Unless you’re on an expedition trip to Antarctica, what to pack for a cruise is fairly straightforward. You can’t go wrong with a few swimsuits, sun cream and a Kindle full of books to read by the pool. Here are a few trip essentials that you might not think to put on your cruise packing list.
Sea days are often spent exploring around the ship: watching lectures or performances in the theatre, taking part in onboard classes, lounging by the pool before heading for lunch. You’ll want outfits that are easy to throw on, as well as layers to keep you warm when the cool sea breeze rolls in. It is a good idea to bring along your own water bottle, too—most ships have fill-up stations somewhere on board, so you can skip the plastic bottles, protect the ocean and stay hydrated.
By the pool
If you’re heading to a warm location, you’ll probably want to take advantage of the pool deck during days at sea. In this case, it’s important to keep your skin protected with sun cream and a sun hat.
The formal dinner
Whether you’re sailing on a larger ship with Celebrity or Royal Caribbean or a smaller vessel with Seabourn or Silversea, you’ll likely encounter at least one black-tie evening or formal night during your cruise. For itineraries that include several formal nights, pack one or two formal dresses or dinner jackets.
In the cabin
Nothing beats kicking back and relaxing in your stateroom after a long day of exploring. Make yourself at home with the little luxuries, such as comfy socks, a weighted sleep mask and your favourite body wash or skincare products. If you are prone to seasickness, don’t forget your tablets or bands.
The shore excursion
Golden rule for shore excursions: Wear comfortable walking shoes. You might also need water shoes, depending on your ports of call and itinerary, but a pair of lightweight trainers always come in handy for any and all sightseeing tours. If you plan on doing a spot of shopping, a big, reusable tote bag is always a good idea. They weight next to nothing and can be filled with trinkets and souvenirs. If you are going hiking to see waterfalls or kayaking, a good thing to bring is a waterproof phone case to capture the memories.
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