Sons and daughters return home from university for the holidays, parents take extra time off work, grandparents come over for dinner, the Queen’s annual Christmas message plays on the TV and everyone gathers around the tree to open gifts… it’s a familiar scene come Christmas time. But, how about doing something a little different this year, like spending time on a cruise ship? The change of scenery is nice in itself, but here are five more excellent reasons to get out of the house and onto a Christmas cruise in the 2014 festive season.

Relaxation

We’ve all seen the McCallister family get their Christmas holidays off to a frantic start in Home Alone, dashing around the house and conveying the impression that Christmas is the ultimate in stress. However, Christmas cruises are entirely relaxing, allowing you to kick back and get into the festive spirit. There’s no need to worry about leaving the turkey in the oven and when it comes to decorations — well the cruise liner will take care of those! You can simply soak in a swimming pool or Jacuzzi, or receive soothing luxury treatments in a spa and forget about all of that.

Entertainment

Of course, at Christmastime show season begins in theatres around the country, but you don’t have to miss out on all the fun. A lot of cruise lines have their own productions and you’ll be able to catch West End-style shows – you might even have the chance to shout ‘He’s behind you’! Then there’s the dancing. Perhaps you’ll miss the office party, but that certainly doesn’t mean you’ll have to wait until next year to sing along to ‘Merry Xmas Everybody’.  Let’s face it, if that song isn’t playing somewhere it just isn’t Christmas.

Family activities

Why not swap charades at home for a game of mini golf on a cruise liner? Or switch ‘Pin the tail on the donkey’ for zipping round an ice rink while you cruise to an exotic location with a company like Royal Caribbean.

Christmas dinner

Just because you’re leaving your daily routine behind, doesn’t mean you have to forgo your turkey and stuffing, pigs in blankets and other components of the traditional Christmas dinner. If a cruise liner is sailing at Christmas, the decks are lined with holly and other festive decoration and you can count on some succulent turkey. Okay, sprouts will still accompany the meal—if you like them— but the chances are a restaurant run by a top chef will be serving up your succulent Christmas turkey.

And last but not least… Santa!

Yes, of course… the star of the festive show; that kindhearted, white-bearded gentleman who delivers presents to families around the world. Normally he’d be blazing through the night sky on a sleigh drawn by reindeer, but for the adventurers exploring the world at Christmastime he has a word with the captain and climbs aboard to carry out his seasonal duties, to the delight of all guests.

P&O Cruises, Cunard, Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises are just some of the lines that can whisk you away this Christmas. Why not book a Christmas cruise in 2014 and add a little extra magic to your celebration? Or if you marked the occasion overseas last year, tell us about it in the comments.

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We are acting as an agent on behalf of travel suppliers and your booking will be subject to the supplier’s terms and conditions. Prices may be subject to very limited availability and are correct as at the date and time of writing. Prices may go up or down from time to time. Prices quoted are for the dates, accommodation, board basis, departure points and number of persons sharing specified only and cannot be combined with any other offer. We reserve the right to amend any quotes given if there is a genuine error as soon as we become aware of it. We reserve the right to withdraw any offers without notice.