Kids Rule The Ship

From wild waterslides to the latest video games, the Fun Ships are packed with excitement for all ages. Carnival has recently rolled out plenty of imaginative features to redefine the way kids big and small spend their time at sea.

kids playing in camp carnival

Where the Ocean Is Their Playground

While the beloved Camp Carnival will no longer be an option on Carnival ships, the new Camp Ocean will offer dozens of new activities. The 2- to 5-year-olds, aka Penguins, play creative ocean-themed games like musical icebergs and ocean bingo. The 6- to 8-year-old Stingrays and the 9- to 11-year-old Sharks can stay busy with video games, keep active with sea-themed relay races and other team games or even make sea salt art and design their own aquarium at the way cool Pirate Game Nights. Kids under 12 can stay up late at Camp Ocean, with Night Owls babysitting offered until 1 a.m., leaving parents free to dine, dance and play their evening away.

Featuring a bright blue décor and sea-inspired murals, playrooms are designed to capture the beauty of marine life and the wonders of the sea. “Talking to our kids, talking to the parents, that’s how we came to this Camp Ocean theming — really listening to our guests,” said Mark Tamis, senior vice president of guest operations. “The idea of embracing the oceans of the world that we sail was obvious and came back to us very loudly and very clearly from all of our guests and our kids. It’s fun and engaging.”

Whimsical Ways to Laugh and Play

Parents, flashback to your younger years and let the nostalgia flow, because Dr. Seuss is jumping on board with Carnival’s Seuss at Sea program.

On select ships, the recently launched program, an exclusive agreement with Dr. Seuss Enterprises, immerses children and their families in the whimsical world of Dr. Seuss. The playful festivities include the Green Eggs and Ham Breakfast with The Cat in The Hat and Friends, where guests can order actual green eggs and ham, Moose Juice and Goose Juice, colorful pancake stacks and more. Don’t be surprised if the beloved Dr. Seuss characters wander over to the table to pose for pictures and sign autographs during what’s sure to be an unforgettable breakfast.

The Cat and some of his pals, including Thing One and Thing Two, also take part in the popular Seuss-a-palooza Parade, which attracts hundreds of guests and flows along the promenade into the theater for Seuss-a-palooza Story Time. Youngsters gather at a Dr. Seuss-themed tent for a front-row seat to hear the beloved rhyming tales. “The parents act out parts and the kids act out parts, so it literally comes to life,” said Tamis.

Teenage Paradise

teens dancing at club o2

Tweens and teens can experience the ultimate hangout venues designed strictly with them in mind. Circle “C,” for 12- to 14-year-olds, and Club O2, for 15- to 17-year-olds, are designed as hip spaces where they can mingle with other teens on board, play games, take part in age-appropriate scavenger hunts, join a round of dodgeball and participate in teens-only dance parties and karaoke jam sessions.

teens in a dance off at club o2

Younger teens will love the fun and upbeat atmosphere at Circle “C,” with flat-screen TVs showing their favorite movies and music videos and gaming stations featuring the latest video games. During the day, they can burn some energy with a game of basketball or dodgeball, while nighttime brings late-night movies and dancing supervised by the staff.

Older teens will love the sleek, high-tech décor of Club O2. Teens start their voyage right with a Welcome Aboard party and receive exclusive Club O2 gifts. They can hang out at Club O2’s legendary parties, offering the latest music, while the dance floor gives teens plenty of space to show off their moves at dance competitions. On select ships, they can even sign up for classes at Spin U and learn how to scratch and mix beats just like DJ Irie, official DJ of Carnival Cruise Line. Some ships also feature a touchscreen jukebox sound system that blasts their favorite tunes and a photo booth to take those popular selfies with all their new friends.

What’s Your Adventure Story?

kids having fun at waterworks

For the young and the young at heart who prefer daredevil thrills, the new SkyCourse is a must-try. This top-deck feature, available on select ships, gives Carnival guests a bird’s eye view of what’s going on below. Slip into a safety harness and traverse an adventurous aerial course that includes rope bridges and suspended beams with views of 150 feet to the sea below.

young boy climbing the rope bridge on the skycourse

For a splashing good time, WaterWorks, poised on the top deck of select ships, attracts action-loving folks of all ages with a variety of different waterslides for every level of adventure.

young boy at the end of the water slide at waterworks

Despite all the high thrills, pint-sized participants always seem to make a beeline for interactive, spritzing water toys. Be sure to glance up if the ship offers the aptly named PowerDrencher, an oversized bucket of water that is continually refilled before raining down on anyone who happens to be standing below. Bonus: This isn’t just for kids.

What’s a Parent to Do with All That Free Time?

little girl standing underneath the waterworks waterslide

With the kids happily busy, all you moms and dads will be eager to enjoy some precious free time to yourselves.

Laugh Together

Take in a show. There’s lively musical revues in the main theater, including the spicy rhythms of Latin Nights and the swinging sounds of the UK in The Brits! The adults-only performances in The Punchliner Comedy Club will have you laughing along to hilarious comedians, some of whom may have been personally recruited by Carnival’s very own “curator of comedy,” funny man George Lopez.

Do Something Different

Routines are fine for back home, but you’re on vacation. Do some-thing different. If your usual workout is yoga, go for a run with a seaside view on the jogging track, or schedule a training session with one of Carnival’s fitness experts.

Play Your Own Game

If poker is your game, swing by the casino and try your luck on the blackjack table, or give the roulette wheel a go for that true Vegas feel.

Make Music Together

Strut into the Piano Bar, pull up a seat and join the sing-along. And if you’re feeling bold, grab the mic at karaoke and belt out one of your favorite tunes.

Enjoy Some Quiet Time

Relish these moments alone. Select a book from the library and read the whole thing. The perfect venue for reading, or simply relaxing in the sun, is Serenity, an adults-only outdoor lounge with plush seating, shady umbrellas, whirlpools, bar service and soothing music. Go ahead and take a nap. The kids are too busy to interrupt you.

This post was created for Away We Go with Carnival, the destination for getting in the getaway state of mind.