The world’s best mega-ship ocean cruise lines

The best mega cruise lines are listed below


There is something timeless and romantic about a trans-atlantic crossing. There is the seemingly endless open ocean, the pace, and the ships, which are reminiscent of the glamour of ocean liners from the early 20th century.

Perhaps the most iconic today is the Queen Mary 2, which regularly carries passengers between New York and Southampton, England in great style.

The polished wood-paneled walls, black-tie dinners, and classic lounge chairs exude elegance and helped the 176-year-old Cunard cruise line top honors in the Mega-Ship Ocean Cruise Line category of Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards.

“It’s like a step back in time,” a satisfied T+L reader wrote. “Love the formality.”

Each year, for us World’s Best Awards survey, T+L asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the world to give their opinion on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise lines, spas, airlines, and more.

Readers rated individual cruise ships on their cabins and facilities, food, service, itineraries and destinations, excursions and activities, and the value (the scores are ranked out of a possible score of 100). These ratings were combined to generate results for the cruise lines in five categories; mega-ship ocean cruise lines have ships that can carry 2200 passengers or more.

The other winners in the mega-ship category, stood out for their innovative programming, both on board and on land. Celebrity Cruises, which is on the fourth place, has struck a chord with cruisers desire to be more immersive culinary experience by chef-led tours in the Caribbean. Princess Cruises, which ranked third, has unveiled Share by Curtis Stone, a very special restaurant with elevated dishes such as butter-poached lobster with caramelized endive, on the Emerald Princess and Ruby Princess.

Not to be outdone, Royal Caribbean has made waves with the launch of the Quantum-class ships, which are over-the-top amenities such as a skydiving simulator and a 360-degree viewing capsule that extends over the side of the ship.

For families, Disney Cruise Line, with a fleet of four ships, remains hugely popular, coming in at Number 2 on the list.

“We had an unforgettable 50th wedding anniversary cruise with our son, two daughters and seven grandchildren in the age of four to 18,” says a reader. “We thought this was an excellent way to celebrate, and were delighted to see that our children and grandchildren to enjoy what we love to do: cruise.”

  • 1.


    Bildagentur Huber/Gräfenhain

    Score: 86.94

    Everyone from Elizabeth Taylor, Uma Thurman has sailed with this distinguished cruise line, which has only three vessels and is best known for the trans-atlantic routes.

    Guests aboard the 2,592-passenger Queen Mary 2 can experience the world’s only planetarium at sea, dine at a Todd English restaurant, and dance the night away in the formal ballroom.

    As a reader: “A great experience start-to-finish. Our Atlantic crossing felt like a holiday with a rich history and tradition, and service to, us feel like a king.”

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  • 2.

    Disney Cruise Line

    Mike Blake

    Score: 86.64

  • 3.

    Princess Cruises

    Princess Cruises

    Score: 85.34

  • 4.

    Celebrity Cruises

    Celebrity Cruises

    Score: 85.34

  • 5.

    Royal Caribbean International

    Tim Aylen

    Score: 78.86

    Check out Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards for more jetsetting inspiration.

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