Conde Nast Traveler
February 9, 2021
By Elissa Garay

An adventure at sea is a joyful way to commemorate birthdays, anniversaries, and more.

For many travelers, there’s no better place to celebrate a special occasion than onboard a ship. Though cruise travel is largely on hold due to COVID-19—you can find our latest coronavirus coverage here—it’s never too soon to start planning your next voyage. To whet your seafaring appetite, we’ve rounded up 10 distinctive cruise ideas for ringing in some of life’s sweeter moments—from an island-hopping honeymoon in South Pacific to a kiddo-friendly birthday cruise (complete with Mickey Mouse cake) in the Bahamas.

A Touching Memorial Cruise

A last wish for some true-blue cruisers is to have their ashes scattered at sea. A charter can be a fitting solution for an intimate ceremony that memorializes your loved one, while also bringing together friends and family to celebrate a life well lived. Small-ship operators Pacific Catalyst II, operated in partnership with AdventureSmith Explorations in Alaska, Baja California, and the Pacific Northwest, have experience delivering lovely at-sea memorials.

Consider, for example, chartering the Westward to Baja’s Sea of Cortez. A typical 8-night voyage between Loreto and La Paz, Mexico, puts the emphasis on the surrounding wilderness landscapes. Onboard the historic yacht, with its wood paneling and fireplace-anchored salon, up to eight guests can break bread over meals sourced from local farmers and fishermen. The memorial services are fully customizable; past guests have opted to scatter ashes at sunset in a calm cove and during an encounter with whales. Charters and scheduled sailing dates available from December through March, starting at $5,750 per person, including excursions. Full-boat charter from $42,840.