Celebrate in a different way by cruising around the Potomac

Spend December’s final moments—and the first few of 2018—on board one of these luxurious water rides.

Photo courtesy of Potomac Riverboat Company

Nina’s Dandy
Departs from the pier in front of The Strand Parking Lot: 201 The Strand, Alexandria

Christmas Eve and Day Cruises
Dec. 24-25, 6:30-9:30 p.m. Boarding begins at 6 p.m.
If you’re looking to switch up your standard Christmas dinner, break from tradition and enjoy a three-course meal whose options include a seafood chowder, shrimp stuffed with crabmeat, spanakopita, pasta primavera and chocolate mousse, to name only a few. For the remainder of the three-hour cruise, dance to live music upon a candlelit marble dance floor or gaze at the stars from the ship’s upper deck. The entire experience costs $98.

Christmas Day Champagne Brunch Cruise
Dec. 25, Noon-2:30 p.m. Boarding begins at 11:30 a.m.
After the gift-opening chaos that can sometimes be Christmas morning, kick back and relax on a $60 two-and-half-hour cruise that comes with a complimentary glass of champagne, mimosa or soft drink. On the brunch menu, find classics like Belgian waffles and build-your-own omelettes, plus less expected items such as homemade macaroni and cheese and a shrimp and vegetable rice medley.

New Year’s Eve Cruise
Sunday, Dec. 31, 8:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m. Boarding begins at 7:30 p.m.
Usher in 2018 with a candlelit dinner of hot hors d’oeuvres, a seafood chowder appetizer, salad, entrees that include a baked cod filet, poached salmon and prime rib and dessert selections such as a puff pastry with eggnog custard, apple pie or a New York Style cheesecake. Guests will receive noisemakers, hats, feather tiaras and also be able to enjoy an open bar that includes spirits, beer, wine and champagne noisemakers. The event costs $190.

Departs from 600 Water St. SW, Washington, D.C.

Christmas Eve Brunch Cruise
Dec. 24, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Boarding begins at 10:45 a.m.
For $72.90, guests can enjoy both breakfast and lunch items that include Scottish smoked salmon, a build-your-own-waffle station, maple and mustard glazed chicken, a shrimp and farfalle pasta salad and more. Unlimited mimosas and chocolate fondue, mini pastry cups and cakes are also a part of the price, but cocktails, wine and beer will have to be purchased separately.

Jingle Bells Brunch Cruise
Through Dec. 30, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Boarding begins at 10:45 a.m.
The Odyssey’s live band will play during this two-hour cruise while guests sip on unlimited mimosas and choose between standard brunch options like scrambled eggs, breakfast meats, waffles and pastries plus striploin, roasted baby carrots, roasted cedar plank oregano salmon and more.

Silver Bells Dinner Cruise
Through Dec. 29, times vary
This 2.5- to three-hour cruise features a three-course dinner with table-side service and the possibility of upgrading your table to one by the window for easier Potomac River sight-seeing. Cocktails, beer and wine are available for purchase, but coffee, water and hot or iced tea is included. On the menu: a shrimp cocktail or seafood tower appetizer, a wedge salad, lobster soup or smoked moulard duck breast for the first course, then jumbo lump crabcakes, braised beef short rib, oven-baked salmon and more for the main course. Make sure you leave room for dessert: sorbet, an apple parfait, salted caramel cake or warm butter cake. The base price ranges from $107.90-127.90.

New Year’s Eve Fireworks Dinner
Dec. 31, 9 p.m.-1 a.m. Boarding begins at 8 p.m.
Weather permitting, when the clock strikes 12:00 a.m., cruisegoers will be able to take in First Night Alexandria fireworks while participating in a complimentary champagne toast. In addition to a dinner featuring a wedge salad, lobster soup, either filet mignon and lobster tail, maple & mustard glazed chicken breast or Greeek zucchini fritters and a dessert station, guests can also enjoy an open bar, holiday decor and live entertainment.

New Year’s Day Brunch Cruise
Jan. 1, 1-3 p.m. Boarding begins at 12:15 p.m.
Kick off 2018 by admiring views of the Washington Monument, Jefferson Memorial and other monuments from a wrap-around deck. Live music will accompany guests’ feast of appetizers, entrees and desserts. 

New Year’s Day Bottomless Mimosa Brunch
Jan. 1, 1-3 p.m.
Like the buffet-style menu found in Odyssey’s other brunch cruises, guests will have an assortment of breakfast, lunch and dessert options which they can wash down with bottomless mimosas. Tickets start at $74.90.

Spirit of Washington
All cruises depart from 600 Water St. SW, Washington, D.C.

Holiday Lights Lunch Cruise
Through Dec. 30, times vary
The buffet-style menu on this afternoon cruise includes four salads, baked ziti, broccoli, corn and mashed potatoes, pork loin, honey and sesame chicken and oven-baked Atlantic cod. There will also be dessert and a DJ for entertainment. Tickets cost between $42.90 and $52.90.

Winter Lights Dinner Cruise
Through Dec. 23, times vary
This buffet-style menu boasts an assortment of salads including an orzo and bay shrimp salad, pasta and veggies such as creamed corn and cheddar cheese casserole and baked ziti plus a whole-roasted pork loin, cod, short ribs and honey and sesame chicken. Dessert options include lemon pound cake, caramel apple bread pudding, a vanilla bean mousse and a red velvet and chocolate chip brownie. A DJ will be on board to keep guests entertained.

New Year’s Eve Family Lunch Cruise
Dec. 31, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
There’s far more to this brunch menu than just scrambled eggs, breakfast meats and potatoes. Adults can enjoy Bloody Marys, cocktails, beer or wine while kids can rejoice in having dessert during the early afternoon. Infants under 3 cruise for free. Tickets start at $56.90.

New Year’s Eve Fireworks Dinner Cruise
Dec. 31, 9 p.m.-1 a.m. Boarding begins at 8 p.m.
For $179.90 those looking to ring in the new year in a nontraditional way can do so on this four-hour cruise experience. Expect to dance to whatever the DJ is mixing up, a platinum open bar, holiday decor and the same buffet-style menu as other Spirit dinner cruises.

Potomac Riverboat Company
Cruise departs from the Alexandria City Marina: 0 Cameron St., Alexandria

New Year’s Eve Fireworks Cruise
Dec. 31, 10 p.m.-1 a.m. Boarding begins at 9 p.m.
While taking in views of monuments and fireworks, enjoy an open bar, a buffet of light hors d’oeuvres and desserts during this three-hour ride. Ring in 2018 with DJ tunes, party favors and a free champagne toast when the clock strikes 12 a.m. Tickets start at $149 per person