New year, new you. We’ve heard it a thousand times before, but let’s face it, there is probably no harder time to keep to your resolutions than when you’re on holiday. It’s so easy to put your goals aside and let your hair down, but sometimes that can mean breaking newly formed habits and failing to pick them up again. But whilst on a cruise, there’s no need to worry about falling off the wagon - you can easily keep the carefree attitude and easily stick to your New Year’s Resolutions.
In this article, we look at four popular New Year’s Resolutions you can keep on a cruise holiday.
Image Credit: Agurtxane Concellon / Hurtigruten
If your New Year’s Resolution is to get fit, then cruising is the best type of holiday for you. Onboard most cruise ships you’ll find a state-of-the-art gym and wellbeing facilities, running tracks around the deck, pools and more. So, alongside exploring port towns and cities, you can spend mornings, evenings and sea days embracing the facilities to hit your fitness goals. Who said a holiday had to be all about indulgence?
We spoke to John from In The Loop Travel who told us how easy it has become to work out whilst cruising. “It used to take quite a bit of your own initiative to make sure you kept up with a fitness regimen. It was not too long ago that ships offered just the most basic fitness programs and equipment. Now, health and wellness have become more of a focus, especially on the big ships that feature amazingly large gyms and all the modern equipment. But many river cruise lines (Emerald Waterways, for example) are also offering wellness programmes and fitness classes onboard.
“I work out regularly, so I aim to stay on track while I cruise too, especially to be able to enjoy all the great food on offer. But a cruise can be a good opportunity to learn a new routine and try something that you normally don't get to do at home. Some classes I took for the first time on cruises include yoga, Pilates and water aerobics. I also learned some new morning stretch routines that I incorporate into my regimen back home.”
Image Credit: Celebrity Cruises
We also spoke to blogger and holiday planner Mouse Fan Margaret, who told us: “A cruise offers lots of great ways to keep that New Year’s fitness resolution going or even start a new one. Today’s cruise ships feature state-of-the-art fitness facilities that include the latest in cardio and strength training machines. Additionally, those fitness areas are usually staffed by trained, certified fitness professionals that are there to help you reach your fitness goals during your cruise.
“On most cruises, these trainers offer both group and individual training sessions and classes. You’ll find everything from cycling and yoga to hard-core fitness boot camps on many ships (doesn’t early morning yoga out on the deck as the sun rises over the ocean sound amazing?). If you’re looking to learn something new in fitness or want to improve in some area, check out the one-on-one training options the ship’s fitness staff may offer.
“Of course, don’t forget about the most popular form of fitness – good old walking. Most ships will have a deck where you can walk (or run) in a complete circuit. Look for posted signs or ask a crew member how many laps make up a mile and get those walks in.”
Margaret also suggests looking for active shore excursions whilst on your cruise: “Most ports of call will offer excursions that include walking, hiking or biking. Last autumn we did an excursion in the Virgin Islands that included a hike through the jungle up to the highest point on the island and back down again. After the hike, we went to a beach to relax for a couple of hours. Not only did we get a great workout, but it was an amazing way to experience the island.”
Eat healthier food
On holiday, it’s only natural to want to overindulge, especially on a cruise when plenty of your meals are prepaid, limitless and irresistibly good. However, if your New Year’s resolution is to eat healthier, there are plenty of options available to you on a cruise ship. With myriad dining options and venues, there are plenty of healthy dishes to choose from to keep your taste buds happy.
The staff will be well trained in being able to adjust meals to your dietary preferences, so if you are trying to cut out a particular ingredient or food type, they will be more than happy to accommodate. Alternatively, if there is nothing on the menu that takes your fancy, you can always ask if they can make something especially for you.
We spoke to Ilana from Life Well Cruised who told us: “Keeping New Year's resolutions like eating healthy, might seem difficult when cruising. However, with the variety of great food options on today's cruise ships, and ample opportunities to exercise, cruising in a healthy way is possible.
“Whether in the Main Dining Room or in the buffet, you'll be able to find delicious food options that are healthy. From fresh fruits available for breakfast and throughout the day, to lower calorie options for desserts or snacks, cruise lines are offering up more nutritious choices.
“To make it less likely to overeat, I try not to eat the bread before the meal and may ask for extra vegetables as a side dish, instead of pasta or rice. We all have our preferences, so make the choices that feel best for you.”
Spend more time with family
What better way to spend more time with family than on a family holiday? With our range of family cruises, there is plenty to entertain everyone, old or young. On board, you can take classes together, go off on adventures and dine as a family. Cruise ships are now laden with some amazing new facilities, with some of the newest cruise ships offering mini-golf courses, go-kart tracks, waterparks, laser tag and so much more. All great opportunities for families to get a little competitive and spend some quality time together.
Onshore, you can explore brand new places together. Whether you opt for a shore excursion or you choose to explore on your own, there is plenty to be gained from travelling together. Not only can you teach your younger children about the world, but you can also let older children plan the days. Before you leave for your cruise holiday, give them one port where they can decide the itinerary. Get them to look up activities on Google and then wait and see what the day has in store for you!
And, if you do ever feel like some quiet time, there are many kids’ clubs on offer that your little ones can go to and make new memories that they can tell you about over dinner that night.
For many, going on holiday isn’t the most affordable pastime, as costs quickly add up with booking flights, adding luggage, organising airport transfers, booking hotel rooms, paying for food, drinks, activities and more. Cruising takes all of those extra costs away and for one set price, you can put your credit card away and enjoy the full holiday. Of course, if you want to pay for a few extras like shore excursions or fine dining you can, but you don’t have to.
In our article, How much does it cost to travel the world?, we explore the savings you can make by taking a cruise.
We spoke to Michelle, a money-conscious blogger at Making Sense of Cents. She told us that “there are definitely ways to go on a cruise vacation for cheap. Some ways may include choosing a cruise that departs from a location near you meaning you won't have to pay for airfare, and you may just be able to drive to the cruise terminal.” At ROL, you can find cruises that depart from a range of UK ports, so whether you want to leave from Bristol or take advantage of our cheap cruises from Southampton, there will be something for you.
Michelle continued: “Another way is to find cruise deals. Quite often, you’ll be able to book a more affordable cruise by being more flexible. If you are able to wait to book a cruise, you may be able to save more money as cruises tend to lower their prices at the last minute.
“Of course, there are plenty of other ways to make it even cheaper - if you eat all of your meals aboard, then you probably won't pay much for food as this is usually included in your cruise package.”
Even if you do have a New Year’s resolution to keep, a cruise lets you have the best of both worlds, allowing you to let your hair down while also working on your goals. Explore our cruise deals today to get the ball rolling and experience a holiday you’ll never forget.