TWO new billion-pound cruise ships with huge water slides, race tracks and casinos have recently anchored in Weymouth and Portland.

Queen Elizabeth, Britannia, Aurora, Marella Discovery and Arcadia, were joined by Norwegian Bliss and Norwegian Encore last weekend, as previously reported. 

The cruise ships are moored off the Dorset coast because the bay offers "secure anchorage with the prevailing weather", according to the RNLI.

These vessels can be seen across Weymouth and as far as Portland and cruise ship tours can also be arranged for tourists and residents.

Norwegian Bliss and Norwegian Encore, operated by the Norwegian Cruise Line, usually take thousands of holidaymakers around America, South America and the Caribbean. 

Dorset Echo: The cruise ships on the Dorset coastThe cruise ships on the Dorset coast

Norwegian Bliss cost around $1 billion to construct and has been a cruise fans' favourite since it first launched in 2018.

The cruise ship, which is 333 metres in length, has a capacity of 4,004 guests with 1,716 ship crew members. 

Guests can either take a trip from Miami to the Western Caribbean or visit Mexican Riviera from Los Angeles.

Like the Norwegian Encore, the vessel features a go-kart circuit on its top deck, along with swimming pools, aqua parks, casino, video game arcade, a gym and spa.

A video, which can be seen below, showcases the Norwegian Bliss' features and various restaurants, and range of rooms that guests can book

There is also a number of bars, restaurants onboard, offering a range of meals, drinks and dining options. 

Guests can also enjoy a number of live music, theatre performances or stand-up comedy.

Norwegian Bliss currently has a 4 rating out-of-five rating on Cruise Critic with positive reviews describing the vessel as a "gorgeous ship with excellent food and lots of live music".

Norwegian Encore, first launched in August 2019 and was christened by American singer Kelly Clarkson in November last year. 

Dorset Echo: The top deck on top of the Norwegian Bliss features a slide and poolsThe top deck on top of the Norwegian Bliss features a slide and pools

Costing £1 billion, the vessel held a number of preview events in Europe and United States of America, with a preview cruise from Bremerhaven to Southampton before its inaugural voyage, an 8-day transatlantic sailing between Southampton and New York.

The Norwegian Encore toured the Eastern Caribbean during its inaugural season before the coronavirus pandemic halted future cruises. 

Spanning 333 metres in length, the vessel has a capacity of 3,998 guests with 1,735 ship crew members. Dorset Echo: The race track on Norwegian Encore The race track on Norwegian Encore

Norwegian Encore also features a range of activities including a go-kart circuit, swimming pools, aqua parks, casino, an 'entourage teen club' full of films, music and games as well as a gym and spa.

The vessel also has a number of bars, restaurants and cafes, ranging from grills to fine dining.  

There's even a number of live music and theatre performances, with Broadway hit Kinky Boots on offer for guests. 

Norwegian Encore currently has a 4.5 rating out-of-five rating on Cruise Critic with users talking about their "amazing time" and their "great experience" on board. 

A video by Cruise with Ben and David, which can be seen below, showcases the Norwegian Encore's features

It is not known when these cruise ships will sail again, as Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd announced that it is extending the suspension of all of its cruises, to include sailings from the Sunday, November 1 through to Monday, November 30, 2020.

The company says it will 'continue to work in tandem with global government and public health authorities and its Healthy Sail Panel expert advisors to take all necessary measures to protect its guests, crew and the communities visited'.

Passengers who are booked on any cancelled sailings are being asked to contact their travel advisor, or the cruise line they have booked with, for more information regarding the next steps to take.