12 outrageous things you didn’t know you could do on a cruise ship

A skydiving simulator on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship. Dickson Lee/South China Morning Post via Getty Images

Cruise ships offer more than just swimming pools and musicals. Thrill-seeking passengers can also whiz around Go Kart tracks at 30 miles an hour, simulate skydiving, and descend 10-story slides.

Here are 12 surprising attractions that you didn’t know you could find on cruise ships.

Bumper cars

Bumper cars on a Royal Caribbean ship. GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images

Royal Caribbean’s The Anthem of the Seas was the first cruise ship to offer bumper cars beginning in 2015.

Skydiving simulators

Skydiving simulators on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship. James D. Morgan/Getty Images

Royal Caribbean’s Ovation of the Seas introduced the first skydiving simulator on a cruise ship in 2016. Reservations are required, but there’s no extra fee with the exception of voyages to China.

Walking the plank

Walking the plank on the Norwegian Escape. Ophidian/YouTube

On Norwegian Cruise Line’s Breakaway and Breakaway Plus Class ships, passengers can “walk the plank” on a thin board extending eight feet out over the side of the ship – while harnessed, of course.

Escape rooms

Inside Royal Caribbean’s Observatorium. Trev and Chels/YouTube

Several cruise lines have started offering escape rooms on their voyages.

Royal Caribbean’s Observatorium and Norwegian Cruise Line’s “Escape the Big Top” challenge passengers to solve a series of puzzles and “escape” from a locked room before the clock runs out.


Surfing on a cruise ship. Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Many Royal Caribbean ships offer simulated surfing on board through the Flowrider, a surf simulator that creates waves with powerful streams of water.


Trapezes on a Royal Caribbean cruise. Swing Adventures/YouTube

Royal Caribbean’s trapeze school inside the ship’s SeaPlex activity space is included in the cruise fare.

Go Karts racetracks

A Go Kart racetrack on a Norwegian Cruise Line ship. Courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Line

Two Norwegian Cruise Line ships, Joy and Bliss, offer Go Kart racetracks for $US15 a person. Passengers can drive Go Karts at speeds of up to 30 miles per hour.

The North Star observation deck

The North Star. Dickson Lee/South China Morning Post via Getty Images

The North Star on Royal Caribbean’s Anthem of the Seas is the highest viewing deck on a cruise ship, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. The pod rises to 300 feet above sea level.


A SkyRide on a Carnival cruise. INSIDER

A cross between a bicycle and a zip line, Carnival’s SkyRide takes passengers 150 feet above the ship’s top deck on an 800-foot-long track where they can pedal up to 18 miles per hour. It’s available on all Carnival Vista packages.


The planetarium on Queen Mary 2. MIKE CLARKE/AFP/Getty Images

Only two cruise ships in the world have planetariums: Cunard Cruise Line’s Queen Mary 2 and Viking Ocean Cruise’s Orion.

Enormous slides

The Ultimate Abyss. LOIC VENANCE/AFP/Getty Images

Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas offers the tallest slide on a cruise ship, a 10-story slide called Ultimate Abyss. Riders can experience an average G-force of 1.46.

Notably, Ultimate Abyss is not a water slide. But Royal Caribbean also hosts the longest water slide on a cruise ship, an 800-foot monstrosity called The Blaster.

Zip lines

A zip line on Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas. JORGE GUERRERO/AFP/Getty Images

On Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas, a zip line 10 deck levels up is included in the price of the cruise, no reservations necessary.