Destinations

7 greatest cruises for seniors who like to journey by sea

The perfect senior cruises combine adult-focused onboard actions with fascinating locations ashore. No two retirees need the identical factor from their travels. Nevertheless, typically, most seniors have time to dedicate to longer itineraries.

Some have saved their cash to get pleasure from a extra premium cruise ship expertise, however all are blissful to snap up a cruise deal or discover a promotion providing elevated worth from their cruise reserving.

How did we select the highest cruises for seniors? We prioritized cruise traces that focus on {couples} and adults moderately than households, in addition to cruise ships with superb eating, grown-up leisure and loads of alternatives for adults to socialize. We appeared for destination-intensive cruises providing immersive cultural alternatives, bucket-list itineraries and a variety of crusing lengths.

We dismissed the massive ships with their whiz-bang top-deck sights, though these are perfect for grandparents on a multigenerational vacation with household. We additionally skipped the small expedition ships that require a degree of bodily health not all seniors possess.

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Primarily based on these standards, listed here are the seven greatest cruise traces for seniors who like to journey and want to spend extra time at sea.

Viking

VIKING

Viking’s 930-passenger ocean ships high our checklist of the most effective cruises for seniors as a result of they’re designed particularly for an grownup crowd. Nobody below 18 is allowed on board, and all of the programming is created with passengers aged 50-plus in thoughts.

These cruises are perfect for academic-minded seniors. Viking chairman Torstein Hagen says that he got down to create “the considering individual’s cruise,” and lectures and different destination-specific programming are the primary type of leisure on board. That does not imply Viking cruises are boring; the crowd-pleasing ABBA tribute present within the theater is to not be missed.

Viking ships are comfy, homey oases — particularly if your own home is completed up in refined Scandinavian decor.

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Itineraries are centered on getting senior cruisers to key sights around the globe, together with UNESCO World Heritage Websites, with a shore tour every day included within the cruise fare. Thrifty retirees will recognize the “no nickel and diming” philosophy and cruise fares that cowl all the things besides cocktails and spa remedies.

Complimentary eating features a specialty Italian restaurant and the Chef’s Desk, with its rotating tasting menus themed round worldwide cuisines.

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Additionally really helpful for the senior and child boomer crowd are Viking’s river ships in Europe, Vietnam and Egypt (amongst different locations) and the road’s expedition merchandise in Antarctica and on the Nice Lakes, which have similarities to the ocean ships, together with the all-inclusive pricing.

Windstar Cruises

The 148-passenger Wind Spirit sails across the Society Islands of French Polynesia. WINDSTAR CRUISES

Windstar’s small crusing ships and motorized yachts vary from 148 to 342 passengers. Though youngsters aged 8 and up are allowed on board, you might be unlikely to see many on these upscale vessels. Most Windstar cruisers are energetic seniors who come as {couples}, pairs of buddies or solo vacationers, on the lookout for a destination-rich expertise on ships the place they received’t really feel misplaced in a crowd.

Windstar has two lessons of ships. Older {couples} celebrating a milestone anniversary ought to select a crusing ship, with its huge open deck area and picturesque sails that set the temper for love. Seniors preferring extra private area ought to hunt down the 312-passenger motorized yachts with their all-suite lodging.

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Cruise highlights on all ships embrace an outside deck occasion with a lavish buffet and late-night conga line, in addition to meals created by James Beard Basis-affiliated cooks. (Windstar companions with the distinguished culinary group.)

Due to their small dimension, all of the Windstar ships can go to quiet harbors and out-of-the-way locations that large ships can’t in locations like Tahiti, the Mediterranean and the Caribbean.

Azamara Cruises

Azamara Quest. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

With 4 almost an identical ships holding fewer than 700 passengers, Azamara has carved out a distinct segment catering to well-traveled seniors trying to cruise in clubby environment.

The road’s cruises are greatest for seniors who do not wish to splurge on a fancier luxurious product however nonetheless need an upscale degree of ambiance, service and facilities. Whereas youngsters aren’t banned, the road makes clear on its web site that it “discourages” passengers below age 18.

Azamara passengers recognize the boutique, hotel-like decor, which incorporates fake fireplaces within the spectacular libraries, known as The Drawing Room.

The road’s destination-focused itineraries in Europe and elsewhere spend extra time in ports than common ships, staying in a single day in key locations. That is best for passengers who wish to discover on their very own. The road additionally affords a complimentary “AzAmazing Evenings” program on each cruise. These function a cultural efficiency ashore at a tremendous vacation spot resembling Turkey’s historic metropolis of Ephesus.

Associated: 5 greatest adults-only cruise traces

Holland America

HOLLAND AMERICA

Holland America is likely one of the greatest cruise traces for seniors as a result of it hits the candy spot with its midsize ships. Carrying 2,668 passengers or fewer, these vessels supply big-ship facilities however lack the extra over-the-top waterslides and thrill sights discovered on megaships. It is an incredible selection for child boomers and older seniors who want to benefit from the line’s different eating choices, casinos and selection of leisure.

An older crowd doesn’t imply a sedate group. Holland America does reside music in a giant manner. Passengers dance the night time away at venues resembling B.B. King’s Blues Membership (that includes among the greatest reside bands at sea). Explorations Central (EXC) programming is designed to coach passengers in regards to the locations they go to, and a enjoyable roster of different onboard pursuits features a winemaking expertise with Chateau Ste. Michelle.

The ships are additionally significantly accessible. Many staterooms supply roll-in showers and different assistive options. Moreover, ships are geared up with a raise system for swimming pools and tenders.

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Along with one-week cruises within the Caribbean and Alaska (the road’s specialty), Holland America explores South America, the South Pacific and different locations across the globe. The road additionally affords months-long world cruises.

Cunard

Cunard’s Queen Victoria. SJO/GETTY IMAGES

Senior cruisers with a penchant for conventional cruising will discover Cunard’s ocean liners to be a high cruise choice. The cruise line has a protracted legacy (it was based in 1840) and is pleased with its formal vibe, which incorporates nightly costume codes. Go old fashioned with dress-up galas held in actual ballrooms with excessive ceilings and twinkling chandeliers. Gents hosts are available if women want a dance associate.

Those self same ballrooms host day by day afternoon tea, full with finger sandwiches and scones and cream, served on superb china by white-gloved waiters. Different refined onboard actions could embrace watching exhibits in Queen Mary 2’s onboard planetarium, attending lectures by visitor audio system, taking artwork lessons and having fun with classical concert events.

Not everybody stays in a flowery suite, however seniors able to splurge ought to e-book both Queens Grill or Princess Grill rooms for upscale lodging and meals served in unique, intimate eating places.

QM2 is the one ship that provides common transatlantic service between Southampton, England, and New York. The two,081-passenger Queen Elizabeth and a pair of,061-passenger Queen Victoria spend time in Europe and different locations, and all three ships supply world cruises across the globe.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

REGENT SEVEN SEAS CRUISES

Retirees who’ve labored exhausting and are able to deal with themselves proper will discover that Regent Seven Seas Cruises is likely one of the greatest cruises for seniors on the lookout for luxurious.

The cruise line brags of working probably the most luxurious ships afloat. It’s exhausting to argue that time, particularly on the road’s newest ship, the $600 million, 732-passenger, all-suite Seven Seas Splendor. The ship boasts a soccer area’s price of marble, a formidable authentic artwork assortment and the costliest suite at sea, which is priced at $11,000 per day, per couple.

Different high-end traces, resembling Seabourn and Silversea, function intimate ships with extraordinary service, lodging and delicacies. Nevertheless, Regent differs with its shore excursion-inclusive, one-stop-shopping fares and grand European resort atmosphere — particularly on the sister ships Seven Seas Splendor and Seven Seas Explorer.

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The opposite Regent ships are well-maintained 480- to 684-passenger older vessels. On all, if you happen to don’t really feel like going to one of many eating places, you’ll be able to keep in your bathrobe and order a meal served course by course in your suite.

Additionally, apart from summer time and vacation intervals, you might be unlikely to search out youngsters on board.

Regent sails to some 450 ports of name around the globe, together with world cruise itineraries, so senior vacationers can discover sailings to all of the locations they have been ready to discover.

Oceania Cruises

OCEANIA CRUISES

Wellness-focused seniors love Oceania Cruises‘ 648- to 1,210-passenger ships for his or her spa and health middle and wholesome meals choices. Foodies are drawn by the impressed eating. PBS host and cookbook writer Jacques Pepin has a French bistro on the road’s two bigger ships, Marina and Riviera, and is likely one of the line’s culinary advisors. All the road’s ships embrace spectacular steakhouses, and a few function Crimson Ginger, a unprecedented fashionable tackle Asian delicacies, in addition to different eateries.

The ships present an interesting nation club-like ambiance, which is upscale with out being fancy. Older passengers would be the kind who wish to entertain themselves, although they may be distracted by the standout attraction of an actual cooking college the place skilled cooks give lessons on Marina and Riviera.

As a nod to solo vacationers, the road is within the means of including solo cabins designed and priced for one.

Oceania is thought for destination-focused itineraries within the Caribbean, Alaska and Europe, amongst different locations. Most are 10 nights or longer; world cruises are as much as 180 days.

Backside line

You may discover seniors on almost each cruise line on the market. Some older vacationers want to discover the world, whereas others want low cost journeys to beachy locations.

Everybody’s best choice will likely be totally different, however we expect these seven traces symbolize the most effective senior cruises. They prioritize an adult-focused onboard expertise and destination-intensive itineraries extra readily accessible to retirees.

Planning a cruise? Begin with these tales:

Further reporting by Erica Silverstein.

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