24 Tips for a Solo Cruise to Iceland
You have chosen the ultimate vacation—a cruise in Europe! It is not every day that you choose a cruise vacation for a solo trip. You are going for an off-the-beaten-track but most rewarding experience.
Plan your solo cruise trip early so that you are prepared to make the most of this life-changing experience. To choose a cruise that fits your bill the best, think it through on what kind of experiences you would want.
As exotic as it may sound, cruises can get slightly monotonous sometimes! So keep a few tips handy that will keep you entertained!
1. Witness nature from close quarters
You are cruising from one of the most beautiful countries in the world to another. As you leave the port and embark on the Sea, you will feel an unexplained rush! The material pleasures of a cruise can be so comfortable that you may tend to ignore your surroundings.
Keep an eye out for the changing landscapes and terrain as the cruise starts. Trust me—you will feel the magic happening during this overseas travel. If you are a nature lover, this experience will fall nothing short of the Discovery channel coming alive.
2. Take photographs and videos
A cruise is ideal for shooting the bounties of nature. Make sure you are carrying your digital camera during your cruise. You will not only end up taking an insane amount of photographs during your cruise but may also end up producing a short film from the number of videos you will take! You can come back, edit the videos, and upload the short film about your solo cruise on YouTube!
3. Hit the gym
A cruise is a world of luxury. So ensure you tick off all the boxes of amenities that are being offered to you. You will be indulging in good food (and why not?) and will not be really counting calories in this cruise vacation. So do make it a point to work out at least once a day. Imagine a gym with a view—yes, that’s your vacation workout! Do some heavy lifting, and you can resume your ‘wine and dine’ mode after that!
4. Eat and wine
I think I was a little too strict with my tips earlier. While there is no excuse for missing an onshore workout, you should leave no stone unturned to go on a food trip while on the cruise! Explore a range of cuisines while on board, as this will be the only time when you can experience such a wide variety at one go! Do not slip into your comfort food mood! Most of the cruise packages will include alcohol, so make sure you drink up the best cocktails!
5. Enjoy the pool
It does not matter if you are an extrovert or an introvert. You can enjoy a dip in the pool on a sunny cruise day. Swimming is one of the most rejuvenating exercises, especially on board when you may spend long hours in a sedentary position! Drink a margarita as you view the sunset half-dipped in the pool!
6. Spend some time in the cruise library
This may sound like a nerdy option, but you will be amazed at how good you feel visiting a cruise library. It will be typically blessed with a great collection. Plus, you get to spend some time away from the crowd and reconnect with your old reading habits. If you were planning to finish a specific book, do not forget to bring it along or use your Kindle!
7. Play board games
Good old board games never go out of style, especially on a cruise. Cards against Humanity, Battleship, Walk the Plank, or Rum and Pirates are perfect board games that can be enjoyed by people of all ages! So rope some fellow travellers in and have some fun!
8. Splurge on a spa
Facials, foot spas, manicures, pedicures—the long list of cruise spas will ensure that you are well taken care of before reaching the ports of Iceland! The cruise spas are quite high-end, and I personally feel they are worth it to indulge in! If you are okay with overshooting your budget, go for luxury spas and saunas!
9. Share a slice of your cruise experience with friends & family
A solo trip is an absolute gateway to discovering your soul! But I do end up missing friends and family members when I am experiencing something beautiful, and they are missing out on it!
Utilise the super-efficient onboard internet speed, and take some time out to video call your friends and family, and make them a part of your cruise experience. It will not only be a treat for their eyes but will make you happy to connect with your closest ones!
10. Catch the live performances
Onboard entertainment was definitely in your mind when you paid for the cruise! So why not take advantage of it?
Cruise live music shows are an absolute blast! Make sure you get enough of the shows in the evenings. Groove along and dance your evening away without a worry in the world! Keep a tab on the daily cruise performances and the locations to make sure you do not miss the shows. If live performances are a must for you, it is better you check the detailed itinerary of it with the cruise in advance!
11. Get to know your fellow travellers
You would be far from experiencing a perfect cruise if you restrain from mingling with fellow travellers on board. A cruise is a perfect ensemble of a motley group of people from across the globe that has interesting anecdotes to share. So let your guards down, and enjoy an evening with other boarders. You can hit the bar with them or spend some quality time on deck chairs under the open sky, swapping life experiences and stories.
It is also a good idea to catch a few meals with like-minded people and carry on with the evening instead of retiring to your room early!
12. Join a culinary/baking class
Cruises offer a range of classes. Instead of sitting idle, do a short course on world-class baking! Or take a culinary class and come back home with added skill sets to surprise your family! Some cruises also offer beverage classes. Imagine honing the art of cooking some Icelandic dishes while on vacation! Can it get any better?
13. What about piano lessons?
This probably has been a childhood dream. But I guess there was never a perfect time for this? In between hectic office meetings and household chores, when was the time to fit in a piano lesson? As they say, it is better late than never! Relaxing on a cruise vacation and catching up on a piano lesson—sounds like heaven to me!
14. Dress up for the evenings
When on solo trips, I had this relaxed attitude to dressing! Now do not get me wrong—I love my shorts and sneakers as much as you do, and there is absolutely no pressure on you to be decked up. But if I have to be honest with you, putting on that red satin dress on one evening and the black one which has been lying idle in your closet forever will brighten up your evening! As I keep saying, dress up for nobody but yourself. Put on some lipstick, wear comfortable shoes, and head to the onboard concert for the evening. Do not forget to take selfies to reflect on once you return to your mundane life in the city!
15. Fine dining on cruise
The fine dining experience on a cruise can burn a hole in your pocket, but needless to say would be worth it. By now, you may have already been hovering around Iceland and catching glimpses of Northern Lights from your cruise. Add to it—a culinary perfection at its luxurious best! Wear something elegant and chic for this experience and blend amid the five-star background!
16. Spot the glaciers, waterfalls, volcanoes
When you are, Iceland bound, you have to keep an eye out for the glaciers as you approach ‘the Land of Fire and Ice.’ Iceland is blessed with moving glaciers and volcanoes. Make sure you keep an eye out for Vatnajokull and Langjökull glaciers and the numerous waterfalls adorning this blessed land as you cruise along!
17. Safety is paramount
Safety is non-negotiable when it comes to a solo cruise. Try to take a solo cabin so that you have your space! Also, ensure that you keep all your identifications, including your passport and visa, safely with you at all times. Maybe you can get a couple of photocopies made just to be on the safe side. You should absolutely get to know your fellow travellers and have fun but also always be slightly vigilant!
18. Wake up on time to make the most of the vacation
You would find too many people waking up late as they are on vacation. Well, my tip is to wake up early. This way, you can experience the calm of the waters early morning, do stretches by the deck against the gorgeous backdrop before all the activities start! This is also a great time to connect with the cruise staff and get to know about the kind of lives they lead on board!
19. Book onshore excursions
The ships dock for a couple of hours every day to ensure you get to see enough onshore too. You can catch new attractions in the countries that you cross while travelling to Iceland. Book the onshore excursions, and do not miss the opportunity to see the best spots of each country! You can team up with other like-minded people you met on board during the excursion.
20. Indulge in some duty-free shopping
I shop wherever I go! And, the cruise is no exception. Indulge in some duty-free shopping to bring back goodies for your closest ones. Be it clothes, perfumes, or jewellery, get a good deal for yourself!
21. Pool games
If you enjoy the sun, the water, and the games, then nothing can beat the fun you can have at pool games! Belly flop and volleyball in the pool are some of the most common games. While most of these games are spontaneous as people gather and kick-start these activities, cruise staff also arrange a number of pool games. Pick your type and have fun!
22. What about ice skating?
I know you are going all the way to Iceland to get enough ice. So why not put your skates on in the cruise, and have some onboard fun? You may be among teenagers while engaging in this activity! I am sure you would not mind competing with young adults in this fun game.
23. Did you know of running tracks on a cruise?
You are surrounded by contrasting landscapes from all sides. Add a jogging track to this beautiful scenario and the breeze! Trust me—this activity will probably leave you more relaxed than a luxury spa. Pick up some speed and go for this morning’s activity. Try to start early in the morning so that you do not need to negotiate with a crowd! Even if you feel lazy, remember to shed the extra pounds that you may have accumulated during the vacation.
24. Watch a movie amid the moon & stars
If the weather is favourable, do not miss an outdoor movie night. You may have been to the best of theatres, but the experience of a movie being screened under the starry sky and moonlit night is unparalleled! The huge movie screen will leave you spellbound with the experience! Sports lovers can catch live sports events on the big screen.
There is so much to explore in Iceland, so don’t go overboard by adding too many places/things to do and muck up your itinerary! Take your time, explore the places that you absolutely cannot miss, and make a lot of memories! And I have to admit that I’m jealous that you ladies are going to have the best time of your life on your solo cruise and also in ‘the Land of Fire and Ice!’
An introverted blogger who is looking to make unforgettable solo travel memories with one short life.