The Best Family Cruise Lines - Norwegian Cruise Line
Foodies are in heaven aboard NCL, where "freestyle cruising" means never having to eat dinner in the same place twice. Choose from six to ten onboard restaurants, including sushi, tapas, trattorias, and French bistros; some eateries cost extra and require reservations. Choice also extends to how you dress for dinnerdon a tuxedo or gown, or don't bother and go casual.
When the Norwegian Pearl debuts in December 2006, it will add a rock-climbing wall plus a full-size bowling alley that transforms into a lounge with music, dancing, and mood-lit lanes at night.
For little kids, several of NCL's ships, including the Jewel, Dawn, Star, and Spirit, feature colorfully themed children's pools with pint-sized slides and splash areas. The Kid's Crew and Teen's Crew programs offer age-specific fun for two- through 17-year-olds, including crafts and pajama parties for tots and pool parties and a video arcade for the older crowd. Although little ones don't have to be potty trained, counselors beep the parents when it's time to redo the Pampers. While most lines allow junior cruisers ages eight and older, with parental permission, to sign themselves in and out of the children's program, NCL gives this privilege only to teens, something that will annoy gradeschoolers if they've enjoyed the freedom to roam on other cruise lines.
Dreaming of Hawaii? Then think NCL America, a division of NCL, and the only line offering regularly scheduled inter-island itineraries. The three ships plying this slice of Pacific paradise are the Pride of Aloha, Pride of America, and the Pride of Hawaii.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication