01904 521 936
Tour Search

Escorted Holiday Cruising Sailing Through Europes Winter Beauty

18 August 2023

Cruising Europe during the wintertime is a vastly different experience to cruising in summer, and for anyone who normally takes a cruise in summertime, there are some big differences to be aware of. It's a magical time of year that brings with it some unique experiences. Yes, it's cold, and, yes, your packing list is going to be longer than the shorts and swimmers of your summer trips, but there's a very singular beauty to Europe in winter that can't be matched by any other time of year.

It's cold outside'

In wintertime the air is fresh, and the water is bracing, so taking a cruise in Europe at this time of year signals a certain degree of cold. It does, and it is, but it also means your facilities are luxurious and there to keep you warm. There's nothing cosier than wrapping up warm with a hot chocolate or a hot toddy and enjoying the views of snowcapped mountains and wintery wonderlands. Everything aboard your ship is designed for your comfort, so after a day exploring the fjords, enjoy a hot meal and fine wine, take a dip in a relaxing hot tub to warm up, or feel the heat in the sauna. It's all the better when coupled with the cold.

Unique experiences

There are some things you can only experience in certain places at certain times of the year. The northern lights are one of them, and a wintery cruise around the Arctic circle gives you the best chance of seeing this spectacle. The Christmas markets of Europe can also only be experienced in wintertime, and there's nothing quite like Christmas in Germany or Oslo when the snow falls and the fairy lights twinkle. Then there's the scenery, the snow-covered mountains and the beauty of the icy waters as you glide along. Some of the ice formations are like works of art. And, if you're courageous enough, this is the best way to brave a cold water plunge. Take a polar plunge straight from the ship and into the cold water, then climb back aboard and step into the jacuzzi with a hot drink. There's nothing to rival the experience.

Beating the crowds

There are some areas of Europe that are busy in summer and very quiet in winter, giving you the chance to explore without the crowds. Cruising Europe's waterways in winter means you can stop off at interesting ports and immerse yourself in the local culture and lifestyle, like a local, and without the tourists. Even the destinations that are famous for winter travel don't have the same bustling crowds as summer destinations and everyone is a bit more laid back about seeing the sites and getting a great spot for a photo.

To create a unique trip that lights up the winter, take an escorted tour - Northern Lights on a Winter Arctic Cruise - that includes a train journey too and you get the best of both worlds as you experience the waterways in all their icy beauty, and glide through the snowy landscapes on the tracks.