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When I set out on a 10-day cruise in late March, I had a lasting impression. The particular 10-day itinerary I was on (a Panama Canal cruise) included four full days at sea – a lot for someone who’s never been on a cruise before!

Over the course of those four days, I set out to find out exactly how much one could do aboard the ship. I’ve seen many lists of the “top 10 things for families” and “7 most relaxing things” you can do aboard a cruise ship… but no comprehensive lists. Here’s my list of things you can do – 45 things to do on a day at sea!

This list is specific to the ship I sailed aboard, the Coral Princess, but there are equivalent services on basically any major cruise ship!

1. Read the “Princess Patter” or equivalent schedule for your ship each day. These handy newsletters are delivered outside your cabin each night and contain the entire schedule of planned events for the day ahead.

Things to Do on a Day at Sea: Watch the Sunrise

2. Rise early to watch the sunrise.

3. Enjoy a fresh coffee from the International Café.

4. Go gambling in the casino.

Things to Do on a Day at Sea: Book a Spa Service

5. Book and enjoy a massage or wellness treatment at the spa.

6. Get a haircut or blowout in the salon.

7. Work up a sweat by working out in the fitness center.

8. Seclude yourself in The Sanctuary for peace and quiet.

9. Grab a favorite book from The Library and spend the day reading.

10. Enjoy a slice of pizza.

11. Indulge in an ice cream cone from the ice cream bar.

12. Visit all of the restaurants and cafés to see if you can make your favorite food aboard the ship – I was able to make currywurst!

Things to Do on a Day at Sea: Walk the Promenade Deck

13. Walk laps on the Promenade deck.

14. Attend a lecture, like the astronomy lectures provided by Paul Cirillo I attended.

Things to Do on a Day at Sea: Bridge Tour

15. Book a tour to visit the Bridge.

16. Attend a live performance in the theater.

17. Do Zumba.

18. Learn a new type of dance at a ballroom dancing class.

19. Lounge in the sun on the Lido Deck.

20. Swim in one of the pools.

21. Relax in one of the hot tubs.

22. Go golfing on the putting green.

23. Challenge a friend to a game of ping pong.

24. Shoot some hoops on the basketball court.

Things to Do on a Day at Sea: Shuffelboard

25. Try your hand to learn shuffleboard or bocce.

26. Watch a Movie Under the Stars, which include popular options like movies from the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them.

27. Attend a Destination Presentation to learn about the next port you’ll be visiting.

28. Browse the art and participate in an art auction it the shipboard gallery.

29. Take a nap. It’s vacation!

Things to Do on a Day at Sea: Afternoon Tea
It’s a swan cream puff!

30. Book a table for afternoon tea in the dining room.

31. Attend a photography seminar

32. … or book a portrait session with a shipboard photographer.

Things to Do on a Day at Sea: Wine Tasting

33. Sip and spit at a wine tasting.

34. Depending on the region you’re sailing, try spirit tasting, like the rum tasting aboard the Coral Princess while in the Caribbean.

35. Once you’re loosened up from the wine or rum, do karaoke!

36. Enjoy dinner at one of the specialty restaurants.

37. Splurge and book a seat at the Chef’s Table for an unforgettable meal.

38. Play bingo, a long-time fave for cruisers.

39. Attend a meetup in your area of interest, like the LGBT Get-Together, Knitters & Natters Get-Together, Singles & Solo Travelers Get-Together, or Informal Bible Study.

40. Reduce your cabin charges by grabbing a drink (or two) during Happy Hour.

Things to Do on a Day at Sea: Watch the Sunset

41. Watch the sunset from an open deck.

42. Watch live sports, like the NCAA Finals, which Princess streamed live aboard the Lido Deck.

43. Go stargazing once the sun sets.

44. Stay up late dancing – think disco, EDM, or whatever the DJ wants to play.

45. Sleep deeply and wake up rested for more shipboard adventures the next morning!

If you, like me, are a first time cruiser, this list will give you plenty to stay busy, no matter how many days at sea you have.

Did I miss any of your favorite things to do on a Day at Sea? Let me know in the comments and I’ll add them!

I spent 10 days aboard the Coral Princess on their Panama Canal cruise itinerary. You can see more on the Princess Cruises website, and book your trip here. This post was created in partnership with Princess Cruises.



Cruises are amazing! Days at sea can get a bit boring sometimes but the boats have plenty to do. You just have to seek it out. Great list!


Thanks, Nikki! I hope this helps cruisers enjoy more of what the boat has to offer!


My husband and I tend to gravitate to all-inclusives or taking our RV out. We haven’t tried a cruise yet; however after reading this, we just might! Thanks!



Based on the other types of travel you enjoy, I think you’ll love a cruise, Tiffany!


Beautoful pictures! I will have to make a mental note of doing these things next time I am next to the sea as I always waste time prancing around in the sun instead!


Nazrin, nothing wrong with prancing in the sun! Now you have plenty of choices though 🙂


Also going to the onboard shops😀


I always forget those! Thanks for your comment, Rachelle.

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