Best For Affordable Elegance
MSC: MSC sailings can be booked for rates similar to those you’d find with Carnival, but you’ll see a lot less kitsch and a lot more swank. Throughout each ship, passengers will notice sophisticated touches like fine art and staircases inlaid with sparkling Swarovski crystals.
Celebrity: Perfect for 30- and 40-somethings who have left their college frat party days behind, Celebrity is reasonably priced and offers the modern touches of mainstream cruise ships but with a more refined vibe.
Holland America: With fares that appeal to budget-conscious travelers, Holland America tends to attract an older demographic of cruisers who appreciate traditions like the Captain’s Dinner and formal attire. Passengers will often find understated glitz, rather than flashy colors or garish neon lights.
River Ship Line #: American Queen Steamboat Company
If nostalgias the name of your game, book a trip with the American Queen Steamboat Company, whose four paddlewheelers sail the Mississippi, Columbia, Snake, Ohio, Tennessee, and Cumberland Rivers. These are leisurely sailings: most are nine days long, with some outliers like the 15- or 16-day journey from Minneapolis to New Orleans.
Medium Ship Line #: Msc Cruises
Showing up for the third time on our list, MSC Cruises is clearly beloved by many! The Swiss cruise line has just four medium-size shipsthe Lirica classwhich accommodate between 2,000 and 2,600 passengers. Theyre also the oldest ships in the fleet, though they each underwent refurbishment as part of MSCs Renaissance program to modernize interiors and expand their size. The line is known for its Mediterranean inspirationthough its fleet sails far beyond the region, calling at ports all over the worldso youll find delicious Italian food on board no matter where your ship is taking you. MSC sailings are quite lively, especially at night, with many guests partying at nightclubs into the late hours.
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River Ship Line #1: Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours
Scenics 16 luxurious river ships sail waters across Europe and Asia, from the Danube in Germany to the Irrawaddy in Myanmar to the Volga in Russia. Each voyage is completely all-inclusivetransfers, excursions, all food and beverage , and gratuities are covered in the ratemaking for a truly relaxing and stress-free experience. And did we mention theres butler service for every cabin?
Viking Ocean Cruises Review Which Recommended Provider
Yet again, Viking has held onto the number one spot in our survey, earning an outstanding five stars in every category. It specialises in small to medium, adult-only ocean cruises, with all of its ships carrying fewer than 1,000 guests. It’s not cheap, but the classy atmosphere, excellent food and unusual destinations are a winning combination, so it’s no surprise customers rated value for money as outstanding.
, or read our full Viking review for more information.
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Large Ship #: Msc Cruises
Nearly half of MSCs fleetnamely those ships in the Musica and Fantasia classesfalls into the large cruise category, with most of its newer builds firmly taking a bigger is better stance. The eight large vessels primarily sail in the Mediterranean and the Caribbean, though they do offer itineraries in North and South America, Asia, and Northern Europe, too. The family-friendly ships skew toward the upscale side, and theyre known for their incredibly international crowds.
What Is There To Do On Board The Regent Seven Seas Explorer
As with any large hotel, the Explorer comes with a generously-sized spa, slick gym, well-stocked library, sophisticated lounge bars and a spacious pool deck. The Culinary Arts Kitchen does surprise though, resembling a prestigious cooking school with fully-equipped individual workstations for group tuition. Clearly popular, you can practice and learn how to prepare dishes, from modern French classics to authentic Spanish tapas.
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What Is The Nicest Cruise Ship In The World
- #1. Seven Seas Explorer. Regent Seven Seas Cruises.
- #2. Viking Orion. Viking Ocean Cruises.
- #2. Viking Sun. Viking Ocean Cruises.
- #2. Seabourn Odyssey. Seabourn Cruise Line.
- #5. Celebrity Reflection. Celebrity Cruises.
- #5. Silver Spirit. Silversea Cruises.
- #5. Viking Sea. Viking Ocean Cruises.
- #5. Viking Star. Viking Ocean Cruises.
Hurtigruten Review Which Recommended Provider
It’s all about the destination on a Hurtigruten ocean cruise. Its vessels may not be the most luxurious around, but they are compact enough to access smaller ports and towns that large ships can’t. Throw in exceptional customer service and there are few better ways to explore Norway and the Arctic.
, or read our full Hurtigruten review for more information.
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Best Cruise Lines For Couples
Awards for the best cruises for those traveling in twos are:
Viking dominates this category due to its “adult-focused environment and luxurious and romantic amenities, such as fireplaces in each ship’s common area and private verandas in every stateroom,” according to a U.S. News & World Report’s press release.
To qualify for this category, at least 62% of a cruise line’s online traveler reviews must be made by couples.
Most luxury cruise lines allow kids, though they often don’t cater to them the way the larger lines do. Viking, however, doesn’t allow children at all.
The company previously welcomed kids aged 12 and older to cruise, but as of 2018, all guests must be 18 or older to board.
Also on the list: Celebrity Cruises , Oceania Cruises , Silversea Cruises , Cunard Line and Holland America Line .
Large Ship Line #: Holland America Line
As its name indicates, Holland America is a cruise line that was established in 1873 to primarily ferry passengers, many of whom were emigrants, between the Netherlands and the United States. Of course, these days, the cruise line sails more broadly to more than 470 ports around the world on its 11 shipsand its highly regarded for its Alaska itineraries. While passengers can enjoy classic cruise activities like swimming, sports, and gambling, Holland America is particularly noted for its culinary and musical programs: it has a partnership with the TV show Americas Test Kitchen for cooking demonstrations, cooking classes, and a number of live music venues , and stage productions dedicated to the history of music on many of its ships. The latest addition to Holland Americas fleet is the Rotterdam, which first set sail in July 2021, with a capacity of 2,650 passengers.
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Best Modern Cruise: U River Cruises
Courtesy of U by Uniworld
- Ship Name: The A
- Itinerary: Haarlem, Netherlands Düsseldorf, Germany Cologne, Germany Koblenz, Germany Rüdesheim Germany Frankfurt Germany
Geared towards millennials, U River Cruises takes a hip approach to river cruising, with modern, stylish ships featuring chic rooftop lounges with ice bars and fabulous, trend-setting dining venues. Theres also yoga, paint and wine classes, and themed cruises that bring special guests onboard, ranging from celebrity drag queens to famous tattoo artists. On the 120-pasenger A ship, cabins include adjustable mood lighting, USB ports, built-in Bluetooth speakers, and luxurious baths with heated mirrors and plush bathrobes. Plus, theres dedicated rooms for solo travelers or groups of three. On the Rolling on the Rhine cruise, the ship stays late in port, with night excursions in Amsterdam, Frankfurt, and others included in the fare.
The 2020 List Of The Worlds Best Cruises Is Out Now
U.S. News & World Report has released its annual list of the worlds best cruises. The report evaluated 176 ships in 17 of the top cruise lines to determine the rankings in six categories including best cruise lines for the money and best luxury cruise lines.
The findings factored in evaluations from cruise industry experts, health assessments conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, price classes, itinerary offerings, and reputation among travelers. The final rankings reflect offerings across the entire fleet of each line rather than information on individual ships within each fleet and the varying services each might include.
Royal Caribbean took the top spot for value cruises.
Royal Caribbean came in at number one in the Best Cruise Line for the Money category, while Viking Ocean Cruises earned the top spot in both the Best Luxury Cruise Line and Best Cruise Line for Couples categories thanks to its high-end amenities, adult-focused ambiance, and romantic touches like private verandas in each stateroom and fireplaces in common areas.
No surprise, Disney Cruise Line maintained its hold on the top spot for Best Cruise Lines for Families yet again it has earned this distinction in every one of U.S. News annual rankings. This year, it also won Best Cruise Line in the Caribbean for the seventh consecutive year. Rounding out the roster of winners, Seabourn Cruise Line remained the number one Best Cruise Line in the Mediterranean for 2020.
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Medium Ship Line #: Cunard
While Cunards Queen Mary 2 fits more than 2,600 passengersand a number of cats and dogson board, her sister ships, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria only have a capacity of about 2,000 passengers. Though theyre quite similar in layout, the QE and the QV differ in design. Both nod to the historic ocean liners of the early 20th century, but the QE takes on a bolder Art Deco vibe, while the QV features more subdued yet equally elegant decor. Guests on board both ships are likely to partake in afternoon tea before donning a glamorous gown for dinner.
Discover The Best Cruise Ships
There are so many reasons to get excited about a Royal Caribbean® cruise. Choose from itineraries that take you to top-rated destinations, from sun-soaked Caribbean isles to ancient temples in Asia and everywhere in between. And make the most out of every moment at sea onboard the worlds best cruise ships, loaded from bow to stern with game-changing thrills, dazzling entertainment, next-level dining and activities for all kinds of adventure-seekers. No matter which ship you choose to sail on, this is a fleet filled with incredible feats.
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The Best Cruise Lines For 2022 Have Been Announced
The best cruise line may be a very subjective question, but U.S. News & World Report has released their opinion of the best lines across various categories.
The 2022 Best Cruises rankings were announced on Tuesday, which is an annual look at which cruise lines rank among the top picks.
There are six categories of categories for ranking 17 different cruise lines.
Royal Caribbean did not come out as the winner in any one category, but did rank near the top in a few.
River Ship Line #: Crystal River Cruises
Crystal River Cruises launched in 2016 with custom-built river ships. The company is dead-set on matching the top-of-the-line service of its ocean ships, and it certainly has readers convinced. The fleet has five river shipsfour of which, Crystal Bach, Mahler, Debussy, and Ravel, are Europes only all-suite, all-balcony river shipssailing the Moselle, Rhine, Danube, and Main rivers. Guests enjoy an all-inclusive experience, with free butler service, unlimited drinks , Wi-Fi, and fitness classes.
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Large Ship Line #: Norwegian Cruise Line
Things escalated quickly for Norwegian: the cruise line jumped from medium-size ships to mega-ships practically overnight , with just three ships in its current fleet sized somewhere in between. But thats soon about to change. Norwegian currently has six ships on order as part of Project Leonardo, each of which will hold about 3,300 passengers. Its interesting to see a cruise line scale back from its mega-ships and opt for a more manageable size for such a large order. The first, Norwegian Prima, is expected to launch in 2022 some of its highlights include the fastest slides at sea , a three-level go-kart racetrack, and a three-story theater that transforms into a nightclub after the evening’s show.
Calculating The Cruise Line Rankings
Best Luxury Cruise Lines: For our luxury cruise lines ranking, we include only cruise lines with a price class rating of 3.5 or above. Qualifying cruise lines are ranked highest to lowest based on their Overall Rating.
Best Cruise Lines for the Money: For our affordable cruise lines ranking, we include only cruise lines with a price class rating less than 2.5. Qualifying cruise lines are ranked highest to lowest based on their average Overall Rating, which carries a 40 percent weight and their price class rating, which carries a 60 percent weight.
Best Cruise Lines for Couples: This ranking factors in each line’s Overall Rating as well as the aggregate traveler rating by “couples” travelers and the percentage of a cruise line’s reviews on Cruiseline.com that are left by couples. For example, a cruise line that receives a high percentage of its reviews from couples is more likely to be couples-oriented. Cruise lines are ranked according to the weighted average of their rank within each of these three factors. For a cruise line to be eligible for inclusion in this ranking, at least 62 percent of its total traveler reviews had to come from couples.
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What Is The Best Cruise Line
There’s a lot to consider when you’re trying to figure out which cruise line is the best. It’s not a simple question to answer because it depends on the interests, personalities and budgets of you and the people with whom you’ll be traveling.
When determining how to pick a cruise line, check out our superlatives below, which are designed to point you in the right direction. Simply find the things that matter most to you, and see which cruise line falls under most of them.
If you’re still struggling with what’s the best cruise line, check out some of our comparison pieces, linked throughout the article below.
Medium Ship Line #: Oceania Cruises
Its all about the food on Oceania Cruises. Its 1,250-passenger MS Marina and MS Riviera offer restaurants by Jaques Pepin, a six-course Dom Perignon dinner with a pairing of three vintages, a cooking center where passengers of all cooking skill levels can take classes, and culinary-themed excursions, like a visit to the market in Nice with a chef. Its four smaller Regatta-class ships, each accommodating 684 passengers, also have excellent dining options, like the Polo Grill and the Italian eatery Toscana. Two new 1,200-passenger ships are on the way for Oceania, set for delivery in 2023 and 2025.
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Best Cruise Company Reviews
Many cruise line passengers book with the same company over and over again. Its that comfort of knowing what to expect on board, from the facilities and food to the general atmosphere. But the truth is that if youre willing to try a different line youll probably have a better holiday. While passengers of the most popular cruise lines, like Cunard, P& O and Celebrity rated them well, there are eight brands rated far better.
River Ship Line #: Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection
Uniworld’s 21 ships cruise around the globe in Europe, Egypt, Russia, China, India, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Peru. Their excursions offer passengers the opportunity to get a little closer to their destinations of choice, with visits to local homes, farms, and artisans, and every excursion is rated by ability level. In 2018, two of its ships were overhauled for a new venture, U by Uniworld Cruises, with itineraries, dining, and activities that appeal to younger prospective passengersthink silent discos, mixology classes, and rooftop camping.
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Large Ship Line #: Cunard
For those longing for the romantic nostalgia of bygone transatlantic sailings, Cunard is your go-to. The legendary cruise line was established in 1840 and has had dozens of ships in its fleet, though today, there are just three active vessels: the Queen Mary 2, the worlds only true transatlantic ocean liner, designed specifically for ocean crossings, as well as the worlds only pet-friendly ship the Queen Elizabeth and the Queen Victoria. Activities havent changed all that much in the last 180 yearstheres still a proper afternoon tea, black-tie dinners, and galas in the ballrooms. Its quite like a step back in time, with all the modern safety measures, of course. Cunards next ship is scheduled to set sail in 2022 or 2023.
Large Ship Line #: Royal Caribbean International
Though Royal Caribbean is perhaps best known for its mega-ships, it has quite a number of large ships, toothe 3,100-passenger Voyager-class ships, for instance, were once the worlds largest, until Royal Caribbean debuted the larger Freedom class and subsequently the Oasis class. Each class had its own series of firstsVoyager of the Seas was the first ship to have an ice rink and a rock-climbing wall, while Freedom of the Seas introduced the first FlowRider surf simulator at sea.
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Queen Mary 2 $880 Million
Cruising the transatlantic, the Queen Mary 2 is owned by Cunard Line, a British-American shipping comopany, and cost $880 million to build. It is currently Cunards only cruise ship that operates between Southampton and New York. The 14-deck liner can accommodate 2,620 guests and 1,238 crew members. Among its distinctive features, there is a Britannia restaurant that seats 1,347, Queens Grill, Royal Court Theater, Winter garden, as well as 14 clubs and fitness and wellness facilities. Measuring 1,132 feet in length and rising 236 feet above the water line, Queen Mary 2 is exactly 147 feet longer than the Eiffel Tower.
Small Ship Line #: Seabourn
Seabourns six ships feature fewer than 300 suites eachbut they leverage that small size into access at some of the worlds most beloved yacht ports: St. Tropez in the south of France the Greek island of Kos and popular large ports like Dubrovnik and Monte Carlo. Michelin-starred chef Thomas Keller designs specialty menus on the ships, and a partnership with UNESCO ensures shore excursions and sustainable tourism practices at some of the wildest and most wonderful destinations around the world. Later this year, the line will debut its first expedition ship, Seabourn Venture, with a sister ship to follow.
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