Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas / Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
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Escape from Planet Z laser tag onboard Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
Escape from Planet Z laser tag onboard Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas / Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
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Aqua Theater on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
Aqua Theater on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas / Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
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Hairspray on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
Hairspray on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas / Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
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El Loco Fresh on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
El Loco Fresh on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas / Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
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Wonderland restaurant on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
Wonderland restaurant on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas / Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
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The Perfect Storm water slides on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
The Perfect Storm water slides on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas / Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
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Central Park on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
Central Park on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas / Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
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Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas / Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
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Ultimate Family Suite on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas
Ultimate Family Suite on Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas / Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
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Symphony of the Seas
Our Ship Review
Royal Caribbean
Cruise Line
Deal Expert / Travel Blogger

With each subsequent addition to the Oasis class of cruise ships, Royal Caribbean has broken its own record for creating the largest passenger ship in the world. Symphony of the Seas is no exception, and every inch of this enormous ship is packed with things to do. Here’s our take.

What We Love
There Is Truly Never a Dull Moment: As you move around Symphony of the Seas, you’ll see zip-liners whizzing overhead, acrobats high diving off 10-meter platforms, bands playing familiar songs, a spinning carousel, and an open-air park thick with greenery. There’s a robot that mixes drinks, a twisting slide with a 10-story drop, a surfing simulator, mini golf, water slides, an ice rink, rock climbing walls, and a bar that moves — elevator-like — between decks every 30 minutes. When it comes to amenities, this vast ship contains multitudes. Some are outrageous (an ice show on the ship’s rink opens with — what else? — lighted drones), and some are standard cruise ship fare, but all of it is designed to soundly banish boredom from your family vacation.
 
Super-Easy Check-In: Like other recent Royal Caribbean ships, your check-in process can be completed from the comfort of home. Fill out a questionnaire, upload your photo, and you’ll spend minimal — if any — time at the check-in desk when you arrive at the terminal. 
 
Mexican Food, Served (Almost) All Day Long: Tacos and warm weather are an effortless combination, and El Loco Fresh is a good open-air, low-stress dining spot for the Caribbean, or Europe in the summer months. We especially like the many fresh options on the salsa bar, so you can dress up your nachos, chicken tacos, or burrito any way — and as spicy — as you like.  
 
Laser Tag at Sea: It’s aliens vs. robots in a game that pits you against your friends and family in a battle for the fictional Planet Z. Fire lasers at your opponent’s vest to win points while protecting your own. The game is played under blacklight in a “fort” that feels like a giant, glow-in-the-dark bouncy castle. Play with a big group then argue over your final scores at dinner.  
Best Known For
Size Matters: It’s the largest cruise ship in the world, and we dare you to forget it.
 
The Most Over-the-Top Family Suite at Sea: The Ultimate Family Suite is designed (for the moment) to be a one-of-a-kind experience. With a two-story twisty slide, air hockey and ping pong tables, a whirlpool on the balcony, a Lego wall, and a TV alcove that converts into a private screening room, this high-end haven is made for families in search of an ultra-exclusive experience. 
 
… Plus Dozens of Other Cabin Options for Families and Groups: If you can’t afford the Ultimate Family Suite (and certainly not everyone can; it starts at about $45,000 per week) this ship offers a slew of cabins that are suitable for lager groups. There are adjoining cabins, suites in every imaginable configuration, and standard-size cabins with pull-outs so there’s room for everyone. 
 
Top-Notch Onstage Entertainment: Royal Caribbean always pulls out all the stops when it comes to entertainment, and this outsize ship is no exception. On board, you can see an abbreviated but impressively staged version of the Broadway musical Hairspray, the aforementioned ice show, and performances at the Aqua Theater. The latter plays like a mashup between Cirque du Soleil and an Olympic swimming event with synchronized swimmers, acrobats, and high-divers plunging into a 20-foot-deep onstage pool. 
Who It's Best For
Families with Kids and Tweens: Kids won’t know where to look first when it comes to this ship. Their biggest decision of the day will be where to start — the water slides or mini-golf.
 
Friends Traveling Together: If your friends are up for a fun and decidedly active getaway, this ship delivers. All of the kid-friendly amenities on this ship — including all the slides — are entirely welcoming to adventurous adults, too. Plus, the sports bar (complete with tabletop shuffleboard), whirlpool-and-greenery-filled solarium, and distinctly grown-up dining (Wonderland, Royal Caribbean’s ambitious molecular gastronomy concept) means there’s plenty for adults to enjoy.  
Don't Say We Didn't Warn You

You'll Need to Seek Out Serenity: Though there are spots on this ship where you can get away from the action, they’re a challenge to find. You may even hear the faraway thump of music from your balcony. If you need a lot of rest and relaxation, there are other, smaller ships that will do a better job of catering to you.