Have a teen who’s too cool for family vacations? Take them on a cruise. Not only do cruise vacations give teenagers the freedom they crave, but more and more cruise ships are also offering unique perks for teens, from teen-only nightclubs to Broadway-caliber shows. These are some of the best cruise ships for teens.
1. Disney Dream
You’re never too old for Disney, and the luxurious amenities and services offered by Disney Cruise Line are seriously over the top. Among the highlights for teens are Vibe, a hip hangout with a sun deck with splash pools, water misters and classic games; an indoor dance floor; stage area for karaoke and talent shows; wall pods for gaming and watching movies; and a lounge with snacks and mocktails. Teens also love the AquaDuck, a water coaster that twists and turns its way around the ship—even going out over the water! You’ll also find the AquaDuck on Disney Fantasy, and all Disney ships offer a teens-only hangout.
2. Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
Teens can get happily get lost on Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas—it’s the largest cruise ship in the world! They’ll discover laser tag, ziplining, ice skating, mini-golf, a carousel and the electrifying Ultimate Abyss waterslide, along with performances of Hairspray and mesmerizing shows at the AquaTheater. The ship’s teen programming is divided into two age groups—12 to 14 and 15 to 17—allowing teens to watch movies, play games, sing karaoke and more with other kids their age.
3. Carnival Vista
One word: Skyride. The suspended bicycle takes riders around the Carnival Vista, 150 above the sea, in a breathtaking experience your teens won’t soon forget! Other thrills for teens include a ropes course, 3D movie experience at the Thrill Theater, and a sports complex with everything from outdoor billiards to mini-bowling. The Carnival Vista also offers two teens-only hangouts: Club 02 for 15- to 17-year olds, and for ages 12 to 14, Circle C.
4. Norwegian Getaway
Talk about an adrenaline rush. On Norwegian Getaway, teens can walk The Plank, a narrow plank that goes out over the sea. (All participants are properly harnessed, so you can take a breath now.) If that’s not enough, there’s also the heart-racing Free Fall waterslide. Other ship activities for teens include rock climbing, the Rock of Ages show and the Entourage Teen Zone for ages 13 to 17.
5. Royal Princess
It’s all about Remix, a teen club for ages 13 to 17 on Royal Princess. This one features a DJ booth where teens can create their own playlist, an indoor lounge with video games and an outdoor area with a wading pool. Regularly scheduled activities include teens-only mocktail parties, sports competitions, dance classes and late-night movies. Another reason we love Princess Cruise Line for teens: the Ocean Medallion, which allows parents to easily keep track of and communicate with their teens, no matter where they are on the ship.