AOL Travel

Best Disney Cruise For Kids

AOL PICK from our Editors
Disney Cruise Line ships devote more space to kids than any other ships -- on Dream and Fantasy nearly a full deck for the expansive Oceaneer Club and Oceaneer Lab spaces for ages 3 to 10 -- plus a separate nursery and ‘tween and teen clubs, including a teen-only sun deck space with wading pools. The four ships are all very much places where kids feel welcome. The youth activities team is expert at keeping kids occupied and the crew expert at keeping an eye out -- even if the kids don’t notice that. The watercoasters, water parks, pools with slides and, of course, the presence of Disney characters and movie-theming make the line especially appealing to kids. But it’s thoughtful planning, creativity and the smart use of technology that really makes the youth activity offerings special.

Andy's Room

Ships: Dream, Magic, Fantasy
Kids can get immersed in the world of “Toy Story” playing in this vibrantly colored space, one of four themed play areas in the Oceaneer Club areas designed for ages 3 and up. The kids are toy-sized next to larger-than-life versions of the characters from the animated movies. You can put coins in a giant Hamm the piggy bank, change the eyes and nose and mouth on a man-sized Mr. Potato Head and climb on a Slinky Dog.

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Magic PlayFloors

Ships: Dream, Fantasy
Whether you leap over lasers with Stitch, try a virtual maze, control racecars or follow Peter Pan to Neverland, playing on this state-of-the-art video floor is a hoot. Embedded in the floor are 28 HD panels with 16 sensors that let you use your feet to control the action of animated games and experiences. There are two Magic PlayFloors, one each in the Oceaneer Club and Oceaneer Lab, for kids age 3 to 10, and they are showstoppers. Warning: Adults may be jealous when they hear about the kids-only fun.

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Super Sloppy Science

Ships: Magic, Dream, Fantasy
Learning can be fun, especially when a big mess is involved. Kids ages 3 to teens (ages of participation vary by ship) can join with Professor Make-O-Mess, who is known for being messy in his experimentation, and/or their youth counselors in the Oceaneer Lab to do a bunch of science experiments (creating exploding volcanoes and the like). Parents will like the educational aspect, but the experience also comes with lots of laughter.

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Ships: Dream, Fantasy, Magic, Wonder
Activities in the Oceaneer Lab on all four ships encourage kids age 3 and up to sketch and paint their favorite Disney characters or create their own characters. On Dream, Fantasy and Magic, a working animation studio can put designs in motion. On Wonder, kids create a flipbook to take home. Youth counselors are on hand both to assist with the drawing and to teach kids about the history of animation.

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Playing With Pirates

Ships: Dream, Fantasy, Magic, Wonder
Pirate-themed activities for kids on Disney ships include everything from “pirate training” and dress-up to cook-like-a-pirate lessons and game shows where they compete at swabbing the deck . The swashbuckling fun includes an audience with Captain Hook. On the Dream and the Fantasy, kids can do a 3-day, ship-wide, Captain Hook-themed search for clues to solve a mystery. On Wonder and Magic, some of the kids’ spaces are themselves pirate-themed, complete with ropes, barrels and planks. Kids can even virtually steer a ship.

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