Holidays are coming and you’ll have to be quick if you fancy joining Santa at sea. Here are four of our favourite Christmas cruises with all the trimmings, because who wants family feuds and high-street havoc when you could be dog-sledging in the snow on a Norway cruise or kicking back with a cocktail under the Caribbean sun?
A Very Cunard Christmas Crusie
A Christmas cruise to the Canaries with Cunard promises winter sun with added festive spirit. Sail from Southampton and spend three days winding down from the Christmas rush. Queen Elizabeth takes your favourite festive traditions to the seas, with carols around the tree and icing-sugar scattered gingerbread villages. Make space in your case for a present or two, with Christmas Day itself spent at sea after calls in Madeira, Tenerife, Gran Canaria and Fuerteventura. Lisbon is your final port of call before you head home feeling rested and rejuvenated for the New Year.
Festive Far East Escape
Whether you’re an avid cruiser who has already ticked a Caribbean Christmas cruise off your bucket list or an intrepid traveller looking for far-flung adventures instead of the usual festivities, this Princess Cruises itinerary fits the bill. Tick Singapore and Kuala Lumpur off your bucket list, spend mornings at vibrant street markets in Ho Chi Minh City and afternoons eating the most incredible pad Thai in Ko Samui. Swap snow for sand on some of the best beaches in the world and leave the Baileys at home; it’s all about enjoying a cocktail or two at rooftop bars overlooking whole cities.
Mistletoe and Mojitos
Spend Christmas in the Caribbean with P&O Cruises. Soak up the smugness of sunning your way through a couple of winter weeks while everyone at home shivers on a last-minute trudge along the high street. Catch a lime at the Oistins Fish Fry in Barbados, before blazing a trail around the hottest islands in the Caribbean. You’ll visit eight idyllic ports, from St Lucia and its Pitons to the paradise isles of Tortola and Grand Turk. Christmas Day itself is spent at sea, so you can enjoy breakfast on the balcony in your Christmas pyjamas, before tucking into a traditional dinner, all while knowing tomorrow brings another beach day.
If Christmas to you means hot chocolate, sledging in fresh snow and wrapping up in your winter woollies, Hurtigruten’s Classic Voyage North is an opportunity to experience all of these things the Norwegian way. December is peak northern lights season too so look up and you might just see Mother Nature’s own Christmas lights dancing in skies overhead. Cruise the stunningly beautiful fjords along the country’s west coast, dipping into tiny towns and cities with festive markets filling their squares and warm cinnamon buns scenting the air.