“Oh What A Night!”

You’ve just enjoyed the most wonderful day on board your cruise. You’ve visited some of the most awe-inspiring destinations and now the day is over and the whole night is ahead of you. What’s it gonna be? The choice is yours.

Nights on board cruise ships can be as relaxing or as active as you wish them to be. If you feel that after a long day on shore excursions is taking its toll on you and you want to relax and hit the hay early after dinner, then by all means you can do just that. It’s your holiday after all. However, it would be a bit of waste to head to bed after dinner without having a look at the entertainment that is taking place throughout the ship in the evening.

For many, the highlight of the evening’s entertainment is the show. This takes place in the ship’s theatre or main lounge and can either be a choice of an all singing, all dancing production show performed by the ship’s resident singers or dancers, a cabaret style act including comedians and magicians, a celebrity act or for some, a firm favourite, the crew show, performed by the crew and staff of the ship.  These shows generally last around 45-60 minutes depending on the cruise line and to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to attend them, there are usually 2 performances each evening. An early performance around 8.30pm and a late performance around 10.30pm. This is to coincide with the two main sittings in the restaurant.

A night out at the theatre on board Queen Elizabeth is just like being at a West End theatre in London. Image © Cruisemarsh

If the idea of the show doesn’t water your tastebuds, then there is a whole host of entertainment going on around the ship in the evening. For those game for a laugh and audience participation, there are gameshows that allow for a mixture of hilarity and fun to take place. On Princess Cruises Royal Class ships, they have their own dedicated Princess Live studio, where the gameshows are held and are filmed too, so you can watch them back in your stateroom at a later date too.

If gameshows aren’t your thing and all you want to do is have a quiet drink with your partner or new friends, there are plenty of bars and lounges on board where you can go and enjoy your favourite tipple with some ambient background live music such as pianists to capture the mood.

Taverners Pub onboard Cruise and Maritime Voyages Columbus. Image © Cruisemarsh

Fancy watching a film but outside? Then why not take in a Movie Under The Stars. On Princess ships with the giant seascreen, you can just do that. With free popcorn and blanket to keep you warm, why not relax in one of the sun loungers and take in the movie from a different perspective.

Most of the modern ships today will have ultra modern casinos with plenty of slot machines and gaming tables. Fancy a flutter? Lady luck might be with you tonight. There are welcoming casino staff that will make you feel welcome and for those who never really gamble, they will give some tips on how to play the games.

The casino on Caribbean Princess. Image © Cruisemarsh

Royal Caribbean offer street parades on their Voyager, Freedom and Oasis class class ships. This takes place in the evening, along the Royal Promenade inside the ship and usually they are themed, are colourful and will also include acrobatic acts too. It’s an event for the whole family and not to be missed.

Characters from Dreamworks including Shrek during a parade on Liberty of the Seas. Image © Royal Caribbean International

For guests who like dancing and in particular ballroom and latin dancing, there is opportunities to take classes on board. MSC Cruises host latin dance classes on board in the evenings and on MSC Preziosa, these were hosted in the Safari Lounge where passengers were able to get up on the dance floor and learn moves from the Cha Cha Cha to the fiery Tango. Whilst on P&O Cruises, there is a host of ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ themed cruises each year, where dancers and judges from the hit BBC show will be on board to give advice and tips to guests on how to improve their dance techniques and also to take part in a special onboard version of ‘Strictly Come Dancing’, where guests will be judged who are the best dancers from a panel of judges and if you are lucky, it could include Craig Revel Horwood!

As the night draws closer to the wee small hours of the morning, don’t forget there is the nightclub. This is the chance to join friends and new found friends on board on the dance floor to ‘cut shapes’ to the latest music including pop, dance and whatever the DJ feels like playing. For those cruising on Princess Cruises Star, Golden or Caribbean Princess, you can arrive and leave the nightclub by a travelator as the Skywalkers nightclub is suspended above the aft decks, which gives great views out to sea during the day. What a cool way to arrive and leave a nightclub?


The travelator to Skywalkers onboard Caribbean Princess. Image © Cruisemarsh

To wind the wonderful night down as thoughts are quickly turning to bed, why not grab a bite to eat from the midnight buffet or for those who don’t like to eat before going to bed, why not take a stroll along the deck, taking in the sea air before turning in. Look up at the sky and marvel at the stars as being at sea is the best place to see them in all their glory (weather permitting of course) as there won’t be any light pollution from any towns or cities. What can possibly be more romantic than a stroll along the open decks on board a cruise ship at night?

Taking a stroll along Sapphire Princess Promenade Deck. Image © Cruisemarsh


Of course, there is no strict guide to how you should spend your evening onboard. Sometimes you might have planned the night out as the show might be the highlight for the night or you just go with the flow. Either way, there is lots and lots of things to do onboard your ship during the evening, we somehow don’t think you’ll get bored, you’ll be spoilt for choice!

Sunset in the English Channel, viewed from Sapphire Princess. Image © Cruisemarsh

Happy sailing folks!


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