Going on a cruise can be a great way to explore several new places during one trip. Cruises offer a ton of destinations, have ships and room types that fit various budgets, and make trip planning pretty simple. The only difficult part will most likely be deciding the best ship and cruise destinations for couples.
What are the best cruise destinations for couples? The best cruise destinations for couples are places that offer couples’ activities or simply give you the freedom to do whatever you want. Of course, everyone has different interests, and some couples may not want to get off the boat while others prefer to explore.
Romance or More Romance?
One of the best reasons to go on a cruise with your significant other is spending quality time together. A lot of cruises have romantic offerings for couples so that you can treat each other to fine dining or evening dancing.
- While the ship is at sea, couples can relax in their suite or elsewhere on the ship. You might be able to go to an onboard spa or book a couple’s massage.
- Many cruises offer fine dining, so you and your partner can enjoy a nice meal together. This can be a romantic way to spend an evening.
- Depending on the destination you choose, you can relax at that destination. If there’s a quiet beach, you can pack a lunch and have a romantic date on the shore.
- You can also get off the ship and explore the area around your destination. Getting to see a new place and a new culture can be an excellent way for couples to bond.
- Be it only for romance or for something more, a cruise can be a great vacation option for couples. You can take one for your honeymoon or anniversary, or just because you want to get away for a while.
While many cruise destinations can be great, some cruises are more romantic than others. As you decide where you want to go on a cruise, think about some activities you might want to do on and off the ship. That could help you decide on the right cruise destination for you.
Deciding on the Destination
You can take a cruise to almost every part of the world, which means you have as much flexibility as if you took a plane. However, the good news about a cruise is that you can visit multiple locations on the same trip. If you find two cruises with similar amenities, let the destinations help you choose.
Perhaps you have always wanted to go to a specific city or country. In that case, try and book a cruise there as opposed to somewhere else. That way, you can enjoy a fantastic trip with your significant other and visit a place on your bucket list.
Of course, you and your partner should consult each other on where to go. While it can be romantic to surprise your love with a cruise, it can be just as lovely to plan the trip together. If you do that, you can bounce ideas off of each other about ideas, dates, and other plans.
Multiple things can factor into choosing the right destination for you. Sometimes, you have to go based on the cruise line’s schedule, or maybe you have a strict work schedule. That can also play into deciding where to take your next couple’s cruise.
Weather or Not
Another thing that could determine which destination is best for your cruise is the weather. Of course, some cruises may not run to places in the far north during the winter. On the other hand, tropical cruises might go to some hot areas in the middle of summer.
- Think about if you or your partner have any weather or climate preferences. If you don’t like extreme heat, choose a tropical cruise during the winter or a northern cruise in the summer.
- Perhaps you only want to get off the ship at one destination. In that case, you won’t have to worry about the weather in other places.
- Regardless of the cruise you take, you may still risk having some not so great weather.
- For example, a tropical cruise during or around hurricane season might not be the best idea.
- In those cases, you may have to decide if it’s worth going to your scheduled destinations or finding romantic activities on the boat.
Weather can play a significant role in determining the best cruise destinations for couples. While you can pick the perfect destination, the weather might affect it. On the other hand, if another destination has excellent weather, you may end up loving it more than you thought.
Best Cruise Lines for Couples
There are nearly 40 different cruise lines, and choosing the right one can mean the difference between going to your dream destination or not. Some factors can make cruise lines better or worse for couples for different reasons. For example, a family cruise probably won’t be the most romantic option.
One cruise line to consider is Windstar. They have smaller ships, so they can go to destinations that don’t fit the larger ones. You can book a suite for some extra room, or you can go with a traditional cabin.
Princess Cruises offer a few different ships that are perfect for couples, including Crown Princess, Emerald Princess, and Ruby Princess. These ships have luxurious suites, and they often feature a night where you can watch a movie on deck and under the stars. You can also find a few restaurants on board so that you can enjoy romantic meals.
Another option is the Norwegian Cruise Line. They offer flexible dining, so you can eat when and where you want. You can relax in the spa, or you can play go-karts against your partner if you want to do something more active.
You should also look at Celebrity Cruises for your next cruise. They cater to adults getaways vs family vacations. Many of the facilities are designed for date nights. There are wine and martini bars, live music on Rooftop Gardens, and fancy dining options.
There are plenty of other great cruise lines for couples. Check out the top ten cruise lines for couples, according to The Cruise Critic, here.
The Best Cruise Destinations for Couples
The world is large, and there are many fantastic cruise destinations. There are so many options to choose from that you may feel a bit overwhelmed by all the possibilities.
If you and your partner want to go on a cruise but don’t have a preference for the destination, you have options. Of course, you can choose a great cruise line for couples. Once you consider when you can go on a cruise, you can book a trip that works with your schedule.
However, you might also want to consider what you want to do on your cruise. If you want to relax on the boat for most of the trip, it may not matter where you travel. On the other hand, if you want to explore and visit different places, you should do some research on where you plan to go.
Some cruises have strict itineraries, while others might allow you more flexibility to do what you want. Still, you should have an idea of what you want to do during your cruise before booking the next one that sets sail. That way, you and your partner can look forward to the trip, and you can make the most of it while you’re at sea.
Destination 1: Australia and New Zealand
If you want to go exploring with your partner, Australia and New Zealand have great places to do that. Depending on your cruise, you can go to the Sydney Opera House or even go scuba diving. New Zealand has plenty of amazing views on land, which can be helpful if you don’t want to go shopping.
- Australia and New Zealand are both English-speaking countries. If you’re an English speaker and don’t speak another language, that means you’ll get along just fine.
- Australia and New Zealand both have a ton of wineries, fine dining, and adventure options. I had a mini tasting in New Zealand and we did archery afterwards. We enjoyed a 7-course meal at Clooney’s (which is now closed) but we’ve also heard good things about The Grove.
- Both countries have plenty of cities and towns, so you can go shopping, eat at a local restaurant, or just walk around. For casual dining, we enjoyed burgers here and ice cream at Giapo.
- You can also find the coast, and you can relax near the water. That way, you don’t have to feel like you’re stuck on the boat.
- Since they’re in the Southern Hemisphere, both countries can be an excellent destination to find relief from the extreme cold of winter or the intense heat of summer.
Destination 2: South Pacific
Close to Australia and New Zealand, there are islands like Fiji and Tahiti. These and other islands in the South Pacific are also great cruise destinations for couples. Tropical islands are beautiful, and they typically have good weather all year long.
If you want to relax on the beaches of Fiji or swim in the waters of Tahiti, there are day trips for that purpose. We spent the majority of our honeymoon in Fiji. It was magical and we would love to return as well as explore other islands in the South Pacific.
There are many islands in the South Pacific, so you can find different cruises in this area. You’ll find tons of things to do, and you can explore new cultures with your partner. Also, these islands are remote, so you’ll probably have some time at sea to relax on the ship.
While the South Pacific isn’t for everyone, it can be a romantic place for couples to take a cruise. You can enjoy some amenities on board while you’re not at a destination, and you can visit multiple small islands, too. If you want something similar but closer to home, there are also some other Pacific Islands to consider.
Destination 3: Hawaiian Islands
If you’ve ever dreamed of going to Hawaii, a cruise is a perfect excuse. You can take an extended vacation to an exotic getaway without ever leaving the United States. There are tons of other great reasons for couples to take a cruise to Hawaii.
- You won’t need to worry about exchanging your currency should you want to make purchases. That can make it easy for American travelers.
- Like cruises to the South Pacific, some cruises to Hawaii might have a few days at sea. This can be an excellent time for you and your partner to spend time together at the spa or in your cabin or suite.
- Typically, these cruises take you to multiple islands. Each island is different, so you can relax on one and explore the next.
- Hawaii has a lot of American stuff, so you don’t have to focus on a new culture. Therefore, you can focus more on your partner.
Hawaii may be part of the United States, but it can feel like a whole different country. After all, it’s in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, so there’s not much to do outside of the islands. However, being in the US could give you more peace of mind than if you traveled on an international cruise.
Destination 4: Alaska
If you want to go on an American cruise but aren’t a fan of tropical places, consider an Alaskan cruise. Now, these cruises aren’t very common during the winter when the Alaska coast freezes over. However, they can be a refreshing way to cool down during the summer heat.
That schedule can make it difficult if you don’t have much freedom in traveling, but it can be a worthwhile cruise nonetheless. When you take a cruise to Alaska, you can take in the beauty of the northern Pacific. You can also enjoy the gorgeous scenery of Alaska itself, which makes for a romantic backdrop.
Depending on when you go, you may get to experience longer days since Alaska is so far north. Still, you can enjoy a romantic dinner on the ship, or you can find a local restaurant at a destination. On land, you can also explore some of the Alaskan wilderness, though make sure you stay safe.
You can also visit some shops in small towns, or you can stay on board and enjoy massages or other activities. While you will travel to Alaska, don’t forget to bring your passport. Many of these cruises leave out of Seattle or Portland, and they stop somewhere in Western Canada along the way.
Destination 5: Caribbean Sea
The Caribbean Sea is probably one of the most popular areas for cruises and for good reason. So many islands and countries here have beautiful views, and you can travel there even in the winter. It’s also a great option if you only speak English since many local countries speak it as a first or second language.
You can take a cruise to Eastern Caribbean destinations, like the Bahamas and the US Virgin Islands. However, you can also go to destinations like Costa Rica or Colombia. If you want to go through the Panama Canal, you can do that, too.
The Caribbean Sea has something for everyone, and many of these cruises vary in length. If you just want a long weekend away, you can do that. On the other hand, you can also schedule a cruise to last over a week.
Like with other destinations, couples will have some time at sea where they can enjoy the spa or partake in fine dining on the ship. You can usually leave from a city in Florida, which makes it pretty easy to travel to the ship to go on the cruise.
Destination 6: Northern Europe
If you want to head to Europe on a cruise, consider countries like Norway or Iceland. In these countries, you can get a good view of the Northern Lights. You can also enjoy the beautiful landscapes in the region.
These views can be very romantic, and you and your partner can enjoy them on land or from the ship. While there may be some limitations on when you can go, it can be worth it to book a trip for the right time. If you want to visit the places on this cruise, you can do so and make it romantic.
Countries in Northern Europe are typically very safe, which means you can explore without feeling in danger. Although you should still be careful when venturing out at night or far from the ship. However, you can also stay on the ship if you don’t want to get off, and you can use that time to relax and spend time together.
The countries of Northern Europe have a lot to see and do on land, but you can also enjoy the views at sea. If you don’t want to go so far north, you can also consider other areas of Europe.
Destination 7: Western Europe
London and Paris are two of the most romantic cities in the world, and they’re both very close to each other. That makes Western Europe another great cruise destination for couples. You can visit London and see the sights like Buckingham Palace.
In Paris, you can visit the Eiffel Tower or the Louvre. If a cruise only takes you to one of those destinations, you can take the Channel Tunnel to the other. Of course, both cities have excellent restaurants where you can sit down for a romantic lunch if you don’t want food on the ship.
A cruise to Western Europe might also visit countries like Spain, Portugal, or Germany. Each of those countries has excellent romantic destinations. Barcelona has a gorgeous coast. Berlin isn’t that far inward. Since much of Western Europe uses the Euro, you can stick to that currency except for when you travel to the United Kingdom which uses the British Pound.
If you do want to travel to other European cities from where the ship docks, make sure you give yourself enough time to get back. You can always plan a trip to Europe later where you’ll have more time to get cozy on land. However, many cities are close enough that you don’t have to stay by the coast.
Destination 8: Mediterranean Sea
Countries like Italy, Croatia, and Greece all have incredible coasts along the Mediterranean Sea. The views here are gorgeous, and couples can enjoy them and have romantic dates onboard as well as on land. Not to mention that many of these countries have great food that you can try.
- Italy has a few coastal cities that you can go to, like Rome. Rome is a very romantic city, and you and your partner can visit some of their many fountains.
- Croatia has a beautiful coast, and you can bring food and a picnic basket for a date near the shore.
- Of course, you can’t take a Mediterranean cruise without at least considering Greece as a destination. There are so many beautiful islands and architecture.
- Some of these cruises might even feature Northern African destinations, like Egypt or Morocco. We LOVED our time in both countries. If you go to Morocco, consider doing a date in the desert or cooking class. In Egypt, you’ll want a great tour guide. We worked with Sara in Cairo and highly recommend her.
Since the Mediterranean usually has good weather, you don’t have to worry as much about that when you go there. That can give you more flexibility, and you might even be able to book a cruise around Valentine’s Day. You can enjoy multiple romantic cities on a single trip, and you can explore different cultures, too.
Destination 9: South Asia
Making your way around, South Asia is a surprisingly underrated cruise destination. Here, you can go to places like Bali, Java, and India. Each of those places is unique, but they’re all a great choice for couples.
Of course, it can get hot in this region during the summer, so you may want to wait until it cools down. Also, these cruises may involve more of a language barrier than their American and European counterparts. However, that’s no reason not to consider Asia as an option. If you don’t want to deal with the language barrier, you can stick to the cities. But again, we don’t think a language barrier should prevent you from going somewhere you want to visit. You can learn a few words and phrases to get by and then use an app such as Google Translate when needed and/or you can book tours in English.
You can also spend more of your time on the boat and enjoying the views. That can be a relaxing way to see these far off places while focusing on spending time together as a couple. The good news is that there are tons of South Asian destinations that you can choose from when deciding on the best cruise for you.
Destination 10: East Asia
Similar to South Asia, East Asia has a lot of amazing places that you might not think to take a cruise to. Japan, China, and South Korea all have unique cultures that you can explore as a couple. If you’re a fan of Asian food, you can get off the ship and try the real stuff on land.
There’s almost nothing more romantic than a romantic meal, and that applies in East Asian countries. If you’re into Japanese culture or K-Pop, you can visit the origin of your favorite shows or musicians. You can also see some of the fantastic views that these countries have, including the Great Wall of China.
Of course, you can also spend some of your time on the boat relaxing as a couple. Then, you can go to shore for an hour or two to explore the city. You can do some shopping and get a feel for the local culture.
Also, since East Asia is quite far from the US than some cruises, you may have to fly to Asia before you can get on the boat and embark on your cruise.
A cruise is often portrayed as a romantic vacation option for couples, and it is. However, not all cruise destinations and ships are the best for couples. So consider what you and your partner want to do and when you want to go since that can help you decide on the best cruise destination for you. Let us know in the comments what destination you decided on!