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The 18 best themed cruises for 2024 and 2025.

From Christmas to Comic-Con, there's a themed cruise for you.

The Best Themed Cruises

Disney characters in front of the Pumpkin Tree on Disney Cruise Line's Halloween on the High Seas.

Kent Phillips | Courtesy of Disney Cruise Line

Grab your costumes, musical instruments, books or anything else you could need for a fun themed cruise.

Imagine boarding a cruise ship to find hundreds – or even thousands – of your shipmates share the very same passions and interests that you do. You're thinking of a themed cruise.

Like a traditional cruise, a themed cruise delivers everything you'd expect of a shipboard vacation, like sundrenched ports, sparkling blue waters and superb dining amid lush surroundings, but instead of a daily program filled with trivia, bingo, dance lessons and pickleball tournaments, you'll find myriad activities geared specifically to the sailing's theme – and plenty of like-minded people to share them with.

Below, you'll find some of the top themed cruises for 2024 and 2025. Be sure to book soon, as these voyages can sell out quickly.

Book a cruise on  GoToSea , a service of U.S. News.

Best Music-Themed Cruises

Best holiday cruises, best star trek cruises, best literary cruises, best culinary cruises, best sports-themed cruises, cayamo, a journey through song: march 1-8, 2024.

In its 16th year, Cayamo celebrates music of all genres. The 2024 voyage brings Lyle Lovett, Billy Bragg and Shawn Colvin together with more than two dozen acts aboard Norwegian Pearl . This themed cruise sails from Miami to the Dominican Republic and Aruba while offering songwriting sessions, open jams, autograph opportunities and more. In addition to full concerts, cruisers can count on memorable collaborations and onboard performances crafted specifically for this weeklong musical celebration. Though this music-themed cruise is currently full, interested travelers can join the waitlist on Cayamo's website .

The Broadway Cruise 2: March 13-18, 2024

The Great White Way relocates from the Big Apple to Miami , with stops in Key West, Florida , and Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands , during this musical salute to Broadway. Join actors – including Norm Lewis, Christian Borle and Kerry Butler – as well as composers, choreographers, journalists and critics for five nights of performances, workshops and panel discussions aboard Norwegian Pearl.

Flower Power Cruise: March 21-28, 2024

Hop aboard Celebrity Summit for a celebration of the stars and music of the 1960s, hosted by Peter & Gordon's Peter Asher. The Rascals, Tommy James & the Shondells, Gary Lewis and the Playboys, John Lodge of the Moody Blues, John Kay of Steppenwolf, The Box Tops and The Grassroots are just part of the stellar lineup of classic rockers sailing from Miami to San Juan, Puerto Rico , and St. Croix on the seventh annual Flower Power Cruise. Visit the Flower Power Cruise website to join the waitlist.

On the Blue: April 5-10, 2024

Justin Hayward of the Moody Blues hosts this five-night celebration of classic rock aboard Norwegian Pearl, filled with full concerts, late-night jams, Q&A sessions with the artists, photo ops, meet-and-greets and themed nights. The Zombies, Alan Parsons, Al Stewart, Little River Band and more join Hayward as Norwegian Pearl sails from Miami to Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic , and Nassau, Bahamas . VIP packages that include priority concert seating, a goody bag filled with themed merchandise and access to a special artist cocktail party are available.

The Michael McDonald and Patti LaBelle Cruise: April 10-13, 2024

In 1986, Michael McDonald and Patti LaBelle teamed up to record what would become a No. 1 smash hit: "On My Own," written and produced by Burt Bachrach and his then-wife Carole Bayer Sager. Now, McDonald and LaBelle reunite – this time, at sea – for a three-night event filled with musical performances. Hosted by Grammy Award winner Marcus Miller, this soulful voyage also features comedians George Wallace and Alonzo Bodden along with a cast of award-winning musicians and vocalists to keep the party going. This cruise sails from Miami to Nassau, Bahamas, aboard Norwegian Pearl.

Disney characters Mickey and Minnie stand in front of the Pumpkin Tree on Disney Cruise Line's Halloween on the High Seas.

Courtesy of Disney Cruise Line

Halloween on the High Seas: Mid-September to October 2024

It's a spooky time aboard four of Disney Cruise Line's ships – Disney Magic , Disney Dream , Disney Fantasy and Disney Wish – during its Halloween sailings. Dress up and join Disney characters for Halloween parties, themed food and beverages, eerie arts and crafts, creepy decor and other special events. Featured Halloween itineraries for 2024 sail to destinations in the eastern and western Caribbean, as well as the Bahamas.

Hallmark Christmas Cruise: November 5-9 and November 17-21, 2024

Hallmark Channel stars bring Christmas magic to life on this festive celebration at sea aboard the Norwegian Gem . Sailing from Miami to Nassau, Bahamas, the cruise includes Christmas cookie decorating, ugly sweater contests and Christmas "carol-oke" among its planned activities. Each voyage culminates in the world premiere of a new Hallmark Channel "Countdown to Christmas" movie. Head to the Hallmark Christmas Cruise website to join the waitlist.

Very Merrytime: November and December 2024

Get in the holiday spirit with Disney Cruise Line 's Very Merrytime sailings, available on Disney Magic, Disney Dream, Disney Fantasy and Disney Wish. Join in for a jolly fusion of shipboard decor and holiday-themed entertainment, including Christmas tree lightings, meet-and-greets with Santa Claus, a holiday deck show and more. Very Merrytime's 2024 itineraries explore ports throughout the Bahamas and the western Caribbean.

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Star Trek: The Cruise: February 22-29, 2024

Board Royal Caribbean International for the best cruise experience in the galaxy on Mariner of the Seas . Sailing to Curacao and Aruba from Port Canaveral, you'll join Star Trek actors Walter Koenig, Levar Burton, Garrett Wang and nearly two dozen others as you're beamed into themed shows, events, parties and actor-hosted shore adventures. Each night of the cruise celebrates a different dimension of the Star Trek experience and, since the cruise's debut in 2017, guests have knocked it out of the park with show-stopping costumes.

A panel talk on Cunard Cruise Line's Literature Festival at Sea in 2019.

Courtesy of Cunard Line

Literature Festival at Sea: November 13-20, 2024

Cross the Atlantic surrounded by authors, poets, journalists, critics, historians and book lovers aboard the legendary Queen Mary 2 as she sails from Southampton, England, to New York City . With discussions, master classes, book signings and special events, this ocean-going book festival, coordinated by The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival, features authors Mark Billingham, Denise Mina and Chris Brookmyre, with more guest speakers and participants still to be announced. This special program is open to all guests sailing this particular Cunard Line crossing and need not be booked through an outside themed cruise organizer.

Comic-Con: The Cruise: February 5-9, 2025

A thrilling new entry into the themed cruise universe, San Diego Comic-Con and Entertainment Cruise Productions team up for Comic-Con: The Cruise. Participants will interact with Comic-Con icons – including the comic book world's leading actors, creators, authors and more – as they sail on Royal Caribbean's Serenade of the Seas from Tampa to Cozumel. While the specific talent lineup will not be revealed until early November, fans can expect nonstop activities on board, including hosted tastings, trivia sessions, parties, cosplay events, and autograph and photo sessions.

Kitchen prepared for culinary classes for Silversea Cruises S.A.L.T.

Courtesy of Silversea Cruises

Silversea Cruises S.A.L.T. (All Sailings)

Sometimes, you'll find a theme built right into a standard cruise experience – like Silversea's S.A.L.T. (Sea and Land Taste), an immersive multipronged culinary program created by Adam Sachs, former editor-in-chief of Saveur magazine. Aboard Silversea's newest ships, Silver Nova, Silver Moon and Silver Dawn , S.A.L.T. celebrates the region guests are sailing through on their particular voyage. Cruisers will find a dedicated restaurant featuring local specialties; a bar offering the area's wines, beers and cocktails; hands-on cooking classes that show guests how to create their favorite local dishes at home; and an intensive program of culinary programs on shore.

Chefs Making Waves: March 25-29, 2024

Award-winning chefs Andrew Zimmern, Aaron Sanchez, Anne Burrell, Marcus Samuelsson, Robert Irvine, Michael Symon and more indulge you in culinary excellence on this four-night voyage from Miami to Great Stirrup Cay and Nassau, Bahamas, aboard Norwegian Pearl. Guests can expect cooking demos, in-depth master classes, culinary panels and, best of all, four meticulously designed sit-down dinners curated by these master chefs who have reshaped the American food scene.

Sara Moulton Cruise: May 18-June 1, 2024

Oceania Cruises, creator of the decadent onboard Dom Perignon Dinner, celebrates dining with sailings featuring leading names in the culinary arts. In May 2024, chef, cookbook author and TV personality Sara Moulton leads food demonstrations and special shore excursions during a 14-day sailing from Barcelona to Rome aboard Marina .

Claudine Pepin Cruise: July 17-31, 2024

Known for its commitment to all things culinary, Oceania Cruises hosts another foodie voyage in July 2024. Claudine Pepin, TV host and daughter of world-renowned Master Chef Jacques Pepin, conducts culinary-themed demonstrations and chats aboard Sirena on a sailing from Reykjavik, Iceland , to Hamburg, Germany , over 14 days.

A racecar races around a track with ships at sea in the background.

Courtesy of Windstar Cruises

Cleveland Browns Fan Cruise: March 11-16, 2024

Celebrate all things Browns during a five-day sailing from Miami to Nassau, Bahamas, and Falmouth, Jamaica, aboard Royal Caribbean's Independence of the Seas . Dozens of Browns alumni will share insider secrets with guests and join in experiences that include special dinners; a deep dive into the past, present and future of the team; autograph sessions; beach parties and more.

Rome & Prix du Monde of Monaco: May 20-27, 2025

Arrive for Formula One festivities aboard Windstar Cruises' Wind Surf, the world's largest sailing yacht. Cruisers will receive a themed gift package containing earplugs, binoculars, a seat cushion and more to enjoy the exhilaration of watching Monte Carlo's Grand Prix du Monde from a premier grandstand seat in Monaco . You'll enjoy two days of Formula One time trials and racing, as well as exclusive access to events like a Prix du Monde-themed cocktail reception. This experience is hosted by a Formula One expert who will provide behind-the-scenes insights, answer questions and participate in discussions throughout the sailing.

2025 British Isles Golf Cruise: July 15-July 28, 2025

In partnership with Perry Golf, Azamara hosts a number of golf cruises throughout the year. This is the big one: a sailing that includes attendance to the prestigious 153rd Open at Royal Portrush. You'll sail aboard Azamara Journey from Southampton, England, to Liverpool, England; Dublin ; Belfast, Ireland, and more, ending your cruise with three days in Edinburgh, Scotland . Travelers can count on playing six rounds of golf at well-known courses throughout the British Isles.

Why Trust U.S. News Travel

Judi Cuervo is a cruise enthusiast. Since her first cruise in 1976, she's been sailing aboard a wide array of cruises from mass market to expedition ships. Cuervo used her extensive cruise experience along with research skills to write this article.

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Home » Cruise Tips » Top Themed Cruises for 2024

Top Themed Cruises for 2024

When like-minded folks take over a cruise ship for an unforgettable gathering at sea, you get these top themed cruises for 2024.

Top Themed Cruises for 2024

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Even if you’ve never considered a cruise before , it might be hard to resist the idea of being in a confined space with your favorite celebrity, band or author. That is exactly the idea behind a themed cruise. Like-minded folks take over a cruise ship for an unforgettable gathering at sea.

What is a themed cruise?

From knitting to New Age music, there is a themed cruise for just about every hobby or interest. A themed cruise is a designated sailing (typically just one departure per year) that offers special programming onboard centered around a theme like jazz or the show “Impractical Jokers.”

Some themed cruises are one-off events chartered by an individual or private organization. Others are meticulously curated festivals at sea that are held annually by companies that specialize in hosting themed voyages.

Top Themed Cruises for 2024

The idea is to not only enjoy the amenities of a cruise vacation but spend a few days learning from experts in their field or attend performances and Q&As with your idols. Themed cruises give passengers the unique chance to immerse themselves onboard with fellow fans while also sailing into ports.

Perks range from special commemorative photos or items; the chance to attend a meet-and-greet; and other special parties and events that are part of the price of your cruise.

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Which cruise lines host themed cruises?

Any ship or cruise line could host a themed cruise. But there are certain lines that seem to offer more than others. Norwegian Cruise Line has a long-running partnership with Sixthman . This company has made a name for itself hosting festivals at sea, with more than 180 under its belt in the last 20-plus years.

Cunard Line is another cruise line that hosts themed cruises (known as “event voyages”) all year long. But these have an emphasis on arts and culture. Board these British ocean liners for a week of big band music, London theater, the symphony orchestra, or discussions with war veterans on their insightful Greatest Generation sailings, typically held around Veterans Day and Memorial Day.

River cruise lines have long hosted themed cruises, with seasonal Christmas markets departures. But more recently, river cruise lines are making the most of their destination access and intimate setting to host other theme cruises. These can range from wine to Black history.

Explore the website of your favorite cruise line for any special events in the coming year. Or you might see a themed cruise independently advertised by a band or artist you follow on social media.

Christmas on a Cruise

How do you book a themed cruise?

Themed cruises are bookable through a travel agent, the cruise line’s website, or the third-party host, whether that is Sixthman or a smaller organizer. Many in-demand themed cruises (typically annual festivals and big-name acts) sell out far in advance. So, it’s beneficial to be on a mailing list to book as soon as the sailing is available. Repeat passengers on the same themed cruise typically have first dibs with the ability to join a pre-sale.

Keep in mind that because of all the special perks and behind-the-scenes access offered on these sailings, themed cruises typically cost more than your average cruise vacation.

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Top Themed Cruises 2024

The following are 10 of the top themed cruises setting sail in 2024. These sailings cover the wide scope of themed cruises available to book, from ships full of cat lovers and culinary experts to celebrations of global sporting events and seasonal rom coms.

While many of these 2024 cruises are sold out, it’s never too early to start thinking about one in 2025.

Top Themed Cruises for 2024

The Soul Train Cruise (January 27-February 3)

Now in its eleventh year, the Soul Train Cruise brings together R&B and Soul artists from across generations to perform. The 2024 Soul Train Cruise will take place onboard Holland America’s Nieuw Amsterdam. The cruise sails round trip from Fort Lauderdale with ports of call in Tortola and St. Maarten.

Featuring more than 50 performances, this year’s artists include musical legends like Boyz II Men, the Family Stone, the Temptations, En Vogue, and War, along with more than a dozen others. Special guests include cruise host Tony Cornelius, son of “Soul Train” creator Don Cornelius, along with BET’s Angela Stribling as co-host, and a team of original Soul Train dancers. Events include Q&As with the artists, plenty of dancing as well as dance lessons, and even a vow renewal ceremony.

The 2024 Soul Train Cruise is currently sold out.

The Meow Meow Cruise (February 21-25)

Organized by feline afficionados, the Meow Meow Cruise is independently owned and operated, first setting sail in 2015. In 2024, cat-crazed cruisers (unfortunately without their kitties) will set sail round trip from Miami. Bound for Key West and Bimini, this cruise takes place aboard Virgin Voyages’ Scarlet Lady. The four-night Meow Meow Cruise is a partial charter. This means that not every passenger will be participating in the furry fun.

Activities for interested parties include a meet-and-greet with your other cat-loving cruisers; a cruise kit and goody bag; themed trivia; group dining; a scavenger hunt; hosted “Meow Meow Mixer” cocktail party; and more.

Top Themed Cruises for 2024

Star Trek: The Cruise VII (February 22-29)

Trekkies will board Royal Caribbean’s Mariner of the Seas in Port Canaveral for their “Un-Conventional Voyage” . This popular cruise is like a “Star Trek” convention at sea. Now in its seventh season, it features exciting access to cast members past and present as well as guest speakers, lecturers, and even an onboard makeup artist to help cruisers get into character.

More than 25 cast members and show crew will be roaming aboard, with headlining names like Wil Wheaton and Levar Burton. From trivia sessions to stunt classes, this adventure across the high seas to Aruba and Curacao is an immersive one. Get ready to pack a suitcase or two with nightly theme parties that span “Mutiny on the Holodeck,” inspired by Ferengi pirates to a Star Trek masquerade formal. 

Cayamo: A Journey Through Song (March 1-8)

One of the most beloved at-sea music fests around, Cayamo is in its sixteenth year in 2024. Guests will board Norwegian Pearl this March for a week of superior performances as well as the opportunity to jam with fellow cruisers or attend an open mic. Hosted by Sixthman, this themed cruise celebrates singer-songwriters across genres. It departs from Miami with calls in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic and Oranjestad, Aruba.

With a focus on the “listening experience,” this cruise puts performance at the heart of its activities. Artists sailing aboard Cayamo in 2024 include Lucius, KT Tunstall, Lyle Lovett, War & Treaty and a whopping 35 other acts.

The 2024 Cayamo Cruise is currently sold out.

Chefs Making Waves (March 25-29)

Taste dishes from your favorite celebrity chefs and learn their secrets in the kitchen on this four-night themed sailing called “ Chefs Making Waves : A Food, Wine and Spirits Festival at Sea.” Join chefs Anne Burrell, Andrew Zimmerman, Marcus Samuelsson and many more onboard Norwegian’s “theme ship” Norwegian Pearl.

Foodies will sail round trip from Miami to Nassau and Great Stirrup Cay in the Bahamas. All the while, they can attend culinary panels, mixology masterclasses, wine tastings and more. Who wouldn’t want to bake with the “Cake Boss” himself, Buddy Valastro?

The 2024 Chefs Making Waves Cruise is currently sold out.

Top Themed Cruises 2024

Storyteller Series: Diana Gabaldon (April 16-24)

Taking place onboard the Danube River, Avalon Waterways’ Storyteller series invites cruisers to get up close and personal with their favorite authors. In 2024, fans of the “Outlander” series will flock to Vilshofen, Germany for a week dubbed “Go Tell the Bees” with New York Times bestselling author Diana Gabaldon.

During guests’ time onboard, they will enjoy ample time to interact with Gabaldon, over dinners, cocktail hours and daily excursions. Concluding in Budapest, this sailing of Avalon Impression will dock in six scenic ports across Germany, Austria and Hungary. The sailing concludes with a Q&A and book signing.

The 2024 Storyteller Cruise with Diana Gabaldon is currently sold out.

Formula 1 Prix du Monde Cruise (May 21-28)

F1 racing has skyrocketed in popularity within the U.S., due in part to the Netflix series “Formula One: Drive to Survive.” In 2024, fans can attend arguably the sport’s most prestigious races, the Prix du Monde of Monaco, onboard a weeklong Windstar Cruise .

Onboard Wind Surf, one of the largest sailing yachts, this themed cruise will sail the Mediterranean in style. Sailing from Barcelona to Rome, it features an overnight in Monte Carlo. Onboard, fans can enjoy themed cocktail receptions and dinners with their host, a Formula One expert who is on hand to provide insights about the sport.

Cruise fare includes tickets to the event for both Saturday’s time trials and Sunday’s final race, with a program, poncho and cap. A themed gift package from the cruise line also includes amenities like a seat cushion, binoculars and ear plugs.

The 2024 Formula 1 Prix du Monde Cruise is currently sold out but is already on sale for 2025.

Top Themed Cruises 2024

Hallmark Christmas Cruise (November 5-9 and November 17-21)

Girl meets boy; girl books a romantic theme cruise. The silver screen phenomenon of the Hallmark Channel’s Christmas movies is made real across two November departures in 2024. Get into the holiday spirit with Hallmark stars and Christmastime traditions onboard these Norwegian Gem sailings, all while sailing from Miami to Nassau, Bahamas.

Passengers on the Hallmark Christmas cruises will be able to participate in photo ops, panels, and even an exclusive world premiere of a brand-new Hallmark Christmas movie. And of course, no storybook holiday cruise would be complete without cookie decorating, craft workshops, carol singalongs and ugly sweaters.

Both sailings of the 2024 Hallmark Christmas Cruise are currently sold out.

Literature Festival at Sea (November 13-20)

Cultured cruisers might want to board Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 for one of the line’s annual Literature Festivals at Sea . On this weeklong transatlantic crossing from Southampton to New York, passengers will be able to participate in lectures and literary programs alongside renowned authors, historians, poets and critics.

Hosted by journalists from The Times and the programming team of the Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival, this event guarantees plenty of food for thought for bookworms and scholars. With seven full days onboard, cruisers have a leisurely amount of time to converse with special guests like novelist and journalist Mike Gayle and historian and author Tracy Borman.

Can’t get enough literature at sea? The floating Australian Literature Festival takes place onboard Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth from December 11-16, round trip from Sydney.

Jewish Heritage Cruises (Various Dates)

Cruises are an ideal vacation for guests to enjoy some carefree days jamming out or digging into guest speakers. But travel can also be transformative, and this is the idea behind sailings that explore culture, religion and personal ancestry. Uniworld Boutique River Cruises hosts a variety of European sailings that are centered around the exploration of Jewish heritage .

In 2024, Uniworld offers select dates of sailings like the 11-day “Remarkable Rhine and Historic Holland” or “Delightful Danube” that include the Jewish Heritage Program. These sailings focus on Jewish roots and communities across Central Europe. They highlight locals making a positive impact on Jewish culture in modern times alongside visits to WWII sites, Holocaust memorials, and museums.

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Have you ever taken one of these themed cruises? Which festivals at sea would you consider sailing? Drop us an anchor below to share your experiences with these themed events on the high seas.

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The Jazz Cruise

For over 20 years,  The Jazz Cruise  has presented the very best in “straight-ahead” jazz, with a full ship of the world’s most passionate jazz fans sailing with the world’s best jazz musicians. Programming the cruise starts with over 100 world-class musicians, scheduled in many exciting configurations for around 225 hours of music, presented festival-style over 7 jam-packed days. Sailing with Paquito D’Rivera, Chucho Valdes,  Christian McBride, Artemis and many more stars from  January 18 – 25, 2024 . More info at  TheJazzCruise.com

The Smooth Jazz Cruise

The Greatest Party at Sea returns for 2 sailings in 2024 featuring more of the top stars in the genre on the ship than can be found on any cruise or at any festival including, Marcus Miller, Boney James, Jeffrey Osborne, Brian Culbertson, Jonathan Butler and more. You’ll enjoy wall-to-wall music for 7 days and nights as you get up close and personal with stars of the smooth jazz world. Sailing January 25-February 1, 2024 and February 1-February 8, 2024 . More info at https://thesmoothjazzcruise.com .

Botti at Sea

This new cruise program features a broad range of top drawer and exciting entertainment, all in the spirit and under the direction of Jazz Trumpeter Chris Botti.  While musical experience forms, the core of the program, Botti has infused exciting performers and events from other entertainment genres.  When viewed together, the cruise reflects the style, stature, and stardom of the amazing host. Sailing February 8-15, 2024 . More info at BottiaatSea.com  

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Broadway-Caliber Production Shows

Spotlight bar.

Our newest show on our newest ship! Join us at the Spotlight Bar , where this imaginative show transports guests to a vibrant bar atmosphere where they connect with local storytellers who share tales of their colorful lives through song. Come as you are to the Spotlight Bar , where a familiar, modern playlist inspires camaraderie and the urge to dance. A prominent West End creative team brings the show to life, Karen Bruce Director & Choreographer, Morgan Large Scenic, Chris Egan Music Arranger and James Whiteside for Lighting. Now available on Discovery Princess® , Enchanted Princess® , and Sky Princess® .

This one-of-a-kind production features incredible costumes inspired by glamorous avant-garde fashion with a musical soundtrack spanning classic rock, opera and musical theater, sung in English, Spanish, Latin and even American Sign Language – a Princess first! Rock Opera is brought to life by a talented cast on Sky Princess®. Rock Opera was created by director and choreographer Danny Teeson, musical producer Nelson Kole, scenic designer John Iacovelli, costume designer Jackson Lowell, lighting designer Brian Gale and sound designer Danny Fiandaca. Now available on Sky Princess® and Enchanted Princess®.

All’s fair in love. Step right up, step right up … and join us for Fiera, a fanciful production set against the backdrop of a lively fairground. Meet quirky and colorful characters in this unforgettable love story, and feel all the feels with a nonstop medley of carefully curated iconic hits, from up-tempo tracks to powerful ballads. Brought to you by a creative team that includes director and choreographer Danny Teeson; Academy Awards arranger Nelson Kole; and the late, great Emmy Award-winning scenic designer John Iacovelli. Now showing on Regal Princess® — and coming soon to Majestic Princess® !

Introducing  5-SKIES  — one of our most technologically advanced production shows yet. Meet Gamer 1, who dares to take on “ 5-SKIES ,” the greatest virtual reality game of all time. Follow him on his journey through a series of increasingly difficult levels, encountering new characters and challenges along the way. Will he master all 5 skies to unlock each level and ultimately reach the Sky Princess?

5-SKIES  was created by director and choreographer Danny Teeson, Music Producer Nelson Kole, scenic designer John Iacovelli, costume designer Jackson Lowell, media designer David Murakami, lighting designer Brian Gale and sound designer Danny Fiandaca. Now available on  Sky Princess®  and on  Enchanted Princess®.

The Secret Silk weaves a soaring world of enchantment

Watch a remarkable world come to life before your eyes as life-size puppetry from Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, dance and special effects transport you to a mythical realm. Created and directed by John Tartaglia, a star of Broadway hits such as Avenue Q and Disney’s Beauty and the Beast , The Secret Silk is our third exclusive show produced with Stephen Schwartz, the Oscar®, Grammy® and Tony® award-winning composer of Wicked . Join us for a mystical evening as the secret is revealed.

Wicked composer brings his "Magic" on board

Enjoy all new original musicals created exclusively by Stephen Schwartz, the Grammy & Academy award-winning composer of  Wicked ,  Godspell , and  Pippin .

During his 40-year career, Schwartz won four Grammys, three Academy Awards for "Best Song" and "Best Score" for  Pocahontas  and "Best Song" for  The Prince of Egypt  and has been nominated for six Tony Awards. He is the only songwriter in Broadway history to ever have three shows run more than 1,900 performances.

Magic to Do casts its spell

Embark on an enchanted musical journey from the Oscar®, Grammy® and Tony® Award winning composer of  Wicked ,  Godspell  and  Pippin , Stephen Schwartz, where you’ll encounter some of history’s greatest magical illusions along the way. Magic to Do is the first of four shows to debut from the unique Princess partnership with the Broadway legend. You’ll experience many of Stephen’s greatest songs, as well a brand new number created exclusively for Princess, in this Broadway-caliber spectacular of song, dance and incredible visual effects.

Bravo unites opera with pop

When classic light opera meets popular music, the result is an extravaganza that brings the house to its feet. Dancing amid breathtaking sets, and backed by a large, 13-piece orchestra, the cast of Bravo…A Regal Celebration delights audiences with such opera classics as “Time to Say Goodbye” and “Habanera” from Carmen. Also woven seamlessly into the production are contemporary hits such as Adele’s “Skyfall.” Join a brilliant soprano, backed by talented singers and dancers for an evening of music that’s truly timeless.

Ballroom elegance takes the stage in an "Encore" performance

Welcome to a sophisticated evening of music and glamour, set amidst the romantic splendor of a beautiful Montecito garden. Inspired by Princess Cruises’ top-rated show Bravo!, and accompanied by an impressive onstage orchestra, Encore celebrates the traditions of pop, opera and musical theater. This spellbinding experience—showcasing new songs, elaborate costumes and stunning sets is directed and choreographed by Disney Channel® creative director Danny Teeson, with musical direction by Academy Awards arranger Nelson Kole and set design by Emmy® award-winner John Iacovelli.

Fantastic Journey transports you to new worlds

Embark on a whole new kind of voyage as dazzling technology, woven into live performances, amplifies the beat of chart-topping hits. Created, directed and choreographed by American Idol’s Danny Teeson,  Fantastic Journey  combines rock-concert energy and spectacular aerial performers in the most technologically innovative show ever presented by Princess Cruises. This visually stunning, multi-faceted stage production features 270-degree 3D-mapped imagery and 14 amazing, choreographed drones.

More Entertainment

Deal or no deal.

All you have to do is pick a briefcase. Easy, right? But when it comes to Deal or No Deal, one of the world’s most popular TV game shows, that’s easier said than done, especially when contents range from a penny to $1,000. Contestants must decide whether to accept the offer of “The Banker” and walk away with a sure bet or go for broke. In our version at sea, audience members can play along to win just as much cash or even a free cruise!

Experience the Voice of the Ocean

Think you have what it takes to take the stage? Princess is bringing the excitement and spectacle of TV’s hugely popular singing competition to the high seas, live and on-stage, with The Voice of the Ocean. The show comes to life throughout the cruise with blind auditions, mentor sessions, the iconic "I Want You" chairs, three charismatic coaches and ultimately a finale performance where guests choose the winner.

Live jazz & craft cocktails

Relive the roots of jazz each evening with our live musicians performing brilliant classics and telling tales of true jazz legends throughout the ages. Debuting first on board Sky Princess®, Enchanted Princess® and Discovery Princess®, Take Five comes to life showcasing vintage footage, iconic imagery and intimate conversations that transport you to the heart of the jazz era. Sip cocktail favorites from Master Mixologist, Rob Floyd as well as specialty gin cocktails crafted exclusively for Take Five.

Movies Under the Stars®

Catch Movies Under the Stars®, our giant 300-square foot poolside movie theater with a 69,000-watt sound system. Take in some of the finest cruise ship entertainment as the theater lights up the top deck day or night with feature films, thrilling concerts and exciting sporting events — including live NFL football games!

Stateroom entertainment

Sit back, relax and watch hit movies and top TV shows right from the comfort of your own stateroom. You can even keep up with your favorite teams with live sporting events.  Visit the sport24live.com page  (refer to the ‘At Sea’ section)* to view what sporting events will be featured on your voyage.

By clicking the link above, you will leave the Princess Cruises website and navigate to a 3rd party website that is not owned, operated, or controlled by Princess Cruises or any of its affiliates.

*Media schedule subject to change

World-class magicians & illusionists

Become mesmerized by renowned illusionists and magicians who will astonish you with their slight-of-hand tricks and mind-blowing acts that will have you shaking your head in disbelief.

Top headliner comedians

Grab a seat, order a cocktail and join fellow guests for some sidesplitting humor from top headliner comedians that have appeared on Comedy Central and late night television.

Street entertainers in the piazza

Enjoy live music, folkloric performances, acrobats and jugglers, even cocktail and food carving demonstrations. Plus, you'll find great shopping, gourmet treats in the International Café, bars, and more great cruise entertainment only a few steps away.

Live music abounds

Catch reggae, Top-40 and even mariachi music on deck poolside. Tap your toes to cover bands, torch singers, and even karaoke in the night clubs. You might even catch a string quartet in the Piazza or a sing-along at the piano bar.

Special Events at Sea

Themed cruises & special events.

Set a course for adventure on one of our Themed cruises from the “Love Boat” to ‘80’s and Comedy. Book now to enjoy a special themed cruise with Princess!

Holiday celebrations at sea

Revel in time-honored traditions, from Halloween pumpkin carving and a Thanksgiving turkey carving contest, to Hanukkah festivities, Christmas carolers and our famous Atrium snowfall. There's no better place to celebrate than on a Princess ship.

More Onboard

What's new on board.

Take a peek at our latest offerings

Food & Dining

Award-winning and made from scratch

Enriching Activities

Relaxing days & enriching experiences

Cruise Insider Tips

The Ultimate Guide To Cruise Ship Theme Parties

If you are looking to add some fun and excitement to your cruise vacation, then cruise ship theme parties are the way to go. Whether you’re a first-time cruiser or a seasoned traveler, these parties offer a unique and enjoyable experience for all. In this ultimate guide, we will provide you with practical tips and recommendations to help you plan and throw the perfect cruise ship theme party. From choosing the right theme to incorporating captivating decor and entertainment, we’ve got you covered. So get ready to set sail on a memorable adventure of themed festivities and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Table of Contents

Understanding Cruise Ship Theme Parties

Cruise ship theme parties are special events or nights organized onboard a cruise ship that revolve around a specific theme. These parties are a fun and exciting way to enhance your cruise experience and add some flair to your journey. Whether you’re a first-time cruiser or a seasoned traveler, participating in theme parties can be a highlight of your cruise vacation.

Theme parties on cruise ships are important because they provide a unique and memorable experience for passengers. These parties create a festive atmosphere, allowing people to let loose, socialize, and have fun. They also help passengers connect with the onboard community by providing a shared interest or theme to bond over.

Common theme party activities include costume contests, live performances, dance-offs, themed food and drinks, and interactive games. These activities are designed to immerse passengers in the theme and create a vibrant and engaging environment for everyone onboard.

Popular Types of Cruise Ship Theme Parties

Formal theme parties.

Formal theme parties are a common occurrence on cruise ships. These parties often take place on elegant nights, where passengers are encouraged to dress up in formal attire. The theme could range from a classic black and white ball to a masquerade party. Formal theme parties provide an opportunity for passengers to showcase their style and elegance while enjoying a sophisticated evening of music and dancing.

Cultural Theme Parties

Cultural theme parties celebrate different cultures from around the world. Passengers can experience the vibrant traditions, music, and cuisine of various countries, immersing themselves in a multicultural atmosphere. Whether it’s a Caribbean Night or a Mexican Fiesta, cultural theme parties allow passengers to broaden their horizons and appreciate the diversity of the destinations they are visiting.

Decade or Era Based Parties

Decade or era based parties take passengers back in time to relive the excitement and fashion of a particular period. From the roaring 20s to the disco era of the 70s, these parties are a blast from the past. Passengers can get creative with their outfits and enjoy the nostalgia of a bygone era. Decade or era based parties are a hit among cruisers who love to dress up and transport themselves to a different time.

Colour or Costume Theme Parties

Colour or costume theme parties encourage passengers to dress up in specific colours or costumes related to the theme. Examples include White Out Night, Tropical Paradise Party, or Superhero Night. These parties allow passengers to showcase their creativity and have fun with their outfits. Costume theme parties often lead to lively conversations and interactions among fellow passengers who share a similar interest or favourite character.

Holiday Theme Parties

Holiday theme parties are especially popular during festive seasons such as Halloween, Christmas, or New Year’s Eve. Passengers can celebrate these holidays onboard the cruise ship, complete with decorations, themed music, and special menus. Holiday theme parties create a joyous atmosphere and bring people together to celebrate in a unique and memorable way.

The Ultimate Guide To Cruise Ship Theme Parties

Steps to Planning for Cruise Ship Theme Parties

To make the most of cruise ship theme parties, it’s important to plan ahead and be prepared. Here are some steps to help you get ready for the festivities.

Understanding Theme Party Schedule

Check the cruise ship’s daily newsletter or online portal to find out the schedule of theme parties during your voyage. Note down the dates, times, and themes of each party. This will help you plan your outfits and activities accordingly.

Planning Your Outfits

Once you know the themes of the parties, start brainstorming ideas for your outfits. Research online for inspiration and get creative with your costume choices. Make sure to pack all the necessary items, including accessories and props, to fully immerse yourself in the theme.

Participating in Activities

Take part in the activities and games organized during the theme parties. Whether it’s a dance-off, trivia quiz, or a talent show, these activities are designed to engage passengers and add to the overall fun and entertainment. Don’t be shy and join in the excitement – you might even win a prize or make new friends along the way.

How to Choose A Suitable Outfit for A Theme Party

Choosing the right outfit for a cruise ship theme party is crucial to fully enjoy and participate in the festivities. Here are some tips to help you select the perfect attire for any theme party.

Adhering to Theme and Dress Code

Make sure your outfit aligns with the theme of the party. For example, if it’s a Hawaiian Luau party, opt for a floral shirt or a grass skirt. Also, check if there are any specific dress code requirements for the party. Some parties may have formal or semi-formal dress codes, while others may require more casual or costume-like attire.

Comfortable and Appropriate Clothing

While it’s important to dress according to the theme, always prioritize comfort and appropriateness. Consider the weather, the type of activities involved, and the comfort level of your outfit. You don’t want to be in an uncomfortable costume all night or risk being underdressed in inappropriate clothing.

Accessorizing for a Theme Party

Accessories can take your theme party outfit to the next level. Choose accessories that complement your costume and enhance the overall look. Wigs, hats, jewelry, and props can add that extra touch of authenticity and fun to your ensemble. However, make sure your accessories are safe and won’t obstruct movement or cause any inconvenience during the party.

The Ultimate Guide To Cruise Ship Theme Parties

Maximizing Fun at Cruise Ship Theme Parties

To fully enjoy cruise ship theme parties, it’s important to immerse yourself in the party spirit and engage with fellow cruisers. Here are some tips to help you make the most of these festivities.

Getting In the Party Spirit

Before attending a theme party, get yourself in the party mood. Listen to music related to the theme, watch movies or shows that align with the party theme, or even read books or articles to familiarize yourself with the party’s cultural or historical references. This will help you feel more connected to the theme and enhance your overall experience.

Engaging with Fellow Cruisers

Cruise ship theme parties provide an excellent opportunity to socialize and meet new people. Strike up conversations with fellow cruisers who are also enthusiastic about the theme. Compliment their outfits, share your excitement about the party, and exchange stories or experiences related to the theme. Engaging with others will not only make the party more enjoyable but also create lasting memories and friendships.

Taking Part in Games and Theme Activities

Don’t be a wallflower at theme parties; actively participate in the games and activities organized. Whether it’s a dance competition, costume contest, or trivia quiz, take part and have fun. These activities are designed to bring people together and create a lively and interactive atmosphere. Even if you’re not the most outgoing person, challenge yourself to step out of your comfort zone and embrace the opportunity to have a great time.

Tips for Family Friendly Cruise Ship Theme Parties

Cruise ship theme parties are not just for adults – they can be a fun and memorable experience for the whole family. Here are some tips to ensure that theme parties are family-friendly and enjoyable for everyone.

Choosing Family Appropriate Themes

When selecting theme parties to attend as a family, make sure the themes are suitable for all ages. Avoid parties that may have adult-oriented themes or activities. Look for themes like pirate night, superhero party, or Disney character night that cater to different age groups and interests.

Dressing Children for Theme Parties

Involve your children in choosing their outfits for theme parties. Let them express their creativity and imagination when selecting costumes. Make sure their outfits are comfortable and safe for them to move around in. Additionally, consider practicality – choose costumes that are easy to put on and take off, especially for younger children who may need to use the restroom more frequently.

Ensuring Safety and Comfort for Kids

While attending theme parties, ensure the safety and comfort of your children. Keep an eye on them during crowded events and make sure they stay within your sight. Dress them in breathable fabrics and provide appropriate footwear to prevent discomfort or potential injuries. Remember to bring any necessary items such as snacks, water, or entertainment to keep them occupied during the party.

The Ultimate Guide To Cruise Ship Theme Parties

Cruise Ship Theme Parties for Couples and Singles

Cruise ship theme parties provide unique opportunities for both couples and singles to have a fantastic time. Here are some suggestions for making the most of theme parties based on your relationship status.

Romantic Theme Parties for Couples

Couples can embrace the romantic atmosphere of cruise ship theme parties by dressing up in matching or complementary outfits. Take advantage of the dance floor and enjoy slow dances or lively dances together. Participate in couple-oriented activities like couple trivia contests, love song karaoke, or photo booths. Use theme parties as a chance to create special memories with your partner while having a great time.

Fun Ideas for Singles at Theme Parties

Singles can make the most of theme parties by embracing their individuality and enjoying the freedom that comes with it. Dress up as your favourite character or in a creative costume that reflects your personality. Use theme parties as an opportunity to meet new people and strike up conversations with fellow cruisers who share similar interests or outfits. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and have a blast on the dance floor or at the party games.

Mix and Mingle Opportunities

Cruise ship theme parties often include mix and mingle events where passengers can meet and socialize with others. Take advantage of these opportunities to make connections, whether it’s for friendship or romance. Engage in conversations, participate in ice-breaking activities, and exchange contact information if you feel a connection. Theme parties create a relaxed and fun-filled environment that encourages socialization and interaction among passengers.

Unique Cruise Ship Theme Party Ideas

While there are common types of cruise ship theme parties, some cruise lines and ships offer unique and creative party ideas. Here are a few examples of these unique theme parties that can add excitement to your cruise experience:

Musical Theme Parties

Musical theme parties are all about celebrating a specific genre or era of music. From rock and roll to disco, passengers can dance the night away to their favourite tunes. These parties often feature live performances, DJs, and themed decorations to create an immersive music experience onboard.

Sci-Fi or Fantasy Based Themes

Sci-fi or fantasy based theme parties transport passengers into the realm of their favourite movies, TV shows, or books. Whether it’s Star Wars, Harry Potter, or Game of Thrones, these parties allow cruisers to dress up as their beloved characters and engage in activities related to the chosen theme. It’s a fantastic opportunity for fans to celebrate their fandom in a lively and entertaining setting.

Parties Based on Popular Cultures or Fandoms

Cruise ships may organize theme parties that celebrate popular cultures or fandoms. From comic book heroes to popular video game franchises, these parties cater to fans of all kinds. Passengers can engage in discussions, showcase their fan art or memorabilia, and connect with like-minded individuals who share a passion for a specific culture or fandom.

Customizing Your Cruise Experience with Theme Parties

Cruise lines often offer passengers the chance to participate in theme party planning and provide valuable input for future parties. Here are some ways you can get involved and contribute to the customization of your cruise experience.

Participating in Theme Party Planning

Some cruise lines invite passengers to join focus groups or provide feedback on potential theme party ideas. Take advantage of these opportunities and share your thoughts and suggestions. This way, you can have a direct impact on the types of theme parties that are planned onboard. Your input can help shape the future of theme parties and ensure that they align with the preferences and expectations of passengers.

Contributing Ideas for Future Parties

If you have unique and creative ideas for theme parties, don’t hesitate to share them with the cruise line. Write to them, participate in online forums, or submit suggestions through onboard feedback forms. Cruise lines are often open to new ideas and appreciate input from passengers. Your ideas could inspire exciting and innovative theme parties that enhance the overall cruise experience for everyone.

Sharing Experiences and Suggestions

After participating in a theme party, share your experiences and suggestions with the cruise line or fellow passengers. Write reviews, share photos on social media, or participate in online forums dedicated to cruise experiences. By sharing your thoughts and recommendations, you can help others make informed decisions and create a community of cruisers who can exchange ideas and tips for future theme parties.

Troubleshooting Common Theme Party Issues

While cruise ship theme parties are generally enjoyable, issues can arise that may require troubleshooting. Here are some common problems and their solutions:

Dealing with Unplanned Situations

In the event of a sudden change in schedule or cancellation of a theme party, stay calm and flexible. Cruise lines may have valid reasons for making changes, such as weather conditions or technical difficulties. Look for alternative activities or parties that are still taking place and embrace the opportunity to try something different. Remember, the cruise line’s priority is to ensure the safety and satisfaction of passengers.

Addressing Dress Code Difficulties

If you encounter difficulties with the dress code for a theme party, seek assistance from the cruise ship’s staff. They can provide guidance on appropriate attire or offer alternatives if you don’t have the necessary clothing. It’s important to respect the dress code to maintain the integrity of the theme party and create a cohesive and enjoyable atmosphere for all attendees.

Solving Socialization Concerns at Parties

If you’re feeling apprehensive about socializing at theme parties, remember that most passengers are in the same boat. Start by observing what others are doing, join group activities or games, or strike up conversations with people who seem friendly or approachable. Chances are, many fellow cruisers are also looking to make connections and have a good time. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and enjoy the party to the fullest.

In conclusion, cruise ship theme parties are a fantastic way to enhance your cruise experience and create lasting memories. Whether it’s a formal ball, a cultural celebration, or a holiday extravaganza, these parties offer something for everyone. By planning ahead, choosing suitable outfits, and actively participating in the festivities, you can maximize the fun and enjoyment of cruise ship theme parties. Families, couples, and singles alike can find opportunities for excitement and engagement, while unique and creative theme party ideas add an extra touch of excitement to your cruise. Get involved in the customization of your cruise experience and troubleshoot any issues that may arise to ensure a smooth and enjoyable theme party experience.

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Urban Splatter

Themed Boat Cruise Parties: Ideas for Unforgettable Themes

August 24, 2023.

cruise themed event

Setting sail on the serene waters of the Pacific is an experience like no other, but why settle for an ordinary cruise when you can embark on an extraordinary journey through creative themes? Themed boat cruise parties are a fantastic way to infuse excitement, charm, and a touch of whimsy into your nautical adventure. In this blog, we delve into the world of themed cruise parties, exploring unique ideas that will transform your oceanic soiree into an unforgettable memory.

Tropical Luau Cruise Party: Transport your guests to a tropical paradise by hosting a vibrant luau-themed cruise party. Imagine swaying palm trees, colourful leis, and tiki torches lighting up the night. Guests can enjoy tropical cocktails, indulge in Hawaiian cuisine, and dance to the rhythm of island beats. Don your best Hawaiian attire, and let the soothing waves carry you away to a carefree oasis.

Masquerade Ball on the High Seas: Elegance and mystery intertwine in a masquerade ball-themed cruise party. Encourage guests to adorn exquisite masks and glamorous evening wear as they waltz under the stars. With dimmed lights, live music, and a touch of allure, this theme promises an air of sophistication and enchantment as you glide across the water.

Back to the Future: 80s Retro Cruise Party: Rewind time and relive the vibrant spirit of the 80s with a retro-themed cruise party. Neon lights, leg warmers, and disco beats set the stage for an evening of nostalgia. Dance to iconic hits, compete in 80s trivia and embrace the era's bold fashion trends. Get ready for a blast from the past as you cruise into the neon-hued horizon.

Mystical Midnight Masquerade: For an air of intrigue and allure, consider a mystical midnight masquerade cruise party. Set against the backdrop of a starry night, guests wear elegant masks and attire while indulging in enchanting cocktails. Incorporate elements of mystery, like fortune-telling or stargazing, to create an atmosphere that ignites curiosity and conversation.

Around the World in One Cruise: Embark on a global adventure without leaving the ship by hosting an "Around the World" themed cruise party. Each deck represents a different country with unique décor, cuisine, and entertainment. From Italian pasta stations to Bollywood dance floors, this theme invites guests to embrace a multicultural experience as they sail through diverse destinations.

Under the Sea Fantasy: Dive into the depths of fantasy with an under-the-sea-themed cruise party. Transform the ship into a mesmerizing underwater world with shades of blue, sparkling lights, and marine-inspired decorations. Guests can channel their inner mermaids and mermen while enjoying seafood delicacies and aquatic-themed cocktails.

As you set sail on the majestic waters of the Pacific, remember that a themed cruise party is more than just an event – it's an enchanting journey that allows you to escape reality and immerse yourself in a world of imagination. From the tropical vibes of a luau to the elegance of a masquerade ball, each theme offers a unique way to celebrate life, create memories, and make waves on the dance floor. So, whether you're grooving to 80s hits or uncovering the mysteries of a midnight masquerade, themed cruise parties promise an unforgettable adventure that blends the magic of the ocean with the charm of your chosen theme. Bon voyage to a world of creativity and fun!

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Cruise with Leo

Carnival Theme Nights 2024: Schedule for Every Ship!

Photo of author

March 15, 2024

Carnival cruise theme nights

Carnival offers some of the most entertaining themed nights and parties at sea .

Since most theme nights require specific attire , many passengers like to know the schedule in advance.

Therefore, I’ve made this article with a description of them and the complete schedule for all ships for 2024 .

Table of Contents

’70s ’80s or ’90s Night

On almost every Carnival Cruise there’s a decade-themed night that celebrates the music, culture, and fashion of the ’70s, ’80s, or ’90s .

You can expect to hear hit songs from each era and have fun while dancing to them.

What to wear? It depends on the decade but generally:

For the ’70s : bell-bottom jeans, psychedelic or floral shirts and dresses, platform shoes. Think disco glam with lots of sparkles.

For the ’80s : bright neon shirts or skirts, off-the-shoulder tops, parachute pants, bandanas, leg warmers, and headbands.

On many ships the the ’80s night is called ’80s Rock n Glow Night, remember to bring with you some neon pieces of clothing.

cruise themed event

For the ’90s : grunge or hip-hop-inspired looks with baggy jeans, plaid mini skirts, band T-shirts, flannel shirts, and snapback caps.

  • White Night

White Night is one of the most famous on Carnival ships, it can be found on almost every ship and it is very easy to dress up in theme.

My advice is: open your closet and pick every white piece of clothing that you have , it’s as simple as that.

For its total white look, a man can wear white dress shirts, pants, and shoes. For a more chic version, a white blazer over a light-colored shirt can also work well.

Women can opt for white dresses, ranging from elegant gowns to casual summer dresses. For the accessories pearl jewelry and white clutches are just perfect.

cruise themed event

Elegant Night

One of the cruise’s highlights, Elegant Night invites guests to dress in their most formal attire. I have to say that, as time goes by, formal nights become less and less popular.

I personally still like to dress up for a few evenings on a cruise. There is no need to overdo it!

Men can wear tuxedos or dark suits , with ties or bow ties if they like it.

Women can wear evening gowns or cocktail dresses , paired with shiny jewels and evening clutches.

  • Island Night

On some cruises, there can be an Island Night . The idea is to capture the spirit of tropical heavens with Caribbean music, island-inspired cocktails, and activities that celebrate beach life.

The dress code for all includes bright floral shirts or dresses featuring palm leaf, floral, or other bright prints .

It’s basically the Carnival version of the Caribbean Night that you can find among the Royal Caribbean Theme Nights 2024 .

  • Motown Party

The Motown Party it’s a night dedicated to the sounds of Motown, with soulful music, classic hits, and an atmosphere that will bring you back to the golden age of rhythm and blues.

As far as I know, there’s no actual dress code for this party. To stay on topic you can opt for a ’50s or ’60s outfit .

Vintage suits, fedoras, and polished dress shoes for men. A-line dresses, sequined tops, and flared skirts for women.

2024 Schedule

Theme nights on carnival elation.

  • Rock the Promenade

Theme nights on Carnival Paradise

  • 80s Rock and Glow
  • Rock the Prom

Theme nights on Carnival Sunshine

  • Motown Showdown

Theme nights on Carnival Sunrise

  • White Party

Theme nights on Carnival Radiance

Theme nights on carnival spirit.

  • 70s and Motown Party

Theme nights on Carnival Pride

  • Electric White Night

Theme nights on Carnival Legend

Theme nights on carnival conquest.

  • 80s and 90s Party

Theme nights on Carnival Glory

Theme nights on carnival miracle.

  • Hawaiian Event
  • Luau Deck Party

Theme nights on Carnival Valor

Theme nights on carnival liberty, theme nights on carnival freedom.

  • Decades Party

Theme nights on Carnival Splendor

  • Superhero Party

Theme nights on Carnival Dream

  • White Night Party

Theme nights on Carnival Magic

Theme nights on carnival breeze.

  • Decades Atrium Party

Theme nights on Carnival Vista

  • Rock and Glow
  • White Hot Party

Theme nights on Carnival Horizon

Theme nights on carnival panorama, theme nights on mardi gras, theme nights on carnival celebration.

  • Motown Part
  • Evolution Party

Theme nights on Carnival Venezia

  • Festa Italiana

Theme nights on Carnival Luminosa

  • Island Nights
  • Motown and 70s Party
  • Decades Music Party

Theme nights on Carnival Jubilee

  • White party

Chart of all the themed nights and parties on Carnival

Theme nights and parties on Carnival cruise

5 thoughts on “Carnival Theme Nights 2024: Schedule for Every Ship!”

Will all the party’s listed happen on every cruise? Do I need to bring outfits for all then find out when I board which ones they will have or is there a way to find out beforehand so I don’t overpack?

Hello Selena, unfortunately the parties can change very often during the year so there is never 100% certainty about which ones there will be. My advice is to bring clothes that can adapt well to the different parties, but that you can also wear normally during your cruise.

What is serenity night on the magic?

as far as I know it should be a deck party at serenity, which is an adults-only area for guests ages 21 and over.

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The Best Cruise Ship Theme Parties and Where to Find Them

Cruise ship deck party

Carnival Cruises:

  • Carnival Cruises is known for its signature 80s Rock'n'Glow Deck Party. 
  • They also have a Caribbean-themed party known as a Mega Deck Party on longer itineraries. 
  • White Hot Parties are also held on some itineraries where everyone wears white.
  • The ships Vista and Horizon are said to have a Latin dance party known as Amor Cubano.
  • Carnival also has a formal night. It has been a while since I have been on one of “The Fun Ships”, but I seem to remember them being a bit stricter about the dress code than a lot of their competitor cruise lines. Guests who were not dressed more formally on elegant nights would be denied seating in the main dining rooms and forced to eat at the buffet. Cruises six days or longer usually have two Cruise Elegant evenings.

Celebrity Cruises

  • A '60s party, 
  • a Motown party, 
  • a Latin party called Sizzle, 
  • a rock masquerade entitled Masque, 
  • And a silent disco. (They seem to be the only cruise line that does this, which is quite surprising considering the noise complaints we used to get on party nights when I worked in the guest services department of one of their competitors.)
  • White Hot Parties are also held on some itineraries where everyone wears white. 
  • Their formal night has been rebranded as “evening chic” which is supposed to be less formal than formal, but smarter than smart casual. 

Costa Cruises

  • Costa cruises are also said to have a white night and a 70s party. 
  • Some itineraries also feature a black & red night and a masquerade party.

Disney Cruise Line

  • Disney Cruise Line is known for its Pirates of the Caribbean Deck Party complete with a fireworks display. (And let me tell you, pyrotechnics on a cruise ship with loads of kids on board? That sounds like a logistical and safety nightmare! ...But also, probably a lot of fun.) 
  • The Disney Wonder is also said to have a Pixar Pals Party,  while the Disney Wonder and Disney Magic have a Frozen Party. 
  • Each cruise also has an optional “Dress-up night” (where you are encouraged to dress in formal attire, not pirate attire - just to clarify what they mean by “dressing up”).

MSC Cruises 

  • White parties are also common on MSC cruises. 
  • Other theme parties include a Tropical Party,  a Flower Glory Party  (A 70s party), a Carnival party (themed around Brazillian carnivals and not MSC's competitor)  and a Space Party (I would like to experience that one).   
  • Cruises longer than seven days have two formal nights, often referred to as Gala Nights.

Norwegian Cruise Line

  • Norwegian’s Mega ships (Breakaway class or bigger) are known for their Glow parties where guests are encouraged to wear neon colours. 
  • On the smaller ships, they used to have White Hot Parties where guests were encouraged to wear all white. They have now (updated 2023) done away with the White Hot Party and the Glow Party has become the signature party fleetwide. You won't look out of place in white but pack your neon too.
  • Other theme nights you may find on an NCL ship (dependent on the length of cruise and itinerary) include Latin night, Caribbean Night, a 50s & 60s sock hop, 70s night, 80s night, a country hoedown and a Latin dance party.
  • There will be at least one “Dress up or not night” per cruise, with the possibility of more on longer itineraries. 

P&O Cruises 

  • P&O is known for a Bianco party, their version of the White Party,  as well as a Nero party, the antithesis of a white party where everyone wears black. Way to shake things up, P&O! 
  • They are also rumoured to have a Back to School Party. 
  • P&O seems to be most well known for its Gatsby Party. From what I understand, this overlaps their signature party and their formal night. Apparently, they do 1920s dance classes and sequinned headband-making craft sessions in preparation for it. 

Royal Caribbean:

  • A 70s night or 'Disco Inferno' is also a common theme night on Royal Caribbean, but they seem to have replaced the 70s party with a 90s party on The Harmony of the Seas.   
  • They also host a Red Party on the Harmony of the Seas, a high-energy party with DJs, surprise performances, special effects and technology.
  • Some of the other parties you may experience on Royal Caribbean include a Black & White Night, a 50s, 60’s or 80’s party or a Country Western party. 
  • Toga parties and Caribbean parties (dependant on the itinerary) also happen on occasion.
  • Sometimes on Royal Caribbean, the formal night is replaced with a masquerade ball (pre-pandemic these masks covered your eyes not your mouth but that may have changed). Cruises that are seven days long or longer usually have two formal nights, the first one being a bigger deal than the second.  (Formal attire is recommended but not mandatory.)

Virgin Voyages:

  • Virgin Voyages obviously does things differently. They have swopped out the white night for a red night or ‘Scarlet Night’ which is said to feature art installations and performances throughout the ship. It’s less a party and more a ship-wide activation. 
  • It may also be the only cruise line that doesn’t do a formal night.
  • Apparently, the spa is also the location of a spa party complete with DJs.

Additional Parties

  • In addition to this, Sailaway parties are standard on most cruise lines
  • Halloween, New Year's Eve and Christmas have their own theme parties 
  • If you’re sailing off the coast of the USA, you can also look forward to parties that commemorate the Super Bowl, the 4th of July and St. Patrick's Day.  
  • If you cross the equator, there's also a party for that.

The best way to find out what theme nights to expect on your specific cruise:

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12 Themed Cruises You Should Have On Your Radar In 2024

T aking a cruise is an experience unlike anything else. Days at sea on a ship full of entertainment and relaxation make for a fantastic vacation. But what if you want even more from your cruise? A theme might be what's missing. In addition to all the usual cruise experiences, themed cruises allow fans of a particular artist, lifestyle, hobby (or even animal), to celebrate their passion on the high seas with activities, events, surprises, and sometimes special guests.

There are dozens of themed cruises on offer each year, usually hosted by major cruise lines like Norwegian , Carnival, and Royal Caribbean. But don't let their numbers fool you. According to  Business Insider , themed cruises are rapidly climbing in popularity, and some trips are selling out in record time. That means it's important to find your dream-themed cruise and reserve your tickets as early as possible.

Fortunately, even if they're sold out, most themed cruises will let you join a waiting list, so there's still hope! Here are 12 themed cruises that will set sail in 2024 and are well worth boarding, either now or the next time they hit the high seas.

Read more: Under-The-Radar Beaches You Need To Visit In The Caribbean

The Emo's Not Dead Cruise

If you truly know it's not a phase, the Emo's Not Dead Cruise is perfect for you. Gather with fellow emo fans for four days (and nights) of concerts, activities, and even a private party at Great Stirrup Kay in the Bahamas. Over a dozen bands will perform, including Yellowcard, Senses Fail, and Armor for Sleep. Alongside themed activities like a masquerade ball, cruisegoers can also enjoy surprisingly cheerful activities like a bellyflop competition in the ship's pool.

The first Emo's Not Dead cruise was in 2022. Cruisegoer and emo fan TheReelChris shared highlights on  YouTube , calling it "EPIC." Fans in the comments section agree, with Schecterplayer92 adding, "This was one of the best experiences of my life." With a killer lineup and entertaining activities scheduled, it seems like Emo's Not Dead 2024 will also be a rad experience. The cruise will be hosted on the Norwegian Pearl, leaving from Miami on February 26 and returning on March 1, 2024. But what would an emo-related cruise be without a little sadness? Unfortunately, the cruise is already sold out. If you're interested, you can  sign up for the waiting list  and hope.

Meow Meow Cruise

Some of us know that no matter how great a vacation might be, cats would make it even better. Meow Meow Cruise has solved that problem. While guests unfortunately aren't allowed to bring their own furry friends aboard Virgin Voyages' Scarlet Lady, the four-day cruise will give them their feline fix in plenty of other ways. 

Activities include cat-themed trivia and a scavenger hunt. But the best part may be communing with fellow cat people (many of whom stroll around the ship wearing cat ears). You'll also be able to mingle with real cats -- one of 2024's ports of call is Key West, where you'll find the Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum and its community of about 60 friendly polydactyl kitties, many of them descended from one of the author's own pets.

It's hard to find reviews for Meow Meow Cruise, but the fact that this themed cruise has been going on annually since 2015 speaks for itself. The 2024 Meow Meow Cruise sets sail from Miami on February 21, with a return date of February 25. Tickets are still available, but to be sure you don't miss out, consider booking right now.

In My Cruise Era

Sure, cruises are great — and cruising is a multi-billion dollar industry — but is anything more popular than Taylor Swift? For those who can't imagine anyone saying "no" to that question, there's no better cruise than In My Cruise Era. While not officially affiliated with Taylor Swift, this themed cruise is a passionate fan homage. Swifties will be able to dress up in their favorite Taylor-inspired looks, exchange friendship bracelets, perform their idol's songs during karaoke sessions, and more. We're also guessing there will be of lots impromptu song breaks throughout the ship from Taylor's extensive catalog.

Royal Caribbean's Allure of the Seas will host this cruise, which sets sail from Miami on October 21, 2024 -- which, as People Magazine points out, is one day after the Eras Tour will be in the city. Fans lucky enough to attend the concert can continue their Taylor euphoria for four more days on the high seas. Since this is a new themed cruise, there aren't any reviews, but based on the positive fan vibes from Eras Tour concerts and movie viewings, among other events, we're guessing it's going to be a great time for Swifties. Swifties must agree, since the cruise is already sold out. Cancellations do happen, though, so hopeful fans can join the waiting list.  Contact the cruise's organizers to sign up.

Disney's Halloween On The High Seas

Go on just about any cruise-related blog or website and you'll see that Disney Cruise Line's Halloween-themed cruise, officially called Halloween on the High Seas, is a popular favorite. As you probably expect from Disney, this themed cruise is perfect for a family vacation , so it's not too scary. The cruise is hosted on multiple Disney Cruise Line ships, and each one is decorated with the care and attention to detail you'll find in most Disney-related enterprises. The Pumpkin Tree is the highlight of the decor, with pumpkins that eventually appear on its branches and transform into lit and unlit jack o'lanterns.

Halloween on the High Seas also features Halloween activities (including a trick-or-treating night) and exclusive Halloween-themed desserts. Disney cruises in general are known for their opportunities to meet the studio's beloved characters, and during the Halloween on the High Seas cruises, some of those characters are in costume. Notably, Disney Cruise Line's official site tells us, Minnie Mouse, Daisy Duck, and Clarabelle Cow will be dressed as the Sanderson Sisters -- who wouldn't want to see that? 

This magical mixture of whimsy, fun, and exclusive opportunities is the perfect way to cast a spell on Disney fans of all ages. Luckily, Halloween on the High Seas is held during a number of different times in September and October, so you and your family should be able to find a place on board!

The Hallmark Channel Christmas Cruise

Sure, Hallmark Channel Christmas movies might be a little on the cheesy side, but let's be honest: lots of us dream of being in one in real life. You can get a little of the real-life Hallmark movie experience by visiting some of the movies' filming locations , but now there's a way to have an even more immersive experience: The Hallmark Channel Christmas Cruise.

Passengers will get to meet Hallmark Channel movie stars, attend panels and photo ops, and get to see a new Hallmark Christmas movie before its world premiere. Maybe best of all, passengers can take part in lots of Hallmark Christmas movie-inspired activities, including tree lighting and cookie decorating -- all while wearing their favorite ugly Christmas sweaters.

2024 is the first year of the Hallmark Channel Christmas Cruise. It was originally intended to be just one cruise, but a second one was added after the first one sold out. As of now, two Hallmark Channel Christmas Cruises are scheduled for 2024. Both go from Miami to the Bahamas and back and last four days in November. ... And both are sold out. But Christmas is a time of miracles, so if a Hallmark Channel Christmas experience on the high seas sounds like your dream come true, sign up for the waiting list as soon as you can!

Hurtigruten Northern Lights Cruises

Themed cruises are often about fandoms and hobbies. But Norway-based cruise line Hurtigruten offers a themed cruise that's about something even bigger: the Northern Lights . There are several Northern Lights-themed cruises out there, including some luxurious options by Cunard. Unfortunately, the Northern Lights aren't always visible, but Hurtigruten stands out by offering a Northern Lights Promise for cruises scheduled between September 26 and March 31 and lasting longer than 11 days. If the Northern Lights aren't visible during your cruise, they'll give you another one. So if you're serious about seeing the Aurora Borealis, this is the company to choose.

The Northern Lights are the focus of Hurtigruten's eponymous cruises, but there are also other things to do on board, including scientific lectures and photography lessons. There are excursions, too -- notably a dog sledding option. Passengers who've taken one of Hurtigruten's cruises unanimously praise the stunning fjords and landscapes you can admire from the ship and during excursions, not to mention their experiences of seeing the Northern Lights. Some warn that the ships aren't as luxurious or modern as many other cruise ships, primarily because Hurtigruten's ships are also functional vessels intended to transport and deliver mail to various points on the Norwegian coast. Still,  Cruise Critic reviewers like cmolaison praise the friendly crew, the surprising level of comfort, and the "stunning vistas" you'll see, saying he and his family "highly recommend" taking a Hurtigruten cruise.

Cruise & Crop Crafting Cruises

If the perfect vacation for you is a combination of R&R and crafting, you're in luck! There are several crafting-themed cruises. One of the most popular is organized by Cruise & Crop, with ships around the world hosting different crafting- and arts-themed trips. This makes them the most accessible themed cruises on our list, with different price ranges, departure points, itineraries, and ports of call. One thing all crafting cruises have in common, though, is groups of like-minded people exploring their creativity amid the other joys of cruising.

For instance, one of Crop & Cruise's 2024 offerings is a Mexican Riviera cruise aboard Royal Caribbean's Navigator of the Seas, featuring scrapbooking and other papercraft classes taught by artist Barb Warne. The ship departs from Los Angeles on April 19, returning April 26. Many Cruise & Crop cruises sell out quickly, so if this idea has sparked both your wanderlust and your creativity, be sure to check their list of 2024 cruises and reserve as soon as you can.

Star Trek: The Cruise

For seven days and nights every year, thousands of Star Trek fans gather to be a part of a fandom extravaganza at sea. Star Trek: The Cruise is an experience that features celebrities aboard (2024's guests include LeVar Burton and Wil Wheaton, among many others), costume and cosplay events, and lots of fun activities. 

But what makes Star Trek: The Cruise truly unique is that audience participation is very much encouraged. Passengers and celebrity guests are all considered the crew of one great, big, intergalactic vessel. Passengers get to interact with the guest stars in events like karaoke battles, and stars share parts of their earthly lives with Q&A sessions and even glimpses at other projects they may be involved in.

The first Star Trek: The Cruise was held in 2017 and since then it's been a fan favorite. Star Wars and cruising aficionado Aaron Bossig writes on  Trek Movie.com that many fans go on the cruise every year, and proudly wear t-shirts from the previous ones. He calls Star Trek: The Cruise "an extra special convention experience." 2024's edition will be held on the Mariner of the Seas, departing from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on February 22 and returning on February 29.

Literature Festival At Sea

Once a year, aboard the legendary Queen Mary 2, passengers can mingle with writers, poets, journalists, and critics in a full-blown literary festival in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Literature Festival at Sea invites writers in all genres to host round table discussions, participate in Q&As revolving around their work and areas of expertise, host workshops, and converse with passengers.

Whether passengers want to participate as much as possible or just attend a few events, the Festival seems to be an excellent addition to a typical Queen Mary 2 voyage. On TripAdvisor , passenger Artemis C writes of her experience at a previous Literature Festival at Sea that "the whole week was a joy". 

2024's lineup features crime novelists, journalists, historians, and more, for what's sure to be a fascinating week of discussion and discovery. If you'd like to combine an elegant transatlantic cruise and a literary experience, 2024's Literature Festival at Sea will take place from November 13-20, departing from Southampton, U.K., and arriving in New York. Cunard has also launched an Australian Literature Festival at Sea, scheduled from December 11-16, 2024, on the Queen Elizabeth, which departs from and returns to Sydney. 

Chefs Making Waves

Many cruise lines are proud of their food offerings. Some cruises feature dishes created by world-famous chefs, and others even host food and wine festivals. But no culinary cruise event seems quite as, well, fun, as Chefs Making Waves. This culinary-themed cruise will set sail for the first time in 2024. Onboard will be a number of beloved celebrity chefs, including Anne Burrell and the Cake Boss himself, Buddy Valastro. Cooking demos and, of course, food tastings of all kinds (including sit-down meals, desserts, and street food) are on the menu. Best of all, Chefs Making Waves is an all-inclusive cruise, so everyone can eat and drink without having to pay extra!

There will be all of the usual cruise-related fun, from swimming to excursions, to help you work up an appetite. There will also be unique games, with some of the chefs participating in events like bingo and a celebrity chef sing-off. If this sounds like an awesome cruise, you're not the only one who feels that way. Chefs Making Waves will take place from March 25-29, departing from Miami with excursions in Great Stirrup Cay and Nassau, Bahamas ... and it's already sold out. But you can still  sign up for the waiting list . With a little luck, you'll be able to enjoy this delicious, themed cruise experience.

Soul Train Cruise

Imagine a festival with a lineup featuring some of the best soul and R&B acts of all time. Now imagine it's on a relaxing cruise ship. This dream is actually reality -- it's called the Soul Train Cruise. The popular themed cruise will be celebrating its 11th year in 2024 and the lineup is on fire. Dozens of groups and artists will perform, including The Temptations, Boyz II Men, and En Vogue. Passengers can also learn how to dance like people did back in the old school days of Soul Train's TV show, with lessons from some of the show's actual dancers. There will also be wine tastings, Q&A's, comedy shows, and a lot more.

With all of this on offer, it's no surprise that the Soul Train Cruise is sold out. But sign up on the waiting list and keep your calendar free from January 27-February 3, and you may get lucky. If you do, the cruise leaves from Fort Lauderdale, with ports of call in Tortola (British Virgin Islands) and St. Maarten.

The Gothic Cruise

The Gothic Cruise is an annual event held on an ordinary cruise ship. Goths mingle with "norms" but have their own private events on board, mostly DJ sets and concerts. There's also a masquerade ball, with Goths decked out in their finest Victorian-style garb ... as long as it meets ship safety requirements, that is. The cruise's website specifies that simulated weapons aren't allowed and notes that hoop skirts are fine for the ball but not in the ship's dining areas, "due to the close proximity of the tables". And yet, the Goth community thrives on these cruises -- and even gains norm fans along the way. 

In a Porthole Magazine article about the Gothic Cruise, longtime attendee Spike Pittman says that many mainstream passengers are wary of the Goths at first, "But by the end they're begging to get into our private events." Some even book their future cruises to coincide with the Gothic Cruise, even if they don't plan on attending every event. 

The Gothic Cruise has been held since 1989. Cruising doesn't seem very Goth, but in the end, the article points out, it comes down to what all themed cruises offer: a sense of community (in this case, one that often stays up all night and sleeps during the day). If this moves your little black heart, the 2024 Gothic Cruise will be held on the Norwegian Escape (but book through the Gothic Cruise's website for private event access), departing from Orlando on March 2, and returning March 9.

Read the original article on Explore .

A couple on a ship toasting with wine glasses

Are you a nudist? Knitter? Golden Girls fan? There’s a cruise for that.

Whether you’re a swinger or just want to practice your golf swing, theme cruises have something for everyone.

cruise themed event

Kaity Talley saw the announcement and knew she had to get on board: A cruise exclusively for Hallmark Christmas movie fans? With cookie decorating, tree lighting, movie marathons and karaoke ?

“I got super lucky,” said Talley, 36, of Ontario, Calif. She landed a booking time that got her a spot on the cruise that turned out to be Taylor-Swift-concert- level popular. After it sold out quickly, organizers added a second voyage, which also sold out.

Talley, a Costco manager who also makes TikToks about cruises, expects to bring an entire Christmas wardrobe, ugly sweaters and all: “I’m going to be very corny on this cruise.”

The Hallmark cruise will make its maiden voyage in November, but it’s hardly the first event to gather an extremely niche community of fans and send them out to sea. Theme cruises have catered to groups as diverse as cat lovers , headbangers , Trekkies , conservative activists and zombie aficionados .

There are clothing-optional cruises, faith-based cruises, swingers cruises and cruises for people who want to practice their golf swing .

“If there’s something out there that people like to do, there’s probably a cruise about it,” said Chris Gray Faust, executive director of the news and review site Cruise Critic .

Theme cruises can take many forms, from a small group tucked into a larger sailing to a full-ship takeover. Some are put on by the cruise lines, but most are organized by a travel agency or production company that blocks rooms and venues or charters the entire ship. Those sailings must be purchased through that third party.

Trips are often scheduled during off-peak times, such as January through March or October and November. Prices are higher than a standard cruise, generally reflecting the extra programming or additional perks that passengers get.

Experts say specialty sailings have exploded in recent years as cruise lines have expanded and consumers have sought out more meaningful ways to travel.

“Overall, the travel industry is getting so much more experiential in a number of ways, and theme cruises are the ultimate experiential vacation,” said Chris Hearing, a partner and executive director at Entertainment Cruise Productions , a major organizer of theme cruises. “You get immersed, in our case, in week-long theme cruises where from the moment you walk on the ship, you are surrounded by people that are completely into Star Trek or Comic-Con or motorcycles or ’80s or ’90s music.”

Another producer, Sixthman , got its start in 2001 with a rock-themed event featuring Sister Hazel. This year, the group will pull off 23 cruise events, and the schedule calls for 27 next year, said CEO Jeff Cuellar.

A gateway for cruise newcomers

As the cruise industry builds more ships and tries to cultivate new audiences to fill them, Gray Faust said theme cruises often serve as an entry point.

“It brings a lot of first-time cruisers into the fold,” she said. “They’re fans of whatever the theme is. The fact that it’s on a cruise is almost secondary.”

Howard Moses, a travel adviser, created a site called themecruisefinder with a business partner several years ago and said there are more than 700 cruises listed at any given time, from small groups to full-ship charters.

“It has blossomed in the last I would say 10 to 12 years,” he said.

Talley, who booked the Hallmark Christmas cruise, said theme cruises got her hooked on sailing. She spoke to The Washington Post from Miami after departing a chef-focused cruise and right before boarding a regular sailing on another cruise line. She has been on the Sail Across the Sun cruise, featuring Train and several other acts, four times.

“There’s just concerts happening the entire time,” she said.

Swifties, Trekkies and crafters

Some event production companies sell the opportunity to be in close quarters with the objects of fan affection. Sixthman, which is owned by Norwegian Cruise Line, pitches the events to singers, chefs and others as a way to interact with their die-hard fans who will follow and support them anywhere. And for those fans, it’s a tough chance to pass up.

“You’re not just spending an afternoon, you’re spending your vacation with them from breakfast to lunch to dinner to cocktails and activities,” Cuellar said.

Even though the Hallmark Christmas cruise — which is being put on by Sixthman — hasn’t named the stars who will sail, Cuellar said the event was the fastest sellout in the company history.

“Within like 48 hours of the first sellout, there were people already putting mugs on Etsy that said, ‘I survived the Hallmark presale,’” he said. “You talk about a passionate audience.”

Other cruises are entirely fan-driven, without the presence of any stars.

Jessica Malerman and two friends and fellow travel agents came up with the “In My Cruise Era” trip in October during another group cruise with their agency, Marvelous Mouse Travels . There’s no affiliation with the Taylor Swift empire, but the trip has already sold the maximum 199 staterooms it reserved on megaship Allure of the Seas in October 2024.

Events will include dance parties, trivia, cocktail parties, friendship bracelet swapping and karaoke.

“What people want is the connection and they want to make friends and they want to go on vacation and have a sense of community,” Malerman said.

Chad Kampe, the owner of Flip Phone Productions, put on the first — and second — Golden Fans at Sea cruises in early 2020 after organizing a “Golden Girls”-themed bar crawl several years before. The company produces drag shows across the country.

The sailings have included themed dances, costume contests, caftan welcome parties, scavenger hunts, performances from the Golden Gays drag troupe, appearances from people with ties to the show and some very competitive trivia sessions.

“The ‘Golden Girls’ trivia is the most intense trivia you’ve ever seen,” Kampe said.

The events take place on regular voyages, meaning passengers might end up surprised by the surplus of Blanches, Dorothys, Roses and Sophias. In year one, Kampe said a biker group was also on board.

“They loved us,” he said.

Many theme cruises are organized around hobbies or other special interests.

Melissa Gower, founder of Craft Cruises , organizes an average of 10 knitting cruises a year. The knitters and their needles don’t take over the whole ship, but the sailings include instructors, social gatherings and “private fiber-related tours,” she said.

“I have people who traveled with me in 1999,” Gower said. “They’ve been on 30-plus knitting cruises, and they’re still booking travel with us.”

How to find (or avoid) a niche cruise

The Theme Cruise Finder website allows people to search according to category for upcoming trips. Often, sales will open up during an event for the people on board, so it can be difficult to get a reservation on a popular repeating cruise.

Gray Faust said travelers will often comment on Cruise Critic forums about their surprise at being on the same ship as some kind of group. She said a friend ended up on a cruise with Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans “and she hates Tampa Bay.”

In 2016, more than 1,500 vacationers who thought they were taking a regular Bahamas cruise ended up sharing space with then-Patriots player Rob Gronkowski and fans on Gronk’s Party Ship.

Gary Bembridge, a cruise YouTuber who runs the site Tips for Travellers , recommends people search online for the name and date of a cruise they’re considering to see if a theme cruise shows up at the same time.

Moses, one of the founders of the theme cruise site, is co-president of a separate business, The Cruise & Vacation Authority , which organizes theme cruises as one of its services.

“In general, theme cruises are way more fun than a regular cruise because you’re traveling with like-minded people,” he said.

And if someone isn’t like-minded on a shared ship, he said the theme group tries to be understanding.

“We try to be very respectful of the other guests on board,” he said.

More cruise news

Living at sea: Travelers on a 9-month world cruise are going viral on social media. For some travelers, not even nine months was enough time on a ship; they sold cars, moved out of their homes and prepared to set sail for three years . That plan fell apart, but a 3.5-year version is waiting in the wings.

Passengers beware: It’s not all buffets and dance contests. Crime data reported by cruise lines show that the number of sex crimes has increased compared to previous years. And though man-overboard cases are rare, they are usually deadly .

The more you know: If you’re cruise-curious, here are six tips from a newcomer. Remember that in most cases, extra fees and add-ons will increase the seemingly cheap price of a sailing. And if you happen to get sick , know what to expect on board.

cruise themed event

We managed to stretch our $12,000 European vacation budget to cover first-class plane tickets and a 12-night cruise. Here's how.

  • Allie Hubers, a freelance travel writer, spent $20,000 on cruises in 2022.
  • A two-week trip to Europe with her husband, which cost $12,000, was the most expensive one.
  • She breaks down all of the costs, including flights, hotels, the cruise, dining, and more.

Insider Today

This as-told-to story is based on a conversation with Allie Hubers , a 29-year-old freelance travel writer. It's been edited for length and clarity. Business Insider verified Hubers' expenses.

My husband Luke and I met in college at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota during our sophomore year. We have traveled together over the past 10 years, including trips to Europe , Asia, and Africa, and hopped on cruises around countries like Morocco, Thailand, Malaysia, Croatia, and Italy.

I'm a freelance travel writer, and Luke is a pilot with the US Air Force. He's been flying since he was 16. We both have high levels of wanderlust and traveling together is how we keep our marriage strong.

We allocate a budget to travel every month and our favorite way to travel is cruising . In 2022, we spent a total of $20,000 on cruises. The most expensive trip we went on was a 12-night cruise around Europe .

At the time, Luke had just returned from a months-long deployment, so we wanted to spend some quality time together. We had a $12,000 budget, which included the cruise , first-class airfare, tickets to an Ed Sheeran concert, and hotel stays. We had been saving for this trip for years. Here is a a breakdown of our budget.

Cost of plane tickets: $4,000

We spent $1,200 each on economy tickets with Delta Air Lines from Florida to London. We ended up upgrading to first-class Delta One the night before our flight. The upgrade cost $800 each. We hadn't taken a special trip together for years, so the splurge was well worth it.

This isn't standard for us, but an enticing upgrade offer was too tempting to turn down.

Cost of concert tickets: $476

Luke and I are big fans of Ed Sheeran . He was playing a set in Sunderland at the Stadium of Light. We snagged general admission tickets for around $116 each.

We both love his song "Tenerife Sea." When we first met in college, we added Tenerife — an island in Spain — to our bucket list. We ended up going to Tenerife during our 12-night cruise, and it was just as beautiful as the song made it out to be.

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We also got tickets for Imagine Dragons at the last minute, and those tickets were $244.

Cost of hotel stays: $621

During our trip, we stayed in four hotels. We spent two nights at The Edition, a five-star hotel near Soho in London . While a night's stay at The Edition costs around $670, we used 60,000 Marriott points each night and didn't have to pay cash.

We also spent a night at The Montcalm East Autograph in London for $350 and our last night at the Renaissance London Heathrow for $111 before flying back to the US.

To attend Ed Sheeran's concert, we spent a night at Newcastle Marriott Hotel Metrocenter, which cost $160. When we returned to London, we spent a night at Bankside Autograph Collection, a luxury hotel near the River Thames. A night's stay there costs around $600, but we used 45,000 Marriott points and redeemed our stay for free.

Cost of the 12-night cruise: $2,800

The 12-night cruise on Royal Caribbean's Anthem of the Seas was $2,800 for the two of us. We initially booked an interior cabin , the cheapest room category, and ended up getting upgraded to an obstructed balcony room a few days before sailing. The upgrade ended up being free.

Stops along the cruise included Spain's Canary Islands, including Tenerife, and Lisbon in Portugal. We spent our days exploring new countries, having seaside cocktails, and reconnecting after so much time apart.

Cost of food and transportation: $2,055

We went on a three-night dining package for $240. On board the cruise, we purchased two specialty dining meals and on Chef's Table experience for $574. In total, including what we spent on food in London, we spent around $1,170 on dining out, coffee, and drinks.

Transportation took a big chunk of our budget. Ubers, taxis, and scooters cost a total of $528. We rented a car to get us to and from the concert venue for $186, with gas costing around $40. We also took the train to get around, and that amounted to $131.

Miscellaneous costs: $2,000

We spent $639 on souvenirs, gifts, and shopping . On board the cruise, excursions weren't free, so it cost us $214 for two excursions in the Canary Islands. Other expenses included internet on the cruise for $374 and roaming with T-Mobile for $103.

We also flew my sister to Florida to watch the dogs and provided her with a meal service for two weeks. That cost a total of $670.

There was no skimping or budgeting for this trip. We had no regrets about the money we spent on this cruise vacation.

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Here’s a new one. On Monday, the New Orleans Saints announced their partnership with Seaside Events to launch the Saints Legends Fan Cruise in April 2025, which you can read more about here . The seven-night cruise on the  Norwegian Getaway will tour the Western Caribbean with stops in Mexico, Belize, and Honduras.

What’s unique is that this gives diehard Saints fans the opportunity to interact with some of their favorite players at meet and greets, group dinners, panel discussions, and autograph sessions, among other events. Additionally, the first 50 cabin bookings will receive seats at the Suite or Club level for a 2024/2025 Saints home game.

Saints owner Gayle Benson announced the cruise in a statement from the team: “We are thrilled to join forces with Seaside Events for this exciting venture, offering Saints fans an exclusive opportunity to interact with our Legends in a vibrant and exclusive atmosphere, fostering memories that will endure for a lifetime.”

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