I sailed on a luxury, adults-only Virgin Voyages cruise ship called the Valiant Lady.
It can hold more than 2,700 guests with unique amenities like a tattoo shop and an adult playground.
Here's a tour of the ship's 17 decks full of cabins, restaurants, and communal spaces.
I recently sailed with the luxury, adults-only cruise line Virgin Voyages onboard their Valiant Lady ship.
Earlier this month, I took my first cruise with Virgin Voyages, a relatively new cruise line that I've been hearing about from friends and other travelers for the last couple of years.
Virgin Voyages launched in 2021, according to its website. Since then, the cruise line has won several awards, including five from Cruise Critic for its cabins, dining, service, and ships in 2023.
Virgin Voyages has four "lady" ships: Scarlet Lady, Valiant Lady, Resilient Lady, and Brilliant Lady. A representative from Virgin Voyages told Insider that the ships are pretty much identical, aside from some differences in artwork and entertainment.
I cruised on Valiant Lady, which began sailing in March 2022. Like the other ships, it can hold more than 2,700 guests.
I stayed in a room with a balcony that typically costs about $5,910 for two people on my itinerary.
The ship has 1,408 cabins and suites, according to the cruise line. I booked a mid-tier stateroom with a balcony — a step above sea-view cabins, which only have a window. Insider received a media rate for the cruise.
The room was 225 square feet, including the balcony. I thought the cabin made great use of the tiny space while including luxury details, from smart controls to a private terrace.
The cruise line sails in Europe and the Caribbean. I took a seven-day Mediterranean cruise that left out of Barcelona.
My ship sailed round-trip from Barcelona, Spain, to ports in Italy and France, including Toulon, Ajaccio, and Marina di Carrara. The cruise ended with an overnight stop in Ibiza.
But a lot of the fun took place on the ship.
According to Virgin Voyages, the ships are 912 feet long and pack in 17 decks filled with cabins, restaurants, and communal spaces.
During my cruise, I never got bored. From shops and swimming pools to game rooms and swing sets, I thought there was so much to do.
To get up and down the ship's many decks, elevators take guests to 13 of the 17 levels.
The lower three levels are only accessible to crew members and the top deck is only accessible from the outdoor portion of deck 16, I learned during my voyage.
Sparkling details like light projections in the elevator and iridescent panels along the staircase made me feel luxurious while getting around the ship.
The fun starts on deck five, the lowest deck with staterooms. It also houses the ship's spa.
Hot stone massages, hydrating skin treatments, and indoor pools can all be found on deck five at Virgin Voyages' Redemption Spa.
These treatments and amenities come at an additional price. Massages and facials start at $155 and passes to access amenities start at $39.
Upstairs, decks six and seven are packed with communal spaces, including several show venues.
A reporter at The Points Guy recently called Virgin Voyages' wide range of entertainment the best on any cruise line. During my cruise, I thought it was easy to see why. There were dance parties, live music, comedy shows, and more.
Many of the venues for these events are on decks six and seven, including the Red Room for performances; On the Rocks, a music bar; and the Manor, a nightclub and theater.
These lower decks also house many of the ship's restaurants and eateries, including fine dining rooms and an ice cream shop.
From personal pizzas to juicy steak dinners, there's plenty to eat on decks 5-7.
There are more than 20 restaurants and eateries on the ship, according to the cruise line. Food and drinks are included in the price of the ticket, save for alcoholic and specialty drinks as well as select menu items in some establishments.
On deck six, High Street is a strip of high-end shops that is reminiscent of a mall.
On High Street, I found a plethora of products from luxury brands including Louis Vuitton, Dior, Fendi, and Bulgari.
The strip also has a store dedicated to the Virgin brand that sells records and other merchandise.
On the same deck, Valiant Lady has a tattoo parlor called Squid Ink.
Upstairs, deck seven is a gamer's paradise.
On deck seven, I found the arcade. It was a narrow, dark room with neon lights and games lining each side. Here, I raced cars and battled with buttons. It was so much fun.
On the same floor, there was a larger room packed with tables for playing board games and puzzles, which were stacked on shelves around the space. I spotted decks of cards and a wide variety of nostalgic games from my childhood, including Mouse Trap, Cranium, and Operation.
Deck seven also has an outdoor lounge known as the Dock.
I thought the Dock was the most relaxing space on deck seven. It's an outdoor lounge at the back of the ship full of beds and sofas. The Dock serves small Mediterranean-inspired plates and hosts events.
I went to the Dock for a stargazing event. Guests got comfortable and looked up at the night sky while crew members told stories about the stars.
Decks 8-14 hold nothing but staterooms.
Most of the rooms on these decks have their own balcony. Mine was on deck 12.
Up on deck 15, there are two pools surrounded by lounge chairs and whirlpools.
The Aquatic Club is on deck 15 and has two pools separated by a bar — the main pool and the Well-Being Pool.
For a beach club vibe, I recommend the main pool because it's bigger and has music playing all the time. I was surprised to find that the pool felt relatively smaller than on a typical cruise ship, in my experience. But it was never too crowded to use — even in the afternoons — so this didn't bother me at all.
On the other side of the deck, The Well-Being Pool is smaller and has seating and jets in the water, so it felt to me like an extra-large whirlpool. But like the main pool, this one was never too crowded to go in either. And unlike the main pool, it was quiet, making it ideal for relaxing and cooling off.
Inside deck 15, there's the Galley, a large dining space with several eateries similar to a buffet.
The Galley is Virgin Voyages' food hall. Similar to a typical cruise ship buffet, there are several stands with a wide range of offerings. But unlike most buffets, servers make the plates and hand them to the customers.
In the Galley, I had tacos, sushi, desserts, and breakfast foods. There's also a burger grill, a noodle bar, a panini shop, and a popsicle stand.
Additionally on deck 15, there's a standalone restaurant called Gunbae that serves family-style Korean barbecue dishes.
There was also a gym in the indoor portion of deck 15.
B-Complex is the gym onboard Virgin cruise ships. They have free weights and machines as well as fitness classes from yoga to spin sessions.
I don't like to work out on vacation unless it's a fun activity that makes me forget I'm exercising at all. So I didn't use the gym. But I thought B-Complex's offerings were consistent with gyms I've been to at home while offering a much better view — the ocean.
But I think you can get a more fun workout upstairs on deck 16.
On deck 16, the Athletic Club is home to an outdoor training center with strength and gymnastics equipment as well as a boxing ring.
The deck has a playground for adults with gigantic netted swing sets and seesaws.
The playground was my favorite part of the ship. Against the backdrop of the sunset over the ocean, I bounced on seesaws and pumped my legs on large, netted swings with the breeze on my face. It made me feel like a kid again.
This area also has a wide variety of games and sports, like a giant chess board.
The playground area had a basketball court and other more unexpected offerings like foosball and a gigantic chess board.
For thrill-seekers, there's a net you can walk — or crawl — around with a view of the ocean below.
The net reminded me of a catamaran. From the outside, I didn't think stepping onto it would be scary. But as soon as I did, my gut dropped. So I immediately got on all fours and crawled to the other side. With butterflies swarming in my stomach, I thought this activity was way more thrilling than I was expecting.
In my opinion, deck 16 is home to the most relaxing spot — Richard's Rooftop.
Richard's Rooftop is the VIP lounge on Virgin Voyages' cruise ships. The rooftop is reserved for passengers staying in suites — known as "Rockstars" by the cruise line.
Virgin Voyages gave Insider access to Richard's Rooftop, and I thought it was the most relaxing place on the ship.
It's packed with cabanas, loungers, and whirlpools. It also has a bar and lounge-side service.
Lastly, the top deck, 17, holds the runway, a bright-red track that circles the ship.
On deck 17, the track is the perfect place to run — or walk, if you vacation like me — with constant views of the wide-open ocean.
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