A family affair: top three multi-generational cruises

With fun-filled kid’s clubs, aqua parks and entertainment for all ages, cruising really is a family affair with these new onboard attractions.Friday, 20 December 2019

By Jeannine Williamson

Carnival Mardi Gras

Seagoing thrills don’t come any bigger than Carnival Mardi Gras, soon to be the largest ship in the Carnival Cruise Line fleet, which will showcase the first ever roller coaster onboard a cruise ship.

BOLT: Ultimate Sea Coaster will be a high point — in every sense — on the 5,200-passenger ship when it launches in August 2020. The roller coaster will transport thrill-seeking passengers through 800ft of twists and drops at speeds of up to 40mph at 187ft above sea level and even includes a loop around the ship’s funnel. The coaster is part of the Ultimate Playground zone, spread across the ship’s top three decks, which also features the largest and most elaborate Carnival WaterWorks aqua park.

Family members who prefer slightly more sedate activities can visit the five other themed zones: the French Quarter, Summer Landing, Grand Central, La Piazza and the Lido, which offer a traditional New Orleans jazz club, a new Mediterranean-themed seafood restaurant, and a poolside rum bar, to name just a few of the highlights.

Family Harbor cabins can be found near the dedicated Family Harbor Lounge, an exclusive spot for kids, parents and grandparents. Breakfast and snacks are available during the day, along with board games, family films and video games. At night, the Night Owls babysitting service takes care of small sailors so adults can enjoy a quiet meal or take in a show. 

The eight-night Northern Europe cruise from Copenhagen to Southampton, departing 31 August 2020, starts from £1,469 per person cruise only. 

La Venezia

Uniworld is one of the few river cruise lines offering dedicated family holidays. Its newest luxury ship La Venezia features an action-packed ‘Generations’ sailing where the young and young at heart can make pasta, discover monsters in Milan’s gothic cathedral and explore dusty dungeons at the Doge’s Palace in Venice.

The nine-night Gems of Northern Italy cruise, departing 28 June, 5 and 12 July 2020, starts from £2,519 for adults, and £2,009 for children including flights. 

Silver Origin

Giant tortoises, sea lions and iguanas — plus snorkelling with shoals of jewel-bright fish — are among the wildlife encounters awaiting passengers on Silversea’s first ship to be based in the Galápagos. Launching in summer 2020, Silver Origin’s onboard facilities include the interactive Basecamp, an elegant lounge where guests can meet and socialise.

The six-night Baltra to San Cristobal trip, departing 25 July 2020, starts at £8,640 per person including flights. 

Published in the National Geographic Traveller (UK) Cruise guide 2019

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