There’s no greater way to explore the sights of the Caribbean than on a boat cruise. Good thing there are plenty of cruise lines to choose from for the ultimate Caribbean experience. But which one to book for your next vacation? We’ve listed some of the best cruise lines offering the most enjoyable excursions around the Caribbean to help you decide!
Disney Cruise Line
A worldwide favourite, the Disney Cruise Line ranks at the top as not only the best cruise line for families, but also the best cruise line in the Caribbean. It has four ships, namely Disney Fantasy, Disney Dream, Disney Wonder and Disney Magic. Among the destinations you can go to are the Cayman Islands, Barbados, Grenada and Disney’s private island on the Caribbean, Castaway Cay. Guests can also sign up for shore excursions called Port Adventures. The cruises aren’t just for kids, either: each ship comes with secluded adult-only swimming pools, lounges and restaurants.
Royal Caribbean International
The Royal Caribbean International cruise line offers hundreds of vacation packages for travelers. Its ships are equipped with plenty of fun activities and entertainment venues for guests to enjoy. You can even ride zip lines, learn to become an acrobat, hang 10 on a surfing simulator and try your hand at wall climbing on board! We recommend booking a voyage on the Anthem of the Seas, the cruise line’s newest and most technologically advanced ship at sea.
Carnival Cruise Lines
With 24 ships and numerous itineraries to choose from, Carnival Cruise Lines offers travellers a wide selection of vacation packages for every budget. As with other cruise lines, Carnival’s voyages range from two or three to 15 days. Passengers on board can while away their time in the ship’s casino, pools, nightclubs and dining areas. There’s a specialty restaurant for every taste, whether it’s Chinese, Japanese or Italian.
Norwegian Cruise Line
It may be Norwegian in name, but this cruise line has a true Caribbean heart. The line is known for a laid-back, relaxed ambiance. There are no fixed dining times and no enforced dress codes. Notable is its freestyle dining concept, where you can freely choose where to dine and at what time. There are plenty of activities to do on board for kids and adults alike, from sports tournaments and movie screenings for families to adults-only comedy shows. Destinations include Aruba, Tortola and the Dominican Republic.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises
If you’re not one to just sit around all day, you can hop on board one of the ships of Regent Seven Seas Cruises and try its onshore excursions and other activities. You can go on a scenic island tour, marvel at the wonders of the sea on a glass bottom boat or watch groups of sea lions frolicking in the waves. Onboard, you can swim laps, sign up for a photography class, or try to make a hole-in-one on the ship’s own putting green. The cruise line’s ship Explorer is home to the most expensive suite at sea, the Regent Suite.
This cruise line sails to exclusive ports in the Caribbean, including Bonaire and Iles Des Saintes. If you’re looking to have a relaxing trip–for your honeymoon, for example–this line will take you away from the usual cruising crowd.
For a luxury trip around the Caribbean, a voyage in one of Crystal Cruises’ ships is just the thing. Crystal’s ships are known for an upscale ambiance and glam interiors. The cruise line sails to top vacation destinations such as St. Lucia and Curaçao, where guests can participate in shore excursions such as scuba diving lessons and island helicopter tours. Onboard amenities and activities include musical performances, jewellery-making workshops and foreign language classes. Book a Caribbean cruise on the ship Serenity and enjoy top-notch service throughout your trip.
Holland America Line
Passengers who have hunger pangs in the middle of the night will love Holland America Line’s 24-hour in-room dining service. For those whose motto is “Why walk when you can dance?” can join the “Dancing with the Stars: At Sea” program to show off their moves. Popular destinations are St. Martin and St. Thomas and the Bahamas, where cruisers can take part in snap-worthy rail rides, dolphin swimming sessions and culinary tours.
Top destinations offered by Oceania Cruises include Antigua, Grenada and Turks & Caicos. The line mostly cater to mature, sophisticated and affluent travellers. The identical ships Marina and Riviera have a boutique hotel feel to them. Activities onboard include cooking classes, bridge tournaments and wine tastings. Onshore, cruisers can try out cave tubing, snorkelling and cliff diving.
Celebrity Cruises has been ranked as the best when it comes to value-for-money Caribbean getaways. Its fleet is separated into three classes: Xpedition, Millennium and Solstice. The length of trips can span up to 18 nights depending on the itinerary, including shore excursions that include a jungle safari and a plantation tea party. Onboard activities include trivia nights, wine pairing workshops and dance lessons.