Caribbean

With an island for every taste, the Caribbean is the ultimate place for relaxation. You’ll find white sands and turquoise water throughout the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico. Some islands are lush, with rainforest and mountain trails, while others have desert climates and coral beaches. Wherever you visit, taste regional specialties such as conch fritters and get out on the water with snorkeling and sailing excursions.

Your first Caribbean cruise is likely to visit the islands of the Eastern Caribbean, which include the U.S. Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands, St. Maarten and Puerto Rico. Enjoy shopping in popular ports such as St. Thomas, or explore Spanish history in Old San Juan. And of course, there are plenty of places for beach bums to grab sun and a cocktail.

Caribbean cruise itineraries are broken up into three routes: eastern, western, and southern. Your vacation length, ideal embarkation port, and interests will determine which is best for you.

For example, the eastern route offers beautiful beaches and lots of water sports. You can zipline through 200-year-old mango trees in St. Martin, find peace and quiet at Virgin Islands National Park in St. John, or hike among the waterfalls and wildflowers in El Yunque rain forest in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The western route offers a great blend of eco-adventures and cultural attractions, with stops along Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, plus Honduras, Belize, and Caribbean islands such as Jamaica and Grand Cayman. Hop in a kayak in Cozumel and paddle around one of the world’s largest coral reefs, or take an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) ride through the rain forest in Ocho Rios.

Ports on the southern route are farther apart than those on eastern and western sailings, requiring more travel time — but also providing a more exotic experience. It’s the most interesting route, calling on remote isles that make you feel as though you’re shipwrecked on “Gilligan’s Island.” You may want to ride horseback through St. Barth’s hillsides and tour St. Lucia’s Sulphur Springs, the world’s only “drive-in” volcano. While the idea of escaping to a tropical island paradise may have been the initial inspiration for a visit, you’ll quickly learn there’s a lot more to the Caribbean than just sun, sand, and surf.

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Select a Port of Call to see information of the port and related shore excursions while focusing on accessibility for the disabled cruiser.

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