12 December 2022

By P&O Cruises Editorial staff

Wishes come true on a festive cruise

Give the gift of adventure and discovery this Christmas to your friends, family or yourself. Whether you choose to cruise close to home or around Norway, fly to the Canaries or the Caribbean, it’ll be a Christmas to remember for years to come. From the moment you board your ship, you’ll step into a wonderful winter wonderland of a different kind. We take care of every tiny detail, so you won’t have to lift a finger. Get your festive glad rags on and we’ll keep you entertained and pampered, amazed and amused, with dining to delight and excite. 

At any time of year, a P&O Cruises holiday delivers incredible value for money. But in December, seasonal savings seem even more magical and the spirit of Christmas is captured in special menus and festive performances across the fleet. Making your wishes come true on an enjoyable, hassle-free holiday is our very merry mission. Festive cheer is at the forefront of events and activities on board your sparkling ship. And when you go ashore, the magic continues…

Keep it festive for family and friends

Treat the kids to some true family time with their favourite foods and non-stop fun on offer. Why not invite the grandparents, aunties, uncles and friends to share the festive fun – minus the pile of dirty dishes and silly TV shows. Enjoy your choice of stunning live entertainment, games and great food on a Christmas holiday with a difference.

Merry and bright highlights

Family and favourite festive traditions are top of our list in December, so you won’t miss out. Our Christmas and New Year cruises feature:

• A sparkling Christmas tree and decorations throughout your ship
• A children’s grotto with a chance to meet Father Christmas
• Special festive-themed activities and entertainment
• A traditional pantomime performance (“Oh yes, we have!”)

And on the big day itself, 25 December

• A festive feast with turkey (or vegetarian option) and all the trimmings
• A gift for each child from Father Christmas
• An intricate gingerbread village display

Have yourself a Continental Christmas

Departing in December, discover destinations dripping in festive decorations and dancing with Christmas lights.

Take a trip from Zeebrugge to Bruges, where the market square claims to be the home of the original Christmas Market, dating back to the 10th Century. Every year, the square comes alive and the surrounding streets light up like a Christmas tree strung with shining stars. There are now over 200 stalls each year at the famous Winter Glow Festival. Warm up with a sweet hot chocolate and delicious Belgian waffles.

Hamburg attracts visitors from all over the world to its famous fish and food markets throughout the year, but the Christmas markets see Hamburg’s reputation rocket. Glug some Glühwein and nibble on stollen in the main Weihnachtsmarkt, which creates a buzz outside the city’s town hall every winter.

In Rotterdam, explore the trendy hipster hub or visit neighbouring Amsterdam’s canals and art galleries. Stock up on presents at the bustling Christmas markets. With no luggage restrictions, you can take as many outfits and accessories as you like for celebrating on board – and bring back all the presents you can carry.

Christmas just for two!

Steal away for an intimate Short Break as a couple. Why not spoil yourselves with time out in the spa and health club, and combine Christmas with a well-being break where all your wishes come true?

Reasons to take a cruise this Christmas

If you think Christmas just isn’t Christmas on a cruise, think again. We’ve got everything covered to make this your best festive season yet.

And you’ll have the gift of extra on-board spending money to make your holiday even more memorable. You can use it to enjoy pampering sessions, makeovers, a new hairstyle or treatments in Oasis Spa and Salon. Or treat yourself to Christmas cocktails, speciality dining, designer shopping and more with your on-board boost.

On land (or maybe in the warm, crystal-clear waters of the Caribbean!), why not put your extra on-board spending money towards a shore experience and see how Christmas is celebrated in your chosen destination?

Northern Europe

Explore city streets dressed with gigantic Christmas trees and strung with twinkling lights. On board Iona in 2023, you can see Hamburg, Rotterdam and Bruges (from Zeebrugge) in all their festive glory.

Short Breaks

Sail out of Southampton for a cosy festive getaway on Arcadia, Ventura or Aurora. Every ship is decorated to make it feel really festive on board.

The Caribbean

Spend a very special Christmas Day or New Year on a sandy beach when you fly to Barbados for a fortnight, this year or next, on board our flagship, Britannia. You’ve also have the choice to fly to Antigua to join our newest ship, Arvia, for festive celebrations in 2023.


Keep it really Christmassy with a 12-night holiday on Aurora to Norway in 2023 – and a chance to catch the Northern Lights, nature’s very own light show over snowy landscapes.

Canary Islands

Fly to Tenerife to meet your ship, Azura, for a week or two of festive-season sunshine in Spain, Portugal and the Canary Islands this December or next. Or set sail from Southampton on Aurora, Iona or our newest ship, Arvia. Next year, you can choose to sail to the Canary Islands on Aurora, Arcadia, Iona or Ventura.


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