How to Plan a Celebration Cruise

January 22, 2020 • Lis Larson

We’ve compiled this list of popular milestones AdventureSmith travelers often cruise to celebrate—along with our recommendation for how to make it happen. From a birthday cruise to celebrating a 7th continent reached, milestones are simply a fun way to plan your travel and ensure you have something to toast on your journey. Browse this list of popular celebration cruises to find your next excuse to get your partner, family, group or self aboard a small ship cruise this year:

A single female traveler sits on the bow of a small ship in Baja

Birthday Cruise

Pick the right sized ship, with the best desserts

Charter cruises are great options for celebrating birthdays as it’s fun to bring the whole gang and have the ship to yourself; our most popular charter ships range from 8 to 22 guests. Or you can opt to just book as a small group to take advantage of savings. You’ll also want to ensure you’ve got a great cake to celebrate. Since you can’t cook one yourself on the ship, be sure to let your AdventureSmith Specialist and the ship’s hotel manager know it’s your big day and they’ll be sure the chef is prepared. While we can honestly say that most of our partner small ships have GREAT desserts, one that stands out for adding some extra personalized touches is the 8-guest Westward thanks to the yacht’s remarkable Chef Tracie, who maintains a seasonal herb garden on the ship’s upper deck and is famous for her elaborate homemade desserts. Alaska’s Western Passages and Westward Voyages in the Sea of Cortez (pictured) are two great birthday cruise choices to get aboard with Chef Tracie on an Alaska cruise or Baja cruise.

Engagement Cruise

Select an itinerary with remote locales

The best engagement cruise itineraries all depend on your love language. Should it feel like an adventure? Or a luxury? We recommend choosing a cruise that offers action-packed snorkeling paired with the most remote of beaches so your beloved is on a wildlife-fueled adrenaline high when you propose on that beach with no one else on it. Fun fact: this actually happened to one of our travelers on their Indonesia cruise (pictured above), but we can recommend other small ship cruises if your proposal dream is perhaps in your cabin’s private balcony, glacier-side with Champagne. View our Romantic Cruises by Small Ship for more romantic ideas.

Honeymoon Cruise

Let a travel expert decide & handle your logistics

You’ve got enough going on planning the wedding; let the AdventureSmith team or your preferred travel agent make the honeymoon a breeze. We’ll choose an idyllic location to suit both of your interests. Small ship cruising offers the unique experience of all-inclusive activities and meals, guided adventures and a different view each day. Once you’re aboard, you can put the wallet aside and enjoy the ride. Connect with one of our cruise specialists today to chat about ideas for your perfect honeymoon cruise.

A happy couple smiles and holds their wedding cake off a table, they are celebrating their nuptials on a small ship Alaska cruise.

Wedding Cruise

Choose an itinerary with the best backdrop for vows

There is nothing more romantic than a captain officiating your “forever” moment! Take it from AdventureSmith’s very own Todd Smith. Our company founder got married on an Alaska cruise while working as a naturalist guide aboard the Wilderness Explorer in Glacier Bay National Park. Todd and Lisa had their ceremony on the bow of the ship in front of the famous Riggs Glacier, complete with cake and Champagne after.

Pro tip if you are seeking to get married on your Antarctica cruise: there are some logistics to sort out if you want it to be legal due to Antarctica not being a country. The Expedition has a wedding package to ensure it’s legal, so ask our Adventure Specialists if a wedding cruise is in your cards and we can ensure you’re prepared and booked on the best cruise for your wedding dreams.

7th Continent Cruise

Pick what’s left & go big!

AdventureSmith Explorations sends dozens of travelers checking off their final continent each year. And while it’s not always on an Antarctica cruise (Asia and Australia are popular last continents too), the White Continent is the most common destination for this milestone. Our favorite AdventureSmith 7th-continent traveler tale comes from Katie P., who booked the Antarctic Explorer cruise with us to accomplish this goal by age 30. Learn more about Katie and tips on how to travel to every continent on our blog.

Graduation Cruise

Select a destination aligned with your degree

What better way to celebrate your degree than to complement your book knowledge with in-the-field experiential fun. Galapagos cruises are often go-tos for our travelers seeking to celebrate with a graduation cruise, and we often recommend National Geographic Endeavour II Galapagos Cruises as these sailings feature guest experts from National Geographic and an undersea program that utilizes underwater video, a glass-bottom boat, a hydrophone and a dedicated Underwater Specialist to bring the archipelago’s science to life.

Empty Nest Cruise

Choose a trip focused on romance

Picture this: You and your partner aboard a 36-guest yacht in the Hawaiian Islands… and not a teenager of your own in sight. We recommend getting back to the basics aboard a ship with a smaller guest count and tropical waters so you can focus on each other, but also have fellow passengers to socialize with when you want. The friendships made aboard small ship cruises are often lasting ones, with likeminded travelers choosing this active, intimate mode of travel. Enjoy each other, and enjoy new friends on a cruise like Hawaiian Seascapes or another of our Romantic Cruises by Small Ship.

Retirement Cruise

Challenge your mind with onboard education

Retirement is often thought of as a time to relax, but we’ve heard from many of our travelers that it’s the time they’re most eager to learn and immerse themselves in a place (along with stress-free travel logistics). There is no better way to do this than with the expert guides aboard small ship cruises. Some notable cruises: Exploring the Sea of Cortez, which features National Geographic guides with more than 25 years of experience in the region (and kid-friendly programming if you want to bring the grandkids); Inside Passage Sojourn, which has a focus on Alaska’s Native cultures; and Antarctic Latitudes, which offers ways to get involved with citizen science data collection. If you have always wanted to go and haven’t yet. What are you waiting for?

This blog detailing celebration cruises is among AdventureSmith Explorations’ extensive travel resources. Visit our Small Ship Cruise Guides page for even more tips and inspiration to plan your cruise. 

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  • Robert Fitzgerald says:

    Looking for Cruise for our 50th Wedding Aniversary (now 52nd because of Virus delays). Staying state side and don’t want to mess with Oversees flights these days. Thought we could get last minute 2022 deal in Aug Sept booking on small ship? Ideas (love wine and bourbon)!

    • AdventureSmith Explorations says:

      Congratulations Robert! We would love to help you celebrate such a momentous occasion. Considering your parameters, for a small ship cruise on the west coast, we might suggest a Columbia river cruise in Oregon or a voyage through the San Juan Islands out of Washington that have local food and wine tastings. And on the east coast a Hudson river cruise out of New York or a Coastal Maine cruise. One of our North America small ship experts will be in touch shortly to go over all your options.

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