The Original Vegan Cruise – “One of the 100 Best Worldwide Vacations to Enrich Your Life.”

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Adhering to a holistically healthy lifestyle these days can be difficult. Every moment, convenience and social convention encourage and reinforce unhealthy behavior, tempting us away from our wellness goals.

That’s why the camaraderie that permeates the Holistic Holiday at Sea is so important. Board the ship and you’ll sense it right away: people get each other. Presenters and passengers all know what it’s like to pursue personal wellness in a society less similarly inclined. Wherever you are on your journey towards good health, to be among so many other like-minded people—exchanging ideas, information, and stories of failure and success—is an uplifting experience with the power to sustain you far after the cruise is over.

Guests enjoy eating and socializing in the dining room aboard the Holistic Holiday at Sea cruise. The program brings its own chefs and ingredients to specially prepare vegan cuisine.

Lynn Rivers follows the macrobiotic lifestyle and has enjoyed several Holistic Holidays. Rivers says, “When I come back here and I listen to the speakers again, it reiterates why macrobiotics makes so much sense to me and then I kind of pull myself back to that.” Another cruise-goer makes a similar observation: people “come back every year just to get that kind of boost again to keep them on track.” Hearing from the authorities on plant-based diet and eating plant-based food at every meal helps refine and reify one’s dietary beliefs, refocusing and fortifying one for the day-to-day challenges of sticking to a wellness plan.

Guests enjoy dancing to live music at one of the nightly socials aboard the Holistic Holiday at Sea cruise.

During the 2014 Holistic Holiday, first-time cruiser Justin Beck wanted to find a way to better incorporate relaxation and meditation into his daily life. For Beck, it was a talk by Dr. Howard Jacobson about motivation that inspired the necessaryconfidence. Jacobson suggested the setting of small goals—to “floss one tooth everyday or write one sentence in a journal,” as Beck remembers—in order to avoid discouragement and build momentum towards larger achievements. Beck left the cruise with a helpful strategy for enacting changes in his life.

For a boost of inspiration, cruise-goers can look to Holistic Holiday mainstay, Chef AJ, who cooks her meals with no sugar, oil, or salt. Hers is a diet that, to many, seems extreme. Can she eat at restaurants? What does she do at parties or when travelling? Isn’t the food bland? Yet Chef AJ makes it work, “pre-eating” before going out, bringing a pressure cooker with her when far from home, and learning to appreciate the natural saltiness of a piece of celery. Chef AJ proves that with ingenuity, motivation, and a sense of humor, even a radical diet is fully possible to follow.

The cruise is, in the words of chef and author Bryant Terry, an “opportunity for people to recommit to their health and wellbeing.” It takes determination and self-assuredness to find and stick to a lifestyle that you believe in. The Holistic Holiday at Sea has the meals, the classes, and, most importantly, the people you need to strengthen your resolve and remember why you care about plant-based food.