5 Best Cruise Lines For Families: Disney, Carnival, & More

One of the best cruise lines for families, sailing off into the sunset.

Going on a cruise vacation with your loved ones is a great way to create life-long memories. With tons of onboard activities, exciting destinations, and family-friendly amenities, cruise lines offer an all-in-one package for an unforgettable family getaway.

If you’re planning a cruise vacation for your family, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve compiled a list of the top 5 most popular cruise lines known for their exceptional family-friendly experiences. Get ready to set sail and make memories you’ll cherish for years to come!

With over 55+ cruise lines and more than 425 ships, deciding the best cruise lines for families can be challenging. So, before booking your trip, it’s important to consider things like price, destination, dining options, onboard entertainment, and more.

In this guide, I’ll lay out recommendations for:

  • The most affordable family cruise
  • The best for families with small children
  • The best family cruises for those with teenagers
  • The best option for larger families
  • The best cruise for active families

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What are the Best cruise lines for families?

Now, choosing the best family cruises ultimately depends on your specific preferences, budget, and the ages and interests of your family members.

However, several cruise lines are consistently praised for their family-friendly experiences and kid-friendly features. Many offer tons of activities throughout your trip, such as deck parties, fireworks, movie nights, arcades, and of course swimming pool.

And if you’re looking for a little private time with your spouse; many ships offer clubs or camps where you can drop your kids off, and trained staff organize a full day of activities for your children to enjoy.

Here are my top picks for the best cruise lines for the whole family.

1. Disney Cruise Line.

Best cruise lines for families with small children

Price: *$750 per night

*Based on a 3-night destination for a family of 4 in October 2023

Top Disney Cruise Line Ships

  • Disney Dream
  • Disney Magic
  • Disney Wish
  • Disney Wonder

Top Destinations

  • Bahamas
  • Caribbean
  • Europe
  • Mediterranean

The Travel Breakdown Take

Disney Cruise Line is renowned for its exceptional kid-friendly cruises. With dedicated children’s areas, character meet-and-greets, Broadway-style shows, deck parties, and fireworks at sea, Disney provides a magical experience for guests of all ages. Disney Cruises’ attention to detail, top-notch service, and immersive storytelling make it an ideal choice for one of the best family cruises.

Family Entertainment

  • Broadway-Style Shows: Prepare to be mesmerized by the world-class Broadway-style shows presented on Disney Cruise Ships. These stunning productions feature talented performers, dazzling costumes, and elaborate sets, bringing beloved Disney stories to life on stage. From classics like “Beauty and the Beast” and “The Little Mermaid” to newer favorites like “Frozen” and “Tangled,” these shows are an absolute treat for the whole family.
  • Deck Parties: Get ready for high-energy, fun-filled deck parties that transform the ship’s top deck into a magical extravaganza. One of the most popular events is the Pirates of the Caribbean Deck Party, where swashbuckling pirates take over the ship, accompanied by music, dancing, and a spectacular fireworks display at sea. Deck parties provide the perfect opportunity for guests to dance, sing, and celebrate with their favorite Disney characters.
  • Let’s go to the movies: Step into the state-of-the-art Buena Vista Theatre, a dedicated movie theater found on every Disney Cruise Line ship. This cinema showcases a wide selection of films, including the latest Disney releases, Marvel blockbusters, Pixar favorites, and other family-friendly movies. With comfortable seating and an impressive sound system, guests can enjoy a truly immersive movie experience while at sea.
  • Dive into fun: Goofy’s Pool is the main family pool found on every Disney Cruise Line ship. This lively and spacious pool area is perfect for guests of all ages to enjoy a refreshing swim or relax on a sun lounger. With a whimsical Goofy-themed design, this pool area exudes a fun and festive atmosphere.​

For Kids

  • Character Meet and Greets: Disney Cruise Line offers numerous opportunities for children to meet and interact with their favorite Disney characters. Whether it’s a princess tea party, a royal ball, or character greetings throughout the ship, kids have the chance to create magical memories with beloved characters such as Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Cinderella, and many more.
  • Marvel Super Hero Academy: Young aspiring superheroes can join the Marvel Super Hero Academy and train alongside Marvel’s iconic characters. From learning battle tactics with Spider-Man to developing their own superpowers, kids can immerse themselves in the Marvel Universe through interactive activities and exciting challenges.
  • Frozen Adventures: For fans of Disney’s “Frozen,” the Frozen Adventures program offers a unique opportunity to step into the kingdom of Arendelle. Children can join Elsa, Anna, and Olaf for enchanting activities, including sing-alongs, arts and crafts, and a magical transformation into their favorite Frozen character at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique.
  • Youth Clubs: Drop your kids off at the “It’s a Small World” Nursery which provides a magical haven for kids ages 2 to 5 years old, offering a safe and engaging environment while parents enjoy their own activities. Join the Oceaneers club, where kids ages 3 to 12 can step into the worlds of their favorite characters. From Andy’s Room from “Toy Story” to the Marvel Super Hero Academy and Pixie Hollow, each themed area offers unique interactive experiences and age-appropriate activities. Read a full breakdown on Disney Youth Clubs.

For Adults

  • A little peace and quiet: The Quiet Cove Pool is an adults-only oasis where guests aged 18 and over can unwind, soak up the sun, and take a refreshing dip. This tranquil pool area offers a peaceful retreat with loungers, whirlpool spas, and a bar where you can sip on your favorite beverage while enjoying the serene ambiance.
  • Self-care at Sea: Indulge in a blissful pampering session at the Senses Spa and Salon. From rejuvenating massages and facials to invigorating body treatments and hairstyling, the spa offers a range of luxurious spa treatments to relax and revitalize your mind, body, and soul. You can also enjoy the steam rooms, saunas, and adult-only rainforest-themed relaxation areas.
  • Mixology Classes and Wine Tastings: Join mixology classes led by expert bartenders and learn how to craft delicious cocktails with a Disney twist. From classic concoctions to themed creations, these classes offer a fun and interactive experience. Wine enthusiasts can also participate in wine tastings, where you get to sample a variety of wines and learn about their origins and flavor profiles.
  • Dining Options: Disney Cruise Line offers a range of adult-exclusive dining venues that cater to various tastes and preferences. From upscale dining experiences at Palo and Remy to casual yet sophisticated options at adult-exclusive restaurants, you can savor delectable cuisine paired with exceptional service in a refined setting.

Pros

  • Unmatched family-friendly experience
  • High-quality entertainment, broadway-caliber shows
  • Magical Disney attention to detail. From character interactions to immersive storytelling and themed dining experiences, Disney Cruise Line brings the enchantment of Disney to the high seas.
  • Kids clubs
  • Variety of destinations

Cons

  • Higher price point than other cruise lines on the list

Best cruise for active families

Price: *$465 per night

*Based on a 3-night destination for a family of 4 in October 2023

Top Royal Caribbean Cruise Line Ships

  • Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas (Oasis-class ships)
  • Royal Caribbean’s Wonder of the Seas (Oasis-class ships)
  • Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas

Top Destinations

  • Bahamas
  • Caribbean
  • Europe
  • Mexico
  • Alaska
  • Hawaii

The Travel Breakdown Take

Royal Caribbean cruise line is a fantastic option for families seeking an adventure-packed cruise vacation. Their ships offer many activities, including rock climbing walls, surf simulators, ice skating rinks, zip lines, water parks, and much more. Royal Caribbean offers complimentary Adventure Ocean kids’ club and teen programs that cater to various age groups, ensuring engaging and age-appropriate activities throughout the voyage.

Family Entertainment

  • Timeless Musicals: Sing along with the entire family while enjoying incredible musical performances. From popular musicals like “Hairspray” and “CATS” to family-friendly productions like “We Will Rock You,” these shows feature talented performers, stunning sets, and captivating storylines that will entertain the entire family.
  • Indoor Skydiving: RipCord by iFLY brings the excitement and thrill of skydiving to the high seas. With a state-of-the-art vertical wind tunnel, this indoor skydiving experience allows guests to float effortlessly in a column of air, simulating the feeling of freefall from an airplane. Whether you’re a seasoned skydiver or a first-time flyer, RipCord by iFLY offers a safe and exhilarating adventure for kids and adults.
  • The Ultimate Water Slide: The exhilaration of Tidal Wave creates memories that will last a lifetime. Whether it’s the rush of excitement as you descend, the joy of conquering your fears, or the shared laughter with loved ones, the experience will leave you with unforgettable moments to cherish long after your cruise is over.
  • Ziplining: Imagine soaring through the skies, feeling the rush of the wind against your face, and taking in breathtaking views of the Caribbean’s crystal-clear waters and lush landscapes

For Kids

  • DreamWorks Experience: Royal Caribbean cruise line has partnered with DreamWorks Animation to bring beloved characters to life onboard their ships. From Shrek and Fiona to Po from “Kung Fu Panda” and the lovable penguins from “Madagascar,” families can enjoy character parades, interactive activities, and character breakfasts. Meet and greet your favorite DreamWorks characters for photo opportunities and create magical memories that will last a lifetime.
  • Splashaway Bay and H2O Zone: Royal Caribbean cruise ships feature exciting water play areas designed specifically for kids. Splashaway Bay offers interactive water cannons, fountains, and slides, providing endless fun and splashing adventures. H2O Zone is another family-friendly water park area, complete with waterfalls, sprays, and geysers. Kids can cool off and enjoy the water while parents relax nearby.
  • Science Rules: The Adventure Science Lab from Royal Caribbean offers a unique opportunity for guests to engage in interactive learning experiences. Led by knowledgeable staff, the lab provides a wide range of age-appropriate activities, experiments, and demonstrations that inspire curiosity and foster a love for science. From chemistry experiments to physics demonstrations, guests can participate in hands-on learning that is both entertaining and educational.
  • Adventure Ocean Kids Club: Adventure Ocean offers a wide range of activities, interactive learning experiences, themed parties, and outdoor adventures for young cruisers. With dedicated and trained staff, this program provides a safe and fun environment where children can learn, make friends, and create lifelong memories. From science experiments and arts and crafts to sports competitions and teen hangouts, Adventure Ocean ensures that every young adventurer has an exciting and enjoyable time onboard a Royal Caribbean cruise

For Adults

  • In the Air: “In the Air” takes the concept of captivating performances to new heights. This awe-inspiring production combines the artistry of aerial acrobatics, breathtaking choreography, and stunning visual effects to create a one-of-a-kind experience that will leave you in awe. The show features state-of-the-art visual effects that enhance the performances, transporting the audience to magical and otherworldly realms. From stunning lighting effects to mesmerizing projections, the visual elements add depth and dimension to the already captivating aerial spectacle.
  • Gamblers’ Paradise at Sea: Royal Caribbean casinos boast state-of-the-art facilities, creating an immersive gaming experience. The casinos feature modern slot machines, interactive video poker, and electronic table games that enhance the excitement and engagement. The vibrant and inviting atmosphere, accompanied by the sounds of spinning reels and cheering players, adds to the overall casino experience.
  • Live Music Extravaganza: The Music Hall showcases a wide range of live music performances that cater to diverse musical tastes. From rock and pop to jazz, country, and beyond, talented musicians and bands take the stage, delivering electrifying performances that are sure to get the audience grooving. Guests can expect high-energy shows, captivating vocals, and instrumental prowess that will leave them wanting more.
  • Dining Options: Royal Caribbean Cruise Line boasts a selection of highly rated restaurants across their fleet, ensuring guests can indulge in unforgettable culinary experiences during their voyage. From the imaginative and whimsical Wonderland to the premium steakhouse Chops Grille, the diverse range of specialty venues offers an array of flavors and dining styles to suit every taste. Celebrity chef partnerships bring forth exceptional dining options such as Jamie’s Italian, where rustic Italian cuisine takes center stage.

Pros

  • Kids sail free
  • Classical musical shows
  • Affordable
  • Kids clubs
  • Variety of destinations

Cons

  • Crowded during peak season
  • Popular activities may have wait times

The most affordable family cruises

Price: *$349 per night

*Based on a 3-night destination for a family of 4 in October 2023

Top Carnival Cruise Line Ships

  • Carnival Mardi Gras
  • Carnival Radiance
  • Carnival Panorama

Top Destinations

  • Bahamas
  • Caribbean
  • Europe
  • Mexico
  • Alaska
  • Hawaii

The Travel Breakdown Take

Carnival Cruise Line is often hailed as the “fun ship” and offers a lively and entertaining atmosphere perfect for the whole family. Carnival’s ships feature water parks, mini-golf courses, thrilling rides, and poolside movies. Their Camp Ocean kids’ program, along with the Seuss at Sea activities, ensures children have a blast during the cruise. Carnival offers a wide range of itineraries, making it accessible to families across various regions.

Family Entertainment

  • Dive-In Movies: Dive-In Movies provide a unique outdoor cinema experience for the whole family. Gather on the pool deck, cozy up on lounge chairs, and enjoy blockbuster films or family favorites on a giant LED screen under the stars. From animated adventures to feel-good comedies, these movie nights create cherished memories while embracing the beauty of the open sea.
  • Hasbro, The Game Show: Carnival cruise line has partnered with Hasbro to bring beloved board games to life with Hasbro, The Game Show. Families can participate in live game show experiences based on popular games like Connect 4, Simon Flash, and Sorry! Engage in friendly competition, cheer on family members, and experience the excitement and laughter that these interactive game shows provide.
  • Family Karaoke and Lip Sync Battles: family-friendly karaoke and lip sync battles where guests can showcase their talents and create unforgettable memories. Sing your heart out to your favorite tunes or lip sync to popular songs while enjoying the applause and support of fellow passengers. These lively and interactive activities encourage family participation and offer moments of fun and creativity.
  • Skyride: SkyRide is an innovative outdoor attraction that combines cycling and soaring above the ship’s deck. Guests hop on specially designed pedal-powered “sky bikes” and take to the suspended track for an unforgettable ride. It’s a unique and thrilling experience that allows you to feel the wind in your hair as you glide through the air.

For Kids

  • Suess at Sea: Seuss at Sea brings the characters from Dr. Seuss’s books to life through vibrant parades and interactive storytime sessions. Join the whimsical procession as favorite characters like The Cat in the Hat, Thing 1 and Thing 2, and Sam-I-Am lead a lively parade throughout the ship. Gather the family for storytime sessions where Seuss’s stories come alive through engaging readings and interactive activities.
  • Skyzone: SkyZone Trampoline Park caters to guests of all ages, making it a fantastic activity for families and individuals alike. Children can release their energy and embrace their inner acrobat, while parents can join in the fun and create memorable moments together. It’s a chance for everyone to let loose, have a blast, and enjoy the shared experience of bouncing on trampolines.
  • Zumbini: When it comes to kids, relaxation takes a back seat to boundless energy. Thankfully, Carnival Cruise has the perfect solution to keep your little ones active and engaged with Zumbini. Created by Zumba® & BabyFirst™, Zumbini brings the joy of music and movement to children aged 2-5 on every sailing. During these complimentary 30-minute classes, kids can enjoy exciting Zumbini® songs, interactive activities, and special instruments, all designed to get them up and moving. 
  • Camp Ocean and Night Owls Kids Club: Camp Ocean offers a wide range of activities that keep kids entertained and engaged throughout their cruise vacation. From arts and crafts to games, movies, and interactive play. Camp Ocean also offers a program called Night Owls, providing evening entertainment and activities for kids while parents enjoy their own evening plans. Night Owls allows parents to have a worry-free night out, knowing that their children are well taken care of and having a great time under the supervision of the Camp Ocean staff

For Adults

  • Punchliner Comedy Club: Adults can enjoy the late-night “Adults Only” shows that push the boundaries of comedy, while families can attend earlier shows that are suitable for all ages. This ensures that everyone can experience laughter and enjoy the comedy that suits their preferences.
  • Piano Bar: Piano Bar invites guests to be part of the musical experience through interactive sing-along sessions. The pianist encourages audience participation, inviting guests to join in and sing along to well-known tunes. It’s a chance to let your voice be heard, create a sense of camaraderie, and connect with fellow cruisers through the universal language of music.
  • Casino Lounge: Carnival Cruise line casinos offer an exhilarating and entertaining experience for guests seeking gaming excitement and the thrill of chance. With a variety of games, friendly staff, tournaments, and rewards programs, the casino provides an enjoyable and inclusive atmosphere for both seasoned gamblers and beginners. 
  • Dining Options: Dining on Carnival cruise ships is a culinary journey that caters to every palate and preference. From the elegant main dining rooms and specialty restaurants to the casual and flavorful options available at the Lido Marketplace, Guy’s Burger Joint, BlueIguana Cantina, Seafood Shack, and various sweet treats venues, guests can embark on a foodie adventure.

Pros

  • Best value for your money
  • Diverse itineraries
  • Family fun for kids and teens
  • Kids clubs
  • Variety of destinations

Cons

  • Party atmosphere (if your family is looking for something more relaxed and serene, this may not be the cruise for you)

Best family cruises for those with teenagers

Price: *$475 per night

*Based on a 3-night destination for a family of 4 in October 2023

Top Norwegian Cruise Line Ships

  • Norwegian Encore
  • Norwegian Prima
  • Norwegian Jewel

Top Destinations

  • Bahamas
  • Caribbean
  • Europe
  • Mexico
  • Africa
  • Alaska
  • Hawaii

The Travel Breakdown Take 

Norwegian Cruise Line is renowned for its relaxed and freestyle cruising concept, making it a great choice for families who appreciate flexibility. Their innovative ships offer an array of amenities for all ages. Norwegian’s complimentary Splash Academy ensures kids have a blast with age-appropriate activities, while the Guppies Nursery caters to the littlest cruisers. Families can bond over thrilling waterslides, mini-golf, and go-karts at their onboard amusement parks. With a vast range of destinations, including the Caribbean, Europe, and Alaska, Norwegian Cruise Line guarantees a memorable family adventure. 

Family Entertainment

  • Award-Winning Shows: Broadway-caliber productions, dynamic live performances, and innovative shows, Norwegian Cruise Line continues to push the boundaries of onboard entertainment, ensuring guests are treated to award-winning features such as Jersey Boys, Kinky Boots, and Burn the Floor.
  • Norwegian Speedway: The go-kart tracks on NCL ships feature electric-powered vehicles that can reach impressive speeds, creating an exhilarating experience for both kids and adults. Guests can channel their inner race car driver as they navigate sharp turns, accelerate down straightaways, and compete against fellow passengers in a friendly and competitive atmosphere.
  • Rock Climb: Whether you’re a novice climber looking to try something new or an experienced climber seeking a thrilling challenge, the rock climbing walls on Norwegian Cruise Line ships provide a unique and exhilarating experience. So, strap on your harness, test your skills, and reach new heights as you embark on a memorable rock climbing adventure at sea.
  • Aqua Park: NCL’s Aqua Parks feature a variety of exhilarating water slides, splash zones, and pools, ensuring there’s something for everyone to enjoy. From twisty-turny slides to high-speed racing slides, the water slides offer thrilling adventures that will leave guests wanting more. Whether you’re a daredevil seeking heart-pounding drops or someone looking for a more relaxed glide, the Aqua Parks provide a range of slide options for all levels of adventure.

For Kids

  • Entourage: The Entourage program offers a wide range of activities and events tailored to suit teenagers’ interests. From themed parties and dance-offs to karaoke nights, video game tournaments, and movie screenings, there’s always something happening to keep teenagers entertained. Trained youth staff members organize and oversee these activities, ensuring a fun and supervised environment for teenagers to enjoy.
  • Mini Golf: Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) offers a delightful mini-golf experience on board their ships, providing guests of all ages with a fun and entertaining activity during their cruise vacation. NCL’s mini-golf courses are designed to resemble real golf courses, complete with colorful obstacles, lush greens, and beautiful landscaping.
  • White Hot Party: This lively and vibrant celebration brings kids and parents together for a night of dancing, music, and fun. The White Hot Party is an electrifying experience where passengers dress in their brightest white attire and dance under an atmosphere charged with energy as live DJs spin the hottest tracks, creating a pulsating ambiance that gets everyone on their feet.
  • Splash Academy: designed specifically for children aged 3 to 12. Splash Academy provides a safe and supervised environment where kids can engage in age-appropriate activities, make new friends, and create unforgettable memories while cruising. The program is led by trained youth staff who facilitate a variety of fun and educational activities, including arts and crafts, interactive games, sports challenges, themed parties, and even special appearances by beloved characters. With dedicated spaces designed to spark imagination and creativity, such as themed play areas and interactive game zones, Splash Academy ensures that young cruisers have a blast while parents enjoy their own time on board.

For Adults

  • Mandara Spa: Mandara Spa offers a diverse menu of treatments tailored to meet the individual needs of each guest. With state-of-the-art facilities, including saunas, steam rooms, hot tubs, and relaxation lounges, guests can unwind and immerse themselves in pure bliss. Whether it’s a solo escape or a couples’ retreat, the Mandara Spa experience on NCL ships promises a journey of relaxation, rejuvenation, and pampering that allows guests to truly unwind and restore their minds, body, and spirit.
  • Howl at the Moon: This high-energy show takes place in a vibrant and lively venue, where talented piano players engage in a friendly musical battle, performing audience-requested songs and creating an unforgettable experience for guests. Howl at the Moon showcases a diverse range of music genres, from rock and pop hits to sing-along classics and everything in between. The interactive nature of the show encourages audience participation, with guests singing along, clapping, and dancing to the infectious beats.
  • Vibe Beach Club: This serene and upscale oasis provides a haven of relaxation and tranquility, allowing guests to unwind and soak up the sun in a sophisticated setting. Vibe Beach Club offers a private sun deck with comfortable loungers, plush seating, and attentive service. Guests can enjoy stunning panoramic views of the ocean while sipping on refreshing drinks from the dedicated bar. With a limited number of passes available, Vibe Beach Club ensures a more intimate and peaceful atmosphere for those seeking a serene escape from the bustling areas of the ship. The club also offers various amenities, such as hot tubs, chilled towels, and complimentary fruit skewers, further enhancing the luxurious experience.
  • Dining Options: With their innovative Freestyle Dining concept, guests have the freedom to dine when, where, and with whom they choose, creating a truly personalized culinary experience. NCL ships feature a wide range of restaurants, from casual eateries and buffets to specialty dining venues that offer diverse cuisines from around the world. Guests can indulge in gourmet steak at Cagney’s Steakhouse, savor Italian flavors at La Cucina, or enjoy fresh seafood at Ocean Blue.

Pros

  • Freestyle experience
  • Award-winning entertainment
  • More options for older kids and teens
  • Kids clubs
  • Variety of destinations

Cons

  • Limited cabin space (it can be tough to get a room for a family of 4+ on some ships)
  • Crowded pools

Best cruise lines for larger families

Price: *$352 per night

*Based on a 3-night destination for a family of 4 in October 2023

Top MSC Cruise Line Ships

  • MSC Bellissima
  • MSC Meraviglia
  • MSC Grandiosa

Top Destinations

  • Bahamas
  • Caribbean
  • Europe
  • Mexico
  • Egypt
  • Alaska
  • Hawaii

The Travel Breakdown Take

MSC Cruise Ships offers an excellent balance of family-friendly amenities, cultural experiences, and affordability. With its comprehensive Kids Club programs, MSC ensures children of all ages are engaged in entertaining activities tailored to their interests. MSC Cruises ships feature exciting water parks, Formula 1 simulators, and immersive video games to keep older kids and teens entertained. While the kids are occupied, parents can unwind at the Aurea Spa or enjoy world-class dining. MSC Cruises offers itineraries in the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, and beyond, allowing families to explore stunning destinations together. 

Family Entertainment

  • Lego Experience: The Lego experience onboard MSC ships is a haven for Lego enthusiasts of all ages, providing a variety of engaging activities and displays that ignite creativity and imagination. From dedicated play areas where kids can build and showcase their Lego creations to interactive workshops and competitions, the Lego experience on MSC Cruises offers endless fun and entertainment. Guests can immerse themselves in the world of Lego with themed events, treasure hunts, and even Lego-themed movie nights. 
  • MSC Formula Racer: Inspired by the thrilling world of Formula 1 racing, this onboard activity allows guests to channel their inner race car driver and compete against fellow passengers in a fast-paced race. The Formula Racer experience on MSC ships features state-of-the-art racing simulators that replicate the intensity and excitement of professional racing. Guests can choose from a selection of virtual race tracks and put their skills to the test as they navigate sharp turns and accelerate down straightaways.
  • XD Interactive Cinema: MSC cruises offers this cutting-edge attraction that takes movie watching to a whole new level by combining high-definition visuals, 3D effects, motion seats, and interactive elements. Guests can step into the XD Cinema and be transported into a world of action, adventure, and excitement. With a variety of movie options to choose from, including family-friendly films and adrenaline-pumping experiences, the XD Interactive Cinema provides an immersive experience that engages all the senses.
  • Aqua Park: NCL’s Aqua Parks feature a variety of exhilarating water slides, splash zones, and pools, ensuring there’s something for everyone to enjoy. From twisty-turny slides to high-speed racing slides, the water slides offer thrilling adventures that will leave guests wanting more. Whether you’re a daredevil seeking heart-pounding drops or someone looking for a more relaxed glide, the Aqua Parks provide a range of slide options for all levels of adventure.
  • Ziplining: The zipline is a popular attraction for adventure seekers of all ages, offering a unique and memorable experience onboard. It’s a fantastic opportunity to add a touch of adventure and excitement to your cruise, providing a thrilling activity that will have you feeling like you’re flying above the open sea. 

For Kids

  • Drone Academy: As the sun sets, the ship’s outdoor deck transforms into an illuminated racecourse, complete with neon lights, obstacles, and high-speed drones. Participants have the chance to put their piloting skills to the test in this adrenaline-pumping competition. The Drone Academy Night-Time Racing offers a unique and exhilarating experience as guests navigate their drones through challenging courses, racing against the clock and fellow competitors. 
  • Dance Crew Competition: Guests can form their own teams or join existing ones, selecting their preferred dance genre, whether it’s hip-hop, salsa, contemporary, or a fusion of styles. Throughout the cruise, crews receive professional coaching and rehearse their routines, preparing for the grand showdown. The Dance Crew Competition culminates in an exciting finale where crews perform their electrifying routines in front of a live audience and a panel of judges.
  • Masterchef at Sea Juniors: Under the guidance of experienced chefs, junior contestants learn various cooking techniques, discover new flavors, and create delicious dishes. From dessert decorating to pizza making, the MasterChef at Sea Juniors program introduces kids to the world of culinary in a fun and hands-on way. The highlight of the program is the thrilling cook-off competition, where young chefs put their skills to the test and vie for the coveted title of Junior MasterChef at Sea.
  • Water Park: The waterpark features a variety of exhilarating water slides, splash zones, and pools, ensuring there’s something for everyone to enjoy. From twisting and turning slides to high-speed racing slides, the water slides offer exciting adventures that will leave guests wanting more. Kids can splash and play in the vibrant water play areas, complete with fountains, water cannons, and interactive features.

For Adults

  • Aurea Spa: MSC guests can indulge in a variety of massages, facials, body wraps, and aromatherapy sessions delivered by skilled therapists who create a serene and soothing environment. The spa facilities feature saunas, steam rooms, and relaxation areas where guests can unwind and destress. For those seeking a more holistic approach, the Aurea Spa also offers yoga and fitness classes, as well as a well-equipped gym for guests to maintain their exercise routine.
  • Starship Club: Domo arigato mr roboto, The Roboto Bartender is a state-of-the-art machine that showcases precision and efficiency as it expertly crafts cocktails and beverages. Guests can place their orders using a touch screen, selecting from a wide range of classic and creative concoctions. The robotic arm then skillfully measures the ingredients, shakes or stirs the drink, and delivers it with flair. The Roboto Bartender adds a unique and entertaining element to the onboard bar experience, captivating guests with its mechanical precision and modern charm.
  • Beer Festival: During this special event, guests have the opportunity to sample an array of local and international craft beers, lagers, ales, and specialty brews. The Beer Festival showcases a curated selection of brews from renowned breweries, allowing guests to explore different flavors, styles, and beer traditions from around the world. From hoppy IPAs to smooth stouts, beer enthusiasts can indulge in a variety of tastings guided by knowledgeable experts who share insights about the brewing process and beer pairings.
  • Dining Options: Msc cruises offer top-notch restaurants, including the renowned “Eataly” restaurant, which offers an authentic Italian dining experience. Here, guests can savor traditional Italian cuisine prepared with the finest ingredients, including fresh pasta, gourmet pizzas, and delectable seafood dishes. Another must-visit is the elegant “Butcher’s Cut,” a steakhouse that showcases prime cuts of meat cooked to perfection, complemented by a selection of flavorful sauces and sides. For seafood lovers, “Ocean Cay” presents a delightful array of fresh and sustainable seafood creations inspired by the ocean’s bounty.

Pros

  • Tons of fun activities for the whole family
  • More affordable for families of all sizes
  • Kids clubs
  • Variety of destinations

Cons

  • The dining package can be confusing
  • Customer service on board can be poor

Family Cruise FAQ

Q: Are there age restrictions for children on these cruise lines?

A: Most cruise lines have programs and activities designed for children of different age groups, starting from infants or toddlers up to teenagers. However, specific age restrictions and requirements may vary between cruise lines and certain activities.

Q:Are there dining options for families with picky eaters or dietary restrictions?

A: Yes, these cruise lines typically offer a variety of dining options to suit different palates and dietary needs. They have main dining rooms, buffet restaurants, and specialty dining venues and often accommodate specific dietary restrictions or preferences. Additionally, children’s menus are typically available, catering to the tastes of young travelers.

Q: Are there medical facilities available for families onboard?

A:Yes, cruise ships typically have medical facilities and trained medical staff available to handle any health concerns or emergencies. It’s recommended to review the cruise line’s policies regarding medical services and insurance coverage.

Q: Are there additional costs for family activities on a cruise?

A: While many activities and amenities are included in the cruise fare, some cruise lines may charge extra for certain activities, specialty dining, or premium services. It’s advisable to check the cruise line’s pricing and policy to understand any additional costs.


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Marshall Dean

Meet Marshall Dean, a dedicated full-time blogger whose wanderlust has led him to discover more than 30 prime destinations, including Alaska, The Bahamas, Grand Turks, and Cancun. While exploring these enchanting places, Marshall enjoys savoring the delectable local cuisines, a passion that adds a flavorful twist to his travel experiences.

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