Best cruises for young adults who like to party
These cruise lines were made for 20-30 year old millennials.
Cruising has come a long way since the days when empty nesters and retirees filled the decks on long journeys across the ocean. These days you can find everything from themed cruises to off-the-beaten-track expeditions.
Cruises for 20-somethings are no exception. On top of featuring your standard cruise deck chairs, these also include activities such as clubbing, concerts and risque performances onboard, as well as hiking, kayaking and pub crawling onshore.
Want to cruise a party boat without the families and oldies? These are some of the best cruise lines for 20-30 year olds that are geared more toward the younger crowd.
Best cruises for young adults
1. MSC Cruises via CruiseAway
Cash in on your youth with MSC Cruises. It offers discounts for 18-29 year olds. No joke.
If you thought that your youth discounts stopped when you turned 18, think again. MSC Cruises encourages young passengers by offering them discounts per cabin for couples and groups. Better get the gang together.
- Young adult activities: Bars, spa, fitness centre, shopping, live music and theatre shows.
- Adults-only sundeck? Called the Top 18, this is located on the 18th deck of the Fantasia-class ships and features spa services, bar and relaxation pods.
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2. P&O Cruises via CruiseAway
P&O breaks up its cruises into six categories – Sea Australia, Sea Asia, Main Events, Islands, Sea Breaks and Explorer – to help you find that perfect sailing.
The secret to picking the young adult-skewed cruise is in the itinerary. You’ll generally find young adult workers on shorter and more adventurous trips, so hit up the Main Events, Sea Breaks or Explorer cruises for sailors of similar ages.
- Young adult activities: Adults-only comedy club, bars and nightclubs, casino and adults-only ocean bar.
- Adults-only sundeck? Called The Oasis, this 18+ sundeck is a child-free area with a pool, hanging chairs and cushioned cabanas. It’s available on the Pacific Aria and Pacific Eden.
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3. Carnival Cruise Lines
Carnival has developed a reputation for itself for being a “fun” cruise line with a lively feel at a good price.
Sure, there will be kids onboard as Carnival has one of the best activity playgrounds on the ocean, but if you don’t want to join them on the rope walks and water slides, there are adults-only sunning areas to hide in.
- Young adult activities: Clubs, bars, casinos and nightclubbing.
- Adults-only sundeck? The adults-only sundeck Serenity can be found fleet-wide apart from on Carnival Conquest and Carnival Triumph. You need to be 18 years or older to access it on sailings from Australia. It features loungers, hammocks and umbrellas.
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4. Celebrity Cruises
This premium cruise line has a premium lineup of activities to keep you relaxed and entertained throughout your sailing.
If you’re the kind who’d rather unwind in the lap of luxury rather than stay up all night dancing under the stars, Celebrity Cruises will primp and prime you. Its Solstice Class is a more sophisticated ship that draws a good 20-30-something crowd.
- Young adult activities: Spa, health and beauty seminars, fitness classes, martini bar, casino, partner dance classes, nightclub and mixology classes.
- Adults-only sundeck? The Solarium is where to go to get away from the youngsters. It’s the onboard adults-only pool area.
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5. Norwegian Cruise Line
When it comes to ideal entertainment for young adults, Norwegian Cruise Line is on point.
From music-themed cruises that feature chart-toppers to casinos on the ocean, your journey will fly by with all the activities this line has prepared for millennials. Those travelling on their own can even book a single room.
- Young adult activities: Live music, casinos, clubs, bars, spa, White Hot Party and ice bars on some ships.
- Adults-only sundeck? Norwegian Epic, Breakaway, Getaway and Escape all have adults-only sanctuaries that have hot tubs, loungers and a water feature. In the evenings on Epic, Breakaway and Getaway the area becomes an open-air nightclub.
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6. Royal Caribbean via CruiseAway
Famed for owning the world’s largest cruise ships, the party scene is hot on a Royal Caribbean cruise.
Day or night you’ll feel the buzz of excitement on your Royal Caribbean ship. The fleet features some of the most innovative activities on the ocean including a skydive simulator on the Quantum-class ships, the ice rinks on the Voyager-class.
- Young adult activities: Rock climbing, casino, live music, skydive and surfing simulators, bars and clubbing.
- Adults-only sundeck? The Solarium is Royal Caribbean's adults-only retreat and pool area. In the evenings it transforms into a fine dining destination. At certain hours, it may be used by under-16 year olds with parental supervision.
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7. G Adventures’ sailing trips
With tours for the budget conscious, G Adventures calls to like-minded and aged travellers from around the world with its marine adventures.
Naturally, the destinations this company cruises to are just as adventurous as the folk who embark on its ships. G Adventures’ marine tours include sailings in the Galapagos Islands, Greek Isles, Cuban Coast, Antarctica and the Arctic.
- Young adult activities: Snorkelling, sailing, hiking and kayaking.
- Adults-only sundeck? No. However, independent travellers must be at least 18 years old. On non-family tours, children over 12 are permitted with an accompanying adult.
Go to G Adventures’ sailing trips website
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Top cruise deals and flights
No single supplement
Book select cruises as a solo traveller and pay no single supplement.
Up to 41% off Antarctic expeditions with Peregrine
Valid on select tours including 41% off the 11-day Antarctic Explorer, 27% off the 7-day Antarctic Express and 27% off the 14-day Crossing the Circle.
Up to 41% off Antarctic and Arctic trips with Intrepid
Valid on select tours departing until in Antarctica and the Arctic. Sample expeditions include the 11-day Antarctic Explorer for 41% off, 8-day Arctic Watch Lodge for 22% off and the 11-day Antarctic Express for 22% off.
Up to 14% off Antarctic cruises
Valid on select Antarctic expedition cruises from Quark Expeditions, Antarctica XXI, Silversea an Hurtigruten.
Up to 72% off P&O Cruises
Valid on select cruises in Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific Islands. Sample discounts include 72% off a 3-night cruise from Brisbane, 85% off a 2-night cruise from Sydney to Melbourne and 56% off a 10-night South Pacific cruise from Sydney.
Feature image: P&O Cruises