The Must-Try Dining Venues From Each Cruise Line

One of the highlights of any cruise is the food, right?

Whether you like extensive buffets and casual snacks or sophisticated dining experiences, knowing where to find the best dining options can greatly enhance your cruise experience.

In this article, I’ll share some of the top dining spots on popular cruise lines, covering everything from simple meals to elaborate sit-down dinners.

My recommendations are based on personal experiences, tips from friends, and online reviews.

Me and my friends waiting for our food to arrive

You’ll find both inclusive options with your cruise fare and special dining experiences available for an additional charge.

1. Carnival Cruise

If you plan to go on a Carnival cruise anytime soon, let me tell you about the dining spots you can’t miss.

One spot that’s always buzzing is Guy’s Burger Joint. Thanks to the magic touch of celebrity chef Guy Fieri, this place serves up some great burgers. It’s casual, it’s messy, and it’s an absolute must-try. 

Guy's burger joint

Also, don’t skip the tacos from BlueIguana Cantina. Fresh, vibrant, and loaded with options, it’s a sunny spot for some Mexican flair.

Whether you choose a soft taco stuffed with seasoned chicken or a crispy fish taco drizzled with tangy salsa, there are lots of choices for everyone.

Blue Iguana Cantina

For a different flavour, visit Cucina del Capitano, which offers an Italian dining experience. The family-style dishes, from hand-made pasta to finely crafted Italian specialties, provide a comforting taste of Italy at sea.

Evening ambiance at Cucina del Capitano on Carnival Mardi Gras, featuring an outdoor dining area with red checkered tablecloths, wooden chairs, and a serene ocean view framed by large windows under a dusky sky.

2. Royal Caribbean 

Jump on a Royal Caribbean cruise, and you’ll be in for a treat with their food. They’ve got a ton of different meals from around the world that are all about great taste and simple cooking.

Chops Grille is a must-visit if you’re into steaks. It’s a more upscale venue and the ambience is perfect for a special dinner where you want everything to feel just right. The menu features high-quality beef, seafood, and a selection of fine wines.

Interior of Chops Grille

Don’t miss out on El Loco Fresh for something more laid-back. They serve up tasty Mexican food like tacos and quesadillas that are full of flavour. If you like things a bit spicy and fresh, their fish tacos are worth a try. 

El loco fresc

Another interesting spot is Izumi, where you can experience a wide range of Asian dishes, especially Japanese. From sushi rolls to sashimi and more traditional Japanese dishes, Izumi offers a taste of Asia at sea. 

Trying sushi for the first time at Izumi

3. Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises is about stepping up the luxury and bringing top dining experiences to your cruise. They put a lot of care into their food, and some great places are on board to grab a bite.

A top pick is The Rooftop Garden Grill. It’s an amazing spot to eat under the stars. They do a great job with American BBQ flavours, making everything from scratch on the ship.

Rooftop garden grill

The atmosphere at Eden Restaurant is just as good as the food. They mix up some unique dishes that you won’t find anywhere else. It’s part dining and part theatrical show, which makes for a fun evening.

The risotto and the chicken are crowd favourites. There’s also a plant-based tasting menu with some incredible roasted celeriac.

roasted celeriac at the Eden restaurant

For a truly unique experience, check out Le Petit Chef at the Qsine restaurant. This is a unique animated dining experience where your food preparation is brought to life through a delightful projection on your table, with the animated chef creating dishes in a playful and interactive show.

Le Petit Chef

4. P&O Cruises

P&O Cruises offers a variety of dining options that reflect a blend of British traditions and global flavours, providing guests with a culinary experience.

The Epicurean is the place for anyone who loves a touch of sophistication with their meals. Here, you can indulge in finely crafted dishes that showcase the best of British and international cuisine in a truly elegant setting.

The Epicurean

Also, you can’t miss the traditional afternoon tea at The Epicurean. It’s an affair with all the classics, such as scones, clotted cream, delicate sandwiches, and a selection of fine teas.

Another highlight is The Glass House. This is your spot if you enjoy pairing your meals with the perfect wine. Curated by wine expert Olly Smith, the venue offers a relaxed atmosphere where you can enjoy a variety of wines matched with dishes specifically designed to complement them.

The Glass House on Arvia

For a unique dining experience, check out Sindhu. This restaurant blends Indian and British cuisines to create both comforting and surprising dishes, offering a delightful twist on familiar flavours.

food at Sindhu

5. Disney Cruise Line

Disney Cruise Line is renowned for its family-friendly atmosphere and exceptional dining experiences that cater to guests of all ages.

A standout on Disney cruises is Animator’s Palate. This restaurant is not just about food; it’s an interactive dining experience where the decor and screens around the room come to life in vibrant colours as you eat. The menu here is as creative as the setting, featuring dishes that appeal to both children and adults.

Disney Magic Animator's Palate Restaurant

For an upscale dining experience, head to Palo. This adults-only restaurant offers a touch of sophistication with a Northern Italian menu. The setting is intimate, and the food is crafted with an emphasis on quality and flavour. Dishes like the seared sea scallops or the rich chocolate soufflé are not to be missed.

Cruise Mummy at Palo

Also, don’t overlook Cabanas, the onboard buffet that offers a more relaxed dining experience with various options from around the world. It’s a great spot for families looking to satisfy different tastes at once.

The Pizza station on Disney Wish

6. Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line is celebrated for its Freestyle Dining approach, emphasising flexibility and various dining options to suit every taste.

Le Bistro offers a slice of Paris at sea. This French bistro is a must-visit for its romantic ambience and meticulously prepared classic French dishes. 

Le Bistro on Norwegian Bliss

Another standout experience is Cagney’s Steakhouse. Known for its premium cuts and upscale steakhouse setting, Cagney’s is ideal for those seeking a hearty American-style meal. The prime rib and truffle fries are popular, perfectly paired with one of the restaurant’s bold red wines.

Cagney’s Steakhouse

For a more laid-back dining option, O’Sheehan’s Neighborhood Bar & Grill offers a fun pub atmosphere with comfort foods available 24/7. Whether it’s wings, burgers, or fish and chips, O’Sheehan’s provides a cosy spot to enjoy a meal any time of day or night.

O’Sheehan’s Neighborhood Bar & Grill on Norwegian Dawn

7. Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises is known for its broad range of dining options emphasising fresh, local ingredients reflecting the ports visited during each cruise. 

Sabatini’s Italian Trattoria is a standout option, renowned for its genuine Italian ambience and rich culinary offerings. This restaurant serves various classic Italian dishes, from hand-rolled pasta to sophisticated seafood dishes, complemented by a selection of Italian wines in an inviting, authentic setting.

Sabatini’s Italian Trattoria on Sun Princess

A popular choice at Sabatini’s is the lobster, prepared three ways and showcases traditional and innovative approaches to Italian seafood cuisine.

For those looking for a lighter or quicker meal, The International Café is open 24/7, serving a range of items from morning pastries to evening snacks. It’s conveniently located in the ship’s atrium, making it an ideal spot for a casual bite or a coffee at any time of day.

8. MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises is well-regarded for its Mediterranean background and the diverse menu highlighting its European origins.

Eataly Steakhouse, a collaboration with the renowned Italian marketplace chain Eataly, is one of the highlights of MSC Cruises. It’s a must-visit for anyone looking to indulge in high-quality Italian meats, pasta, and seafood, all prepared with traditional methods that honour Italian culinary traditions.


For a more casual dining experience, La Piazzetta offers a buffet that spans global cuisines, from Mediterranean classics to Asian favourites. This venue is perfect for families and those looking for a quick, delicious meal without the formality of a sit-down restaurant.

MSC Buffet

Bottom Line

If you love food, it’s a good idea to research meal options before your cruise. Checking out what’s available and reading some reviews can make your trip even better, especially if you want to try something special. I hope you found this guide helpful.

A  breakfast spread on a white table with a scenic ocean view on a cruise ship, featuring a hand holding a white coffee cup, plates of scrambled eggs and omelet, bowls of fresh fruit and yogurt, with orange juice and coffee on the side.

There are plenty more options and places I didn’t mention here, as it’s not possible to list them all. If you have any suggestions add them in the comments below.

And if you want to know which specific dishes cruisers recommend that you look out for, then read this guide next: 10 Must-Try Foods From Your Favourite Cruise Lines.


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Cruise Mummy

Jenni Fielding is the founder of Cruise Mummy. She has worked in the cruise industry since 2015 and has taken over 30 cruises. Now, she helps over 1 million people per month to plan their perfect cruise holidays.

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