Shipping Out: 10 Pop Culture-Themed Pleasure Cruises

From tweedy aesthetes to rowdy headbangers, there's a cruise for everyone

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Winter is coming, but outside of Game of Thrones, that simply means cruise season is almost upon us. These days, there are cruises that cater to almost every interest. Quilting? Sure. Apple products? There’s a cruise for that. Star Trek fan? No problem. Want to hang out with Kid Rock? Here’s your chance. Prefer a band like Weezer? You’re covered. We are here to help you find the right cruise for you. While we’ve missed the boat on the KISS Kruise, we’re confident you’ll find another reason to take to the high seas on one of these pop culture-themed cruises:


Paula Deen

Paula Deen

Slaven Vlasic / Getty Images

If you miss watching Ms. Deen whip up her butter-drenched fare on the Food Network, you can share the experience on the high seas. Join Ms. Deen and her sons Bobby and Michael for cocktails, conversation and cooking demos as as you cruise from Miami to Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, St. Maarten aboard a Celebrity Cruise ship. You’ll want to pack your favorite sleepwear for the pajama party and start your training for something called the Deen Team Lawn Olympics.

(January 18-25, 2014; $1,748 to $,6846;  The Paula Deen Cruise)


Dancing with the Stars

DWTS - logo


Fans of our Dancing with the Stars recaps will surely want to share a Caribbean adventure with DWTS pros Kym Johnson and Tristan MacManus. Compete in the Dancing with the Stars: At Sea challenge in the hopes of bringing home your own Mirror Ball trophy. If your dancing skills aren’t up to snuff, learn to cha cha, samba and paso and other ballroom staples.

(Two 7-day January cruises; from $999;  The Dancing with the Stars Cruise)


Duck Commander

Duck Commander logo

Get up close and personal with the cast of Duck Dynasty on the four-night Duck Commander Cruise. While the chance to hang around with Willie, Phil, Jase, Jep and Si Robertson — with American Idol winner Scotty McCreery offering onboard entertainment. Other ways to kill time as you cruise the Caribbean include a cooking class by Miss Kay, get some tips on duck hunting and duck calling from the Robertson men, plus storytelling from Si.

(July 17-21, 2014; SOLD OUT; Duck Commander Cruise)


Ancient Alien

Ancient Alien cruise

Fans of the History Channel show that almost shares its name (and has no official connection) can meet and mingle and discuss their favorite topic — the idea that Earth was long ago visited by extraterrestrials — on a five-day cruise that will take them to Mayan ruins.  Ancient-alien experts Dr. Robert Schoch, David Hatcher Childress and Hugh Newman will give daily presentations on their theories about the extraterrestrial influence.

(January 9–14, 2014; $799 to $1199; Ancient Alien Cruise)


Elvis Presley

Elvis In Concert

Redferns / Getty Images

While Elvis Presley has left the building, his fans cruise on. In fact, fans of The King have multiple cruises to choose from. There’s the Caribbean New Directions Elvis cruise — that caters specifically to those with disabilities — with tribute concerts, talent contests and Elvis trivia. For those fans who prefer to stay closer to Elvis’ home, the American Queen Steam Boat Company offers a cruise up the Mississippi with Elvis impersonators, panels featuring Elvis’ bodyguard, backup singers and musical director and a stop at his Graceland home.

(cruises depart regularly; $2,495 to $6,795; New Orleans-Memphis Journey)


Soul Train

Soul Train logo

What was once the so-called “hippest trip in America,” is now the “hippest trip at sea.” Soul Train, which has been off the air since 2006, has found a healthy life-after-television on the high seas. Music fans can cruise the Caribbean with a lineup of onboard entertainment that rivals any terra firma-bound festival around. Class acts like the Isley Brothers (featuring Ronald & Ernie Isley), Charlie Wilson, Roberta Flack, The Commodores, Peabo Bryson, Morris Day and The Time — and even Biz Markie (among many many more) all perform nightly. Plus there are meet-and-greets, celebrity-lead cooking classes and panel discussions to get you up close to your favorite soul singers all while working on your tan.

(February 23–March 2. 2014; $1,750 to $7,900; Soul Train Cruise)


The Potterverse

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Pack your wands and wizard hats, because while your acceptance letter from Hogwarts may have gotten lost in the owl mail, the Wizard Cruise is ready for you. Whimsic Alley, a L.A.-based wizard-themed store (with no affiliation with J.K. Rowling or Warner Bros.), is hosting a four-night interactive cruise for Potter-philes and lovers of magic. Your weekend will be filled with wizard school-style activities, guest appearances, optional shore excursions and more. What exactly is in store for travelers is a surprise — after all, did Harry know what was in store for him in the Triwizard tournament?

(November 27–30, 2013; $651 to $1,184; Whimsic Alley Wizard Cruise)


Public Broadcasting

PBS logo

Problem: you’re a fan of cruises, but worry that you’ll miss out on all your favorite public-broadcasting shows while you’re away. Solution: This 19-day cruise to exotic locales from Dubai to Singapore lets you bring your favorite public-broadcasting stars with you, including David Fanning and Renata Simone from Frontline, Mark Samels from American Experience; Arun Rath from PRI’s The World and respected electoral analyst Charlie Cook. These public-broadcasting luminaries will help you while away the hours through lectures and one-on-one conversations.

(December 3–22, 2014; $9,249 to $20,249; Indian Ocean Odyssey)


Heavy Metal

70000 Tons of Metal - Carcass - logo

Anyone know the weight limit on a cruise ship? You might want to inquire before booking a ticket on the 70,000 Tons of Metal cruise, which features 40 heavy metal bands, including Carcass (pictured), Dark Tranquility, Death Angel and Dirty Rotten Imbeciles along with 2,000 of their fans. Bang your head as you cruise from Miami to Costa Maya, Mexico and fill your days and nights with nothing but metal: Metal music, Metal Karaoke, a Metal All-Star Jam, Metal Clinics, Metal Workshops, a very Metal Belly Flop Contest, and, of course, bars that never close.

(January 27–31, 2014; $999 to $1,599; 70,000 Tons of Metal)


Boston Red Sox

Boston Red Sox logo

Regardless of the outcome of the World Series, Red Sox fans have something to celebrate this year. What better way to do that than aboard the 2014 Red Sox Fan Cruise where devoted fans can relive key moments in Sox history, with Red Sox legends (Keith Foulke, John Tudor and more) as well as WEEI broadcaster Joe Castiglione. Relive the magic of “Slaughter’s Mad Dash,” “The Impossible Dream” and Carlton Fisk’s game-winning home run in the 1975 World Series while sailing to Cozumel, Grand Cayman and Labadee, Haiti, where an exclusive Red Sox beach party will be held and, presumably, a Cardinal will be burned in effigy.

(January 12–19, 2014; $910 to $1,290; Take Me Out to the High Seas: 2014 Red Sox Fan Cruise)