubs are usually separated into age-appropriate groups with entertainment to cater towards toddlers, children and teenagers. A team of fun and friendly hosts will be on hand while the kids enjoy the latest video games, dance classes and sports.


Couple dining


Treat the family this Christmas

Although there are a few common misconceptions about cruising at Christmas time, it’s easy to see why this is actually one of the best ways to spend the festive season! Not only will the whole family enjoy more traditional celebrations, but you’ll also explore new destinations and try new activities, all without the stress. The weather won’t be bad to depending on where you decide to go! There are a huge range of December cruises available, though if you’re feeling stuck get in touch with our helpful team for more advice here.