Lounging at the pool while at sea was once all cruise ships had to offer sun-loving cruisers. Fast forward to today, and almost all family friendly cruise lines offer one or more thrilling water slides onboard. Cruisers climb to the upper decks of the ship for spectacular views and wet thrills alike. Kids and adults can enjoy the floating water park during their voyage at sea.
The Disney Dream and Fantasy
A water slide experience awaits passengers aboard Disney's two flagships, the Disney Dream and the Disney Fantasy. The ride on the AquaDuck is like being at a water park on the high seas. The flume, constructed of clear acrylic, allows guests to see the both ship and sea during the ride. This water coaster is only for riders who are at least 42 inches tall.
The Disney Magic
Following the popularity of the AquaDuck on her sister ships, The Disney Dream and Fantasy, the Disney Magic's refurbished pool deck boasts the AquaDunk. The AquaDunk is billed as a "thrill slide" for cruisers who don't just want to lounge at the pool. Riders climb to the top of the ship's funnel and are dropped 40 feet, straight down and then over the side of the ship. You'll land safely on deck at the conclusion of your thrill ride at sea.
Carnival Cruise Lines offers an entire water park-at-sea experience for thrill-seeking cruisers. Brightly colored, twisting and turning slides cover the deck. Family members can race side-by-side on the Speedway Splash. Junior sailors have pint-size slides designed just for them, so the whole family can join in on the fun.
The Norwegian Epic: Aqua Park
In 2013, Norwegian Cruise Lines unveiled its newest ship, the Epic, complete with multi-deck water slides and tornado-twister slides. The main attraction is the Epic Plunge featuring an open air funnel. For younger cruisers, the Aqua Park Kid's Pool includes a kid-size sea shell slide. And when the sun sets, the cosmic lights come out, making this a water park at sea a neon-soaked visual experience.
Royal Caribbean's Jewel of the Seas
Though more understated, the pool areas of Royal Caribbean's Jewel of the Seas offers sunbathers and swimmers plenty to enjoy while at sea. The main pools, including the adults-only solarium pool on this Radiance Class vessel, are on Deck 10. To enjoy the onboard water slides, head to Adventure Beach on Deck 12. One of the features of this slide is that multiple riders can ride at the same time without a tube, so parents standing on deck can snap a photo of the kids riding the slide together.
- Disney Cruise Line: AquaDuck
- Disney Parks Blog: A Closer Look at the AquaDunk
- Carnival Cruise Line: Carnival WaterWorks
- Norwegian Cruise Line: Norwegian Epic
- Nova: Norwegian Epic: A Family Vacation That's Actually for the Entire Family
- The Cruise Web: Jewel of the Seas
- CruiseAdvice.org: Jewel of the Seas Pool, Water Slide and Sunbathing
- Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images