Parents taking a cruise with tween or teenage children know these kids enjoy their space as much at sea as they do at home. The world’s most popular cruise lines have long recognized this and now offer more hangouts and activities tailored exclusively to these age groups than ever before.
Combine this space with plenty of activities for the whole family and it is easy to see why cruises make for memorable family vacations, no matter what one’s age. Special pricing for children up to seventeen years old applies on many cruises, and this makes a cruise truly value for money.
The following is a sample of the coolest places for older youth to hang out at sea in safe and secure settings:
Teens traveling on HAL cruise ships enjoy The Loft, a special lounge area designed to resemble a New York artist’s studio. The setting includes music and videos, comfortable furniture, Internet access stations, video games and karaoke, big screen TVs, and more. A secluded passageway leads upstairs to The Oasis, a teens-only sundeck featuring a nine-foot waterfall and a cooling cave. Teens can sunbathe during the day and dance under the stars at night to the beat of a state-of-the-art sound system and laser show.
Royal Caribbean International
This cruise line’s Voyager Class ships are a floating paradise for teenagers. The Living Room invites kids to hang out during the day, and is stocked with computers, books, and games. The Back Deck provides teens with a place to sunbathe together and enjoy a buffet dinner. Fuel, the teens-only disco, is open until 2 Am and provides a great place to mingle and meet new friends.
Norwegian Cruise Line’s Entourage for Teens offers a lounge for teens, a teen dance club plus fun activities. Tweens and teens can learn circus skills, play video games, play sports from dodgeball to soccer, and enjoy themed events and parties.
A little Disney magic makes cruising memorable for teens too. They are invited to spend time with their peers in the Vibe. These teen-only hangouts feature music, movies, video games, plasma TVs, a dance floor, an Internet café, and other activities. In addition, Disney hosts an H2O Splashdown and Party in Paradise farewell bash exclusively for teens.
Carnival Cruise Line offers Circle C for young teens ages 12 to 14 to hang out and enjoy planned activities including dance parties, games, outdoor movies and more. Circle C is available on all of Carnival’s ships.
Carnival’s Club O2 facilities continue to be very popular with teens aged 15–17. In addition to a pulsating dance floor and the latest music and lighting systems, Club O2 features a teen-oriented library and lounge with non-alcoholic specialty drinks.
This cruise line’s Grand Class ships have the largest facilities for teens. The Beach House teen center includes plenty of games, movies, big-screen TVs, and jukeboxes. On the Grand, Golden, and Star Princess, teens can use their own Jacuzzi and sun deck.
This cruise line’s Celebrity X-Club Youth Program offers teens plenty to do, especially during the summer and holiday family travel seasons. This includes supervised theme parties, pool games, movies, sports tournaments, karaoke, talent shows, fitness activities, and play stations.
Ultra-luxury cruise line Regent Seven Seas also offers teen programs. Regent’s Club Mariner operates during the summer and select holiday sailings and gives tween and teen travelers the opportunity to enjoy a variety of exciting, interactive activities, including whale watching in Alaska and art classes on tropical cruises, plus other unique adventure and cultural opportunities.
Select Crystal sailings during the summer and holidays also offer older youth things to do without their parents on ultra-luxury cruises. These include games, arts and crafts, video games, and other activities under the supervision of experienced activities directors. The Crystal Symphony and Serenity also feature Waves, a teen video arcade.