11 Fun Ways to Stay Active and Fit on a Cruise Vacation

Ahoy there, fellow cruise enthusiasts! As someone who’s had the privilege of setting sail on countless cruises over the years, I’ve learned that staying active on a cruise ship is not only achievable but also incredibly enjoyable.

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Combining my love for travel with my commitment to fitness has made my cruising experiences even more rewarding. So, if you’re looking for fun and engaging ways to stay active while sailing the high seas, you’ve come to the right place!

I’ve put together a list of 11 fantastic activities that will keep you moving and grooving throughout your cruise vacation, ensuring that you have a great time while maintaining your fitness and well-being. Let’s dive in and explore these exciting opportunities together!

That's me, Claudia Faucher, getting an early morning stroll in. Have a fitness goal on vacation is something you can do before the day's activities. I aim for 10000 steps per day.

Over the years, I’ve had the pleasure of cruising with Carnival, Princess, and Royal Caribbean, each offering unique experiences and fantastic amenities. Carnival is known for its lively atmosphere and affordability, while Royal Caribbean boasts thrilling activities and impressive facilities. However, if I had to choose, I’d pick Princess Cruises as my top choice. With its perfect balance between relaxation and entertainment, diverse onboard activities, and exceptional service, Princess delivers a truly remarkable cruise experience that has left me with cherished memories and a desire to sail with them again!

Claudia Faucher

Take advantage of the onboard fitness center

One of the best ways to stay active during your cruise vacation is to take advantage of the onboard fitness center.

Most cruise ships offer state-of-the-art gyms equipped with a variety of cardio machines, such as treadmills, ellipticals, and stationary bikes, as well as weight training equipment to help you maintain your strength.

Additionally, you’ll often find that cruise lines provide a range of fitness classes catering to different interests and skill levels.

From high-energy spin classes to calming yoga sessions, there’s something for everyone! Scheduling some time each day to work out in the fitness center is a fantastic way to keep up with your exercise routine while enjoying the incredible views and unique atmosphere of a cruise ship.

Participate in group exercise classes

Another fun way to stay active on your cruise is by participating in group exercise classes. Cruise ships typically offer an assortment of classes that cater to diverse interests and abilities.

You might find yourself perfecting your warrior pose during a yoga or Pilates session, letting loose in a high-energy dance or Zumba class, or even taking the plunge with a water aerobics class in the ship’s pool.

These classes not only provide an opportunity for a great workout, but they also allow you to connect with fellow passengers who share your passion for staying active.

Plus, with experienced instructors guiding you through each session, you’ll have the chance to learn new skills and techniques, making your cruise experience both fun and rewarding.

Make use of the ship’s sports facilities

Don’t forget to make use of the ship’s sports facilities to add some variety and excitement to your fitness routine.

Many cruise ships feature sports courts where you can play basketball or volleyball, allowing you to stay active while enjoying friendly competition with other passengers.

If you prefer something more low-key, you might find mini-golf or shuffleboard on the ship’s deck, which are great ways to engage in light physical activity while having a blast.

These facilities offer a unique opportunity to combine exercise with social interaction, making it easy to meet new friends and create lasting memories as you stay active and entertained during your cruise vacation.

Walk or jog on the designated track

Walking or jogging on the designated track is a fantastic way to stay active and explore your cruise ship.

Most ships feature a walking or jogging track that wraps around the vessel, providing an ideal setting for a leisurely stroll or an invigorating run.

As you complete laps around the ship, you’ll be treated to breathtaking ocean views and fresh sea air, making your workout feel more like an adventure than a chore.

Use this opportunity to set daily step goals or challenge yourself to a specific number of laps, ensuring that you maintain your fitness routine while enjoying the unique atmosphere and stunning scenery of life at sea.

Take the stairs instead of the elevator

An easy yet effective way to stay active on your cruise is by choosing to take the stairs instead of the elevator whenever possible.

With multiple decks to explore, you’ll find plenty of opportunities to burn extra calories as you navigate the ship.

Climbing stairs is a fantastic low-impact exercise that helps to strengthen your legs and improve cardiovascular fitness, all while you discover new areas of the ship and enjoy the lively atmosphere.

Challenge yourself to make stair climbing a habit throughout your cruise, and you’ll not only maintain your fitness level but also feel a sense of accomplishment as you conquer the ship’s heights.

Join in on poolside activities

Poolside activities are another enjoyable way to stay active during your cruise vacation. Many cruise ships organize a variety of games and activities in and around the pool, which can range from pool volleyball to water-based relay races.

These events provide a fun, lighthearted atmosphere in which to engage in physical activity while also enjoying the sun and water.

If you prefer a more individual approach, consider swimming laps or performing water-based exercises in the pool, which offer low-impact yet effective ways to stay fit.

By participating in poolside activities, you’ll combine the pleasures of a tropical getaway with the benefits of an active lifestyle, creating a perfect balance for your cruise experience.

Dance the night away

Dancing the night away is a fantastic way to stay active and have a blast during your cruise vacation.

Many cruise ships host themed dance parties, live music events, or even offer dance lessons, giving you plenty of opportunities to showcase your moves or learn some new ones.

Dancing is not only a fun form of exercise but also a wonderful way to connect with fellow passengers and create lasting memories.

Whether you’re a seasoned dancer or a complete beginner, don’t hesitate to hit the dance floor and let the rhythm guide you. You’ll be surprised at how enjoyable it can be to stay active while you dance your way through the night under the stars.

Participate in shore excursions that involve physical activity

When you arrive at each port of call, consider participating in shore excursions that involve physical activity to keep up your active lifestyle.

Many cruise lines offer a range of active excursions, such as hiking through lush forests, kayaking along picturesque coastlines, or snorkeling in crystal-clear waters. You can also explore port cities on foot or by bicycle, immersing yourself in local culture while staying active.

These adventures not only provide a fantastic workout but also allow you to discover the unique beauty and history of each destination.

By choosing active shore excursions, you’ll combine the excitement of travel with the satisfaction of maintaining your fitness routine, making your cruise experience truly unforgettable.

Try unique onboard activities

Cruise ships are known for offering unique onboard activities that you may not have the chance to try elsewhere, so why not use these opportunities to stay active and have some fun?

Many ships feature rock climbing walls, rope courses, or even surf and skydiving simulators, providing thrilling and unconventional ways to exercise.

These activities not only challenge your physical fitness but also help to build your confidence and enhance your overall cruise experience.

Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and give these unique activities a try – you might just discover a new favorite way to stay active while making lasting memories on your cruise vacation.

Practice mindful stretching and relaxation

Lastly, it’s essential to remember the importance of mindful stretching and relaxation in maintaining an active lifestyle, even while on a cruise.

Set aside some time each day to practice gentle stretching exercises in the privacy of your cabin or find a quiet spot on the ship to meditate or engage in deep breathing exercises.

These practices can help alleviate muscle tension, improve flexibility, and promote mental well-being, allowing you to fully enjoy your cruise experience.

By incorporating mindfulness and relaxation into your daily routine, you’ll support your overall health and well-being, ensuring that you return from your cruise feeling refreshed, rejuvenated, and ready for your next adventure.


In conclusion, staying active on a cruise ship vacation is not only possible but also incredibly enjoyable, with countless activities and opportunities available to help you maintain your fitness routine.

From working out in the fitness center and participating in group exercise classes to exploring ports of call through active shore excursions, there are many ways to combine the excitement of travel with the benefits of an active lifestyle.

By making a conscious effort to stay active during your cruise, you’ll not only enhance your overall cruise experience but also support your long-term health and well-being.

So, go ahead and set sail, knowing that you can have the adventure of a lifetime while staying fit and active on the high seas!

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