Norwegian Cruise Line's next ship will have the largest aqua park at sea and feature four water slides, the company announced today.
Scheduled to debut in October, the 4,200-passenger Norwegian Escape also will have the largest ropes course at sea, a miniature golf course, a full-size basketball court and a bocce ball court -- a first for the line.
As previously announced, the 163,000-ton vessel is an expanded version of Norwegian's recently unveiled Norwegian Getaway and Norwegian Breakaway and will be the line's largest ship to date.
In addition to four water slides, the Norwegian Escape's Aqua Park will boast a dedicated Kids' Aqua Park, two pools and four hot tubs. The water slides will include Aqua Racer, a tandem slide where competitors can race side-by-side on tubes, and Free Fall, a side-by-side set of slides where passengers free fall into a loop as the floor drops from underneath them. There also will be a more relaxing, family-friendly open-flume body slide.
The Norwegian Escape's ropes course will be three stories high and feature 99 elements including two walkable planks extending over the side of the ship and zip tracks that allow guests to soar through the air. The Kid's Aqua Park will have an enclosed tube slide, a two-story climbing structure and watery elements.
Norwegian today also revealed that the ship will have the line's first dedicated nursery for young cruisers two and under.
Norwegian announced earlier this year that the Norwegian Escape would join the new Norwegian Getaway in sailing to the Caribbean year-round from Miami. It'll operate a seven-day Eastern Caribbean itinerary starting Nov. 14, 2015 that features stops in Tortola, British Virgin Islands; St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands; and Nassau, Bahamas.
Norwegian Escape and sister ship Norwegian Bliss, due in 2017, will be about 10% larger than the Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Getaway.
By Gene Sloan (USA Today, "New Cruise Ship to Have Giant Waterpark", 12/16/14)
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Featured photo credit: Holland America Lines