The ocean air and open seas are beckoning you. You’re ready to book that magical cruise, and you’re wondering which cruise lines are truly LGBTQ friendly.
A cruise is just the ticket to relax and enjoy life. Let’s explore some top LGBTQ cruises and discover which one is right for you.
- Azamara Club
Azamara: Voted the Best LGBTQ Small Ship Cruise
- Meet Me on Board Cruizie Awards
- Best Small Cruiseline for LGBTQ (2013-2019)
- Best Onboard Small Ship LGBTQ gatherings (2016-2019)
- US News and World Report Best Cruiselines
- Silver Award Best Cruise line For couples
- Best Cruise Line for Romance (2015, ranked #3)
They began in 2007. Azamara’s founding company is Royal Carribean. It has three ships:
- Azamara Journey
- Azamara Pursuit
- Azamara Quest
Of these small ships, the Journey is ranked number one. Each Azamara ship has room for 690 guests, compare this to more than 3000 guests on larger cruise ships, and you can imagine what a personal and luxurious experience this cruise will be.
If you are looking for a romantic, intimate experience, Azamara would be perfect.
Voyage Cost on Azamara
Prices begin at $1599 per person and rise to $7,199 per person. They travel to a wide array of beautiful destinations. These prices are all-inclusive and offer excellent gratuities.
- One AzAmazing Evenings (except on trans Atlantic and sailings under 7 nights long)
- Most Meals (having meals in fee areas is upto the passengers)
- Bottled water
- Coffee and Tea
- Open Bar (During certain times of day)
- Port Wines (During certain times of day)
- Self service laundry
What Azamara Offers
A smaller ship means smaller crowds and a more personal experience. This cruise line offers Destination Immersion programs to bring the destinations and cultures to life while educating passengers in an enlightening and enjoyable way.
Azamara Club Cruises are often chartered for gay and lesbian cruises. They offer LGBTQ onboard activities, and some LGBTQ friendly destinations.
Please note, This is an adult cruise line. Azamara asks that no children under the age of 18 be brought on board, as they are not equipped for dealing with children. There are no amenities geared toward children, and there are no babysitters.
What LGBTQ Passengers Say about their Azamara Experience
According to comments found in Cruise Critic, the majority of LGBTQ passengers have a high opinion of Azamara cruises. It is said the staff are friendly, enjoy talking to and learning about their passengers. Many people have compared their experiences on Azamara with larger cruises and have immediately noticed a feeling of being accepted and included on Azamara.
Set Sail on Celebrity Cruise Lines
- Hawaii Islands
- Galapagos Islands
- Pacific Coast
- South America
- Canada and New England
How Much is a Celebrity Voyage?
Celebrity voyage costs are determined by the voyage and what you want to be included. Voyage prices start at $444 per person for a five night western Caribbean cruise and go up to $14,136 for the 7 night Galapagos Outer Loop cruise.
The Galapagos cruise price includes
- Unlimited wifi,
- Meals and beverages
- All gratuities
- Snorkeling equipment and wetsuits
- Park entrance and tourist card fees
Something to remember with the larger cruise ships is not everything is included. The final cost will depend on what package you choose and what you want to add. Be sure to look through the FAQ guides for the cruise line you are thinking about taking.
What Celebrity has to Offer
Celebrity has been voted the best premium cruise line. It’s ships hold up to 3,373 guests. There are hundreds of daily activities. You could even take a glass blowing class. Celebrity offers fine dining and beverage packages. There’s a casino to gamble in and shows in the theaters. There are also pools and hot tubs on each ship.
Celebrity cruises also offer legal same sex marriages at sea, performed by the captain. There are LGBTQ meet and greets, LGBTQ welcome parties, and other LGBTQ events and social hours. Celebrity also has the largest Pride Party at Sea offered in June each year.
What the LGBTQ community has to say about Celebrity Cruise Lines
It seems that most people have found their Celebrity Cruise to be enjoyable and exciting. They found their ship clean with friendly staff and enjoyable food and entertainment.
According to Cruise Critic’s Gay & Lesbian Cruise Reviews, Celebrity Cruises had 82 Excellent reviews, 43, Very good, 26 average, 11 poor, and 7 terrible reviews. There were some complaint issues across the board.
- Cleanliness of ship and/or cabin
- Felt disappointed after hype of what the cruise offered
- Issues with billing
- Issues with flights
Despite some negative feedback, Celebrity remains one of the most sought after large cruises for voyages.
Aquafest Cruises for Gay and Lesbian Cruises
Aquafest offers cruises and vacations for the LGBTQ community. These cruises are booked on various cruise liners with mixed patrons. These organized small group cruises are capable of more destinations and less expensive than some all gay cruises.
They have been organizing LGBTQ group and event travel for 17 years; they know which cruises will be inclusive as well as enjoyable. Enjoy and explore striking ports when you book with Aquafest.
- And more
Current cruise and vacations offered through Aquafest.
- Scandinavia and Russia Blatic Cruise
- Romantic Danube Reunion Cruise
- 20th Annual Halloween Cruise
Does it Cost More to Book Your Vacation through Aquafest?
Actually, prices are comparable, if not a little less expensive than booking directly with other ocean liners. Both ocean and river cruises are available. For the Halloween cruise, prices start at $1025 per person. For 2021 this cruise will take place on Virgin’s brand new “Scarlet Lady” ship.
The most expensive “cruise” I found was for $3,699 (look in Aquafest Vacations) . This cruise is on the Egyptian Nile River.
Many voyages for 2021 will be on new ships.
What is Offered with Aquafest Cruises?
Aquafest offers many features when you take one of their cruises.
- Discounts for singles, couples, and groups
- Celebrations including Mardi Gras and Halloween
- Parties including Beach, Costume, and Cocktail
- Formal Dinners
- Shows including Celebrity Guests, Game shows, and Comedy shows
Here’s what Fellow LGBTQ Have to Say About Aquafest
The responses I went through on Aquafest’s Face Book page and cruise critic were extremely positive. Everyone spoke of having fun and truly enjoying their experience. It sounds like the events, cruises, and ship staff were exemplary. The Aquafest cruises and festivities really bring out the vacation.
Vacaya When You Just Want to be with Like-minded People
Vacaya is made for the entire LGBTQ+ community. This is the only vacation company made for LGBTQ only vacations. These are the cruises currently being offered through Vacaya.
- New Orleans
These are specialty cruises catered just for the LGBTQ family. They are few and exclusive.
Do Vacaya Cruises Cost More?
You may have heard or read that gay only cruises cost more. Though this is true, it offers a different vacation. A cruise spent with others who are LGBTQ or are supporters of the community. There’s no need to feel uncomfortable with who you are. It’s your vacation, and you deserve to relax, have fun, and be you.
Pricing varies between and within each cruise. The least expensive begins at $897 for an interior stateroom on the Caribbean Cruise. The highest price is listed at $9,997 per person for a suite on the Iceland Cruise. It is important to make your reservations early as you will get the best choices on pricing.
- All standard meals
- Staff Assistance
What Vacaya Offers
The entire cruise ship or resort is for Vacaya guests. They are exclusive vacations for LGBTQIAPK community. It’s about celebrating the diversity that makes us human while experiencing new places. Vacaya also offers their Solo Traveling Ease Program for singles that are traveling alone.
Vacaya is for adults over 18. They do require any one 18 to 20 to be accompanied by and stay with an adult over 25 years of age.
What Others Say About Vacaya
All I can say is wow. It was difficult to find a negative comment when it comes to Vacaya. Reading Cruise Critic speaks of having a fantastic time and attentive staff. The festivities are amazing. The atmosphere is comfortable and friendly amongst guests. There were comments on how the cruise was like a gay summer camp and how new friends exchanged phone numbers at the end of the voyage.
Atlantis for the All Gay Experience
Atlantis is the all gay cruise line that has hosted over 25,000 guests. Atlantis has been in business for 19 years.
Atlantis charters ships from top cruise lines. These are large cruise ships, depending on the ship’s size, there will be 1,000 to 5,000 guests on a voyage. The ships include:
- Virgin’s New Scarlet Lady
- Oceania Riviera
- Royal Caribbean Odyssey of the Seas
- Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas
This company is the most favored for all gay cruises. An Atlantis Cruise will take you to exotic places. Below are the upcoming cruises.
- Virgin Caribbean
- Venice to Athens
- Odyssey Med
- 30th Anniversary Caribbean
What will a Cruise with Atlantis Cost?
Prices vary depending on the cruise and what suite options you want. For the 30th Anniversary cruise, the price begins at $2,399 for a Junior Suite and goes all the way to $22,000 for a Royal Loft Suite. At the time of writing this, all options were sold out, except for the Junior Suite.
The Virgin Caribbean Cruise will cost from $2,999 to $8,999. Again this ship is almost full, and there are limited reservations available.
Venice to Athens Cruise prices are from $4,999 (the only cabins still available) to $13,200. The Odyssey Med Cruise runs from $3,599 to $9,500.
Atlantis is obviously a very popular choice. All of the cabin options aside from the small cabins are filled on each ship!
What Do You Get With Atlantis?
With Atlantis, you will receive everything you need.
Atlantis does offer a room share program for those traveling alone. Athens also offers a daily meeting for those in a 12 step program. All staff are gay friendly and often ask to work on the Atlantis sailings because they are so fun. These cruises are adult only, and it is required that those 18 to 21 travel with a companion of at least 25 years of age.
Parties! Atlantis has the parties you’re looking for. Many say it’s like one non-stop party, but in reality, there are 8. Take advantage of their “$200 gets you on board,” which is where you can make monthly payments toward the trip with $200 down.
What the Gay Community Says About Atlantis Cruises
The reviews I have read are all good. The Globe Trotter Guys rave about the parties and how fun and easy it is to meet people. The food was great, and the trip was fun. Most expressed that you must experience at least one Atlantis Gay Cruise.
In Cruise Critic, there were a few questions about drinks being included with the price, and the answer is no. As someone pointed out, people tend to drink 3 to 4 times as much on these chartered cruises, so the drinks are a real revenue.
People that have traveled solo say they have not experienced problems with roommates they were paired with but have heard bad stories. It was noted that the staff is there to help with any problems and disputes.
Olivia Leads for Lesbian Cruises
Olivia offered its first lesbian cruise in 1990. Before this, they were in the music industry and have their record label. Olivia has been with us for nearly fifty years, supporting Lesbian and LGBTQ+ women, ensuring there are safe and celebratory places for all LGBTQ+ women.
Olivia is a quieter experience than some of the LGBTQ party ships. It is only women, and many of the women are older and have been enjoying Olivia’s benefits since the ’70s.
They have luxury and discovery cruises available. Ocean voyages and river cruises are available. These are the ocean voyages.
- Lisbon to Dublin
- Greece Cyprus Israel
- Costa Rica and Panama Canal
- Discover Iceland
The ships for these cruises will be:
- Windstar’s Star Legend,
- Windstar’s Wind Spirit
- The Azamara Pursuit
- Wind Star
- Wind Star’s Star Pride
Olivia’s riverboat cruises will take you to beautiful and exotic places such as Portugal’s Douro River and Amsterdam to Switzerland, and more.
How much is a Cruise with Olivia?
Olivia has competitive pricing. Prices start at $2,699 and rise to $14,699 depending on the cruise and the accommodations you choose. You get better deals if you reserve early.
Why Cruise with Olivia?
Olivia is an all Lesbian LGBTQ+ women’s vacation company. Their cruises are elegant and eloquent. Women of all ages, backgrounds, and ethnicities enjoy vacationing with Olivia. On an Oliva cruise, the price includes such things as:
- Meals including room service
- Complimentary soft beverages
Depending on the vacation you choose, other things such as complimentary laundry or select standard spirits may be included.
Olivia is wonderful for those traveling alone. They have a room share program if you wish to share a room and pair you with another based on your habits. Olivia also has a solo’s coordinator who organizes special activities.
Olivia also offers travel perks such as:
- Loyalty and Rewards
- Honeymoons and Celebrations
- Travel for a cause
- Payment plans
These travel perks give you the chance to become an Olivia member and save you money.
If you are going on a honeymoon, or celebrating an anniversary, join the Honeymoon Wish registry.
Olivia also believes in supporting the cultures and communities where you cruise. You can give back to the communities you visit through Travel for a cause.
What Others Say of their Olivia Experience
On Facebook, Olivia receives rave reviews. The experiences are amazing. Many of the women have taken more than one cruise with Olivia. There were others that experienced an Olivia cruise for the first time. They stated that they had a wonderful time, met new friends, and enjoyed the friendly and accepting atmosphere of sisterhood.
Cruise Gay and Proud
It doesn’t matter who you are if you are LGBTQ+; there’s a cruise right for you. If you have a family, family cruises with Celebrity are available. Azamara is ideal for those seeking a more intimate cruise on a smaller ship. If you want to experience amazing gay pride parties and lots of fun, Vacaya and Atlantis have these experiences awaiting you.
No matter what cruise is right for you, you can expect to visit amazing ports on beautiful ships, with wonderful people.