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10 Best Cruise Ships for Teens

March 02, 2020

Chart a course for fun with your teens on a family cruise. Here are a slew of ocean cruises that will appeal to even the most jaded teens.

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Photo: Disney Cruise Line

Sail Away on a Teen-Friendly Adventure

There's something for everyone on a cruise ship, even for discriminating teens. From dedicated teen clubs with loads of virtual-reality games to adult-free offshore excursions, today's cruise ships bring the fun for teenagers. Look for water slides, race tracks and massive open-air laser tag arenas, and even the first-ever roller coaster at sea. We've compiled the most fantastic cruise ships and sails that are so amazing teens won't be able to keep themselves from having a good time.

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Photo: Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Cruise Line: Carnival Panorama

The brand-new Carnival Panorama sails the Mexican Riviera year-round from its home port in Long Beach, California. Onboard this mega-ship, teens enjoy age-specific activities, like Circle C (ages 12 to 14) and Club O2 (ages 15 to 17). Think dance parties, video games, karaoke and dodgeball tourneys. In the high-flying Sky Zone, the first-ever trampoline park at sea, teens jump, bounce, flip and fly across a gigantic 12-lane trampoline court. Meanwhile, the ship's water park wows with two massive corkscrew water slides There's also the uber-popular SkyRide bike-in-the-sky aerial attraction and Sky Course, a suspended ropes course.

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Photo: Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line: Norwegian Encore

Chart a course for Bermuda from New York onboard the 4,000-passenger Norwegian Encore, which was Cruise Critic's pick for best new ship in 2019. Teens navigate hairpin turns and race laps at speeds up to 30 miles per hour at the Encore Speedway, the largest race track at sea. There's also an open-air laser tag arena, virtual reality, simulator rides and an escape room. At the Aqua Park, teens can chill with a frozen drink or take on the Aqua Racer, a tandem water slide. In Entourage, teens find a dedicated adult-free zone where they can play video games, listen to music and watch movies with other teens. Order up an over-the-top milkshake from Coco's on deck six. Delicious.

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Photo: MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises: MSC Seaside

Sailing to the Caribbean year-round from its home port in Miami, the MSC Seaside wins raves from teens for its adrenaline-pumping onboard activities, like dueling water slides, a full-scale Formula One simulator for high-speed racing and two of the longest zip lines at sea. There are even two full-size bowling lanes (no duck pins here). A brand-new thrill for teens is Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve, MSC's private island in the Bahamas, which will make its formal debut in May. Here teens can lounge on eight pristine white-sand beaches, explore the waters on a guided kayak tour, go on a snorkel safari and, importantly, learn about marine life, coral restoration and good environmental stewardship.

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