What does the word "cruise" mean to you? As a cruise blogger, I have written that particular combination of letters far too many times to count, be it on its own to represent our favourite type of holiday, or as part of a longer phrase like "cruise ship","cruise line" or "cruise away and forget about real life."
For some people it has strong memories attached, of family fun or romantic getaways, and evokes images of cocktails and lying by the pool. Although it's used in many other contexts, for our cruising community that particular combination of letters, forming one short syllable, holds a lot of meaning and significance. Do you associate the word with a good time? Or do you need to be onboard a cruise
before that holiday excitement hits?
Etymology: From cross to cruise
Every word in any language has a history, and "cruise" is no exception. The form we use finds its root in the Dutch word "kruis" meaning "cross" (similar to the Latin "crux"). The connection here between a cross and a cruise is a little difficult to see, although the Latin root does show up in words elsewhere around the globe - such as "croisière" and "crociere", the French and Italian words for cruises.
There is another Dutch word derived from "kruis" which makes the link a little more clear. "Kruisen" means to cross, or to sail to and fro - which bears a little more resemblance to the notion of cruising that we know and love!
A way of life
In modern English, the word cruise has several different meanings - sailing about for pleasure or on patrol, moving at a slow speed in any of a variety of vehicles or on foot, to move effortlessly, and a holiday at sea. The overall idea is one of leisurely travelling, often on the water.
The meaning of the word reflects the mindset and lifestyle of cruising. It's a style of holiday that is just as much about the journey as the destination, and that's made evident as soon as you step onboard the ship. No other kind of travel puts you in vacation mode right from the start!
Port stops are a fun aspect of any cruise, and add a little excitement, but the nature of cruising is that getting there is half the fun - or more! There's no rush, no stress and no need to do anything other than exactly what you wish, be that sitting on your balcony and watching the world go by, enjoying a glass of wine in your favourite bar or making friends with the organised activities.
We'd love to hear what "cruise" means to you! Post in the comments and share your thoughts on the word that launches a thousand ships - every year! If you're inspired to find a cheap cruise
or a luxury cruise
, Cruise Sale Finder can help you out. From P&O cruises
to Princess cruises
, voyagers of all tastes can do a bit of "kruisen!"