top of page
  • Writer's pictureAllison van Tilborgh

Celebrity Solstice Vegan Review (Alaskan Cruise)

Partaking in an Alaskan cruise always seemed pie-in-the-sky—something older people get to do—and at that, something I definitely was counting on doing someday. Luckily I was blessed with the opportunity to visit Alaska’s inside passage this year aboard the Celebrity Solstice with some of my immediate family members! The premise was exciting, but quickly I got to researching how this whole “vegan thing” was going to work on this form of transport.

The Celebrity Solstice.

Growing up in Orlando, I often did discount cruises with my mom in November or early December so I was familiar with midnight pizza and endless soft serve. But these days I can’t consume most pizza or soft serve, which left me with a predicament: how was I going to eat vegan on the Celebrity Solstice specifically?


This particular article will focus on my experience traveling on the Celebrity Solstice, which squeezed through Alaska’s inside passage to and from Seattle in early June 2023. My cruise stopped in Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, and Victoria, but this article will not focus on this aspect of the cruise. Here, I will zero in specifically on the Celebrity Solstice and make an assessment of the best path to veganism onboard!


There are MANY great articles online outlining best vegan cruising practices. I wrote one for VegOut Magazine HERE recently, which is a great resource to all vegan travelers who opt for a cruise. Consider reading that one you’ve finished this piece.

USING THE MENU LEGEND UPON CELEBRITY CRUISES

On Celebrity Cruises they use a menu legend which, frankly, can be confusing. A blue cow with a strike through it means it is lactose-free. The presence of a purple leaf means vegetarian. If you see both, you usually have a ‘bingo,’ and the dish is vegan.

These legends are (mostly) used at the Oceanside Cafe buffet as well as the main dining option, the Grand Epernay. I say mostly because sometimes Oceanside Cafe plainly forgets to label their options, leaving one to wonder, “is this bread or soy milk or orange marmalade really not vegetarian?” Always confirm the vegan status of a dish when you can. The specialty dining options do not use the legend system, but the staff should be able to answer your questions easily.

A typical use of the menu legend.

VEGAN OPTIONS AT OCEANSIDE CAFE, CELEBRITY SOLSTICE’S BUFFET

Oceanside Cafe, the cruise’s all-day buffet serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, was the single best place to get vegan food whenever I wanted it. Oceanside is a huge space with wonderful views of Alaska’s waters and snow-capped mountains (I suggest sitting on the outside porch for the best view). They also have plentiful plant-based offerings across their various stations.


For breakfast: expect veggies, roasted potatoes, bread (with jam and nut butter), congee (with savory toppings), Indian dishes. Unfortunately, there was no vegan pancakes, waffles, egg-like dishes, oatmeal, or yogurt.


Breakfast congee. Yum!

For lunch: expect pasta, veggies, Indian dishes, rice (white, brown, stir-fried, sometimes lemon), couscous, savory bread like focaccia.



A typical lunch, al fresco :)

For dinner: expect a more limited menu than lunch with a slightly more themed menu. For example "British night" or "Mexican night"


For dessert: fruit sorbet offered all day, as long as the stand is open.



Raspberry Sorbet

For beverages: water, tea, coffee, and soy milk are available at all times at the two beverage stands in Oceanside cafe.


BOTTOM LINE: Your best bet at all meals will be visiting their “Indian Corner,” which is almost entirely vegan (notated by a sign). If you’re not into Indian food, there are definitely lots of other options, but Indian food will always be the most reliable.


ORDERING VEGAN AT GRAND EPERNAY, CELEBRITY SOLSTICE’S MAIN DINING

As with most cruises, the main dining option has a rotating daily menu. Grand Epernay has, typically, one vegan option listed on the menu between the appetizer and entree sections. On our first night I thought I’d just have to suffice for this one option (I was thankful there was one!). I asked the waitress to be sure it was vegan, to which she told me to wait a moment, and she brought out a HUGE vegan menu I had no idea existed!


That’s right: EIGHT salads. SIXTEEN mains. And this didn’t include the vegan sorbet option each night too!


Vegan menu I received on night one.

As long as you reserve your meals with them ahead of time (just talk with your wait staff), you can eat GOOD as a vegan on the Celebrity Solstice.

EATING VEGAN AT SPECIALTY DINING ABOARD CELEBRITY SOLSTICE

Celebrity Solstice is also home to four specialty dining options: Le Petit Chef at Silk Harvest, Murano, Sushi on Five, and Tuscan Grille.

Vegan sushi onboard.

Our goal was NOT to spend even more money trying all these places, so I can’t speak a whole lot to the vegan options on these menus. We did, however, dine at Sushi on Five one night and were very pleased with the vegan options there.


We got: brown rice tea, hot miso soup, edamame, and vegetable sushi. Can’t really get better than that! If you’re vegan on the Celebrity Solstice and want to try one of the specialty dining options, I can confidently say that Sushi on Five will be the best option for you!

VEGAN SNACKS AT CELEBRITY SOLSTICE SHOPS

I learned on this trip I am a bit of a chocoholic. I, unfortunately, discovered this via withdrawals. Vegan desserts, I knew would be a point of contention, but I started feeling it bad—even after just a day! I’d advise anyone to pack any vegan non-negotiable on a cruise like the Celebrity Solstice because once you’re out at sea, there are no guarantees you’ll get access to plant-based chocolate, hot sauce, salad dressing, or any other specific items you crave daily!

My quest for vegan chocolate lead me to check out all the shops on board to find virtually no vegan snacks, period (and certainly not chocolate). At the time of my cruise, I found Sour Patch Kids and some chips (which I guess it something). Point is: if you think you can’t go 8 days without it, pack it!


Luckily I found a chocolate shop in one of our ports where I was able to snack some chocolate bark that sustained me through the trip.

FINAL VEGAN REVIEW OF CELEBRITY SOLSTICE

Overall, I found the Celebrity Solstice to be a pretty vegan-friendly ship. Not everything was perfect: the menu legends were inconsistent, and ordering ahead out vegan meals for Grand Epernay could be a headache, but overall I was very pleased with the variety offered on board (with the exception of desserts, which are sparse everywhere). I would recommend this boat to other vegans or groups traveling with vegans!


Want to learn more about cruising vegan?

Watch THIS reel to learn about my top 3 tips for cruising vegan!

Watch THIS reel to learn about the top 5 things I ate aboard the Celebrity Solstice!




74 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comentários


Post: Blog2_Post

Subscribe Form

Thanks for submitting!

Post: Subscribe
bottom of page