The cruise industry’s most highly anticipated new ships of 2022 range from megaships accommodating more than 5,000 passengers to smaller luxury vessels carrying between 596 and 930 guests—and there’s a new Disney ship for the first time in a decade. What they all have in common is innovative and contemporary décor and dining plus an array of itineraries that call on top island and coastal destinations around the world in the coming year and beyond.
So, whether you’re looking for fun in the sun or a cultural deep dive, here’s a look at some of the top island-centric itineraries (28 in all!) offered aboard 10 of 2022’s exciting new cruise ships.
Royal Caribbean’s Wonder of the Seas
The fifth ship in Royal Caribbean’s Oasis-class, Wonder of the Seas debuted in March and is sailing the Mediterranean from Barcelona and Rome through October, before repositioning to Port Canaveral in November for Caribbean sailings.
Some island-centric itineraries aboard the 5,734-guest ship—the largest in the world with eight “neighborhoods,” 31 restaurants and bars, and thrills such as a zipline and the Ultimate Abyss slide—include Western Mediterranean experiences this spring and summer that call on Mallorca (along with Naples, for access to the island of Capri) and 7-night Western Caribbean & Perfect Day, visiting Cozumel, Roatan, and Royal Caribbean’s private Bahamian island, Perfect Day at CocoCay.
Celebrity Beyond, the third Edge-class ship in Celebrity Cruises’ fleet, will spend the summer in the Mediterranean following her late April inaugural. The 3,260-guest vessel features sophisticated décor, upscale dining (including Le Voyage, the first signature restaurant at sea by Chef Daniel Boulud) and several itineraries that visit the region’s top islands—such as the 10-night Italy & the Greek Islands and the 10-night Greek Islands & Malta, both of which visit Santorini, Mykonos, and Rhodes.
Beyond then crosses the Atlantic to Fort Lauderdale in October and begins a series of Caribbean itineraries that include the 8-night Eastern Caribbean Holiday, visiting Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, St. Maarten, Tortola and Nassau, and the 7-night Puerto Plata, St. Thomas & St. Maarten. In 2023, he ship’s European itineraries combine the Greek Islands with Italy, Croatia, Turkey, and Montenegro.
Making its debut in August 2022 in Northern Europe, 3,099-guest Norwegian Prima marks a new class for Norwegian Cruise Line after its six Breakaway and Breakaway Plus-class ships. Prima is a bit smaller and will feature a more sophisticated design and enhanced culinary experiences, but the ship keeps some favorite family-friendly activities, including the Prima Speedway racetrack (NCL’s longest, it curves over three decks) and Galaxy Pavilion for virtual-reality gaming. Prima’s first winter season in the Caribbean includes the 7-night Great Stirrup Cay & Cozumel itinerary that visits Norwegian’s private island in the Bahamas, Cozumel, Grand Cayman, and Jamaica from Port Canaveral.
If non-tropical islands are more your style, in June 2023 Prima sails a 10-day Iceland & Norway to London itinerary that visits three ports in the island nation of Iceland, three ports in coastal Norway, canal-laced Amsterdam and Bruges, and Southampton in England.
The first new Disney Cruise Line ship in 10 years and the fifth ship in its fleet, Disney Wish debuts in August with all the onboard magic Disney is known for—plus some cool new onboard experiences and the first “attraction” at sea, the AquaMouse ride. The 4,000-guest ship will sail roundtrip from Port Canaveral on 3-night Bahamian Cruises and 4-night Bahamian Cruises visiting Nassau and Castaway Cay (Disney’s private island).
After her March 2022 debut, 3,660-passenger Discovery Princess, the fifth ship in Princess Cruises’ Royal class, spends the spring and summer sailing Pacific Coastal and Alaska itineraries and returns to the Pacific Coast and the Mexican Riviera in fall.
Two fun coastal itineraries: the 7-day Classic California Coast, sailing roundtrip from Los Angeles and visiting Santa Barbara, San Francisco, San Diego, and Ensenada, Mexico, and the 7-day Love Boat-Themed Cruise to Mexico, visiting Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, and Puerto Vallarta, roundtrip from LA.
As Carnival Cruise Line celebrates 50 years of “Fun Ships,” its newest vessel, 5,374-guest Carnival Celebration, launches in November with the latest in onboard thrills and amenities (a top-deck rollercoaster called BOLT, crazy twisting waterslides, several eateries by Guy Fieri and Big Chicken by Shaquille O’Neal) and a 14-night Transatlantic Crossing from Southampton, England, to Miami that calls on La Coruna and Vigo in Spain, Funchal on the Portuguese island of Madeira, and Santa Cruz de Tenerife in the Canary Islands.
From Miami, Celebration will sail 7-night Eastern Caribbean cruises that visit Grand Turk, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, and St. Thomas and 7-night Western Caribbean itineraries that visit Cozumel, Costa Maya (Mexico), and Mahogany Bay on Roatan island in Honduras. In 2023, Celebration will add 8-night Southern Caribbean cruises that visit Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao.
The fourth ship in the Azamara fleet, 670-guest Azamara Onward is virtually identical to her sisters (all former R-class Renaissance ships that have been extensively refurbished), debuts in late April and will spend the spring and summer sailing Mediterranean itineraries that include 7-night Greece Intensive Voyages (there are 8-and-9-night Greece sailings as well), visiting Mykonos, Santorini, Crete, Rhodes, and Patmos; an 8-night Islands of the Med itinerary calling on Elba, Sardinia, Corsica, Menorca, and Mallorca; and after crossing the Atlantic in November, an 11-night Eastern Caribbean sailing from Miami visiting Puerto Rico, St. John, St. Maarten, Antigua, St. Kitts, and Virgin Gorda.
After its April debut in the Mediterranean, Viking Mars—the seventh ship in Viking’s fleet of identical, 930-guest ocean ships—spends time in the Mediterranean and sails an 8-night Journey to Antiquities sailings that visit ports in Italy, Greece and Turkey, including the islands of Sicily and Crete. In January 2023, the ship sails a series of 14-night Australia & New Zealand itineraries from Sydney to Auckland (and vice versa) and calls on the Australian island state of Tasmania as well as five cities on New Zealand’s North and South Islands.
In April 2023, a 14-night British Isles Explorer itinerary visits England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales, including calls on the Shetland and Orkney Islands. Viking Neptune, debuting in May, also does the Journey to Antiquities and British Isles Explorer itineraries as well as 10-night Greek Odyssey sailings that call on Santorini, Rhodes and Crete.
After her christening in early April in Lisbon, 596-guest Silver Dawn, the 10th ship in Silversea’s fleet of small luxury and expedition vessels, spends the summer in the Mediterranean, with itineraries such as the 14-day Venice to Rome, which calls on 11 ports, including the islands of Hvar in Croatia, Corfu in Greece, Sicily in Italy, and Malta. There’s also a 19-day Barcelona to Dakar sailing in November that visits 16 ports in five countries, among them the Spanish islands of Mallorca, Fuerteventura, Lanzarote (in the Canary Islands), and three ports in Portugal’s Cape Verde Islands.
After crossing the Atlantic, Silver Dawn will sail a 20-day Fort Lauderdale to Fort Lauderdale itinerary over Christmas and New Year’s that calls on 10 Caribbean Islands: Puerto Rico, St. Barth, St. Kitts, Dominica, Antigua, St. Thomas, Cozumel, Roatan, Grand Cayman, and Key West.
The second ship in Richard Branson’s Virgin Atlantic fleet, 2,700-guest Valiant Lady was christened in March and is sailing itineraries from Barcelona to some of the Mediterranean’s most scenic islands—and offering a party ambience both onboard and ashore along with 20 dining options.