These Are the Best Cruise Ships in 2022, According to Experts

From Norwegian Cruise Line to Virgin Voyages, these are the crème de la crème in cruising this year.

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Just because cruise travel is back doesn't mean we're traveling on any old cruise ship. We want the crème de la crème, naturally. And according to the Cruise Critic Editors' Picks Awards, that's the Norwegian Prima.

The 3,099-person capacity vessel, which boasts a 24-hour butler service and three-level race track, was just named the best new cruise ship of 2022 in the Ocean category, CNN Travel reports. This year marked the return of the annual awards ceremony, which took a hiatus during a tumultuous few years for the industry. 

"Most lines no longer have pretesting guidelines or vaccine requirements," Editor-in-Chief of Cruise Critic Colleen McDaniel told the outlet. "Cruise lines no longer have capacity limits, making the onboard environment much more bustling than we'd seen in the months immediately following the return, and there are more areas onboard open to cruisers—from lounges and entertainment venues, to restaurants and fitness classes."

According to McDaniel, now that cruising is back, it's back in a big way and "exceeding expectations." 

These are the best cruises in the ocean category: 

  • Best New Ship: Norwegian Prima
  • Best Cabins: Celebrity Cruises
  • Best Dining: Virgin Voyages
  • Best Entertainment: Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Best for Families: Disney Cruise Line
  • Best Innovation/Tech: Princess Cruises
  • Best for LGBTQ+ Travelers: Virgin Voyages
  • Best Nightlife: Virgin Voyages
  • Best Service: Holland America Line
  • Best for Solo Travelers: Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Best Spa: Holland America Line
  • Best Specialty Dining: Celebrity Cruises
  • Best Suites: Royal Caribbean International
  • Best Suite Complex: MSC Cruises
  • Best Value for Money: Carnival Cruise Line
  • Best App: Royal Caribbean International
  • Best North American Homeport: Vancouver

In the luxury category, Silversea Cruises was named the best luxury cruise line and also snagged the title for best dining. The Emerald Azzurra, which is classified as a "luxury yacht" and accommodates just 100 guests, took home the best new luxury cruise ship award. 

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Megan Schaltegger is a Staff Writer on the News team at Thrillist.