Cunard Queen Victoria Cruise Ship - Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise

Luxury cruise takes you to the most thrilling destinations on the planet with outstanding elegance and style. You get to explore, experience and enjoy the world aboard posh vessels with upscale amenities and exclusive services thus offering a decedent-filled experience to cruisers, and, here are 10 of the top things to do on a luxury cruise.

Several luxury cruise lines exist with many operating themed cruises and a variety of onboard luxury facilities and services.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Seabourn Cruise Line, Silversea Cruises, Viking Ocean Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, Oceania Cruises, Paul Gaugin Cruises, Windstar Cruises, Ponant, Scenic Cruises and Cunard are among the Best Luxury Cruise Lines in the World. These luxury cruise lines have similar cruise packages for upscale sailing.

Think of being in an exclusive luxury resort but this time around, you revel in the “resort” as you sail across the seas. From upscale accommodation, fine dining, posh rooms and suites, and recreational amenities, to private or customer-tailored services, if you want to sail the world like a royal, you go luxury cruising!

Knowing that luxury cruises are the apex of cruise endeavours, this post fully answers the question, what are the things you can do or experience on a luxury cruise?

Swimming Deck of a Luxury Cruise Ship - Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
Swimming Deck of a Luxury Cruise Ship

Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise

1. Enjoy the service of a private butler

What is cooler than cruising to fascinating places and having someone do all your onboard errands and requests at your ultimate comfort? A private butler is a cruise crew member who answers all your in-cabin requests. He is essentially a personal assistant that attends your all your onboard needs.

Not all cruise lines or ships have butler services but some luxury cruise lines like Silversea have a butler for every suite on their vessels. Regent Seven Seas, Azamara Cruises, Seabourn, Celebrity Cruises, Crystal Cruises, MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, and Oceania Cruises also offer butler services for a truly exceptional onboard experience for their passengers.

Butlers are professionally trained in the art of hospitality and their services may include things like welcoming you onboard, unpacking your luggage, preparing your drinks, delivering meals to your suite, make reservations (for example dining, shore excursions, art exhibitions, onboard classes or spa), and handle your laundry and cleaning needs.

They pay special attention to every detail to make your onboard experience as gratifying and hassle-free as possible.

Butler on a Luxury Cruise - Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
Butler on Cruise Ship Source

2. Go on an exclusive shore excursion

Shore excursions are great ways to explore and experience natural wonders, culture and top attractions of a cruise destination closer and deeper. This makes you learn about the destination and appreciate it more.

Most luxury cruises offer shore excursions and this can include day trips and multiday tours.

Silversea is one of the leading cruise lines that provides high-end shore experiences to their cruisers. All luxury cruise lines include and prioritize providing private tours, intimate group excursions and customized passenger-tailored experiences.

During an upscale shore package, you can roam the port of call, dine or have lunch in a Michelin-starred restaurant, take a private jet to ultra-posh places, a helicopter tour of extreme destinations and natural wonders, embark on luxury train journeys, explore ancient ruins and landmarks, shop for souvenirs at local markets, taste some local flavours and immerse yourself in local cultures.

Shore excursions can be informative, educative, entertaining and adventurous.

From snorkelling in the Coral reefs of French Polynesia, enjoying a beautiful train journey in Flam, visiting reindeer herders and eagle hunters in Mongolia, having lunch at a Michelin-starred restaurant in Provence, glamping in Bolivia’s Salt Flats or the Atacama Desert of Chile, and taking a guided tour of Machu Picchu in Peru, shore excursions on luxury cruises makes you experience overland destinations, activities, attractions and wonders with utmost glamour.

A Cruise Ship Docks in Venice, Italy -Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
A Cruise Ship Docks in Venice, Italy

3. Experience Fine Dining

From delectable French cuisines and sumptuous Asian flavours to heartwarming Italian meals as well as a variety of international options, luxury cruises offer an upscale refined dining experience to guests.

Many luxury cruise lines feature speciality restaurants, Michelin-starred chefs, expensive meals like Caviar or lobsters, culinary programs like the Silversea S.A.L.T., and even toned-down meals for people who love to take things a bit simple.

For the best onboard culinary experience, Edwina of Mundy Cruising highlights 6 of the best luxury cruise lines for foodies. According to her, Seabourn is best for gourmet experiences ashore, Silversea for speciality restaurants, Oceania Cruises for plant-based menus, The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection for Michelin-inspired restaurants and Windstar Cruises for barbecue.

Some luxury cruise lines have exclusive restaurants that can only be accessed by early bookings.

Luxury cruise restaurants are upscale and many can rival any fine dining restaurants on land. From the restaurant’s settings – design, tables, chairs and fittings, the menus and course presentations, everything is done with great care, best quality of materials, fresh ingredients and utmost culinary mastery.

Onboard Restaurant on Cruise Ship - Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
Onboard Restaurant on Cruise Ship

4. Take a class or lesson

Many luxury, premium and speciality cruise lines organize a variety of classes for their guests. This can range from dancing and cooking classes to fencing lessons. Several of these cruise lines are gradually increasing the number of subjects (courses) that they offer.

Since you will be spending several days at sea on a cruise and most of your time will be spent onboard, it is one of the most decent things to book a lesson or join a class. Lessons and classes on luxury cruise ships are customized with a sizeable number of high-class participants.

Not all cruise lines offer the same type of lessons or classes, and some lines are best known for specific onboard educational activities. Some also traditionally invite guest lecturers and performers onboard.

You can attend a hot glass class with Celebrity Cruises, participate in an astronomy class aboard Cunard luxury vessel, learn how to skydive with Royal Caribbean International, relish a wine-tasting class with Princess Cruises, learn photography on Silversea, take fencing classes aboard Cunard, join a cooking class on Oceania Cruises, listen to guest speakers on Seabourn, and you can even master a new language on luxury cruise lines like Princess Cruises [Source].

Cooking Class on Cruise Ship in Tagine, Morocco -Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
Cooking Class on Cruise Ship in Tagine, Morocco

5. Book a Helicopter Tour

As science and technology evolve so is the cruise industry. One of the most recent additions to luxury cruising is helicopter tours of exhilarant destinations, rugged terrains and natural marvels.

Scenic Eclipse, a 228-passenger luxury cruise adventure ship is credited to be the first of its kind to offer helicopter at sea in 2019. Scenic Eclipse I and Scenic Eclipse II are two ultra-luxury cruisers with onboard helicopters and helipads.

Helicopter tours are today one of the most luxurious things you can indulge in and enjoy on a luxury cruise.

Book a helicopter tour and experience from above scintillating wonders and exciting places like Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Milford Sound (New Zealand), Kauai (Hawaii, USA), Time + Tide Miavana (Nosy Ankao, Madagascar), Grand Canyon National Park (Arizona, USA), Santorini (Greece), and Franz Josef Glacier and Fox Glacier (New Zealand).

Juneau (Alaska, USA), Iceland, Victoria Falls (Zambia/Zimbabwe), the Great Barrier Reef (Australia), Greenland (Denmark), Bora Bora (French Polynesia), Volcanoes National Park (Hawaii, USA), and the Himalayas from Kathmandu can also be explored on a luxury cruise chopper.

Helicopter tours can be arranged with the cruise line you are sailing with in cases where there are no onboard helicopters. They will book shore tours and helicopter tours from overland operators on your behalf.

A Helicopter Hovers Across a Mountain Range - Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
A Helicopter Hovers Across a Mountain Range

6. Lodge at an ultra-luxury cruise suite

There is nothing compared to an ocean cruise in your own floating “palace” or “royal” quarters with amazing ocean views, balconies, private wine cellars, plunge pools, private theatres, hot tubs, decadent furniture and fittings, minibars, spacious living areas, and stately rooms complimented with a private butler.

Wake up every morning at sea to behold glamorous rooms and elegant living spaces – with, breakfast waiting for you!

Luxury cruise suites like the Regent Seven Seas Regent Suite, Royal Caribbean’s Royal Loft Suite, Owner’s Residence of Explora Journeys, Crystal Cruises’ Crystal Penthouse Suite, the Haven 3-Bedroom Garden Villa of Norwegian Cruise Line, Wintergarden Suite of Seabourn, Balmoral and Sandringham Suites of Cunard, Silversea’s Owner’s Suites, and Scenic Owner’s Penthouse Suites are top of luxury cruise lodgings.

Ultra-luxury cruise suites come with high-end amenities like a spa, private lounges, a private library, a boardroom, walk-in closets, smart TVs, a fireplace, and whirlpools, as well as exclusive services including 24/7 concierge and in-suite dining.

Lodging at an ultra-luxury cruise suite exemplifies what I will call 5-Star Cruising! It is the epitome of opulence at sea. Though these lodges cost a fortune to experience, every penny is worth the price.

A Private Balcony on a Cruise Ship - Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
A Private Balcony on a Cruise Ship

7. Indulge in an unforgettable Spa Experience

The spa is a wellness and relaxation facility where you can experience treatments such as pedicures, facials, massages, wraps and detox cleanses. Most spas aboard luxury cruise ships feature a thermal suite with a sauna, steam room, hot tub, monsoon showers, variety of massages and facials, some also have a salon with hairdressers and manicurists.

To make your cruise as pleasing as possible, you should experience this tranquil, blissful and relaxing onboard facility.

From Balinese-inspired massage to an acupuncture session, cruise spas will calm and rejuvenate your mind, body and soul. This is the facility for ultimate relaxation at sea!

If you are looking for some of the best cruise ship spas for your next luxury cruise line options or choice, you can check out the LivNordic Spa of Viking Ocean Cruises, AquaSpa of Celebrity Cruises, Serene Spa of Regent Seven Seas, Otium of Silversea Cruises, Senses Spa of Scenic Cruises, and Seabourn’s The Spa.

With some luxury cruise lines, spa treatments are complimentary service for every passenger while with some others, you need to pay a token to access spa facilities, services and programs.

Luxury Spa on the Seabourn Odyssey Cruise Ship - Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
Luxury Spa on the Seabourn Odyssey Cruise Ship Source

8. Hire a Private Concierge

While a private butler assists with your in-cabin needs and requests, a concierge takes things a bit further from making restaurant, spa and entertainment reservations to booking tours, air transfers and shore excursions.

A private concierge makes your cruise experience as smooth, seamless and stress-free as possible from the beginning to the end of your journey. They offer you incredible convenience and a high-end personalized service.

Your luxury cruise journey starts from the comfort of your home or office when you’re booking a particular cruise. Hire a private concierge service with your cruise booking and everything from hotel booking, exclusive airport lounges, your transport to the port, onboard reservations, and shore tours will be taken care of.

What a cool way to cruise the world with class!

Additionally, some luxury cruise lines like Celebrity Cruises, Disney Cruise Line, Holland America, MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises, Royal Caribbean International and Princess Cruises offer special and exclusive lounges for elite-level passengers cruising with private concierge services or booked top suite.

These concierge lounges provide high-level comfort, upscale amenities and complimentary services to high-class passengers.

Concierge Lounge on Oceania Riviera Cruise Line - Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
Concierge Lounge on Oceania Riviera Cruise Line Source

9. Explore the beneath waters in a Submarine

The concept of submarine exploration beneath waters was pioneered by Crystal Cruises in 2015 with its luxury vessel Crystal Esprit. Luxury cruise lines such as Scenic Luxury Cruises and Tours with its Scenic Eclipse I and Scenic Eclipse II expedition vessels, Seabourn Cruises with its Seabourn Venture and Seabourn Pursuit vessels, and Viking Ocean Cruises’ Viking Octantis and Viking Polaris vessels have followed suit [Source].

If overwater cruises and helicopter tours are not enough for you, take things a bit deeper by exploring the underwater world in a submersible.

More suited in destinations like Antarctica, Greenland, the Galapagos, the Pacific and the Caribbean where there are buoyant marine lives including a variety of sea plants and animals, submarine exploration to about 1000 feet below the sea during a luxury (expedition) cruise is an experience that only a few are opportune to have.

With up-to 300-degree view of sunken wrecks, reefs, and colourful marine wildlife, plush leather upholstery, air conditioners, a champagne cooler, and even a Bluetooth stereo system, going on a sub “dive” during a cruise is a truly luxury adventure.

Submarine on a Seabourn Luxury Cruise Ship - Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
Submarine on a Seabourn Luxury Cruise Ship Source

10. Lounge in a private cabana

In the traditional sense, a cabana is a reserved area with a hut (or covered with curtains) and relaxation amenities like lounge chairs and wine tables on a cruise ship sun deck, spa, private island or port destination.

There are various designs of cabanas and they may provide complete or partial shade with furniture ranging from cushy lounge chairs and tables to couches, sofas, dining spaces and daybeds.

Lounging in a private cabana is a great way to upgrade your cruising experience.

Whether it is an onboard cabana or a private island cabana, cabanas provide a unique and peaceful way to relax and refresh on a luxury cruise.

In most luxury cruises, cabana rental usually comes with complimentary services such as a butler, meal service, bar service, and free goodies like bottled water and fruit skewers.

Not all luxury cruise lines have cabanas onboard their cruise ships as in the case of Carnival and Disney Cruises. You will find onboard cabanas on vessels of luxury cruise lines like the Royal Caribbean, Princess Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruises, Holland America, MSC Cruises, and Seabourn Cruises.

Most luxury cruise lines’ private island cabanas are located in the Caribbean and they feature amazing views of the sea, beach access, complimentary services, water sports amenities and portable living spaces.

A Luxury Private Cabana in Oia, Santorini, Greece - Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise
A Luxury Private Cabana in Oia, Santorini, Greece


From enjoying the service of a private butler, going on an exclusive shore excursion, experiencing fine dining, lodging at an ultra-luxury cruise suite, and taking a helicopter tour, to booking a private cabana, a luxury cruise allows you to explore, experience and enjoy the world across the seas in style and glamour.

What makes luxury cruises different from mainstream voyages is the type of amenities, onboard facilities, and quality and extent of services available to passengers.

And if you’re still wondering, as many other people do, what are the things to do on a luxury cruise, in this post, I presented the best 10 top things to do on a luxury cruise. These are the activities and things that take your cruise adventure beyond the status quo.

You can live like a king in one of the floating decadent-filled suites, have someone like a butler or a concierge do all your bidding and requests at your utmost convenience, explore historic sites like Machu Picchu in Peru, snorkel in the Coral Reefs of French Polynesia, have a taste of delectable onboard culinary mastery in a speciality restaurant, take a dance or fencing class, or even relax in a private cabana, luxury cruises give you unforgettable experiences.

This post discussed the things you do that make luxury cruises extraordinary.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What is the difference between luxury cruises and mainstream cruises?

The major difference between luxury cruises and mainstream cruises is the quality of amenities and services onboard cruise ships in either category of cruising. And more so, luxury cruises involve smaller and more intimate vessels than mainstream cruises. Luxury cruises have lower passenger-to-crew ratios and passengers can enjoy upscale services such as high-end rooms and suites, butler and concierge services which are not available on mainstream cruises.

2. What are the top things to do on a luxury cruise?

The top things to do on a luxury cruise include:

  1. Enjoying the service of a private butler
  2. Go on an exclusive shore excursion
  3. Experience fine dining
  4. Take a class or lesson
  5. Book a helicopter tour
  6. Lodge at an ultra-luxury cruise suite
  7. Indulge in an unforgettable Spa experience
  8. Hire a private concierge
  9. Explore the beneath waters in a submarine
  10. Lounge in a private cabana

3. What is the difference between a butler and a concierge on a luxury cruise?

The primary difference between a butler and a concierge on a luxury cruise is essentially their scope of work. A butler attends to your in-cabin needs and requests including unpacking your luggage, doing your laundry, bringing your meals and cleaning the room while concierge services can include making airport and hotel reservations or booking shore excursions or tours for you.

4. Are shore excursions included in every luxury cruise booking?

While almost all luxury cruises involve shore excursions, going on such excursion is not mandatory hence you have to check at the time you are booking a cruise to be sure if a shore excursion is included in the cruise package or program. However, shore excursion is often included in most luxury cruise fares by default.

5. What types of classes or lessons are available on luxury cruises?

The type of classes or lessons available on luxury cruises varies from cruise line to cruise line. However, the following are some of the classes or lessons you can take on most of the luxury cruises:

  1. Hot glass class
  2. Astronomy class
  3. Learn how to skydive
  4. Wine-tasting class
  5. Learn Photography
  6. Take fencing class
  7. Join a cooking class
  8. Listen to guest speakers

6. Which luxury cruise lines have submarines?

The luxury cruise lines that are known to have submarines are Crystal Cruises with the vessel Crystal Esprit, Scenic Luxury Cruises and Tours with the vessels Scenic Eclipse I and Scenic Eclipse II, Seabourn Cruises with the vessels Seabourn Venture and Seabourn Pursuit, and Viking Ocean Cruises with the vessels Viking Octantis and Viking Polaris.

7. What are private cabanas on luxury cruises?

Cabanas are reserved areas with a hut (or covered with curtains) and relaxation amenities like lounge chairs and wine table on a cruise ship sun deck, spa, private island or port destination.

Related Posts:

  1. Best 10 Bucket-list Top Cruise Destinations for the Year
  2. The Top 10 Best Luxury Cruise Lines in the World
  3. The 6 Most Popular Cruise Destinations in the World
  4. The Top 10 Best Cruise Lines in the World
  5. The Defining Model of Luxury Travel

Please share on your favourite Social Media handle:

The Favicon for

Hi, 👋 It’s nice to have you on my blog.

Sign up to receive amazing content and updates in your inbox any time new posts are published.

We don’t spam! You can unsubscribe at any time. Read our Privacy Policy for more information.

Related Posts

7 thoughts on “Best 10 Top Things to Do on a Luxury Cruise

Comments are closed.