Your kids might feel like they’re too cool for school, but here are 10 cruise ship experiences they’ll never stop raving about! From laser tag and 3D movie theaters, to surfing simulators and aqua parks, these cruise ship experiences will guarantee a photo album full of unforgettable family vacation memories.
Without further ado, make like every kid on summer vacation, put off those summer assignments and continue below to check out The Cruise Web’s top family cruise experiences:
Splashaway Bay Aqua Park (Royal Caribbean)
Families won’t have themselves a better or wetter time than at Royal Caribbean’s Splashaway Bay aqua parks, featuring waterslides, water cannons, fountains, pools and the infamous drench bucket! With plenty to occupy everyone from toddlers to teens, Splashaway Bay is one of the most family-friendly aqua parks at sea. Note: Splashaway Bay requires a minimum height of 42”-45” for select waterslides.*
Royal Caribbean ships featuring Splashaway Bay: Adventure of the Seas, Harmony of the Seas, Liberty of the Seas, Majesty of the Seas, Ovation of the Seas & Symphony of the Seas
LEGO Experience On Board (MSC Cruises)
MSC Cruises is the only cruise line to offer the LEGO Experience On Board, featuring LEGO-themed play areas where activities include LEGO building competitions, LEGO video games and more! Plus, each ship with the LEGO Experience features one entire day during every cruise dedicated to family-friendly LEGO activities and entertainment. At the end of this day, children can even earn Junior LEGO Master Builder diplomas!
MSC Cruises ships featuring the Lego Experience: MSC Armonia, MSC Bellissima, MSC Grandiosa, MSC Lirica, MSC Meraviglia, MSC Opera, MSC Seaside, MSC Seaview & MSC Sinfonia (and eventually fleetwide)
Race Track (Norwegian Cruise Line)
This twisting and turning two-level race track—the largest at sea—offers thrills from high atop deck 19 of Norwegian Bliss. Because the go-carts are electric, and therefore run quiet so as not to disturb fellow guests, adrenaline-pumping engine noises are played through the carts’ headrests. Note: This exclusive race track costs $9.95 per guest, per race, and requires a minimum height of 48”.*
Norwegian Cruise Line ships featuring the Race Track: Norwegian Bliss
SkyRide (Carnival Cruise Line)
Race your family around a suspended two-lane track in this one-of-a-kind onboard experience. Best for the active and adventurous families, you can count on a good workout and great views! Note: SkyRide has a minimum height requirement of 54”, making this perfect for families with older children.*
Carnival ships featuring SkyRide: Carnival Horizon, Carnival Panorama & Carnival Vista
FlowRider (Royal Caribbean)
Exclusive to Royal Caribbean, the FlowRider surfing simulator offers the unique chance to catch the perfect wave onboard. Make it a family affair by cheering from the stadium seating! The FlowRider is free during scheduled operating times, but lines do form during peak hours. However, both private and group lessons are available from $69-$552 per session. Note: There is a minimum height requirement of 52” for the bodyboard and 58” for a stand-up flowboard.*
Royal Caribbean ships featuring the FlowRider: Adventure of the Seas, Allure of the Seas (2 FlowRiders), Anthem of the Seas, Explorer of the Seas, Freedom of the Seas, Harmony of the Seas (2 FlowRiders), Independence of the Seas, Liberty of the Seas, Navigator of the Seas, Oasis of the Seas (2 FlowRiders), Ovation of the Seas, Quantum of the Seas, Symphony of the Seas (2 FlowRiders) & Voyager of the Seas
Seuss at Sea (Carnival Cruise Line)
The whole family gets to join in the fun when the wacky world of Dr. Seuss comes to sea aboard Carnival Cruise Lines. Activities include an exclusive character parade, interactive Seuss-a-palooza Story Time, arts and crafts, and the popular Green Eggs & Ham Breakfast – equal parts delicious dining and character party. Plus, Carnival’s newest ships even feature Dr. Seuss Bookville, a character-themed library filled with children’s books. Note: The Green Eggs & Ham Breakfast costs $5 per guest, but all other Seuss at Sea activities are complimentary.*
Carnival ships featuring Seuss at Sea: Available on all Carnival cruise ships, with the exception of Dr. Seuss Bookville, which is only available on Carnival Freedom, Carnival Horizon, Carnival Panorama & Carnival Vista.
Laser Tag (Norwegian Cruise Line)
Test your family’s teamwork skills (or settle your family disputes) in an open-air laser tag arena! Modeled after an off-world space station, this family-friendly Laser Tag experience pits guests against each other in two heart-pounding sessions per battle. Note: Laser Tag costs $5 for two 5-minute sessions.*
Norwegian Cruise Line ships featuring Laser Tag: Norwegian Bliss
Thrill Theater (Carnival Cruise Line)
State-of-the-art 3D video effects combined with real live feedback—such as moving seats with wind and water effects—to create the coolest, most immersive movie-watching experience at sea. Thrill Theater programming is constantly changing, but you’ll always find a refreshing mix of family favorites and enthralling epics. Note: At the time of publishing this blog, Carnival’s Thrill Theater costs $7.95 per show (or $14.95 for unlimited shows).*
Carnival ships featuring the Thrill Theater: Carnival Horizon & Carnival Vista
Ropes Course (Norwegian Cruise Line)
Work together as a team or split up to conquer the 40+ challenging elements of these elevated ropes courses, featuring multiple levels and Sky Rail zip tracks. For a next-level thrill, step out onto The Plank that extends 8 feet over the side of the ship and features a camera to capture your triumphant—or trembling—moment. Note: Guests must be 48” or taller to enter the Ropes Course without a chaperone. The children’s Skytykes course is open to guests under 48” tall, as long as a chaperone is present.*
Norwegian Cruise Line ships featuring the Ropes Course: Norwegian Breakaway, Norwegian Escape & Norwegian Getaway
Ultimate Abyss (Royal Caribbean)
For brave families seeking unparalleled thrills, drop into the Ultimate Abyss. This 10-story slide is the tallest at sea, and starts 150 feet above sea level from a see-through glass platform on the top deck. Follow the energetic music into the mouth of the angler fish—your entrance to the Ultimate Abyss—and race your family down one of two twisting tunnels. As an added bonus, a camera is positioned to perfectly capture your expression at the end of each ride. Note: The Ultimate Abyss is complimentary, but requires a minimum height of 44”.*
Royal Caribbean ships featuring the Ultimate Abyss: Harmony of the Seas & Symphony of the Seas
To learn more about family-friendly cruising, or to book your next fun-filled cruise vacation, contact The Cruise Web’s expert cruise consultants at 1-800-377-9383.
* All published age limits, height requirements and/or admission costs are accurate as of June 2018, when this article was published. For current information, please contact The Cruise Web at 1-800-377-9383.