Enlightening Experiences at Sea
A compilation by The Cruise Web employees.
If you are at all familiar with cruising you should know that sea days are far from boring. Cruise ships sailing the world’s oceans and rivers have many attractions onboard to keep you and your travel companions entertained. They also feature a vast array of enrichment experiences. Ships offer traditional lectures on art, history, politics and culture, but they also let you dive deeper – creating gourmet meals in their kitchens, learning acupuncture techniques in the spa and even teaching you how to get down with ballroom and Latin dance classes.
Read on to discover some of the most enlightening experiences our Cruise Web staff has had while cruising.
I took a cooking class on a Celebrity cruise where they took us right into the galley during the lunch rush! We all had on our aprons and chef hats while the guest chef explained to us how to make several dishes. When we were done we were taken to Murano to have our creations served to us and to dine with the chef!
I enjoy some of the lectures about the next day’s destination. It gives a good preview about some of the places we’ll tour and some history behind the places.
The Berlitz language classes are among my favorites. As a refresher, I completed conversational Spanish while sailing Mexico. My introduction to Italian was while sailing the Italian Riviera. To my surprise, I was armed with a certificate of completion and just enough knowledge to stay out of (or get into) trouble. Cin Cin (a formal “cheers” or “salute” in Italian, pronounced chin-chin)!
Since making its way to the West, acupuncture has quickly become one of the fastest growing alternative therapies and is often used to complement and enhance the benefits of conventional medicine. Recently, I attended a complimentary consultation in the spa during my cruise vacation to Bermuda and New England aboard Royal Caribbean’s Enchantment of the Seas. I was able to learn more about this traditional Chinese medicine, and even got to experience a needle inserted into my hand as a test.
Anytime food is involved, I’m usually interested. I especially look out for opportunities to participate in wine tasting. It’s always fun to try new wines from different regions of the world.
I attended a glass blowing demonstration on the Celebrity Solstice. I tried it at home… My lips grew back after a few weeks.
I’ve participated in several lectures while at sea, but my favorite must have been the lecture given about Salvador Dali while sailing the Baltic. Not only was the information on this great but eccentric artist relevant to our upcoming visit to the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, it also prepared me for the art auction on the ship.
There are three things that are always very memorable for me when it comes to enriching my life skills on board a cruise ship.
The first are the dance lessons: I learned to ballroom dance on a cruise ship. I especially remember one Princess cruise where they would have a particular ballroom dance lesson during the day and then later that night, in one of the smaller lounges, there would be a small band playing the style of music of the dance you learned that day. This gave everyone a chance to show off their skills from the day’s lessons and my Cha Cha was pretty on point.
Second, I hone in on my trivia skills during the once or twice daily trivia events on board. You get to mix and mingle with other well witted passengers and learn fun facts that you may find useful in your life on land.
Thirdly, I love the napkin and towel folding demonstrations. I have learned how to make many unique napkin accessories that I often use for my table settings whenever we manage to all eat together at the dinner table. And my grandchildren just marvel at the cute little towel animals I sometime leave on their beds.
I am about to embark on a ship very soon that offers Berlitz language lessons and piano lessons at sea. I am excited about that and can hardly wait!
I did a wine seminar with Celebrity Cruises where I learned how to correctly test the wine and check the legs, along with how different foods can impact the taste.
I also took a beading class on Silversea and made myself an anklet that I actually wore this summer.
Lastly, while on a Rhine river cruise, I enjoyed a cooking demonstration for authentic German Black Forest cake with Kirsch, a strong clear schnapps. We got to sample this when it was done and were given the recipe to take home.