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PHOTO: The Norwegian Escape is expected to enter service in November. (Via YouTube)
Norwegian Cruise Line's new ship will have a three-story ropes course with two six-inch-wide planks that extend eight feet beyond the side of the ship and zip tracks that let guests soar for a bird's-eye view.
The Norwegian Escape, the line's biggest ship ever, also will have what is billed as the largest water park at sea, with a new racing slide and an expansive sports complex with a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle miniature golf course.
The 164,600-ton, 4,200-passenger ship will offer Eastern Caribbean cruises year-round from Miami starting Nov. 14.
For a sneak peek at the ropes course and water park, check out this video:
The elevated ropes course will span the width of the ship with 99 elements and features extended beyond the ship's hull on both the sides. The two planks let guests hook up for safety will they inch out on beams that extend eight feet from the hull. The Sky Rails will let guests glide through the air on zip tracks, with the longest one extending over the side of the ship. There are three Sky Rails on the main ropes course and two on the kids' ropes course.
The Aqua Park will have four multi-story water slides, dedicated children's area, two pools and four hot tubs. The new tandem Aqua Racer slide lets passengers race side-by-side in twisting and turning tubes.
Returning is the Free Fall, which debuted on Norwegian Breakaway. These side-by-side slides offer a thrilling free fall, as the floor drops away. For a more relaxing ride, there is a family-friendly open-flume body slide.
The children's aqua park will have an enclosed tube slide, a two-story climbing structure, water cannons, elevated buckets that deliver surprise drenchings, spray features and along a multi-story tower with a rope bridge and lookout platform.
The new nine-hole miniature golf course features Nickelodeon's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The sports complex also will also include a full-size basketball court and a bocce ball court, a first for the line.
Norwegian Escape will be the sixth ship to offer Nickelodeon-branded entertainment, which includes opportunities to meet SpongeBob SquarePants, Patrick Star and Dora the Explorer and other characters. Activities include Nickelodeon Pajama Jam Breakfast, Dora's Dance Party, Story Time with Dora and Nickelodeon arts and crafts.
In a first for the line, Norwegian Escape will offer child-care services for children age six months to three years. The nursery will include an active area for play time and age-appropriate activities and a separate space for napping. In addition to the nursery services, the Guppies program will offer a dedicated open play area for parents and babies to play together, featuring sensory-based games, interactive media and themed activities hosted by an early years coordinator.
The Splash Academy complex on Deck 5 will offer age-appropriate supervised activities for children ages three to 12. It is adjacent to the family-friendly ocean-view staterooms, accommodating up to five guests. As on all Norwegian vessels, parents will use the e-Youth tablet-based electronic registration system, which allows them to swipe their keycard to register their children and input a password for additional safety to sign in and pick-up their children.
Entourage, located on Deck 17, is the high-energy zone for ages 13 through 17. This hip area includes trendy lounge furniture, a gaming station, air hockey and foosball.
Theresa Norton, editor in chief of AGENTatHOME Magazine, covers the cruise industry for TravelPulse.com.
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