U.S. News & World Report has just published its annual list of the best cruise lines in North America. These are the 10 companies that rank highest among travelers looking for cruises. Our analysis includes ratings based on factors such as value, quality, amenities, crew, food, entertainment, safety, security, itineraries, ports of call, onboard activities, shore excursions, and reviews. We also include information about each cruise line’s fleet size, number of sailings per week, average price per person, and the percentage of passengers who choose their cruise line over others.
The rankings are based on data collected from surveys conducted by independent research firms. They do not reflect opinions from U.S. News editors or reporters; rather, they represent the views of consumers who participated in those studies.
Here are the 10 cruise lines that ranked highest among travelers seeking cruises:
1. Carnival Cruises: Overall rating 4.5 out of 5 stars
2. Royal Caribbean International: Overall rating 4 out of 5 stars
3. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.: Overall rating 4.25 out of 5 stars
4. Princess Cruises Ltd.: Overall rating 3.75 out of 5 stars
5. Holland America Line N.V.: Overall rating 3.5 out of 5 star
6. Cunard Line PLC: Overall rating 3.5out of 5 stars
7. Seabourn Cruise Line Ltd.: Overall rating 3.4 out of 5 stars
8. Celebrity Cruises Inc.: Overall rating 3.25 out of 5 star
9. Regent Seven Seas Cruises Ltd.: Overall 2.9 out of 5 stars
10. Crystal Cruises Ltd.: Overall 1.9 out of 5 star
Celebrity Cruises Celebrity Apex
The cruise ship Celebrity Apex debuted in April 2019 with a $1 billion price tag. And it just got even pricier. On Tuesday, Celebrity announced that the luxury liner had been named the world’s most expensive cruise ship. The vessel features a number of amenities, including a spa, pool, gym, library, theater, casino, shops, restaurants and bars. The ship can accommodate up to 2,500 guests, making it one of the largest ships in the Celebrity fleet. The ship is expected to make its maiden voyage later this year.
Royal Caribbean Odyssey of the Seas
Odyssey of the Seas debuted in 2009 and has been sailing ever since. With three sister ships, she’s one of Royal Caribbean’s most popular vessels, offering everything you’d want out of a vacation experience. Aboard, guests are treated to a wide array of amenities including multiple dining venues, bars, lounges, pools, and more. But what makes this ship really stand out is how much thought went into every detail. From the design of the rooms to the entertainment options, there’s no aspect of the ship that wasn’t considered carefully.
Atlas Ocean Voyages World Navigator and World Traveler
The world’s largest cruise operator, Royal Caribbean International, announced it will launch a new brand called Atlas Ocean Voyages. It is the first cruise line dedicated entirely to exploration.
The new brand will feature a fleet of four ships, including the ice-class, 196 passenger, World Navigator, scheduled to debut in 2021. The first ship will be named World Navigator and will sail around Antarctica twice every summer season. It will offer guests the chance to explore the continent’s most remote regions, such as the Weddell Sea and Ross Sea, where no one had ever been before.
World Navigator will be followed by World Traveler, which will take travelers on voyages throughout the globe, offering access to some of the planet’s most beautiful destinations. In addition, both ships will host pop-up restaurants, bars, lounges and shops, allowing passengers to enjoy the best of each destination while onboard.
The latest vessel to join Royal Caribbean International’s fleet of cruise ships is named Viking Venus. This ship joins the Voyager of the Seas and Crown Princess Cruises’ Explorer of the Seas as one of three vessels in the RCI fleet bearing the name “Venus.” Launched in April 2018, Viking Venus features a number of innovative design elements including a glass-enclosed promenade deck, a retractable roof over the pool area, and a unique exterior decor inspired by ancient Greek mythology.
Virgin Voyages Scarlet Lady and Valiant Lady
The luxury cruise lines are finally ready to start taking passengers on their adult-only voyages.
Sir Richard Branson announced Friday that his two newest vessels, the and, are set to begin sailing next summer.
Branson says he hopes to attract people over 50 who want “a different experience.” He says the ships’ design is meant to evoke images of 1950s ocean liners.
They’ll depart from the British port city of Southampton and sail around the world, stopping in places like Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
Silversea Cruises Silver Origin
The latest game-changer coming to the Galapagos Islands, the sleek, understatement 100-passenger Silver Origin is Silversea cruises’ first purpose-built vessel. Guests get the best of both world: wise, warm expedition guide who draw on a wealth experience, and a host modern ship amenities.
Guests dine, drink, discover aboard the elegant ship, what with the guides’ evening lectures, endless variety of ceviche open air at The Grill, and nightlife dancing at the Piano Bar, The Explorer Lounge. But where Silver Origin excels is in the most unexpected way—in the food and beverage department.
Silver Origin offers something no other cruise ships do: a dining room designed around local cuisine and ingredients, with menus featuring dishes such as ceviche, tacos, and even sushi rolls. And it doesn’t stop there; the ship also features a wine cellar stocked with over 2,500 bottles, and an extensive collection of spirits.
Silversea Cruises Silver Moon
The latest cruise ship to debut under the Silversea banner takes passengers to some of the world’s most iconic destinations. With three different itineraries featuring stops in Panama, Costa Rica and Greece, Silver Moon offers up a variety of experiences. Guests are treated to a gourmet meal prepared by the onboard chefs, who prepare dishes inspired by each destination.
Silver Moon features eight suites with balconies, including four Royal Suites that offer additional space and amenities such as personal butler service, wine storage and mini refrigerators. There are two penthouses, one of which includes a balcony.
Guests can choose from several dining options, including specialty restaurants like the SALT lab, where chefs teach guests how to make traditional recipes from around the globe. Other dining venues include a main restaurant, a casual eatery called the Market Café and a buffet-style venue called the Dining Room.
The ship also boasts a spa and fitness center, along with a pool deck, hot tubs and a sauna. For entertainment, there’s a movie theater and live performances held throughout the day.
From $5,100 per guest. —Janice Wald Hendon
The world’s largest cruise liner, the 378-passenger expedition vessel Viking Octantis, just finished her maiden voyage around Antarctica. She’ll be sailing again next summer, and she’s already booked up for the winter.
Alongside the line’s hallmark Nordic-style blond-wood interior, rich blue fabrics, and comfy mid-20th century slingbacks facing floor-to- ceiling windows, guests have a hangout packed with toys like Zodiaks and two subs.
New onboard spaces include the Aula, where lectures and documentaries are held, and the 36-person onboard crew includes ornithologists, archaeologists, geologists, historians and a wildlife photographer. After a guided kayak beside seals at icy Deception island, the heated pool in spa may just feel like heaven.
From $3,995 per guest, based on double occupancy, including all meals, excursions, taxes, port charges and gratuities. —Megan Spurrel
A new breed of luxury travel company has emerged in recent years, offering travelers more than just a vacation experience. They’re providing a lifestyle change, too.
These companies aren’t only about getting you away from your daily routine, they’re about helping you create a new one.
“We want people to come back home feeling refreshed,” says Tania Brugman, founder of the boutique hotel chain The Ritz-Carlton Club & Spa. “It’s not just a place to stay.”
Princess Cruises Enchanted Princess
The holidays are a busy time of year for everyone, especially those traveling for vacation. But there is something about being on holiday that makes people feel a little less stressed. And what better way to relax than by taking a cruise?
There are many different types of cruises, and each type offers something unique. There are cruises that offer luxury experiences like spa treatments, gourmet dining, and shopping excursions. Others cater to families with kids activities such as swimming lessons, arts & crafts sessions, and supervised play areas. Still others focus on adventure, offering zip lining, parasailing, kayaking, snorkeling, and scuba diving.
And while some cruises are designed to provide a relaxing experience, others are built around entertainment options. These cruises often include live music performances, comedy acts, trivia nights, and themed parties.
Whatever type of cruise appeals to you, there is always a reason to celebrate. So whether you’re looking forward to spending quality family time together, catching up with old friends, or simply enjoying a romantic escape, here are five reasons why cruising is the perfect way to unwind during the holidays.
1. You’ll Get To Know Your Fellow Passengers
When you travel by ship, you spend much of your time onboard with fellow passengers. This gives you the chance to make new acquaintances and build relationships with people from across the globe. When you travel alone, you don’t really get to know anyone else. Sure, you might meet someone new at dinner, but chances are that person won’t stick around long enough to become part of your social circle. On board, however, you’ll find yourself surrounded by friendly faces every day.
2. You Can Take A Break From Work
If you work hard, it can be easy to forget how important it is to take breaks throughout the day. While working on a computer all day can certainly help keep you productive, it also means that you’re missing out on opportunities to enjoy other aspects of life. By taking a break from work, you give yourself the opportunity to do things outside of your job. Whether you go hiking, visit museums, or attend a concert, you’ll have plenty of ways to fill your free time when you’re on holiday.
3. It’s An Affordable Way To Travel
Cruising isn’t just an affordable option for those who want to travel; it’s also a great choice for those who want to see the world without breaking the bank. With prices starting at $50 per night, you can easily afford to book a cruise if you’ve been saving money for years. Plus, since most ships offer discounts for seniors, students, and military personnel, you can save even more money.
4. It’s Fun For The Whole Family
Cruises aren’t just fun for adults. They’re also a fantastic way to bring the whole family together. Kids love the excitement of exploring a new place, and they especially enjoy being able to explore their surroundings in a safe environment. If you’re traveling with children, you can plan trips to places like Disney World, Universal Studios, SeaWorld, and Legoland. Or, if you’d rather stay closer to home, you can still enjoy the thrill of visiting a local amusement park.
MSC Cruises MSC Seashore
The cruise industry is changing—and it’s not just because of the coronavirus pandemic. Cruise lines are now offering guests the chance to enjoy the ocean without having to spend hours on board. And one of those companies is MSC Cruises. This week, the luxury cruise operator announced plans to launch a brand-new ship called MSC Seashore. The ship will offer a variety of activities such as yoga classes, cooking lessons, and even surfing lessons. There will also be a spa and salon onboard. But what really sets MSC Seashore apart is where she docks. Instead of docking in Miami like most cruises do, the ship will dock in Nassau, Bahamas.
This move makes sense for several reasons. First, there’s no shortage of beautiful beaches in the Bahamas. Second, the island nation offers some of the best weather in the world. Third, the islands boast a great selection of restaurants, bars, and shops. In fact, the Bahamas are home to many cruise ships, including Royal Caribbean International’s Oasis of the Seas, Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Getaway, Carnival Corporation & plc’s Carnival Vista, and Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Edge. These ships are often docked in Freeport, Grand Bahama Island, which is about a 45-minute drive away from Nassau. So, if you’re looking for a relaxing vacation, then the Bahamas might be the perfect destination.
Holland America Line Rotterdam
Staterooms start at about $550 per person, depending on the size. A variety of specialty dining options are included.
The ship offers a wide array of entertainment, including live music performances, comedy acts, lectures, art exhibits and children’s activities. Guests enjoy free Wi-Fi access throughout the vessel.
Guests can choose from three main restaurants: Sea View Restaurant & Bar, Windjammer Café and Zodiac Cafe. Each restaurant serves different cuisine and has its own unique atmosphere.
Sea View Restaurant & Bar, located on Deck 9, features casual American fare such as burgers, sandwiches, steaks and seafood dishes.
Windjammer Café, located on Deck 8, provides buffet meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Zodiac Cafe, located on Deck 7, is a casual eatery serving coffee, snacks, salads, wraps, soups and desserts.