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Ten of the largest cruise ships ever
  • Quantum of the Seas is the newest ship from Royal Caribbean International. Launching from Southampton in Autumn 2014, it promises to takes guests to new heights (literally) with a jewel-shaped, glass capsule transporting them on a journey more than 300 feet above the ocean and over the sides of the ship to deliver awe-inspiring 360-degree views. As well as the incredible views, passengers can brave the onboard skydiving experience, get speedy on the bumper cars and test their surf skills on the FlowRider surf simulator. Oh and did we mentioned the ship is pretty huge too? It measures 348 metres in length, can carry 4,905 guests and has 16 passenger decks for you to explore.

  • Measuring 333 metres in length and weighing approximately 140,000 tonnes, MSC Preziosa is MSC Cruises' largest ship. She boasts 1,751 cabins, 26 lifts and 18 decks - 14 of these for passengers. Inside, passengers can enjoy six restaurants, 21 bars, a casino, four swimming pools, 12 whirlpools, a bowling alley, plus a sports area with playing fields, a children's area and the superb MSC Aurea Spa. The Doremi Castle kids aqua park is unique to Preziosa, with its swooping thrills of Vertigo, the longest single-rider waterslide on the seas.

  • The 4,100-passenger and 155,873-tonne Norwegian Epic from Norwegian Cruise Line incorporates innovations including several new types of accommodation – the curved New Wave staterooms, the largest Villas suite complex at sea comprising 60 suites and villas on two private decks at the top of the ship, plus spa and family-friendly accommodations. Kids and adults can have a blast with the world-class entertainment on the 330-metre-long ship, including the Legends in Concert live tribute show featuring for the first time at sea in more than a decade, the dinner and acrobatic show Cirque Dreams and Nickelodeon at Sea offering character meet and greets and interactive game shows.

  • Norwegian Cruise Line's newest ship Norwegian Getaway is 324 metres long, weighs 144,000 tonnes and carries 4,000 passengers. The ship hosts groundbreaking entertainment and is the first to feature the GRAMMY Experience at sea, which includes artefacts chosen and curated by the GRAMMY Museum, along with live performances by past GRAMMY winners and nominees. The Illusionarium is a dining and entertainment experience enveloping guests in the fascinating world of magic, astonishing illusions of world-class magicians and supernatural special effects. For families, a three-storey Sports Complex features the Aqua Park with five thrilling water slides, two swimming pools and one of the largest multi-level elevated ropes course to challenge guests to more than 40 different elements, including a zip track.
  • Family-friendly Ventura is P&O Cruises' biggest cruise ship, measuring 290 metres in length and weighing 116,017 tonnes. The 3,078-passenger ship features 14 decks for passengers and is home to 12 places to eat including a fine dining restaurant by Marco Pierre White, as well as 16 places to drink, a lavish two-deck theatre, spa, four swimming pools and countless spaces to relax and socialise. The endless entertainment includes cabaret, tributes, comedy, dancing and a bar with a panoramic video wall displaying a different city skyline each evening. And for the kids, there are children's clubs, Noddy and Mr. Men characters, as well as DJ decks and video games.

  • With its 14 towering decks, a ship length of 340 metres and capacity to accommodate 4,000 passengers, Disney Cruise Line's Disney Dream is one of the biggest cruise ships in the world. It boasts a weight of 130,000 tonnes, 1,458 crew members and 1,250 staterooms. Designed with families in mind, Disney Dream promises 'splashes of magic' at its themed restaurants, live musical shows and in the sparkling pools. For the adults, there are five nightclubs and lounges for dancing and socialising at sea.
  • With the Duchess of Cambridge as its godmother, it's only fitting that Princess Cruises' largest ship would offer royal touches and contain seriously impressive features. The 330-metre Royal Princess' most distinguishing design element is the over-water SeaWalk, a top-deck glass-bottomed enclosed walkway extending more than 28 feet beyond the edge of the vessel. From here passengers can enjoy dramatic views, including to the sea 128 feet below. Over its 19 decks, the Royal Princess also has a spectacular Atrium which is the social hub of the ship, a chef's table experience, private poolside cabanas, and a television studio featuring live shows, demonstrations and performances.
  • Designed as New York’s ship, Norwegian Breakaway brings the high-calibre dining and entertainment options that NYC is known for to sea. The 324-metre-long ship features an open-air promenade and a wide range of indoor and outdoor venues on three dynamic decks, creating a whole new complex at sea. The ship features 28 dining options and an Ice Bar, which is kept at -8C and serves New York City-inspired cocktails, as well as featuring ice sculptures of the Brooklyn Bridge, Statue of Liberty and the Chrysler Building. The top decks of 144,000-tonne Norwegian Breakaway include the first Aqua Park at sea with five full-size water slides, including twin Free Fall slides - the first ever at sea - and a three-story sports complex with the largest ropes course at sea, a nine-hole miniature golf course, basketball court and rock climbing wall.

  • Queen Mary 2 entered service in January 2004 and was the first transatlantic liner to be built since QE2 in the 1960s. She weighs 151,400 tonnes and measures 342 metres, making her one of the largest cruise ships in the world. Everything about Queen Mary 2 is superlative: most of the cabins feature private balconies and there is over £3.5 million of artwork on board. She's home to the world’s first floating Planetarium, which offers virtual reality rides through the galaxies. The ship still has the first and only suites with private lift access, the first Canyon Ranch Spa at sea, the first Veuve Clicquot Champagne Bar at sea, the largest Library at sea (with 8,000 hardbacks, 500 paperbacks, 200 audio books and 100 CDs) and the largest ballroom with the biggest dance floor at sea.
  • At 362 metres long, Royal Caribbean International's Oasis of the Seas is the largest cruise ship in the world. Accommodating 6,400 guests at total capacity, the ship is longer than four football pitches, wider than almost six London buses parked end-to-end and weighs a huge 225,282 tonnes. Oasis of the Seas will be making its first ever port of call into Southampton in autumn 2014 and when it arrives, it will be 40 per cent larger than any other cruise ship to ever dock in the UK. The world's largest cruise ship will be offering cruise holidays in Europe for the first time from autumn 2014. On board, you'll find Central Park, a lush park the size of a football field, as well as a DreamWorks experience, theatre, surf simulator, ice skating rink and climbing walls to keep you entertained.