So you want to take a cruise …
Cruising is an ideal vacation option for families, groups of friends, seniors and more, thanks to all-inclusive rates and itineraries that allow travelers to visit multiple destinations in a single trip. To help cruisers narrow down the line that best suits their needs and budgets, U.S. News evaluated and ranked 15 top cruise lines in a variety of categories. Read on to find out which cruise lines came out on top and how they excel in the cruising industry.
Best Cruise Lines for Families
With character meet and greets, engaging kids clubs and themed dinners, it’s no surprise that Disney Cruise Line ranks as the No. 1 Best Cruise Line for Families for the third consecutive year. Disney has entertaining families down to a science. Its amenities cater to kids of all ages (even teens), plus each ship has a designated adults-only area for when grown-ups need some down time. Royal Caribbean International ranks No. 2 and Carnival Cruise Lines ranks No. 3 on the Best Cruise Lines for Families list.
Read more: The Best Cruise Lines for Families 2016
Best Cruise Lines for the Money
Royal Caribbean International is the No. 1 Best Cruise Line for the Money for 2016. This massive fleet’s numerous ships sail to a variety of destinations across the Caribbean, Mexico, Alaska, Europe and more, and many itineraries cost less than $150 per person per night. What’s more, cruise rates not only include accommodations (plus room service) but also cover meals in the main dining area and access to onboard activities and entertainment like rock climbing, language lessons, live music concerts and comedy shows. Carnival Cruise Lines comes in at No. 2 and Celebrity Cruises ranks No. 3 on the Best Cruise Lines for the Money list.
Read more: The Best Cruise Lines for the Money 2016
Best Cruise Lines for Romance
Intimate dinners, fun dance lessons and luxe lodging options are just a few reasons Crystal Cruises ranks as the No. 1 Best Cruise Line for Romance. Lovebirds can spend time together enjoying a couples massage at the spa, relaxing in the pool or dining in one of the upscale specialty restaurants. When it’s time to bed down — or rekindle the romance — accommodations on Crystal’s ships feature queen-sized beds with Egyptian cotton sheets, ocean views and electronic “Do Not Disturb” signs for ultimate privacy. The No. 2- and No. 3-ranked Best Cruise Lines for Romance for 2016 are Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Azamara Club Cruises, respectively.
Read more: The Best Cruise Lines for Romance 2016
Best Cruise Lines in the Caribbean
Disney Cruise Line sails to 14 Caribbean ports — and boasts its own private Caribbean island. The No. 1-ranked Best Cruise Line in the Caribbean stops at popular destinations like St. Kitts & Nevis, the Cayman Islands, Jamaica and, of course, Castaway Cay in the Bahamas. Disney’s Port Adventures also encourage cruisers to experience the islands’ best assets, with offerings like snorkeling trips, bike tours, dolphin encounters, zip lining adventures and more. Royal Caribbean International takes the No. 2 spot and Celebrity Cruises claims the No. 3 spot on the Best Cruise Lines in the Caribbean ranking for 2016.
Read more: The Best Cruise Lines in the Caribbean 2016
Best Cruise Lines in the Mediterranean
Regent Seven Seas Cruises takes the No. 1 spot in the inaugural ranking of the Best Cruise Lines in the Mediterranean. The cruise line’s three ships sail to 12 countries and countless cities and ports in the region, with stops in popular and picturesque locales like Venice, Italy, Saint-Tropez, France, and Athens, Greece. Plus, the cruise line’s complimentary shore excursions allow passengers to explore all that these cities have to offer. Azamara Club Cruises and Silversea Cruises rank No. 2 and No. 3 on the Best Cruise Lines in the Mediterranean list, respectively.
Best Luxury Cruise Lines
When you think of a traditional luxury cruise, formal gourmet dinners, over-the-top service and spacious suites are probably some of the features that come to mind. This year’s No. 1-ranked Best Luxury Cruise Line, Crystal Cruises, offers all of those features and more. Crystal’s intimate ships sail with no more than 1,070 guests, allowing for more personalized service than many of the megaships sailing today. The fleet’s smaller ships can also navigate to more remote and unique ports of call like Fiji, the South Pacific island nation of Vanuatu and Madagascar. Regent Seven Seas Cruises comes in at No. 2 and Azamara Club Cruises ranks No. 3 on the Best Luxury Cruise Lines list.
Read more: The Best Luxury Cruise Lines 2016
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