Baltimore, being a large city located along a body of water (an arm of the Chesapeake Bay, more specifically), is a prime place for dining cruises, and thanks to Spirit Cruises, there are in fact several dining cruises offered in the city. Baltimore’s dining cruises generally take the form of brunch, lunch, and dinner cruises that are regularly scheduled, but there are also specialty cruises offered for particular occasions, like holidays or events of Spirit’s own creation. Below we sort out all that is available, providing you with a concise and helpful guide to the dining cruises offered in Baltimore.
As mentioned, Spirit Cruises is at the center of the dining cruises in Baltimore. Indeed, as far as we can tell, they are the sole provider of dining cruises in the city. So, if you want eat on the Patapsco River (the section of the Chesapeake Bay that lines the city is technically a river) on a ship that departs from and returns to Baltimore, you’ll almost certainly be sailing with Spirit Cruises, unless you arrange to charter a private boat or something to that effect. This is just as well, however, because Spirit Cruises is a major force in the world of dining cruises, and in general people tend to regard their cruises highly.
On the other hand, the fact that there is only one provider means that the dining cruises can be fairly limited. To take a cruise on any given day or night, this isn’t really a problem – if you don’t get on the Friday night dinner cruise, for example, you can take the one on Saturday, or perhaps you can take one of the dinner cruises offered during the week. There are plenty of regular dining cruises offered by Spirit in Baltimore, at least during the warmer months of the year. (Things definitely slow down during late fall and winter.) However, that Baltimore is a “one dining cruise company” town becomes more on an issue if you are trying to land a spot for a specialty cruise. Valentine’s Day cruises, in Baltimore and elsewhere, can fill up quickly, and this is especially true if only one company offers them.
For people (such as ourselves) trying to discern the general patterns of Spirit Cruises’ yearly dining cruise schedule, the search function on the Spirit Cruises website doesn’t make this especially easy. Even after messing with the search parameters a bit and performing lots of different searches, it is hard to determine any sort of set schedule. In general, though, from approximately mid-spring to mid-fall, there appear to be dining cruises (for both lunch and dinner) every weekend. During the summer, there are many more cruises; among other things, dinner cruises are offered on multiple nights during the workweek, and brunch cruises are consistently offered on Sunday. So, regular dinner cruises are offered with some regularity for perhaps half of the year, with the peak falling during the summer months.
Throughout the whole year, there are specialty cruises, primarily for holidays, so technically dining cruises are offered in Baltimore all year round. However, there are definitely more specialty cruises during the warmer months because in addition to the summer holidays, Spirit offers most of their themed cruises during this time. The “Crab Fest” cruises, featuring all-you-can-eat crab legs, are offered only during the summer, for example, and the same is true of other specialty cruises.
So, there are a decent number of dining cruises in Baltimore, but the number of options depends heavily on when you are looking to cruise. Also, since there is only one company, it is best to book early if you want to take a dining cruise on a holiday.