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weekend getaway cruise kid blast fun waterpark pool

WANNA HAVE FUN

YOUTH PROGRAMS BEST CRUISE ACTIVITIES FOR KIDS & TEENS 

Loads of laughter and unforgettable experiences go hand-in-hand when cruising with your kids. Royal Caribbean’s games, events, and cruise activities for kids are going on all over the ship throughout the day and into the evening hours, making family time a great time. And thanks to our award-winning Adventure Ocean® youth program, children love their cruise vacation just as much as their parents.

Loads of laughter and unforgettable experiences go hand-in-hand when cruising with your kids. Royal Caribbean’s games, events, and cruise activities for kids are going on all over the ship throughout the day and into the evening hours, making family time a great time. And thanks to our award-winning Adventure Ocean® youth program and the all-new DreamWorks Experience, children love their cruise vacation just as much as their parents.

Anthem of the Seas Fuel Teen Disco

Teen Lounge

The Teen Lounge is the spot for teens to hang out.

cruises from florida kid friendly

Adventure Science Lab

Junior scientists expand their horizons in the Adventure Science Lab.

onboard,  Adventure Ocean empty,  Aquanauts play room,  kids spaces, fleetwide

There are endless ways to satisfy kids' curiosity in the Adventure Ocean® Aquanauts group.

Harmony of the Seas Adventure Ocean Imagination Studio

Imagination Studio

Kids can create anything they want at the Imagination Studio at Adventure Ocean®.

Adventure Ocean Theater Seats

Adventure Ocean Theater

At Adventure Ocean® Theater, young stars take center stage.

Adventure Ocean Royal Babies and Tots Room

Babies and Tots Programs

Littles have big-time fun in the Babies and Tots programs at Adventure Ocean®.

Father and Daughter Using Water Colors in Adventure Ocean

Adventure Art

Adventure Art lets kids create their very own masterpiece.

Adventure Ocean Explorers Venue Playroom

Discovery is the name of the game in the Adventure Ocean® Explorers group.

Oasis of the Seas Adventure Ocean Workshop Girl Doing Art

Adventure Ocean ®

The new Adventure Ocean® youth program is designed to ignite the imagination.

Adventure Ocean Voyagers Play Area

The Adventure Ocean® Voyagers group gets active with games, competitions and educational activities.

Up and Away

Up and Away

Join puppets Mia and Max as they embark on a glow-in-the-dark adventure.

Colorful Fantasy Land depicted in poster for the Away We Go Cruise Show by Royal Caribbean

See what happens when you wish upon a star in Away We Go .

OUR AWARD WINNING ADVENTURE YOUTH PROGRAM 

With our Adventure Ocean® youth programs, not only will your children's time on board be fun, it will be educational too! Aquanauts (ages 3-5 years) will have fun conducting cool experiments and becoming Certified Jr. Adventure Scientists. Our specially designed Explorers program (ages 6-8 years) is packed with exciting cruise activities for kids, which includes themed parties. Voyagers (ages 9-12 years) will explore a range of activities that puts the "cool" back into learning.

Adventure Ocean Youth Program area, consider one of the best activities for kids on a cruise.

NIGHT OUT FOR ADULTS LATE NIGHT PARTY ZONE

Father and son playing in a playroom onboard a family-friendly cruise.

FOR OUR TINIEST GUESTS& BABIES & TOTS PROGRAMS

Social 100 Teens Selfie

FUN ISN'T JUST FOR ADULTS TEENS & TWEENS PROGRAM 

Whether hanging out with other cruisers or checking out games, sports and parties, our teen-only spots are the places to be. Our Teen Program also allows older kids the freedom to come and go as they please. They’ll love it so much the only thing you might wish for is a little more time with your kids.

cruises from florida kid friendly

THE LIVING ROOM

Go ahead and put your feet up — this is a teens-only space where you can hang out and just chill, play games and video games, and even compete in tournaments.

Whether you want to chill out or all-out dance, drop by teen-only spaces where you can hang out late. Start at the teen lounge, a laid-back hideaway, and then amp up the energy at the teen-only nightclub.

Symphony of the Seas Fuel Teen Disco Venue

FUEL TEEN CLUB

Teens get their own late-night party on the dance floor with a DJ spinning all the best bangers.

See the Shrek movies as well as other fantastic DreamWorks films brought to life in our 3D theatre or in your stateroom.

The Arcade for kids and teens is one of the top things to do for children on a cruise.

THE ARCADES

Blips, bleeps, clangs and cheers. Play to win in a classic arcade atmosphere with timeless games like Pacman and table hockey, plus the latest – Guitar Hero, Fast and Furious Drift and more.

YOUTH FACILITIES & AMENITIES 

Adventure Ocean youth facilities are designed to meet the needs of younger guests. Kids will have a blast at our complimentary, award-winning Adventure Ocean® Youth Program. We break kids and teens out into age groups so that they can enjoy specialized programs made to expand their imaginations in interactive, multi-room spaces designed just for them. It’s an awesomely fun, totally edu-taining adventure.

movies on demand

See the some great comedy movies as well as other fantastic action films brought to life in our 3D theatre or in your stateroom.

Library onboard Royal Caribbean's family-friendly cruises.

FAMILY LIBRARY

Available in the ships library, this area offers classic and popular family titles in a variety of languages (based on the ship’s itinerary) and a comfortable reading area for kids to relax and delve into a book, individually or with a parent.

Family playing mini golf on a cruise. A cruise activity for families with children.

FAMILY TIME

No doubt about it – our ships are built for families. Get together for festivals, poolside games, physical challenges, karaoke nights, theme nights and more.

Girl looking at food part of the My Family Time cruise dining experience for kids.

FAMILY TIME DINING

My Family Time Dining is offered for the first seating time in our main dining room, for children ages three to 11. Kids enjoy their meal within 40 minutes of seating, before heading to the evening's Adventure Ocean activities. The program starts the second evening you're onboard. After that, you can use it each evening or whenever you wish.

Soda Being Poured in a Royal Reusable Cup

CLASSIC SODA PACKAGE

Allows guests to enjoy as many soft drinks as they like for a fixed price for the duration of the cruise.

Allows guests up to 18 years of age to enjoy as many soft drinks as they like for a fixed price for the duration of the cruise. Learn more

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best family-friendly cruises from Florida

5 Best Family-Friendly Cruises from Florida for Fun and Adventure

By Shreya Suresh Kumar

Are you looking for a vacation that will keep the whole family entertained? Look no further than these five incredible cruises from Florida. With options for adventure-seekers, relaxation enthusiasts, and everyone in between, there’s something for everyone on these family-friendly cruises. So pack your bags, grab your loved ones, and get ready for an unforgettable vacation at sea with mesmerizing views.

1. Disney Cruise Line

No list of family-friendly cruises from Florida would be complete without mentioning the Disney Cruise Line . With four ships departing from Port Canaveral, Miami, and Port Everglades, there’s no shortage of options for families looking to set sail with Mickey and friends. From water parks to live shows, there’s something for everyone on a Disney cruise. Plus, with themed dining experiences and character meet and greets, your kids will feel like they’re in a magical world all their own.

2. Royal Caribbean

Royal Caribbean is another great option for families looking for a fun and exciting cruise. With ships departing from Miami and Port Canaveral, Royal Caribbean offers a range of activities for all ages, from rock climbing and mini-golf to ice skating and zip-lining. And with award-winning Broadway-style shows and delicious dining options, there’s plenty to keep parents entertained too. You shouldn’t miss this one at any cost.

cruises from florida kid friendly

3. Carnival Cruise Line

Another popular choice for the best family-friendly cruises from Florida is the Carnival Cruise Line. It is known for its fun and festive atmosphere, making it a great choice for families looking for a lively vacation. With ships departing from Miami, Port Canaveral, and Tampa, Carnival offers a range of family-friendly activities, including water parks, mini-golf, and even an IMAX theater. Catering to a wide range of tastes, the dining choices at the resort are sure to satisfy even the most food enthusiasts, with highlights such as Guy Fieri’s Burger Joint and the BlueIguana Cantina. Sounds amazing, right?

cruises from florida kid friendly

4. Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line is one of the most popular options for family-friendly cruises from Florida. With ships departing from Miami and Port Canaveral, you will not regret this one. One of the highlights of a Norwegian cruise is the line’s “Freestyle Cruising” concept, which allows passengers to dine and relax on their own schedule. And with activities like a ropes course, mini-golf, and a water park, there’s plenty to keep everyone entertained. You’ll be spoilt for choice.

5. MSC Cruises

If you want a more European-style cruise experience, consider MSC Cruises. MSC offers a vast variety of family-friendly activities, such as a water park, mini-golf, and a 4D cinema, for those sailing from Miami. And with a focus on Mediterranean-style dining and entertainment, parents will feel like they’re on a sophisticated getaway, while kids will enjoy the fun and excitement of a family vacation.

Don’t miss out on incredible family-friendly cruises from Florida! No matter what age your family members are, these cruises offer something for everyone. With endless options for activities, dining, and entertainment, you are sure to make some lasting memories from this trip. So, why wait any longer? Book your family-friendly cruise now and start planning your next adventure together!

Read to know  6 Fun Road Trips to Take from Washington DC .

Shreya Suresh Kumar

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cruises from florida kid friendly

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Family Cruises With Princess

Voyages of discovery and connection that the whole family can share., best family cruise destinations.

Explore our top picks for  best family-friendly cruises

Alaska Cruise Destinations and Cruisetours

See the Great Land’s glaciers, wildlife, and national parks.

Caribbean Cruise Destinations

Walk along sun-kissed beaches in a laid-back style.

European Cruise Destinations

Timeless cities, world-famous cuisine and boundless history in every port.

Australia & New Zealand Cruise Destinations

The Great Barrier Reef, stunning coastlines and relaxed charm are calling.

3rd and 4th Guests Sail Free

Cruise activities for the whole family.

Princess makes sure there are a variety of family friendly cruise activities so you have plenty of ways to spend quality time together

Adventures every member of the family will enjoy

Unique and immersive travel experiences, including more time in more ports, Discovery™ and Animal Planet™ shore excursions, and award-winning onboard programs, have earned Princess the distinction of "Best Cruise Line for Multi-Generational Family Travel" in the  Porthole Cruise Magazine 2018 Readers' Choice Awards.  Get more out of your family cruise vacation when you sail with Princess.

Princess MedallionClass® For Family Cruises

Get more from family time with the MedallionClass experience on all ships. Easy embarkation and customizing dining preferences, including pace, means fewer meltdowns and smoother family cruising. Interactive games and the fast, reliable MedallionNet® Wi-Fi keep the gang entertained. And you’ll always be able to find the kids (or the adults!) anywhere on board. Connect with what matters most – each other – on your Princess MedallionClass cruise.

Get in the family zone

New on the Caribbean Princess® family cruise ship, the Reef Family Splash Zone is the perfect place to relax, have fun and enjoy the water. An interactive splash pad with giant whale feature will entertain kids of all ages with showers, sprays and a water jet from the whale's spout! Oversized backyard games in the all-ages game zone set the stage for some good natured family competition. Celebrate after with playful mocktails for the kids and refreshing cocktails for the parents at our kid-friendly bar area. When you need a break from the sun, head to the comfy loungers and sheltered shade canopies. All Princess family cruises create a lifetime of unrivaled experiences and unforgettable memories.

Discovery™, Discovery Family™ & Animal Planet™ shore excursions

Welcome to enriching, immersive, once-in-a-lifetime experiences your whole family will never forget — especially on unique Discovery™ and Animal Planet™ Exclusive Tours that can't be booked independently, and are available only through Princess Cruises.

Voyage to the stars

Princess enables everyone in the family to find their place among the stars. With top-deck stargazing, an indoor planetarium with real-time views of planets, stars and galaxies, Camp Discovery activities, expert insights through Encounters with Discovery at SEA, engaging stateroom content and more, there are many unique experiences for every family to enjoy.

Meet Stanley

Make friends with the cuddliest bear at sea. Interact with Stanley throughout the voyage — at photo ops, story time, bear games, and crafts! You can even get your own Stanley exclusively on board and bring him home as a reminder of your special journey. And don’t forget to share your adventures on social media with #StanleyAtSea.

Immersive Princess entertainment

The thrill of being part of a live-theater audience is something family members will relive for years. And Princess-exclusive, Broadway-caliber stage shows from award-winning composer Steven Schwartz are a dazzling way to bring everyone together. You'll also find plenty of opportunities for audience participation with  The Voice of the Ocean  musical competition, the  High Seas Heist  mystery challenge and  Can You Survive?  game show.

So many fresh ways to dine together

Eat dinner every night as a family and try new regional foods together. Satisfy everyone's personal tastes with a delicious variety of casual dining options, special kids' menus in the Main Dining Room, and the ability to cater to individual dietary preferences upon request. Princess does the cooking and cleaning so you can spend more time focusing on what matters most.

Family cruise celebration vacations

The heart of a celebration is spending time with those you love. But what if one person you love is 17, and the other is 71? It’s hard to pick an activity that appeals to everyone. A Princess family cruise is a perfect chance to celebrate together while enjoying the hundreds of amazing activities taking place on Princess ships from morning to night.

Family-friendly cruise lodging

Princess makes it easy to sail together in comfort. ‭In addition to comfortable Mini-Suites and spacious Suites, ‭larger groups can ‭opt for a Family ‭Suite which includes ‭two interconnecting ‭staterooms and ‭sleeps up to eight on select ships.

Explorers Come in All Ages. And Princess Inspires Their Imaginations

Uniquely themed centers host engaging activities specially designed to help them play, huddle, create and discover. Exciting classes, activities, and events designed for different ages make for an amazing cruise for kids.

Exciting youth & teen clubs

In partnership with Discovery™, Princess has developed engaging new youth programming and wonder-filled centers designed for our youngest guests.

  • Places for young explorers to learn about the world and discover new interests.
  • Invitations to meet new friends and enjoy memorable experiences while sailing.

Kids Cruise Activities — Ages 6 Months - 2 Years

Making our youngest voyagers feel right at home.

Princess welcomes babies, toddlers and preschoolers to the world of cruising with services and amenities that make life easier for their families as well. These young guests are welcome in Camp Discovery when accompanied by a parent. Mini-Suites and Full Suites offer full-sized bath tubs, and wash bins for showers are available. Staterooms with balconies are perfect for naptime. You can request high chairs, booster seats and cribs. We also provide complimentary jarred baby food. And fresh, pureed foods (fruits, veggies and rice) are available in the main dining room, specialty restaurants, and Horizon Court or World Fresh Marketplace.

Kids Cruise Activities — Ages 3-12

The treehouse — ages 3-7.

This bright, whimsical, forest-themed center for children features hands-on activities and programs surrounded by captivating creatures.

The Lodge — Ages 8-12

Inspired by the great outdoors, this cozy center is filled with sports activities and comfortable places for kids to explore, hang out and lounge.

Sports, games, physical activities

  • Scavenger hunts, group games, basketball tournaments, ping pong competitions, dodgeball, skeeball, dance parties and more!
  • Try your skills on PlayStation®, Nintendo Wii™, and XBOX Kinect consoles, board games, air hockey and ping-pong.
  • Join dance classes and engage in friendly competitions.
  • Enjoy sports including basketball, mini golf, yoga and miniature Olympics.

Places, Animals, Science

  • Mythbusters Jawsome Sharks program: Try hands-on challenges, featuring Tori Belleci from the show.
  • Animal Planet™ uncovers ferocious secrets in  Shark Attack , and learn squid anatomy in  Just Squiddin’ Around .
  • Learn the science of magic or become an engineer for a day with programs from the  California Science Center , home of the  Endeavour  space shuttle.
  • Inspire a love of nature from the regions we sail with Animal Planet Endangered Species and Glacier Bay Jr. Ranger programs.

Fun interactions with peers

  • NEW!  Rhythm of the Caribbean : Caribbean music, dance, trivia and crafts light up the night for the whole family.
  • Wild Alaska Festival : Celebrate Alaskan nature at this family theme night.
  • Discovery at Sea™ theme days with activities inspired by  Shark Week  and Animal Planet.
  • Talent Shows showcase singing, dancing, musical skill, and jokes.
  • Theme Nights include Pirate, Mexican Fiesta and competitive Challenge themes.

Arts, crafts, inventions

  • Compete: Join the Klutz® paper airplane challenge or Lego boat-building contest.
  • JrCHEF@Sea: Learn cake decorating and enjoy the results with your family.
  • Make Animal Planet puppets, masks and paintings inspired by regional wildlife.
  • Klutz® Art Projects: Craft bracelets, velvet art, jewelry and more.

Teens Cruise Activities — Ages 13-17

The beach house — ages 13-17.

This contemporary beach-themed lounge is "the" place for teens to hang out, socialize and connect.

You won't want to miss our  Rock the Boat Party . It’s the occasion to dress up, stroll down the red carpet and flash your VIP badge, then enjoy an evening of mocktails, awards and celebrating with your friends.

Competitions

Give your skills a workout in our video game tournaments. Play to win in air hockey, foosball and ping-pong. Or compete in outdoor sporting activities like dodgeball and basketball tournaments.

Dance classes

Perfect your moves with guidance from one of our crew dancers, then show what you’ve got at dance competitions and parties.

Movies & more

Get your scream on at  Scary Movie Night , or catch some recent hits at  Late Night Movies . Or cast yourself in a whole new light with teen makeovers and glitter tattoos.

Youth & Teen Program Registration

Registration Form with Youth Guidelines & Safety Measures (PDF)  or  Register Online

Registration Form with Teen Guidelines & Safety Measures (PDF)  or  Register Online

Please note:  During voyages with a high number of families onboard, we will make all efforts to accommodate interested parties. However, participation in our program cannot be guaranteed. Hours of operation may change to better serve our guests.

Hours of Operation:  Sea days 9:00am to 12:00 pm | 1:00pm - 5:00pm | 6:00pm - 10:00pm. Port Days 8:00am - 5:00pm | 6:00pm - 10:00pm. Depending on the itinerary, port hours may be expanded. Check the schedule once onboard. The program is complimentary during port days and advanced bookings are not required.

Kids and Youth center facilities vary across Princess cruise ships.

Parents Night Out

Where kids can play while you're away.

Family cruises are all about connection, but “you time” is still an important part of your vacation experience. Rest assured, whether you've planned a day of exploring or a romantic night out, the group kidsitting at our Youth Centers offers your children between the ages of 3 and 12 plenty to look forward to. It's the perfect place for them to relax or play games with their friends. And the charge is just $5.00 USD per hour per child.

Dinner events exclusively for kids

Children and adults alike get the chance to enjoy dinner on their own with a variety of opportunities for kids to eat with their friends and Princess Youth Staff. They'll find kids-only dinners on select evenings, a teens-only dinner on a formal night in an exclusively reserved section of the dining room, as well as ice cream and pizza parties held throughout the voyage. Please be sure the Youth Staff members know about any food allergies your child may have.

Cruise Activities for Young Adults — Ages 18-20

Imagine a secret society. Only those invited can join. Guests ages 18-20 will learn the secret handshake and be granted a special code word to unlock an exclusive list of Club1820 events made just for them. No parents, no little siblings, no official hosts.

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Best kid-friendly cruises, discovery at sea.

DiscoveryTM & Animal PlanetTM bring the spirit of adventure to every Princess cruise.

What's New On Board

Take a peek at our latest offerings

Food & Dining

Award-winning and made from scratch

Enriching Activities

Relaxing days & enriching experiences

cruises from florida kid friendly

Top Tips for Booking Family-Friendly Cruises from Florida

by Judith Eve | Feb 26, 2024 | Destinations

cruises from florida kid friendly

Embarking on a family-friendly cruise from Florida isn't just a vacation; it's stepping into a world of endless fun and adventure that's perfect for every member of the family. From thrilling water slides to enchanting shows, these cruises pack in excitement for kids and relaxation for adults, all under the sunny skies of the Sunshine State.

Choosing the right cruise means finding that sweet spot where the interests of toddlers, teens, and adults align. Luckily, Florida's ports are gateways to itineraries that tick all these boxes, offering a blend of tropical escapes and cultural excursions. Whether it's exploring ancient ruins or building sandcastles on pristine beaches, there's something onboard for everyone.

So, if you're dreaming of a getaway that keeps the whole family smiling from embarkation to the final farewell, a cruise from Florida might just be the ticket. Let's dive into what makes these voyages a must for families seeking fun and togetherness on the high seas.

Top Family-Friendly Cruise Lines Departing from Florida

When considering a vacation that meets the desires of every family member, several cruise lines stand out for their exceptional family-friendly offerings. Departing from various ports in Florida, these cruise lines provide a mix of adventure, relaxation, and unforgettable experiences.

Disney Cruise Line is often the first to come to mind for a family cruise. Known for bringing the magic of Disney to the high seas, Disney cruises offer themed entertainment, character meet-and-greets, and activities that fascinate both the young and the young at heart. Their ships depart from Miami and Port Canaveral, ensuring easy access for families flying into or driving to Florida.

Royal Caribbean International impresses with its innovative ships that feature attractions like rock climbing walls, ice-skating rinks, and surf simulators. The cruise line's private island, Perfect Day at CocoCay, promises a day of thrills and relaxation for all ages. With departures from Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, and Orlando, selecting a convenient itinerary is a breeze.

For families that adore interacting with nature and exploring vibrant cultures, Carnival Cruise Line offers an engaging mix of on-board activities and shore excursions. From water parks on the deck to educational programs about the destinations they visit, Carnival cruises are designed to entertain and enlighten. Ports of departure in Florida include Miami, Jacksonville, and Tampa.

Each of these cruise lines has its unique appeal, ensuring that no matter the family's interests, there's a perfect cruise waiting to whisk them away from Florida's shores. With a range of options covering various price points, durations, and destinations, selecting the right cruise is an exciting part of the vacation planning process.

Choosing the ideal cruise often involves considering the specific interests and ages of family members. Whether it's thrilling adventures, peaceful escapes, or enriching cultural experiences, the right cruise can deliver a memorable vacation that appeals to everyone.

Onboard Attractions for Kids of All Ages

cruises from florida kid friendly

Cruise lines departing from Florida are well aware that the key to a successful family vacation lies in keeping kiddos entertained. From toddlers to teens, they've thought of everything. Disney Cruise Line, for instance, brings fairy tales to life with characters mingling among passengers and interactive play areas straight out of storybooks.

Disney Cruise Line: A Magical Experience

Disney's ships feature D Lounge, a family club where everyone can join in games and entertainment. AquaDuck , the first water coaster at sea, twists and turns for thrilling splashes above deck.

Royal Caribbean International: A World of Innovation

Royal Caribbean takes adventure seriously with their onboard FlowRider surf simulators and rock-climbing walls. They even have ice-skating rinks and bumper cars. Their teen clubs offer a cool hangout spot, while younger kids can enjoy character encounters from popular DreamWorks movies.

Carnival Cruise Line: Fun for the Whole Family

Carnival Cruise Line keeps the fun rolling with WaterWorks, their onboard waterpark. They have mini-golf courses and SkyRide, a pedal-powered aerial attraction that offers breathtaking views. Camp Ocean, their marine-themed kids' program, inspires young explorers through engaging activities.

Each cruise line has meticulously designed their onboard attractions to cater to children's diverse interests and energy levels. Whether it's meeting their favorite characters, making a splash, or trying out new and exciting activities, there's something on board for kids of every age.

Entertainment Options for Teens and Adults

cruises from florida kid friendly

Family-friendly cruises from Florida don't just cater to the youngest travelers; they're packed with exciting options for teens and adults as well, ensuring everyone in the family finds their slice of vacation bliss. For teens craving independence and new friendships, specialized programs and dedicated spaces aboard these cruises offer the perfect backdrop.

Disney Cruise Line stands out with its Vibe teen club, a parent-free zone designed to resemble a chic urban loft where teens can hang out, watch movies, play video games, and even attend themed dance parties. The D Lounge on Disney ships also offers family trivia and karaoke nights, allowing teens and adults to enjoy entertainment together.

Meanwhile, Royal Caribbean International takes adventure to the high seas for all ages. Its ships feature the FlowRider surf simulator, rock climbing walls, and zip lines that invite both teens and adults to challenge themselves while bonding over thrilling experiences. For evening entertainment, Royal Caribbean's Broadway-style shows are a hit among adults, while teens might prefer the teen-only discos where they can socialize with peers.

Carnival Cruise Line also offers a variety of entertainment that appeals to both demographics. The WaterWorks waterpark and SkyRide , a pedal-powered aerial ride, provide fun under the sun for adventurous family members. Adults looking for a break can enjoy comedy shows and live music available nightly, ensuring there's never a dull moment.

Each cruise line's commitment to creating a welcoming and entertaining environment for all ages signifies their understanding that unforgettable vacations are about exploring, laughing, and making memories together. Whether through adrenaline-pumping adventures or laid-back evenings filled with laughter, these cruising experiences weave lasting bonds among family members.

Exciting Shore Excursions for the Whole Family

Family-friendly cruises departing from Florida don't just offer onboard entertainment; they also provide a plethora of shore excursions designed to captivate guests of all ages. These excursions offer families the opportunity to explore beautiful destinations, immerse themselves in local cultures, and create unforgettable memories together.

Disney Cruise Line stands out with its exclusive Castaway Cay, an island paradise reserved for its passengers. Families can enjoy a day filled with snorkeling in the crystal-clear waters, cycling around the island, or relaxing on the white sandy beaches. Royal Caribbean International not only takes its guests to stunning Caribbean locales but also offers adventures like zip-lining through lush rainforests and swimming with dolphins, ensuring that every family member finds something thrilling.

Carnival Cruise Line excels in providing a mix of relaxation and adventure. Its excursions range from scenic tours of ancient ruins to hands-on cooking classes with local chefs. This variety means that whether you're seeking adrenaline-pumping activities or cultural experiences, there's something for everyone.

One notable aspect of shore excursions on these family-friendly cruises is their emphasis on educational experiences disguised as fun. Children and teens can learn about marine conservation, historical landmarks, and local ecosystems, all while having the time of their lives. It's a brilliant way to combine learning with leisure, ensuring that the trip is not only enjoyable but also enriching.

As families disembark to explore these destinations, they're not just taking a break from the ship; they're stepping into new adventures that will bond them closer together. The carefully curated shore excursions are as much a part of the vacation experience as the onboard activities, tailored to ensure that every family member has an unforgettable journey.

Tips for Planning a Smooth Family Cruise Vacation

cruises from florida kid friendly

When the lure of the sea calls, and you're eager to embark on a journey from the sunny docks of Florida, a bit of planning can go a long way. Family cruises are an unforgettable adventure, but ensuring everyone's needs and preferences are met requires some forethought.

First, research is key . Each family member might have different expectations for the vacation, so it’s important to discuss options together. Whether it’s snorkeling adventures or cooking classes on the itinerary, involving everyone in the planning process ensures that the trip offers something special for all.

Booking early can also greatly benefit your travel plans. Many cruise lines offer early bird discounts and more cabin choices , allowing families to secure accommodations that best suit their needs. Furthermore, some cruises offer themed adventures, which can fill up quickly. Snagging those spots early means you're less likely to miss out on these unique experiences.

Another valuable tip is to familiarize yourself with the ship’s layout and amenities before boarding. Cruise ships are like floating cities, packed with activities, dining options, and entertainment. Knowing where everything is located can help you maximize your time enjoying the facilities rather than navigating them.

Packing is another crucial aspect to consider. While it's tempting to pack for every possible scenario, remember that cabin space is limited. Focus on essentials and maybe a few extras for special occasions. Additionally, many cruise lines offer laundry services, which can help lighten your luggage.

Budgeting for extra expenses is wise as well. While many onboard activities and dining options are included, shore excursions, specialty restaurants, and onboard shopping can add to your overall expenses. Setting aside a budget for these additional costs can help avoid any surprises.

Involving kids in the planning can enhance their excitement and anticipation for the trip. Letting them choose a few activities or excursions can make them feel part of the adventure and build their enthusiasm.

Finally, remember to check travel documents and requirements for each destination. Ensuring passports are up to date and understanding the visa requirements, if any, can save a lot of stress. Some destinations may also have specific health or vaccination requirements.

By keeping these tips in mind, families can set the stage for a seamless and memorable cruise vacation from Florida. With a little planning, they're bound to create lasting memories on the high seas, exploring new horizons together.

Key Takeaways

  • Family-friendly cruises from Florida are the perfect blend of adventure and relaxation, offering something for every member of the family, from toddlers to adults.
  • Leading cruise lines for family vacations include Disney Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, and Carnival Cruise Line, each offering unique onboard activities and attractions catered to children, teens, and adults.
  • Onboard attractions are diverse, ranging from water coasters and surfing simulators to character meet-and-greets, ensuring entertainment for kids and teens alike.
  • Adults and teens have ample entertainment options, including teen clubs, Broadway-style shows, and adrenaline-pumping activities like rock climbing and zip-lining.
  • Shore excursions add a rich layer to the cruise experience, allowing families to explore new cultures, engage in adventure sports, and relax on beautiful beaches, all while providing educational experiences for younger travelers.
  • Planning a smooth family cruise vacation involves early booking, researching shore excursions, familiarizing with the ship, packing pragmatically, budgeting for extras, involving children in planning, and ensuring travel documents are current.

Embarking on a family cruise from Florida can be the adventure of a lifetime, offering something special for every member of the family. With careful planning, early booking, and a keen eye on everyone's preferences, it's easy to craft an experience that'll be talked about for years to come. Remember, the key to a successful voyage lies in the details—packing smart, budgeting wisely, and ensuring all travel documents are in order. By keeping these tips in mind, families are set to enjoy not just the destinations but the journey itself, weaving together moments that turn into cherished memories. So, grab those suitcases and set sail on an unforgettable family cruise from the Sunshine State!

cruises from florida kid friendly

Hello, explorers! I’m Judith Eve, the founder and principal writer for HeyFamilyTravelers and CruisingtonPost.

My home is nestled in beautiful South Florida, where the sun kisses the waves and the beach stretches out like an endless welcome mat. It’s a gorgeous place that brings joy and inspiration, but my spirit has always been captivated by the allure of distant shores and unique cultures. The thrill of packing a suitcase, stepping aboard a plane or a ship, and waking up in a new destination never fails to ignite my soul.

I started my life’s adventure as a mother of two wonderful children who have since blessed me with three delightful grandchildren. The memories we’ve built exploring the globe together are the treasures of my heart. This love for family and travel is the core of HeyFamilyTravelers, a place where I share our stories, tips, and experiences, aiming to inspire other families to embark on their own adventure-filled journeys.

Over the years, my family and I have discovered our shared passion for cruising. There is something incredible about floating on the endless sea, with world-class service, fabulous entertainment, and the excitement of exploring multiple destinations in one trip. My love for this unique form of travel led me to establish CruisingtonPost, another platform where I focus on sharing our sea-borne adventures, cruise reviews, and travel advice.

My objective is simple. I want to encourage everyone, especially families and seniors, to step out of their comfort zones, explore the world, and create their own cherished memories. Life’s journey is full of beautiful places and moments waiting to be discovered. I hope that through my stories and articles, you’ll find the inspiration and practical guidance you need to set sail on your own grand adventure.

Thank you for stopping by. I look forward to sharing our family’s escapades with you and hearing about your own travels!

Happy Travels, Judith Eve

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Cruise Canaveral

Cruise Canaveral > Port Canaveral Cruise Lines > Family Cruises

Family Cruises from Port Canaveral

All of the cruises out of Port Canaveral are kid-friendly. Because of the close proximity of Orlando, it's a family-oriented market that attracts affordable, casual cruise lines with lots of activities for children.

Disney Fantasy cruise

Family-Friendly Disney Cruises

Disney Cruises is obviously geared toward kids. Huge youth club areas are packed with top-quality fun that only Disney can provide. On the Disney Dream and Disney Fantasty ships that sail from Port Canaveral, the Oceaneer Club (for ages 3 to 12) has four themed lands: Andy's Room, Monsters Academy, Pixie Hollow, and Explorer Pod. Disney character greeting are available at designated areas during all cruises.

Kid-friendly dining options on the cruise include Animator's Palate restaurant, which comes with a dinner show starring Disney characters of course. Enchanted Garden and Royal Palace are other main dining rooms featuring a wide choice of dishes and a kid's menu. Cabanas buffet is designed like a beach boardwalk.

The whole family will enjoy a Disney Cruise's deck parties such as fireworks and Pirate Night, live Broadway-style shows featuring Disney characters and stories, waterslides, splash zones, and movies both indoors and outside by the pool.

Carnival cruise

Family Carnival Cruises

Carnival Cruise fun ships have been attracting families for many years. Youth programs include Club O2 for teens, Circle C (ages 12 to 14), and Camp Carnival (ages 2 to 11). The Carnival Valor ship has Seuss at Sea character parades and storytime. ZSpa is a spa experience just for teen girls.

On Carnival cruises you can pick a casual dining option like Guy's Burger Joint which will probably appeal to kids. The main dining room menus change daily, and they have kids' menus aimed at picky eaters. Pizza is always available.

The entire family will like Dive-In Movies outside by the pool, Twister waterslide, mini golf, and live shows.

Norwegian family cruise

Kids on Norwegian Cruise Line

The Norwegian Cruise Line Splash Academy youth program features the unique Circus School, where kids learn things like balancing, juggling, plate spinning, and stilts based on age. The supervised Entourage program for teens (ages 13 to 17) offers video games, movies, arts, music, sports and a cool lounge.

Free dining options include the main dining rooms (with four-course dinners), casual buffets, and 24-hour room service. If you decide to try one of the added-free specialty restaurants, kids 12 and under eat free from the kids' menu.

Norwegian Cruise family-friendly accommodation choices include family mini-suites and interconnecting staterooms.

Royal Caribbean cruise

Family-Friendly Royal Caribbean Cruises

Royal Caribbean Cruises are the most innovative in the industry, and that includes designing for kids and families. Adventure Ocean youth progams are built for learning and exploring in a fun way. Teens-Only programs are available too. The H2O Zone water park is for kids.

Depending on the ship you choose, you may have more than 20 dining options onboard. Dynamic Dining Choice lets you pick your restaurants and dining times day and night.

The Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas ship is coming to Port Canaveral, and it has lots of things the whole family will love: an amazing outdoor diving show in the AquaTheater, a carousel, two rock-climbing walls, two FlowRider surf simulators, a zipline, and a pool and sports zone that occupies an entire deck.

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5 Best Family-Friendly Cruises from Florida for Fun and Adventure

Are you looking for a vacation that will keep the whole family entertained? Look no further than these five incredible cruises from Florida. With options for adventure-seekers, relaxation enthusiasts, and everyone in between, there’s something for everyone on these family-friendly cruises. So pack your bags, grab your loved ones, and get ready for an unforgettable vacation at sea with mesmerizing views.

1. Disney Cruise Line

No list of family-friendly cruises from Florida would be complete without mentioning the Disney Cruise Line . With four ships departing from Port Canaveral, Miami, and Port Everglades, there’s no shortage of options for families looking to set sail with Mickey and friends. From water parks to live shows, there’s something for everyone on a Disney cruise. Plus, with themed dining experiences and character meet and greets, your kids will feel like they’re in a magical world all their own.

2. Royal Caribbean

Royal Caribbean is another great option for families looking for a fun and exciting cruise. With ships departing from Miami and Port Canaveral, Royal Caribbean offers a range of activities for all ages, from rock climbing and mini-golf to ice skating and zip-lining. And with award-winning Broadway-style shows and delicious dining options, there’s plenty to keep parents entertained too. You shouldn’t miss this one at any cost.

3. Carnival Cruise Line

Another popular choice for the best family-friendly cruises from Florida is the Carnival Cruise Line. It is known for its fun and festive atmosphere, making it a great choice for families looking for a lively vacation. With ships departing from Miami, Port Canaveral, and Tampa, Carnival offers a range of family-friendly activities, including water parks, mini-golf, and even an IMAX theater. Catering to a wide range of tastes, the dining choices at the resort are sure to satisfy even the most food enthusiasts, with highlights such as Guy Fieri’s Burger Joint and the BlueIguana Cantina. Sounds amazing, right?

4. Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line is one of the most popular options for family-friendly cruises from Florida. With ships departing from Miami and Port Canaveral, you will not regret this one. One of the highlights of a Norwegian cruise is the line’s “Freestyle Cruising” concept, which allows passengers to dine and relax on their own schedule. And with activities like a ropes course, mini-golf, and a water park, there’s plenty to keep everyone entertained. You’ll be spoilt for choice.

5. MSC Cruises

If you want a more European-style cruise experience, consider MSC Cruises. MSC offers a vast variety of family-friendly activities, such as a water park, mini-golf, and a 4D cinema, for those sailing from Miami. And with a focus on Mediterranean-style dining and entertainment, parents will feel like they’re on a sophisticated getaway, while kids will enjoy the fun and excitement of a family vacation.

Don’t miss out on incredible family-friendly cruises from Florida! No matter what age your family members are, these cruises offer something for everyone. With endless options for activities, dining, and entertainment, you are sure to make some lasting memories from this trip. So, why wait any longer? Book your family-friendly cruise now and start planning your next adventure together!

Read to know  6 Fun Road Trips to Take from Washington DC .

The post 5 Best Family-Friendly Cruises from Florida for Fun and Adventure appeared first on Momtastic .

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  • Cruising with Kids

What to Know About Cruising With Kids

a family having fun one a white sand beach

WE’RE READY TO WOW THE WHOLE FAMILY

 plenty of activities for kids

Plenty of Activities for Kids

little girl playing in slide with mom

  • We’ve got all-day youth activities for kids to hang out and make new friends their age. Camp Ocean for ages 2–11, Circle “C” for 12–14 and Club O2 for 15–17.
  • When planning your day aboard, plan on waterslides, mini-golf and live entertainment galore.
  • Off the ship, you’ll find great ways to explore the destination together, learn about the local culture and have unforgettable family photo-ops.

Comfortable Staterooms

mom and children lounging on the bed in a carnival stateroom

  • Some families think it’s difficult to book multiple staterooms. It’s actually really easy! You can book two or more — at the same time — right here on carnival.com.
  • Or you can stay together and still be comfy. Some Carnival staterooms sleep up to five, and feature flexible bedding configurations.
  • Some rooms come with a view, some with balconies, and some even have an extra half-bathroom!
  • Like a great hotel, connecting rooms are available. Adults get their privacy and so do the kids.

Explore New Destinations

mother, father and son race into crystal blue water

  • Carnival is known for taking families to the Caribbean. Who doesn’t love a vacation of beaches, calypso music and maybe even swimming with dolphins?
  • Alaska isn’t cold in the summer months… but it’s definitely still cool! Chill while taking in views of wildlife, mountains, glaciers and stunning natural beauty.
  • That’s just the start! The Bahamas, Mexico and Hawaii are all top destination picks with plenty of family-friendly activities.

Enjoy Family Dining & Kid-Friendly Food

boy and mom enjoying pasta

  • Dining definitely has a place at the family table with plenty of casual and sit-down restaurants to choose from.
  • Room service is always on the menu, 24 hours a day. Delivery is just a quick call away.
  • Also very much available: the pizza station doesn’t close until 4 a.m — long after you’re all in bed — and our soft-serve machines never get time off for delicious behavior.

See how these families spent their vacation on a Carnival cruise.

Best cruises from Florida: Our top 9 trips from the Sunshine State

Megan duBois

Cruises from Florida are the most popular options for travelers who wish to sail from the United States. It was only this year that Miami was dethroned as the busiest cruise port in the world — replaced by rival Florida home port, Port Canaveral.

Not only do cruises from Florida allow you to see some of the most beautiful islands in the Caribbean and Bahamas, but they also allow travelers to experience some of the biggest and best cruise ships sailing right now. The largest cruise ship afloat, Royal Caribbean 's Wonder of the Seas, sails from Port Canaveral; family-friendly rival Disney Wish, the newest Disney cruise ship in a decade, also home ports in Florida.

For more cruise news, reviews and tips, sign up for TPG's cruise newsletter .

Families planning multigenerational getaways, couples seeking child-free vacations and groups of friends looking to have a good time can all find their perfect ship and itinerary departing from one of Florida's six departure ports.

To give you a taste of the diversity of options available from the Sunshine State, here are our picks for the best cruises from Florida.

Wonder of the Seas to the Western Caribbean 

cruises from florida kid friendly

Wonder of the Seas , Royal Caribbean's flagship and the largest cruise ship in the world, departs weekly from Port Canaveral (the cruise port closest to Orlando). The ship sails seven-night Western Caribbean itineraries, stopping at tropical destinations like Cozumel and Costa Maya, Mexico; Roatan, Honduras; and the cruise line's private island in the Bahamas, Perfect Day at CocoCay .

While the islands offer plenty of fun in the sun, the ship itself is filled with tons of family-friendly activities. Siblings or parents and kids can race each other to the bottom of the twin waterslides, named Typhoon and Cyclone. If you prefer to stay dry, hop into the Ultimate Abyss tunnel slide, where riders will glide down 10 stories of darkness before bottoming out on the ship's Boardwalk.

Kids ages 6 months to 17 years old have their own hangouts with dedicated programming supervised by fun counselors. While the kids play with new friends, adults can veg out in the glass-encased Solarium, relaxing on padded loungers or in a bubbling hot tub.

When it's time to come together for a meal, you'll please all palates at The Mason Jar , one of Royal Caribbean's newest restaurants that highlights Southern comfort food. The menu teems with tasty dishes like fried chicken, gumbo and po'boys that will leave you completely satisfied. Brunch here comes with a side of live country music.

Related: Wonder of the Seas 3 ways: Inside, balcony and suite compared

Freedom of the Seas to the Bahamas

cruises from florida kid friendly

Cruisers who are loyal to Royal Caribbean or those who want to test the waters with the brand without the commitment of a seven-night sailing can enjoy short, three-night sailings on Freedom of the Seas out of Miami.

The quickie voyages take you to Nassau and Perfect Day at CocoCay, and a day spent on Royal Caribbean's stunning island is reason enough to book this cruise. At this private Bahamian beach resort, cruisers can ride the slides at Thrill Water Park, rent a beachside cabana for a mix of shade and sun, or float about in a sheltered lagoon. A barbecue lunch is included, and passengers can utilize their onboard drink package.

The 4,635-passenger ship provides fun around every corner. Challenge one another to a round of minigolf, show off your skills on the FlowRider surf simulator or test your muscle on the rock climbing wall. Entertainment on Freedom of the Seas ranges from Royal Caribbean's iconic ice skating shows to live music in the pub. Pool parties, outdoor movies and laser tag are also included with your cruise fare.

With so much to do on board, plus the short sailing times, cruises on this ship can have a distinct party vibe. There's a reason that the College Party Cruise charter company uses Freedom of the Seas for its March spring break sailings.

No cruise is complete without great food, and this ship offers 11 different dining venues highlighting such cuisines as Italian, Mexican and Japanese.

Related: Caribbean vs. Bahamas cruises: Which itinerary will I like more?

Carnival Elation to the Bahamas 

cruises from florida kid friendly

Carnival Elation is unique because it's the only ship from any cruise line that sails from Jacksonville. Its four- and five-day sailings to the Bahamas stop at Nassau and a second destination that varies. Choose from cruises to Bimini, Freeport, Half Moon Cay or Princess Cays — the latter two are private beaches operated by the Carnival Corporation.

The 2,606-passenger cruise ship is one of Carnival Cruise Line 's smallest and oldest ships. Aboard the intimate vessel allows you to get to know the crew and other cruisers. Popular hangouts include Carnival's beloved Alchemy Bar, where you can order cocktails at a vintage pharmacy-themed bar.

For outdoor dining, head to Guy's Burger Joint, created by celebrity chef Guy Fieri. Order a loaded burger and perfectly golden-brown fries, then head to the Lido Deck near the pool for great people-watching.

Entertainment on this small ship is still plentiful. Cruisers can splash around at WaterWorks, the family-friendly water playground, or head up to the adults-only Serenity Retreat for a quieter experience. The Punchliner Comedy Club hosts a variety of comedians that will have kids and adults laughing throughout the night. Catch a live production in the main theater or sing along with the pianist at the popular Piano Bar.

Related: Visiting a cruise line's private island? Don't make these mistakes

Carnival Mardi Gras to the Eastern Caribbean

cruises from florida kid friendly

If you'd prefer to sample one of Carnival's newest and largest ships, you can sail from Port Canaveral on the line's Mardi Gras . Its Eastern Caribbean sailings visit island destinations like St. Thomas, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and Grand Turk. Mardi Gras' six- to eight-night itineraries provide a good mix of sea days at the start and end of the sailings.

The impressive ship is known for its party atmosphere, which is highlighted by an onboard zone themed to New Orleans' French Quarter. Here, passengers will find Emeril's Bistro 1396, an homage to NOLA's cuisine developed in partnership with celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse. Don't miss the Brass Magnolia and the Fortune Teller bars, which start hopping when the sun goes down.

The Ultimate Playground on the ship's top deck is where adrenaline junkies and sports lovers will want to hang out. You'll get all the thrills with a ride on BOLT, the first roller coaster at sea, or take a lap around the elevated ropes course. If you prefer to keep your feet on the ground, minigolf and a full-size basketball court await.

Related: Best Carnival cruise ships: Here's which ship you should sail, based on your travel style

Disney Magic to the Bahamas 

cruises from florida kid friendly

When the summer of 2024 rolls around, Disney Magic will set sail from Disney Cruise Line 's newest home port in Florida, Fort Lauderdale. The ship's shorter three- and four-night Bahamian itineraries include a visit to Nassau and either Castaway Cay, Disney's stunning private island, or Lighthouse Point, Disney's newest island destination . Longer five-night sailings include a stop at both private beaches or a double dip at Castaway Cay, along with a day at Nassau.

Disney Magic is among Disney's smaller ships, but fans love it for its intimate size and fewer crowds. Beloved Disney characters like Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse welcome you aboard with hugs and photo ops throughout your sailing.

Guests rotate each night among the ship's three dining rooms, including Rapunzel's Royal Table — inspired by Disney's animated "Tangled." There's also Animator's Palate, an homage to Disney's animation studios. You'll have the same servers at all restaurants, so they get to know your family and your dining preferences. At night the Walt Disney Theater features Broadway-caliber shows, like "Tangled: The Musical."

Families looking for some time apart will love that Disney has an included kids club where younger cruisers can enjoy fun activities under the watchful eye of the ship's youth staff. The Oceaneer Club features themed areas like Andy's Room from "Toy Story" and Tinkerbell's home at Pixie Hollow. Kids can also take superhero lessons from Thor. The Oceaneer Lab offers baking classes inspired by "Ratatouille" and sessions where kids learn how to draw their favorite Disney characters.

Adults can use their free time to savor a meal at the adults-only Italian restaurant, Palo, or kick back in the ship's multiple bars and live music venues.

Prefer to sail on a newer Disney ship? Check out Disney Wish , with three- and four-night sailings from Port Canaveral to Castaway Cay and Nassau.

Holland America's Rotterdam to the Southern Caribbean

cruises from florida kid friendly

Holland America is known for its elegant ships and longer itineraries, such as Rotterdam 's nine- to 16-night Southern Caribbean options out of Fort Lauderdale. The newest ship in the fleet, Rotterdam sails to Curacao, Bonaire, Aruba and Half Moon Cay on nine-night voyages, while its longer 16-day sailings add on Grand Turk, the Dominican Republic, and Key West.

With just 2,668 guests onboard, Rotterdam is homey and charming with a touch of luxury. The ship doubles down on live music; a live band plays all the rock hits at the Rolling Stone Rock Room, while an eight-piece band gets everyone on their feet when they play R&B favorites at B.B. King's Blues Club. For some daytime activity, the competition is on at the ship's pickleball courts , where cruisers can take lessons or play in tournaments against their shipmates.

Expect impeccable dining at specialty restaurants like Rudi's Sel de Mer, a French-inspired restaurant from Holland America's master chef Rudi Sodamin; Canaletto, an Italian bistro offering all of the classics; and Tamarind, where diners can sample regional dishes from China, Japan and Southeast Asia. For daytime snacks, don't miss the Dutch pancake bites called poffertjes or the French fries with peanut dipping sauce.

Related: The 5 best destinations you can visit on a Holland America ship

Norwegian Encore to the Eastern Caribbean

cruises from florida kid friendly

If you're looking for a weeklong cruise out of Miami, consider sailing on Norwegian Encore to the Dominican Republic, St. Thomas and Tortola. Each island offers spectacular sandy beaches that give way to sparkling blue waters, plus options for water sports, museum visits and hikes to the top of lush mountaintops.

The itinerary also includes a stop at Norwegian Cruise Line 's private island, Great Stirrup Cay. There you can enjoy a relaxing beach day, where all you have to worry about is getting back to the ship on time from the tender dock.

On board the ship, zip around the Encore Speedway in a go-kart, play laser tag in an Atlantis-themed arena, splash around the AquaPark or experience virtual reality games inside the Galaxy Pavilion. For a calmer diversion, purchase a pass to the Vibe Beach Club, an adults-only retreat with lounge chairs, umbrellas and specialty food and drinks. The pass is good for the entire cruise, so you can come and go as you please.

There's a wide range of dining options, including complimentary and extra-charge restaurants. Belly up to the Local Bar and Grill for classic pub dishes and cocktails on tap. If you're willing to pay extra for a meal, Q Texas Smokehouse is worth a stop. The a la carte restaurant serves authentic Texas-style barbecue and all the classic sides. After dinner service, the restaurant turns into a country dance club with a live band and an open dance floor.

Celebrity Apex to the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico

cruises from florida kid friendly

Celebrity Cruises' Celebrity Apex sets sail from Fort Lauderdale to some of the most picturesque islands in the Caribbean. From November 2023 through April 2024, Apex will offer weeklong sailings to Puerto Rico, St. Maarten, St. Thomas and the Dominican Republic. Two sea days give you time to relax and have fun on the ship.

What makes this itinerary special is that it features later all-aboard times in San Juan and St. Maarten, allowing guests to see the islands as they come alive in the sunset glow.

Celebrity Apex is part of Celebrity Cruises ' Edge class of ships, with standout features like high-end design and modern touches. One of Apex's highlights is the Magic Carpet, a suspended lounge that hangs off the side of the ship. When it's positioned by the pool deck, you can stop in to sip cocktails; when it's at water level, it serves as a platform for easy boarding of tender boats.

There are lots of chic spots to chill with your travel companions. Savor some kebabs or a flatbread pizza among live plants in the ship's Rooftop Garden, then watch the sun sink into the sea at the aptly named Sunset Bar. Submerge yourself in a martini-shaped hot tub out on the pool deck or enjoy a dip on a rainy day in the covered adults-only Solarium.

With 29 different food and beverage options on Apex, cruisers will never be bored at meal times. Specialty dining includes Le Grand Bistro, themed after a traditional Parisian boulangerie-patisserie, and the Eden Restaurant, with its tasting menu of international dishes.

If you don't want to spend extra money on food, stick with the ship's four themed main dining rooms and the Mast Grill, which serves juicy burgers and hearty salads. The Oceanview Cafe serves made-to-order breakfast and lunch offerings, while dinner features a rotating menu with international flair.

Related: Eastern Caribbean vs. Western Caribbean cruises: Which itinerary will I like more?

Virgin Voyages' Scarlet Lady to Key West and Bimini 

cruises from florida kid friendly

Step aboard the adults-only Virgin Voyages' Scarlet Lady for a Fire and Sunset Soirees cruise to Key West, Florida and Bimini, Bahamas, from Miami. The four-night sailings are great for cruisers who want to try out Virgin Voyages or those who want a long weekend away.

You can book an excursion in Key West, but it's easy to explore on your own. Take a ride on the hop-on, hop-off bus or saunter down Duval Street and around Old Town. For local fare, swing by D.J.'s Clam Shack for fresh seafood or Garbo's Grill for Korean barbecue beef tacos. Both were showcased on the Food Network's "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives." Treat yourself to key lime pie on a stick before you head back to the ship.

In Bimini, head straight to Virgin's exclusive beach resort, the Beach Club at Bimini . Here, you can enjoy floating in the pool, Caribbean-themed lunch and games on the beach.

Scarlet Lady is a playground for grownups. The Redemption Spa is a relaxing retreat where you can book a block of time to enjoy the thermal suite or try out a couples massage. For a permanent reminder of your cruise, get a tattoo at Squid Ink . The ship is known for its creative theatrical performances and rollicking nightlife. Head to The Manor for comedy and drag shows, plus late-night revelry. Don't miss Virgin's hyped-up Scarlet Night, which culminates in an epic pool party.

All of the table-service restaurants on Scarlet Lady are included in your cruise fare. You won't find a traditional main dining room. To secure your preferred mealtimes, book dinner reservations through the Virgin Voyages app as soon as you can. Restaurants that are not to be missed include Extra Virgin for Italian fare; The Wake, the fine-dining steakhouse; and Gunbae, the Korean barbecue restaurant where you start your meal with a drinking game.

Bottom line

You can find cruises from Florida to fit every traveler's wants and needs, from a weeklong family vacation to a shorter getaway for a couple or group of friends. Older-yet-intimate ships, newer mega-ships and everything in between depart from the Sunshine State to destinations in the Caribbean and Bahamas.

Whether you choose one of our favorite sailings or find an itinerary that suits you better, you can't go wrong with a cruise out of Florida.

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cruises from florida kid friendly

Disney Magic

The 2,713-passenger Disney Magic is the oldest ship in the Disney Cruise Line fleet (it first launched in 1998). It was last refurbished in May 2023, when it received updates like a "Soul"-themed lounge, concierge-level upgrades and a new "Encanto" live show. The ship also features family favorites such as the AquaDuck waterslide, the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique dress-up shop and Edge, an interactive game center for tweens.

Disney Magic features diverse entertainment, including live shows, an open-air Wide World of Sports deck, three pools and a splash area for children younger than 3. Unique to the Magic is the teens-only Chill Spa. When it comes to dining, the ship offers eight eateries, including an adults-only specialty restaurant and buffet options. Recent cruisers gave the food quality mixed reviews.

In terms of lodging, 70% of cabins offer ocean views or verandas. All cabins are outfitted with flat-screen TVs, sitting areas and bathrooms with separate showers and tubs. Suites include extra perks such as concierge service and media libraries. Past cruisers noted that the service on this ship is up to Disney's standards, but so is the price tag.

Disney Magic sails from Galveston, Texas ;  San Diego ;  Miami ; Fort Lauderdale, Florida ;  New Orleans ; and  San Juan, Puerto Rico . It visits destinations across the Bahamas , the Caribbean, Mexico and the Panama Canal.

U.S. News Insider Tip : Once per sailing, guests are invited to watch Tangled: The Musical in the Walt Disney Theater. This Broadway-style show retells the story of Rapunzel and Flynn Rider with three new original songs, puppets, and beautiful costumes. This show is very popular, so it's best to get to the theater about an hour before the show starts to get a good seat. Doors open 30 minutes prior to showtime. – Megan duBois, Contributor

cruises from florida kid friendly

Odyssey of the Seas

Launched in July 2021, the Odyssey of the Seas holds 5,498 passengers and 1,550 crew members. Royal Caribbean's latest ship is the first Quantum Ultra Class vessel to sail in the United States. As a member of this class, Odyssey of the Seas offers standout amenities like RipCord by iFLY, billed as the only skydiving simulator available at sea, and the FlowRider, a 40-foot-long surf simulator. There is also the North Star observation capsule, which hoists guests 300 feet above sea level over the cruise ship to enjoy unparalleled views below. 

In addition to these thrilling activities, the ship comes equipped with standard facilities like pools, an arcade, a spa, a fitness center with classes, kids clubs and shopping venues. There are also 15 dining options, ranging from Japanese fare to all-you-can-eat buffets to Starbucks. For drinks, the ship offers nine bars and lounges, giving passengers plenty of places to enjoy libations. Entertainment options include theatrical performances, live music, a casino, outdoor movie nights and more. 

As far as cabins go, cruisers can choose between Interior, Ocean View, and Balcony staterooms, as well as suite accommodations and new Virtual Balcony rooms. These technologically advanced cabins feature floor-to-ceiling displays that project real-time views of the sights and sounds from the outside of the ship. 

Odyssey of the Seas sails to ports in Europe, as well as to various destinations in the Caribbean from Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Cape Liberty, New Jersey.

cruises from florida kid friendly

Symphony of the Seas

The 6,680-passenger, 2,200-crew-member Symphony of the Seas set sail in 2018 and features 18 decks packed with activities.

For heart-pounding fun, travelers will find a surf simulator, an indoor ice skating rink, two 40-foot rock walls, a zip line and a 10-story slide. Meanwhile, relaxation seekers can unwind in the spa, sip cocktails made by robotic bartenders or stroll through the Central Park -inspired neighborhood.

Onboard snacks and meals are served at 20 quick-service and sit-down eateries. The Main Dining Room is where the ship's traditional, complimentary dinners are provided nightly, but specialty options like a steakhouse, a bistro and a Johnny Rockets outpost are also available. What's more, cruisers can dine at Jamie's Italian, a restaurant helmed by celebrity chef Jamie Oliver.

After filling up on gourmet fare, passengers can retreat to their cabins, all of which include work desks, flat-screen TVs and minibars. Guests can choose from 149-square-foot Interior Staterooms, some of which have virtual balconies with real-time views of the ocean, or opt for upgraded cabins with furnished balconies and up to 1,524 square feet of space. Select suites also feature two bedrooms, whirlpool tubs and dining rooms.

Symphony of the Seas departs from Cape Liberty, New Jersey, Miami , Fort Lauderdale, Rome and Barcelona for sailings throughout the Caribbean and Europe.

U.S. News Insider Tip: If you’re on one of the 19 Royal Caribbean ships that have a FlowRider, like Symphony of the Seas (which has two!), reserve a private lesson with a pro. For a small fee, you'll save yourself some embarrassment and get more ride time. – Skye Sherman, Contributor

cruises from florida kid friendly

Wonder of the Seas

Wonder of the Seas, which embarked on its maiden voyage in March 2022, holds 7,084 passengers and 2,204 crew members. The ship measures 1,188 feet long and 215 feet wide, and it weighs 235,600 gross tons. It surpasses its sister ship, Symphony of the Seas , as one of the largest cruise ships in the world.  

Guests can enjoy plenty of thrill activities on board, such as the Ultimate Abyss – a 10-story dark tunnel slide – or the 40-foot-long FlowRider surf stimulator. The ship also offers a fitness center, shopping venues, rock climbing, a carousel and clubs for kids and teens. When it's time to dine, cruisers have the option of 21 dining venues ranging from Italian fare to Southern cuisine. Travelers can also indulge in a few cocktails at 14 bars and lounges.

Accommodations include Interior, Ocean View, Balcony and Suite staterooms. If you're looking for something more spacious, check out the ship's all-new Suite Neighborhood. Located on the upper decks, these suites offer guests ample private quarters to recharge during the cruise. Amenities included in the exclusive suites include priority boarding, a members-only dining facility and a dedicated check-in line. For families, the new neighborhood may be of particular interest because it features the Ultimate Family Suite. The family suite offers two floors of space with stunning ocean views, in-suite movies and video games and a kids slide between the floors.  

Wonder of the Seas sails from Orlando , Florida, to ports in the Caribbean.

cruises from florida kid friendly

Disney Dream

Last renovated in 2015 (after being introduced in 2011), the 4,000-passenger Disney Dream is one of Disney's largest ships. Highlights include the 765-foot AquaDuck water coaster, a virtual sports simulator (for an extra fee) and theatrical performances that bring Disney animated favorites – like "Beauty and the Beast" – to life.

While the ship emphasizes family-focused entertainment with five specialized kids clubs, parents can enjoy the adults-only Quiet Cove pool and the Senses Spa & Salon. At night, a section of the ship called The District transforms into an adult oasis with host of bars and lounges. In terms of dining, the ship offers nine themed venues including two specialty adults-only restaurants.

Staterooms also cater to cruising clans, offering perks like sofa beds. Over 85 percent of cabins have ocean views or verandas. Those looking for extra space can opt for Concierge Suites, which range from 622 to 1,781 square feet.

While some recent cruisers commented that the ship is more expensive than other mainstream competitors, most said it was well worth the price due to the personalized attention they received from the staff.

Disney Dream departs from Fort Lauderdale, Florida ;  New York ; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Southampton, England; and more for sailings in the Bahamas , Bermuda, Canada, the Caribbean and Europe. The cruise line also offers some transatlantic voyages.

U.S. News Insider Tip : Don't skip dinner at Animator's Palate and its Undersea Magic dinner show. During the meal, you'll be immersed in the world of Finding Nemo, as Crush the turtle from the movie swims by virtually to chat with families between courses. (This dinner show is also available on the Disney Fantasy ). – Megan duBois, Contributor

cruises from florida kid friendly

Disney Fantasy

Disney Fantasy launched in 2012 and underwent a dry dock in 2017. The ship features activities such as Pixar Day at Sea, Disney's Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular and the 765-foot AquaDuck water ride.

Staterooms are designed with families in mind. Inside cabins can accommodate up to four guests, and over 85% of the ship's cabins have an ocean view or a veranda. All cabins are outfitted with flat-screen TVs, minifridges and iPod docking stations.

Onboard entertainment is just as family-oriented, with Goofy’s Sports Deck activity center, a virtual sports simulator (for an extra fee), nightly live performances and 3D movies. While younger guests play in age-appropriate youth clubs, adults can relax at the Quiet Cove Pool or enjoy an evening at an adults-only bar or lounge.

When it comes to dining, the ship offers 10 themed dining venues, including two adults-only specialty venues, three main dining rooms and an ice cream shop: Sweet on You.

Fantasy sails from  Port Canaveral (Orlando), Florida , to the Bahamas , Bermuda and a variety of ports in the Caribbean.

U.S. News Insider Tip : Between Palo and Remy is a secluded adults-only bar called Meridian. The bar is known for its martini program, where the bartenders will ask you a few questions and then whip up something off-menu for you to enjoy inside or outside on the exclusive patio. (Meridian can also be found on the Disney Dream ). – Megan duBois, Contributor

cruises from florida kid friendly

Carnival Radiance

Carnival Radiance (previously Carnival Victory) set sail in December 2021 after a full transformation. The ship, which holds 2,984 guests and 1,108 crew members, boasts plenty of fun indoors and outdoors for cruisers of all ages.

Carnival Radiance features a ropes course, waterslides, a mini-golf course, dive-in movies in the evening and a sports area for activities like soccer, basketball, volleyball and boxing. The ship also offers a kids club for youths ages 2 to 17. The pool is surrounded by lounge chairs – perfect for relaxing – and those seeking additional quiet space can spend some time at the Serenity Adult-Only Retreat. Inside, the spa, the piano bar, the comedy club and the performance event venue, which features musicals, concerts and more, round out some of Carnival Radiance's most popular offerings. Dining options (14 eateries in total, including a Chef's Table experience) abound on this ship as well: Cruisers can enjoy casual fare at Big Chicken or Guy's Burger Joint, or sit down for a more upscale meal at Cucina del Capitano, Bonsai Sushi or the Steakhouse.

Staterooms aboard the ship include Interior (porthole and picture window choices are available), Ocean View, Balcony and Suite category options. Carnival Radiance sets sail from Los Angeles to destinations in Hawaii and Mexico .

cruises from florida kid friendly

Carnival Panorama

A member of Carnival Cruise Line's Vista class, the Carnival Panorama debuted in December 2019 as the first new Carnival ship homeported on the West Coast in 20 years. With a capacity of 4,008 guests and 1,450 crew, Panorama is one of Carnival's largest ships.

Among the ship's standout amenities is the Sky Zone – a trampoline park that offers dodgeball and basketball games, toddler bounce sessions and more. Other unique Carnival amenities found on the ship include a suspended bicycle in the air called SkyRide, a sprawling water park, the Cloud 9 Spa and an open-air recreation area and ropes course.

Dining options on board are just as diverse. In fact, there are more than a dozen dining venues aboard Carnival Panorama, including multiple Guy Fieri eateries, a sushi restaurant, a steakhouse, a seafood eatery and more.

Carnival Panorama offers the line's typical range of accommodation classes (Interior, Ocean View, Balcony and Suite) along with Family Harbor and Havana staterooms and suites. Havana Cabana Suites feature rain showers and patios equipped with hammock chairs, along with exclusive access to the Havana Bar & Pool. Meanwhile, Family Harbor accommodations are located next to the ship's Family Harbor Lounge and afford guests special perks, such as a free evening of babysitting and complimentary kids meals in the onboard specialty restaurants.

Sailing from Los Angeles , the ship cruises to destinations in Mexico, including Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas . It also departs from Singapore for transpacific voyages. 

cruises from florida kid friendly

Allure of the Seas

The 6,826-passenger Allure of the Seas, unveiled in 2010, is among the largest cruise ships in the world. There are a whopping 2,054 crew members on board to cater to passengers' needs. Along with signature line amenities like rock climbing walls and ice skating rinks, the ship houses seven unique neighborhoods with a variety of activities, shows and dining options. The ship underwent a $165 million refurbishment in 2020, which added approximately 50 new staterooms, the Ultimate Abyss (the tallest slide at sea), redesigned kids and teens spaces, new dining venues and more.

Other standout features include a zip line that descends 10 decks, two surf simulators and a science lab. Plus, with 19 dining options – and a Starbucks at sea – every member of the family will be satisfied.

In terms of lodging, about 65% of cabins feature balconies, and all staterooms are appointed with TVs and minifridges. Interior staterooms are the most economical option, but those who splurge on Suites are granted larger balconies and concierge service. Crowd-free areas might be difficult to find due to the outrageous capacity of the ship, but some recent cruisers praise the nonstop activity and entertainment. 

Allure of the Seas departs from Miami, Orlando, Florida, and Galveston , Texas, for sailings in the Caribbean.

cruises from florida kid friendly

Harmony of the Seas

Welcoming up to 6,687 passengers and 2,200 crew members, Harmony of the Seas is one of the largest cruise ships in the world. Launched in 2016 and tuned up in 2021, the ship features Royal Caribbean staples like surf simulators and rock climbing walls, as well as innovative amenities like the Ultimate Abyss (a 10-story slide) and three multistory waterslides. Plus, while younger passengers play in the arcade or at age-appropriate clubs, adults can relax at the spa or sip cocktails at multiple bars and lounges.

After working up an appetite, guests can choose from 20 dining options. Past cruisers especially praised the multitude of specialty restaurants, which range from Mexican to Japanese fare and require reservations and an additional fee.

When it comes to lodging, Harmony of the Seas offers a wide variety of cabin categories, with more than 70% of cabins featuring balconies. While Interior staterooms are the most economical choice, those looking for a little more space and luxury should consider upgrading to a Suite, which range from Junior Suites to four-bedroom Villa Suites. While all cabins offer flat-screen TVs and minibars, suites include access to a private restaurant, lounge and sun deck.

Harmony of the Seas sails from Miami and Galveston, Texas , to destinations throughout the Caribbean.

Disclaimers about ship ratings: A ship’s Health Rating is based on vessel inspection scores published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If a ship did not receive a CDC score within 22 months prior to the calculation of its Overall Rating, its Health Rating appears as N/A; in such a case, the ship’s Overall Rating is calculated using the average Health Rating of all CDC-rated ships within the cruise line. All ship Traveler Ratings are based on ratings provided under license by Cruiseline.com.

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From fun activities on board to adventurous excursions on land, our award-winning cruises offer unforgettable experiences for the whole family to enjoy. Kids, parents, and grandparents will find plenty of opportunities to spend quality time together and create memories that will remain long after your vacation ends.

Gather everyone for a movie night under the stars. Enjoy theater shows and live music. Splash with your kids on the beach or go on thrilling shore excursions with adventurous teens. There’s something for everyone to love on our fun-filled family cruises.

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Kids and Teen Programs

The fun starts at Camp At Sea, our onboard entertainment center and program designed exclusively for kids ages 3 to 12. Open every day from 9:00am - 10:00pm, Camp at Sea offers kids the opportunity to participate in a number of entertaining activities, including treasure hunts, arts and crafts, sports, and theme parties, all under the supervision of our experienced youth staff. For our teen cruisers, the Teen Club is the place to be. At the Teen Club, they can make new friends and participate in events like video game competitions, teen parties, and culinary classes. Activities are overseen by our team of teen counselors and offered throughout the day, allowing teens to come and go as they please.

Entertainment On Board

There’s no shortage of entertaining venues on board. Spend the day swimming in the pool with the kids, then watch the sunset while relaxing in one of our elevated hot tubs. Gather on board for movie night under the stars, silent disco parties, hot glass classes, and archery tournaments —so many activities to share. Don’t miss the views from the Lawn Club or the Resort Deck, which provides the ultimate backdrop for a picture-perfect family photo.

One of the top reasons we’re one of the best cruise lines for families is because we offer an array of family-friendly shore excursions at over 300 port destinations. With activities varying from cultural tours to thrilling water sports, families will have no trouble finding a number of exciting excursions such as swimming with dolphins, hiking up volcanoes or glaciers, and strolling through ancient Mayan ruins.

Family Luxury at The Retreat

The Retreat is the ultimate luxury vacation experience on board. Families staying at The Retreat will not only enjoy a private sundeck*, but also spacious suite accommodations with expansive verandas and large lounge areas, where the whole family can comfortably relax and spend time together. Those traveling with multiple family members can stay at our Penthouse Suite or book one of our breathtaking Iconic Suites, which span over 2,500 square feet.

*The Retreat Sundeck available on Edge Series and Revolutionized ships.  

Unforgettable Family Cruise Destinations

With over 300 destinations on our itineraries, there are plenty of exciting places waiting to be discovered. Tropical islands, cosmopolitan cities, seaside villages, and rustic towns are all on the agenda.

Take the family on a cruise to Alaska, where you’ll sail through the famous Inside Passage and witness the magic of towering glaciers and the stunning wilderness of the Last Frontier. If you’re looking for a little bit more culture, head on one of our European journeys, where you’ll stroll past ancient buildings, feast on exquisite cuisine, and stop by picturesque towns. As for a sun-soaked vacation, it doesn’t get much better than a cruise to the Caribbean, where white sand beaches and turquoise waters await.

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Family Fun for Everyone

Cruises are the perfect opportunity for multigenerational family members to bond. Spend the day together at the pool, sign up for any number of group activities, and enjoy nightly family meals at our main dining room. If you want to try something different, then plan a skip-generational vacation, where parents stay at home and grandparents are free to spoil their grandkids during an unforgettable trip.

Summer Cruises

What better way to enjoy the warm, balmy weather of summer than by sailing to a sunny destination with the family? Spend a week visiting Caribbean beaches, chase adventure during a cruise to Alaska, or discover the best of Europe while on a Mediterranean journey—our summer cruises are what vacation dreams are made of.

Spring Break Cruises

Take advantage of spring break and spend seven days at sea with the kids. Even though school’s out, there are still plenty of opportunities for learning on board. At Camp at Sea, children can take art classes, participate in sports activities, and sign up for special STEM-based programs focused on marine biology and environmental conservation.

Holiday Cruises

Celebrating the holidays with family is easy while aboard one of our cruises. Even if you’re far away, you’ll feel right at home with our festive decorations and delicious traditional holiday meals. Get into the holiday spirit by hearing Christmas carols or taking in a holiday show at our theater. And don’t worry, Santa always makes a surprise appearance bearing gifts for the kids.

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Best Family & Kid Friendly Cruises from Tampa

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4 Night Cruise to the Western Caribbean

  • You a value-packed cruise on a ship with plenty of features
  • You find Royal Caribbean's newer ships to be just too big
  • You like to keep busy and want a full schedule of activities
  • You want the wow factor of Royal Caribbean's big new ships
  • You need spacious cabins; standard cabins are fairly tight
  • You want all the latest bells and whistles to be onboard

7 Night Cruise to the Western Caribbean

  • You want lots of high-energy entertainment options onboard
  • You appreciate a value-packed cruise with lots of amenities
  • You don't want to feel like one of a crowd on a bigger ship
  • You want the latest flashy decor and knockout features onboard
  • You like adventurous diversions, like waterslides and ziplines
  • You prefer to have more spacious cabin accommodations

16 Night Cruise to Transatlantic

  • You want a classy, adult-oriented cruise on a gracious ship
  • You enjoy having plenty of big-ship amenities and features
  • You want an upscale cruise experience at an affordable price
  • You dislike paying extra for drinks, gratuities and excursions
  • You are looking for a true luxury cruise ship experience
  • You want the latest and most technically innovative ship

5 Night Cruise to the Western Caribbean

9 night cruise to the eastern caribbean.

  • You want a fun, big-ship cruise with classic nautical motifs
  • You love open deck space; this ship has plenty to go around
  • You want a variety of window-lined restaurants and lounges
  • You want the gadgets found on Royal Caribbean's newer ships
  • You think bigger is better and want a Vegas-style experience

9 Night Cruise to the Western Caribbean

6 night cruise to the western caribbean, 4 night cruise to the bahamas.

  • You want plenty of evening entertainment and production shows
  • You don't mind paying extra for some specialty restaurants
  • You want plenty of fun options for all ages by day and night
  • You're after a more classic, laid-back onboard experience
  • You prefer taking part in lectures and enrichment activities
  • You don't like paying extra for drinks and other options

4 Night Cruise to the Caribbean

  • You like the idea of traveling on a fully refitted ship
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5 Night Cruise to the Caribbean

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11 Night Cruise to the Caribbean

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The 5 Best Kids Sail Free Cruises for 2024 & Beyond

I f you're angling for an affordable family cruise , you'll be happy to know that several major cruise lines let children sail for free (either regularly or during special promotions). Read on to discover which lines cater to families with kids sail free offers.

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Holland America Line

Deal: Holland America Line is offering a "Kids Cruise Free" promotion on select itineraries in 2024. The offer applies to several itineraries including Hawaii , the Caribbean and the Panama Canal; to qualify, children must be 18 or younger and cruising as third and/or fourth guests in the same cabin as adults. As with similar promotions, taxes and port fees are still required for each child's sailing.

Family-friendly perks: Amenities onboard Holland America ships include kids clubs and youth programs, as well as shore excursions oriented to families with little ones in tow. Plenty of stateroom options can also accommodate larger bookings. The Nieuw Statendam and Koningsdam ships, in particular, feature oversized staterooms with beds for four, a large sitting area and a spacious veranda.

Book a Holland America Line Cruise on GoToSea , a service of U.S. News.

Norwegian Cruise Line

Deal: Norwegian Cruise Line lets third and fourth guests cruise free on select itineraries throughout the year. Cruises to which this promotion applies are offered all over the world, including bucket-list destinations like Alaska and the Mediterranean .

Some of the itineraries that qualify for free third and fourth guests also come with complimentary amenities like an unlimited open bar, specialty dining, shore excursions and/or complimentary Wi-Fi. Additionally, some of the itineraries include generous discounts on the total cruise cost , as well as free airfare for a second guest (when booked through the cruise line).

Family-friendly perks: With Norwegian's all-ages kids clubs, family dining, entertainment and activities included in one bundled rate, planning a kid-approved vacation with the cruise line is a breeze. Many Norwegian ships also feature an array of family-friendly staterooms with plenty of extra space. For example, the luxurious Norwegian Prima offers a two-bedroom family villa with a large balcony in "The Haven" – its exclusive area for VIP guests.

Explore Norwegian Cruise Line deals on GotoSea.

Royal Caribbean International

Deal: Royal Caribbean offers a "Kids Sail Free" deal several times each year, allowing children 12 or younger to cruise free provided they are the third guests (or beyond) staying in the same cabin as at least two paying adults. The only catch is that blackout dates apply – typically during holiday and school breaks.

Family-friendly perks: There's a reason so many families choose Royal Caribbean ; kid-friendly amenities range from age-specific programming to zip lining at sea. The line's  exclusive island for cruisers , Perfect Day at CocoCay in  the Bahamas , is also a big hit with young passengers thanks to its waterslides and splash areas.

Compare Royal Caribbean cruise itineraries on GotoSea.

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Costa Cruises

Deal: Costa Cruises may not be as popular as some other cruise lines on our list, but it's a worthwhile option for cruisers looking to sail through Europe, the Middle East or South America. The cruise line allows kids traveling as third or fourth guests to sail for free with two adults in the same cabin, and this promotion applies to passengers ages 2 to 17. This offer is valid on all sailings offered by the line, many of which feature destinations in desirable ports along the Mediterranean such as Barcelona , Marseille and Rome .

Family-friendly perks: Costa Cruises vessels offer abundant family-friendly amenities, from water parks to arcades to mini golf. Kids clubs are available for children ages 3 to 11, and they provide entertainment like arts and crafts, themed parties, and games galore. A teen zone also hosts cruisers ages 12 to 17 who want to mingle, sing karaoke and play group sports when ships aren't in port.

Find a Costa Cruises deal on GotoSea.

MSC Cruises

Deal: MSC Cruises lets children younger than 18 cruise for free on select itineraries, depending on the ship's capacity. (Other exclusions or eligibility requirements may apply.) Kids must be the third or fourth guests traveling in the same cabin as their parents (at least two adults) for the deal to be valid; note that any port fees and taxes still apply to children's fares.

Family-friendly perks: MSC Cruises offers a variety of leisure activities and amenities designed specifically for kids. On board, youngsters can take advantage of perks from water parks with slides and swimming pools to Broadway-style shows and interactive dinners. The line also hosts fun family excursions and a "Lego Experience On Board" event on every cruise. In addition, there are a myriad of amenities for parents to enjoy while the youngest passengers are occupied by one of five dedicated kids clubs.

Why Trust U.S. News Travel

Holly Johnson is a seasoned travel writer who has covered family travel and cruises for more than a decade. Johnson has traveled with her family to more than 50 countries, and her many trips have included cruises all over the world. Johnson lives in Indiana with her two children and her husband, Greg.

You might also be interested in:

  • The Top Cruises for Babies & Toddlers
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Subscriber only, travel | water slides, floating cabanas highlight latest carnival reveal for new bahamas destination.

Starfish Lagoon is the family-friendly area for Carnival Cruise Line's...

Starfish Lagoon is the family-friendly area for Carnival Cruise Line's new Celebration Key destination in the Bahamas opening in 2025. It will feature the Flash Flamingo and blue Mach III Marlin water slides. (Courtesy/Carnival Cruise Line)

Starfish Lagoon is the family-friendly zone for Carnival Cruise Line's...

Starfish Lagoon is the family-friendly zone for Carnival Cruise Line's new Celebration Key destination in the Bahamas opening in 2025. It's located on one of the largest freshwater lagoons in the Caribbean and Bahamas. (Courtesy/Carnival Cruise Line)

Guppy Grotto splash pad is a kid-friendly play area in...

Guppy Grotto splash pad is a kid-friendly play area in Starfish Lagoon, the family-friendly zone for Carnival Cruise Line's new Celebration Key destination in the Bahamas opening in 2025. (Courtesy/Carnival Cruise Line)

Starfish Lagoon is the family-friendly area for Carnival Cruise Line's...

Starfish Lagoon is the family-friendly area for Carnival Cruise Line's new Celebration Key destination in the Bahamas opening in 2025. It will feature AquaBanas, floating cabanas available for rent. (Courtesy/Carnival Cruise Line)

Starfish Lagoon is the family-friendly area for Carnival Cruise Line's...

Starfish Lagoon is the family-friendly area for Carnival Cruise Line's new Celebration Key destination in the Bahamas opening in 2025. The Sports Court includes volleyball, basketball and pickleball courts adjacent to the Game Pavilion with foosball, ping pong and corn hole among other games. (Courtesy/Carnival Cruise Line)

Richard Tribou, Orlando Sentinel staff portrait in Orlando, Fla., Tuesday, July 19, 2022. (Willie J. Allen Jr./Orlando Sentinel)

Dubbed Starfish Lagoon, the zone is the fourth of five to be unveiled by the cruise line ahead of the resort’s opening on Grand Bahama Island next July. The line plans more than 500 visits among 18 of the line’s ships from Florida ports Port Canaveral, PortMiami, Tampa and Jacksonville as well as six other U.S. ports.

One highlight will be the 10-story Suncastle structure that will be home to two 350-foot-long water slides named after the Bahamas’ national bird and fish: the pink Flash Flamingo and blue Mach III Marlin. The pair offer riders the option to race one another down through a twisting path amid flashing lights and colors into a photo finish splashdown.

For the younger set, there will be the Guppy Grotto splash pad themed to coral reefs with a 2-foot-deep wading pool, water toys, dump bucket and other interactive features. Parents can keep watch from a shaded area while also having access to an adjacent ice cream shop.

Starfish Lagoon is the family-friendly area for Carnival Cruise Line's new Celebration Key destination in the Bahamas opening in 2025. It will feature AquaBanas, floating cabanas available for rent. (Courtesy/Carnival Cruise Line)

The area is also centered on one of the largest freshwater lagoons built in either the Caribbean or Bahamas, and for an extra cost, families can rent one of 12 floating AquaBanas, floating cabanas with room for eight, located around a peninsula with a dedicated bar. The line has land-based cabanas and daybeds as well.

The lagoon and its stretch of beach also will be home to kayak and paddleboard rentals.

For the active set, there’s a game pavilion with table games including foosball, pingpong and corn hole and the sports court area with volleyball, basketball and pickleball among its offerings.

Adults will have their own swim-up bar while lounging options will include hammocks adjacent the the Suncastle, and all along the beach will be sun loungers and umbrellas.

Food options will include restaurants, snack and bar shacks as well as Bahamian food trucks.

“At Carnival, we carry more children than any other cruise line, so we’ve designed Starfish Lagoon specifically for family fun,” said Carnival Cruise Line President Christine Duffy in a press release.  “Toddlers, teens and adults alike will find their own piece of paradise whether it be racing down one of the water slides, playing a round of pickleball or relaxing on our floating AquaBanas.”

The previously announced sections, which the line calls portals, include the welcome area Paradise Plaza, adult-friendly area Calypso Lagoon and the shopping district Lokono Cove. Details on the final portal, an adults-only area, will be revealed later. Future expansion will build beyond the five portals including the construction of a water park.

The 369-acre site less than 20 miles east of Freeport that’s the largest port construction project in the line’s history will be the first dedicated to Carnival Cruise Line, although Carnival ships have used sister line destinations Princess Cays and Half Moon Cay for years.

The port of call will open with one dock capable of handling its largest ships, the 6,000-passenger Excel class, including Port Canaveral-based Mardi Gras and Carnival Celebration out of Miami.

The line announced this year a $100 million plan to expand that with a second dock so that it could handle up to four such ships beginning in 2026. That expansion, which grows the line’s investment to $600 million so far, means it expects nearly 4 million passengers to visit the site annually by 2028, an average of 11,000 visitors every day.

Other U.S. ports visiting the new site are Galveston, Texas; Baltimore; Norfolk, Virginia; Mobile, Alabama, Charleston, S.C. and New Orleans.

Disney pitches authenticity for new Bahamas cruise destination Lookout Cay

Carnival’s plans are just one of many new Bahamas destinations opening around the island nation in the coming years. This summer will see the debut of Disney’s new 900-acre destination Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point on the island of Eleuthera while Royal Caribbean has broken ground on what will become the 17-acre Royal Beach Club Paradise Island in Nassau.

These augment the existing private Bahamas destinations such as Royal Caribbean’s Perfect Day at Coco Cay, Norwegian Cruise Line’s Great Stirrup Cay, Disney’s Castaway Cay, Virgin Voyages’ Bimini Beach Club and MSC Cruises’ Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve as well as Princess Cays and Half Moon Cay.

More in Travel

From Amelia Island on the northeast tip of Florida to Alligator Reef in the Keys. From the pink sands of Eleuthera in the Bahamas to the slopes of Mount Scenery on the Dutch island of Saba in the Lesser Antilles. The May 2024 issue of our Explore Florida & the Caribbean takes you places – by land, sea and air. The new issue that will appear in digital format on Sunday, May 5, features stories on Florida’s lighthouses, cruise-line dining, a return to ultra-luxe Little Palm Island in the Keys, a camping trip to Peanut Island in Palm Beach County, a […]

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1 Trending: How Larry Hogan Can Recover From His Show Trial Campaign Flub

2 trending: joe biden’s fingerprints are all over the criminal prosecutions of donald trump, 3 trending: fauci’s agency raked in $690 million from big pharma in the wake of pandemic lockdowns, 4 trending: loren merchan silent as her clients raise millions from trump conviction her dad oversaw, here are the 3 biggest findings in florida’s grand jury report on covid ‘wrongdoing’.

Covid mask.

A new grand jury report contains damning information about how the ‘expert’ class did not, in fact, ‘follow the science’ on Covid.

Author Shawn Fleetwood profile

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A Florida grand jury released its second interim report last week on its investigation into potential “wrongdoing” by Covid shot manufacturers and entities who promoted them.

Requested  by Gov. Ron DeSantis and  authorized  by the Florida Supreme Court in December 2022, the grand jury was  tasked  with determining whether “pharmaceutical manufacturers (and their executive officers) and other medical associations or organizations” participated in “criminal activity or wrongdoing” concerning “their involvement in the development, approval or marketing of COVID-19 vaccines.” The jury released its first interim report in February, in which members confirmed the accuracy of many claims health “experts” and media apparatchiks dismissed as “misinformation.”

Submitted to the Florida Supreme Court on May 21, the grand jury’s second interim report details various topics not covered in the first, such as the prevalence of natural immunity among those infected with Covid and medications used to treat infected patients. Much like the first report, this new analysis contains damning information about how the “expert” class did not, in fact, “follow the science.”

1. Covid Patients Gain Natural Immunity Through Infection

Infection-derived immunity (IDI), or “natural immunity,” is not a new phenomenon. As noted by the grand jury, the human body acquiring natural protection from harmful antigens via infection is a concept that has existed for “thousands of years.”

While no human had previously been infected with Covid-19 prior to the outbreak in late 2019 and early 2020, it became evident in the months and years that followed that those who got infected and recovered from the virus possessed greater natural protection against reinfection. According to the report, “[m]ost studies show that, on average, IDI lowered chances of reinfection from the Ancestral, Alpha and Delta variants of SARS-CoV-2 in the unvaccinated by roughly 80%,” with such “immunity generally [starting] to decline around 40 weeks after infection but level[ing] off to what appeared to be a roughly stable 50% that lasted from 60 to 80 weeks after infection.”

“These promising IDI numbers did not just appear out of the blue in 2024. They were echoed in numerous studies produced at different times over the course of the last four years,” the report reads.

A 2021 Israeli study cited by the grand jury, for instance, reportedly found that “unvaccinated people with IDI had an overall effective protection rate of approximately 86% against the Delta variant.” Meanwhile, a 2021 study of patients in New York and California “showed that infections per 1,000 unvaccinated persons were roughly 129 for those with no IDI, and only 5 among the IDI, a 96% relative risk reduction rate.”

The grand jury noted how “[n]one of these statistics should have been a surprise to anyone in healthcare” and that such basic science “is so well understood that the broad strokes of it could be found in virtually any high school textbook.” Jury members further highlighted how “people with IDI in 2020 and 2021 had little to nothing to gain” from nonpharmaceutical interventions such as masking and lockdowns — two policies their first interim report documented had little to no scientific benefit. They also admonished government health agencies for ignoring biological reality and for inconsistent public policy prescriptions.

“Given that there were testing modalities available that could easily confirm whether a person had IDI, this Grand Jury believes it was irresponsible of government agencies not to have advised tailoring their mitigation measures to divide those at decreased risk due to IDI in the same way they would later divide the vaccinated , especially those of lower age with fewer comorbidities who were already at reduced risk,” the report reads. “… Where officials have concerns about certain behaviors, they should absolutely communicate those concerns and discourage those behaviors, but not at the expense of suppressing or ignoring ‘the science.'”

2. Government ‘Experts’ Attacked Potential Covid Treatments

While the grand jury noted the difficulty in finding effective treatments for a new virus amid a global outbreak, it lamented how some government health officials committed “avoidable mistakes” when it came to “messaging and communication” with the American public about potential early treatment options. Among the most notable was the “expert” class’s war against hydroxychloroquine , a commonly used drug often prescribed to treat malaria.

The jury noted how some “well-credentialed scientists and clinicians” were “dissatisfied” with the data the Food and Drug Administration used to justify its decision to revoke “Emergency Use Authorization” of hydroxychloroquine for treating Covid patients, and they chose to prescribe the drug to patients based on the data they were examining. The medication’s proponents argued the data cited by the FDA “focused on using the drug in hospitalized patients as opposed to outpatients, contained large numbers of low-risk individuals,” and had other issues undercutting its reliability.

The grand jury said it does “not believe it was unreasonable [for doctors] to include hydroxychloroquine in an early outpatient treatment regimen for Covid-19” given the drug’s “long history” of relatively safe use and the ever-changing nature of “the science.”

While the grand jury found clinicians’ use of the drug to treat Covid patients reasonable, government agencies and their media allies did not. The grand jury described how “[p]rominent government public health officials, of course, did not agree, widely stigmatizing the drug, vilifying the doctors who prescribed it, the researchers who advocated it and the people who took it.”

“In April of 2020, a mere two days after the Guidelines were initially published with an ‘Emergency Recommendation’ for hydroxychloroquine, a prominent newspaper characterized interviews with hydroxychloroquine proponents as ‘a big dose of dumb[,]’ and noting that ‘[c]laims about hydroxychloroquine to treat Covid-19 have gained traction despite a lack of scientific evidence,’” the report reads. “From there, the information war was on. Even after the Guidelines changed hydroxychloroquine’s status to ‘Not Recommended,’ news agencies continued to criticize those who researched the drug, calling hydroxychloroquine ‘the most disappointing, disavowed drug that researchers keep studying for Covid-19.’”

The grand jury similarly examined the “bizarre” information warfare against ivermectin, a Nobel Prize-winning antiparasitic medication approved for human use in 1987. While researchers published studies both supporting and disproving the drug’s efficacy against Covid, the same aforementioned government and media figures engaged in a “pointless, ugly war of words over a proven-safe drug with questionable effectiveness.”

The grand jury criticized public health officials for issuing dismissive and childish messaging, specifically for an August 2021 tweet about ivermectin by the FDA that read, “You are not a horse. You are not a cow. Seriously, y’all. Stop it.” The jury similarly lambasted the media for referring to the medication as a “horse paste” and noted how some state licensing boards “began to threaten the livelihoods of doctors who prescribed Ivermectin to their patients for Covid-19.”

“Through all this, none of these opponents were able to effectively articulate a good reason for their contempt towards Ivermectin,” the report reads.

3. ‘Expert’ and Media Lies Put Lives at Risk

Above all, the grand jury highlighted how government health “experts” and legacy media’s efforts to squash debate about the efficacy of drugs like ivermectin created an avoidable scenario in which individuals who felt they were being lied to took matters into their own hands.

“Some people became so desperate to get this supposed miracle drug, so sure they were being lied to, that they began to resort to doses and formulations of the drug meant for animals, resulting in a number of well-publicized Ivermectin overdoses,” the report reads. “Once again, opponents looked down their noses at the foolishness of these desperate, misguided fools. Late night comedians made jokes at their expense and everybody who knew how to ‘follow the science’ laughed. This Grand Jury is not laughing.”

“This was a profound failure of public health messaging. We lay every overdose that occurred at the feet of those who authored this campaign of vilification ,” the grand jury added.

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  1. VACATION WITH THE FAMILY

    Family-friendly vacation destinations are always on the itinerary when you sail with Royal Caribbean®. From thrill-topping island hopping to exploring the Last Frontier, max memories like never before onboard the best family cruise ships in the world. cococay getaway. Kick family bonding up a notch at Perfect Day at CocoCay in The Bahamas ...

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    Disney Cruise Line is often the first to come to mind for a family cruise. Known for bringing the magic of Disney to the high seas, Disney cruises offer themed entertainment, character meet-and-greets, and activities that fascinate both the young and the young at heart. Their ships depart from Miami and Port Canaveral, ensuring easy access for families flying into or driving to Florida.

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