An Insider's Guide to Solo Cruises
Cruising is often seen as a travel style for couples, groups and families, but many single travelers board cruise ships and have a wonderful time. Imagine a day at sea with nobody else demanding your time, or an adventure-filled port day where you can do things others might balk at. When you are cruising solo, the only limit is where can the open sea take you. With many cruise lines now offering single cabins and discounts on single supplements, now's the time to consider a solo trip to see all the Caribbean has to offer.
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Where to stay
Luxury adults-only cruise ship offering voyages to the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Europe and beyond.
Premium cruise line taking travelers to destinations around the world with elevating dining and refined on-cruise experiences.
Norwegian Cruise Line
Known for its laid-back culture and ambiance, Norwegian Cruise Line offers trips to the Caribbean, Bermuda, Alaska Cruises, Hawaii and Europe.
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Things to do
Make Friends! - Cruisers are a social bunch in general, and many will be happy to share a table at a lounge and strike up a conversation. The crew of the ships will also be happy to strike up a chat, and many of them have fascinating stories to tell.
Take advantage of the onboard activities - Cruises have activities throughout the day that encourage socializing with your fellow guests, including meetups for Single or LGBTQ+ folks and team-based games.
Book a more adventurous shore excursion! - I know I have a hard time convincing my friends and family to go ziplining through the jungles in Honduras, jumping down the waterfalls of Damajagua in the Dominican Republic, or kayaking in the bioluminescent waters of Puerto Rico. Solo cruises are the perfect time to try one of the many unique adventures you can find in port.
Sample the local flavor - If you aren't in the mood for an outdoor adventure, consider a food, wine or liquor tour, these are great ways to get a taste of the local culture of the port you are visiting, often guided by a local who can provide a wealth of information.
Catch a show onboard - Entertainment is a highlight of many cruises, from talented comedians to Broadway musicals, and live musicians, there are plenty of options to enjoy.
Try something new on the ship - Many cruise lines offer unique adventures on board the ships, making them a destination in their own right. On royal Caribbean's Oasis Class Ships, for example, there are FlowRider surf simulators, rock climbing with ocean views and unique eats at their Wonderland restaurant.
Do nothing at all - That's the best part about traveling solo, there are no demands on your time. You can sleep in, soak up the sun on the pool deck with a cocktail in hand, and you don't have to worry about what anyone else wants to do.
A note from Adam
Note the solo cabin options on NCL and Virgin, as well as Celebrity's Edge Series. Royal has great onboard activities for single adventurers.
Places to eat & drink
Places to eat & drink onboard
Wonderland (Royal Caribbean) - Unique dishes served in a whimsical, Alice in Wonderland-themed restaurant.
Eden Restaurant (Celebrity's Edge series) - Contemporary cuisine served in a unique space filled with greenery.
Martini Bar (Celebrity) - A Celebrity staple. Classic and creative martinis made by talented bartenders are served on an ice-topped bar.
Places to eat & drink on shore
Cynthia's Talk of the Town in Grand Case, Saint Martin - Casual, outdoor eatery for Caribbean-style barbeque.
Cafe Manolin in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico - A institution for Puerto Rican cuisine in the heart of San Juan, the mofongo is a must-have.
Scryer Rum Barrelhouse in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico - Serving up classic dark rum cocktails and twists on old favorites, you'll find it hard not to bring home a bottle when you leave.
El Pescador in Cozumel, MX - A casual eatery serving up Mexican fare, tropical cocktails, and beer right on the beach.
Need to Know
For more cruise travel tips, check out Guide to Virgin Voyages: The Cruise for Non-Cruisers by Fora Advisor Randy Marsden.
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