Easily the best part of taking a family cruise vacation is knowing that all the activities and amenities available to your little ones will keep them occupied and entertained, while you kick off your shoes and enjoying your favorite cocktail. While many cruises advertise themselves as being kid-friendly, it can be difficult to parse out which one will best fit your particular needs. To help you get an idea of which cruise line is the best for you and your little ones, check out these lines and all that they have to offer.
For an Adventurous Family Cruise: Royal Caribbean Cruises
Unmatched in awesome on-board activities, Royal Caribbean is perfect for the more adventurous of families. Get your hearts racing with surfing and skydiving simulators. For a more tactile thrill, try rock climbing or ziplining. Or maybe a team activity is more your family’s style, like an escape room or laser tag match. The out-of-this-world nighttime entertainment will leave you wanting more, with exhilarating ice shows, extravagant Aquatheater acrobatics, and classic Broadway performances. For more family fun back in the room, check out the Ultimate Family Suite on Symphony of the Seas, complete with a slide, a LEGO wall, and tons of games.
While activities for the whole family are important for a cruise with kids, you’ll also want to take some time for yourself! Fortunately, the kids clubs on Royal Caribbean cruises are large and include activities such as a theater, arts and crafts, science lab, video arcade, and scratch DJ academy. You can drop your kids off here confident that they will be thoroughly enthralled while you step away to enjoy one of the world-class dining experiences on board such as Wonderland, Teppanyaki, Portside BBQ and more.
For the Laid Back Family Cruise: Norwegian Cruise Line
Family cruises on Norwegian are perfect for families with both teens and tots in their rank and file. When trying to please both young children as well as young adults, you need to be free to do what you want, when you want. Freestyle dining helps by allowing you to dine whenever and wherever you please. The wide array of onboard activities includes go karts, water slides, ropes courses, rock climbing, motion simulators, mini golf and so much more to give kids of all ages something they can get excited for.
Splash Academy, the free kids club, offers different activities for every age. The different age groups at the club are 3 to 5, 6 to 9 and 10 to 12 years old with drop-off for younger children also available for a fee. And for your older kids? Teens are able to hang out in the teens-only night club, Entourage, where they will find TVs, video games, air hockey tables, and more. With the kids otherwise occupied, you’ll be free to bask in the sun, take your taste buds on a tour, revel in a cocktail, or whatever else your heart desires.
Family Cruise on a Budget: Carnival Cruises
If your family is on a tighter budget, you can still have the family vacation of your dreams. For a cruise with kids that doesn’t break the bank, Carnival has got your back! For starters, their kids area, Camp Ocean, is tons of fun for kids under 12 and is the only cruise line that allows 2 year olds to attend the free drop off program, so you won’t be paying extra just to get a little alone time. Furthermore, Carnival offers regular dance and pool parties for kids, as well as teen exclusive shore excursions and a Playstation and Xbox area.
Many of the restaurants here are celebrity themed, with the likes of Guy Fieri, Emeril Lagasse, Rudi Sodamin & Shaq being featured. Family-friendly activities include pools, SkyRide, ropes course, mini golf, IMAX theater, and water parks and slides. If that’s not enough for you, a roller coaster at sea offers a once-in-a-lifetime experience for your kids. Carnival really earns its name with the breadth of exciting and daring activities offered.
For Childhood Wonder: Disney Cruise Line
Of course, we couldn’t leave out Disney for our list of the best family cruises. This is all the magic of Disney’s iconic parks slapped onto a cruise ship and taken out onto the high seas. Meet-and-greets with Mickey Mouse and his friends? Check! Interactive movie-themed dining experiences? Check! Themed events like Pirates of the Caribbean night with a visit from Jack Sparrow? Check!
Naturally, staterooms are designed for your whole family, with bunk beds, split bathrooms, and plenty of storage. The kids club onboard, known as the Oceaneer Club, offers themed play areas that are unique to each ship, so your little ones can get a new experience with every sailing. This is what the wonder and magic of childhood is all about!
Don’t wait to start planning the vacation of a lifetime. To check out all of the options for family cruises, visit Cruises.com — we can help you book the smart way! We give you our exclusive bonus offers and all qualifying cruise line offers, plus all of the cruise line loyalty program benefits. Book online for the largest selection of cruise line deals at Cruises.com or call 800-288-6006 today.