MSC Orchestra for Families
If you're used to the expansive facilities onboard Carnival and Royal Caribbean ships, you'll be disappointed in the kids' areas on MSC Orchestra. First, the Children's Mini Club has tailored activities for ages between 3 and 13, but you won't find the further age breakdowns so popular on American ships.
Activities include games, acrobatic lessons, puppet shows, arts and crafts classes, and Playstation video games. (On the day I looked in, there were nine kids, speaking Italian and German, on a scavenger hunt for hidden puzzle pieces.)
There are also pizza parties, ice cream parties and hot dog parties.
And, in a real break for parents, there's even complimentary "baby parking," as MSC calls it, during shore excursions.
Playland, the outdoor kids' area on Deck 14, has two slides, a maze and wading pool. All activities are supervised.
Beware of one thing: If traveling with older teens, know that MSC is a European company and can legally serve alcohol in the bars to anyone over 18 years old. What is more, wine can be served in restaurants to teenagers though parental approval is required.