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A Hobie Cat catamaran plies the waters off Jolly Beach, Antigua, in the Caribbean.

Winterpark Photography / Courtesy of Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority

A Hobie Cat catamaran plies the waters off Jolly Beach, Antigua, in the Caribbean.

7 most romantic shore excursions on a cruise

Love is in the air. Whether you plan to surprise your sweetheart with a pair of cruise tickets on Valentine’s Day or you’ll be sailing to celebrate an anniversary or another special occasion, a cruise is the perfect romantic getaway.

 
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Just keep in mind: Romance is not limited to your time aboard the ship. There are also plenty of tour options for you and your honey while on shore. If you’re looking to kick-start that love connection on your next voyage, here is our list of the seven most romantic shore excursions on a cruise. Have your own favorites? Tell me about it in the comments. 

 

A catamaran at sunset in St. Barts seen from the deck of Wind Surf.
JD Lasica / Special to CruiseableA catamaran at sunset in St. Barts seen from the deck of Wind Surf.

Hop onto a catamaran at sunset

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There’s nothing more romantic than setting sail with your sweetheart on a catamaran for a short journey around your port of call. Add the setting sun, a few cocktails, some local music, and you have all the ingredients for a perfect start to your evening. Regardless of the region where you’re traveling — the Caribbean, Med, Hawaii or South Seas — you’re sure to find a tour provider offering sunset cruises. These picturesque shore excursions are sure to set the mood.


 

Helicopter tours over Tahiti allow visitors to view the scenic landscapes from a bird's eye view.
Courtesy of Tahiti TourismeHelicopter tours over Tahiti allow visitors to view the scenic landscapes from a bird's eye view.

See the sights on a helicopter tour

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Take your love to new heights with a helicopter tour. You’ll get an entirely new perspective of the land below — and each other — from 1,000 feet above sea level. Soaring high in the sky is the only way to truly appreciate the majestic Pitons of St. Lucia or peaks of Tahiti or the endless ice fields and glaciers in Alaska. You could even appreciate the architecture of the European capitals or marvel at the impressive historical remains in South America from a one of a kind helicopter tour. Check to make sure the operator has a great safety record, and check the cost, too — these can be pricey. 


 

Relax with a couples massage at the Cunard Royal Spa aboard Queen Elizabeth.
Courtesy of Cunard LineTry a couples massage to get rejuvenated and let your cares melt away.

Melt away your cares with a couples massage

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The cool ocean breeze, the sand under your toes and a relaxing day with your honey on a pristine beach sounds like the perfect cruise vacation. Why not heat things up even further on your next Caribbean cruise with a beachfront couples massage? Now, the two of you can unwind with a little help from a masseuse. The cost has come down in recent years. What used to be a somewhat pricey luxury option has become quite affordable at several popular ports of call. Even cruise line private islands offer this hands-on shore excursion at reasonable prices.


 

Wine tasting on a Silversea shore excursion.
Courtesy of Silversea CruisesWine tasting on a Silversea shore excursion.

Explore cuisines or wines with a culinary tour

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Indulge your senses at your next port of call. At many stops in the Caribbean, the Mediterranean and even Alaska, you can find some pretty tasty shore excursions. Sip wine in the Bordeaux region of France, learn to make pasta in Italy or feast on authentic Bahamian cooking. Culinary experts around the world will school you in the fine art of pairing foods and libations and provide insight into different cooking styles. These culinary tours are among some of the most intimate and fun experiences you can find. 


 

A zipline tour near Playa del Carmen, Mexico.
Ricardo Espinosa / Courtesy of Mexico Tourism Board A zipline tour near Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

Soar on a zipline

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Get ready to challenge yourself as you zoom through the air with nothing between you and the ground except your seat. Get your heart pumping with an exhilarating zipline tour. Speed through the rainforests of the Caribbean or zip by glaciers and wildlife in Alaska. Depending on your location, a zip lining tour could include other obstacles like rope bridges and rappelling walls as well. It is going to take teamwork, perseverance, and a whole lot of trust if the two of you are going to survive this adventure. Sounds a little bit like marriage, doesn't it? After you overcome these challenges, the two of you will be closer than ever before.


 

Keukenhof Lake and Gardens in Lisse, the Netherlands.
Courtesy of Uniworld River CruisesKeukenhof Lake and Gardens in Lisse, the Netherlands.

Tiptoe through the tulips 

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Just about every woman loves flowers. So why not spend your day exploring some of the world's most beautiful and well-maintained gardens? Head to Boboli Gardens in Florence, Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen, Romney Manor in St. Kitts or Keukenhof Lake and Gardens in the Netherlands. Stroll the well-tended Butchart Gardens in Victoria, British Columbia, where several themed gardens provide an unforgettable backdrop for a romantic afternoon. Other lovely estates abound in many regions of the world with guided and private tours giving you plenty of options for a bucolic day.


 

Enjoy horseback riding in the surf on Grand Bahama Island.
Courtesy of Grand Bahama Island Tourism BoardEnjoy horseback riding in the surf on Grand Bahama Island.

Give horseback riding a giddyup

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Be the star of your own romance novel with a horseback riding tour. Set off on a leisurely horseback stroll along the beach with your significant other. Whether you book a private tour or a group tour, riders of all experience levels can enjoy the rugged beauty and power of these majestic animals during this romantic shore excursion. Make sure to snap plenty of selfies along the way as this will certainly be an unforgettable experience and you'll want to make your friends a bit jealous. 

How about you? Been on any romantic shore excursions?

DB & the Princess
Along with my wife, I'm the co-editor of EatSleepCruise.com, helping you sea the world, one port at a time!

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