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East coast cruises.

Discover nonstop memory making from the east coast.

An East Coast cruise on Royal Caribbean® is your ticket to adventure — before you even set sail. Start by exploring exciting East Coast cruise ports. Wander through charming cobblestone streets and upscale crab shacks in Baltimore. Or ride to the top of the Empire State Building and get a close-up look at the Statue of Liberty in New York City. Then tropic-hop to sunny Caribbean shores like beautiful Bermuda and our award-winning private island, Perfect Day at CocoCay in The Bahamas. Plus, turn up the thrills during weeklong discoveries in Puerto Rico, Antigua, St. Lucia and more. 

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From cultural hot spots in buzzing cities to breathtaking views of secluded landscapes, cruises from the East Coast are the perfect way to explore the region and kickstart your vacation. With so much to see and do, there’s something for every type of adventurer.

Times Square Manhattan Manhattan, Cape Liberty, New Jersey


New York is a cultural mecca with one of the most diverse populations in the world. From Europeans and Asians to Africans and South Americans, immigrants have flocked to the Big Apple for centuries, seeking the American dream. Today, over 8 million people speak 800 different languages throughout the city. To immerse yourself in the vast cultural influences, visit neighborhoods like Little Italy, Chinatown and Brooklyn. 

Hiker on Appalachian Trail in Maine


Get in touch with nature at one of the East Coast’s most awe-inspiring recreational areas — the Appalachian Trail. Considered the world’s longest hiking-only footpath, the Appalachian Trail stretches 2,194 miles and winds through 14 states, including New York and Maryland. Whether you’re an avid hiker or just a beginner, the Appalachian Mountains are the perfect spot to catch incredible views and gaze out over picture-perfect landscapes.

World Trade Center Fall, Maryland, Baltimore


The birthplace of the National Anthem, Baltimore is steeped in American history and Southern charm. Explore historical sites like the Inner Harbor, one of the nation’s oldest seaports, or Lexington Market, which has sold fresh produce and delicious meals since 1782. And if you’re a literary fiend, be sure to stop by the home of the beloved American horror writer and poet Edgar Allan Poe.

Bahamas Dolphins Underwater Swimming, Grand Bahama Island


With so many choices from the East Coast, your best beach day is closer than ever. Cross Bermuda’s pink-sand beaches off your bucket list, or snorkel through clear turquoise water at Grand Bahama Island. Whether you set sail from Cape Liberty or Baltimore, year-round getaways to unforgettable destinations are always nearby.

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Put adventure on the itinerary when you sail from Cape Liberty to sunny Caribbean shores . Go snorkeling in fan-favorite destinations like Nassau . Drift along the Caribbean’s largest freshwater pool at our award-winning private island, Perfect Day at CocoCay . Or head to Bermuda for picturesque strolls along some of the world’s most breathtaking beaches.

Explore CRUISES from Cape Liberty

Grand Bahamas Six Mile Cave


Royal Caribbean® is your ticket to memory-maxing adventure from Charm City. Watch rockets blast off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida . Wander through Grand Bahama Island’s postcard-perfect beaches. And take on record-breaking thrills and endless ways to chill at Perfect Day at CocoCay, voted Best Private Island Experience by Travel Weekly readers.

Explore Cruises from BALTIMORE

WHAT TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO An insider's Guide to an East Coast trip

New York and Baltimore are both exciting cities with so much to explore. Regardless of which port city you visit, you’ll be doing a lot of walking. When you’re packing, keep in mind that comfortable shoes are non-negotiable.

And after all that walking, you’re bound to work up an appetite. Be sure to make a reservation to snag a table at one of the best restaurants in town — or you’ll risk missing out. You can contact restaurants directly or check out online reservation sites with access to hundreds of top restaurants nationwide.

If you want to score discounted rates for a Broadway show or concert at the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, go to the theater’s box office the morning of the performance. Many productions offer same-day rush tickets, which means you can pay as little as $20.

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The Best Summer Vacation Cruises from the Northeast Hop on an adventure of a lifetime on a cruise from the Northeast...

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6 Best Summer Vacation Cruises from New York Calling all New Yorkers — You can have the best summer vacation ever. Here’s how...

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Insider Tips to the Best Things to Do When You Cruise from New York Take a bite out of the big apple on a cruise from New York...

To walk like a New Yorker, stick to the right side of the sidewalk, don’t multitask, and always pay attention to your surroundings.

Score free transportation in Baltimore on the Charm City Circulator and Harbor Connector water taxi and visit popular southern neighborhoods.

Taxis from JFK offer a flat rate to Manhattan, which is often cheaper than taking an Uber or Lyft.


No matter what you’re craving, the East Coast has delicious fare to satisfy your appetite. From every type of clam chowder you can think of to handmade bagels, the region offers a fusion of bold flavors that will make your tastebuds happy. So whether you have a list of must-try local dishes or want to taste something new — bring your appetite.

Chicken chow mein a popular oriental dish


Nothing says comfort food like a warm bowl of chow mein. For the authentic Cantonese-style noodle dish, head to Chinatown in New York City. There you will find bustling Chinese restaurants filled with locals getting their fix of stir-fried noodles sauteed with vegetables, beef, chicken, shrimp or tofu.

Maryland blue crabs with seafood


If you love seafood, Maryland is perfect for you. This charming destination is known for mouthwatering steamed blue crab feasts. While you can find blue crabs along the entire East Coast, Baltimore has some of the nation’s tastiest dishes, like traditional Maryland crab soup and irresistible crab cakes.

Best Pizza made with New York water in New York City, NY


You can’t leave the Big Apple without having a slice of New York-style pizza, considered by many to be the best in the world. Locals claim New York water is the secret to the iconic thin, hand-tossed crust that is both crispy and soft. Grab a slice at one of 400 pizzerias throughout the city and decide for yourself.


Cruises from the East Coast are your gateway to one-of-a-kind thrills. Explore Caribbean-kissed shores in Bermuda and The Bahamas or take in the vibrant colors of Fall foliage along windswept shores of New England and Canada onboard the world’s boldest ships

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Houses by the Shore, Charleston, South Carolina


Gloucester Lighthouse Harbor, Boston, Massachusetts


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All the Cruise Ports on the East Coast! (2024 Updates)

Ahoy, fellow adventurers! Whether you’re a seasoned cruiser or a newbie setting sail for the first time, the East Coast promises a myriad of memories.

So, grab your sailor hat (okay, not necessary, but why not!), one of our free cruise planners , and let’s dive into the charm of the East Coast, one port at a time.

Prepare to be dazzled by the best cruise ports the East Coast has to offer!

cruise ports east coast

The Vibrant Charm of New England Ports

New England, with its tapestry of history, culture, and raw natural beauty, has always been a beacon for travelers. But for cruisers?

Oh, it’s like a siren song that beckons with its unique blend of the old-world charm and pristine landscapes.

Let’s sail into two of its most iconic ports, featured as some of the top cities to visit on the East Coast , and discover what they have in store!

Boston, Massachusetts

Ah, Boston! The Cradle of Liberty and one of America’s oldest cities. But don’t let its age fool you. This city is as lively as ever!

  • Historical Significance and Landmarks: Strolling through the cobblestone streets of Boston is like taking a step back in time. The Freedom Trail, a 2.5-mile-long route, will guide you through 16 historically significant sites. From the Paul Revere House to the Old North Church, it’s a crash course in American history, minus the school desk.
  • Culinary Delights and Recommendations: A visit to Boston wouldn’t be complete without savoring its culinary offerings. And if you’re thinking seafood, you’re spot on! The Quincy Market is perfect for a quick clam chowder fix. For the more adventurous foodies, Union Oyster House, America’s oldest continuously operating restaurant, offers a seafood experience like no other. And of course, don’t forget to treat yourself to a classic Boston Cream Pie!

Bar Harbor, Maine

Nestled on the northeast shores of Mount Desert Island, Bar Harbor is a haven for nature lovers and food enthusiasts alike.

  • Natural Attractions like Acadia National Park: Just a stone’s throw away from the port, Acadia National Park offers cruisers a chance to experience Maine’s wilderness up close. Whether you’re up for a scenic drive along Park Loop Road or a short hike to capture panoramic ocean views, Acadia is pure, unadulterated nature at its best.
  • Local Delicacies, such as Lobsters: And now, for the pièce de résistance—Maine lobsters! Bar Harbor offers numerous quaint eateries where you can sink your teeth into fresh, buttery lobster rolls. And if you’re up for a little adventure, some local spots even let you choose your own lobster from a saltwater tank. Talk about fresh!

From the hustle and bustle of Boston to the tranquil settings of Bar Harbor, New England’s ports are the perfect starting point for our East Coast cruise adventure.

But hold tight, as we’re just getting started! Next up, the magnetic allure of the Mid-Atlantic awaits…

sunset in New York on cruise ship

The Mid-Atlantic Wonders

As we continue our voyage southward, the East Coast’s vibrant spirit remains unwavering, but the flavor evolves.

The Mid-Atlantic boasts a seamless blend of rich history, urban charm, and seaside allure. Let’s anchor at three key ports that exemplify this beautiful meld.

New York City, New York

The city that never sleeps! The skyline of NYC, with its towering skyscrapers, serves as an iconic backdrop for any cruise ship.

  • Iconic Landmarks for Cruisers: You might be on a tight schedule, but spots like the Statue of Liberty and Times Square are easily accessible and not-to-be-missed. And if you can, sneak in a quick walk in Central Park or a gaze at the city from the Top of the Rock. The views are surreal!
  • Insider Tips for Quick City Exploration: Want to explore NYC in a jiffy? Hop-on hop-off buses can be a lifesaver! Also, local delis are perfect for grabbing a quick bite—a classic bagel with lox or a New York-style pizza slice!

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Often overlooked by cruisers, the City of Brotherly Love has a lot to offer, especially for history buffs.

  • Historical Sites and Offerings: The Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, and the steps Rocky Balboa famously climbed—Philadelphia is a city teeming with stories. Dive into America’s roots while munching on a delectable Philly cheesesteak!
  • Unique Cruise Views: The Delaware River offers a unique vantage point to appreciate Philly. As your ship sails, enjoy the shimmering reflections of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge and the city’s skyline.

Cape May, New Jersey

Cape May, with its Victorian charm and serene beaches, is the East Coast’s little secret gem.

  • Historic and Architectural Wonders: This town is famous for its colorful Victorian homes, making it feel like you’ve time-traveled to another era. Guided trolley tours are a fun way to learn about Cape May’s rich history and stunning architecture.
  • Relaxation by the Atlantic: After history lessons in Boston and NYC, Cape May offers a refreshing change of pace. Its pristine beaches are perfect for unwinding. And if you’re a bird enthusiast, the Cape May Bird Observatory is a must-visit during migration seasons!

The Mid-Atlantic region, with its metropolitan marvels and hidden seaside towns, offers a diverse array of experiences for every cruiser.

However, as the landscape starts to shift towards warmer climates and palm trees, get ready for some Southern hospitality up next in the Southeastern ports!

Charleston, South Carolina

Southeastern Serenades: From Carolinas to Florida

As we sail further down the East Coast, we transition from the urban spectacles of the Mid-Atlantic to the warm and breezy embrace of the Southeast.

Think sandy beaches, historic cities, and that undeniable Southern charm. So, let’s explore what this enchanting stretch of the coast has in store for us.

Charleston, South Carolina

Charleston is a city where history dances on cobblestone streets, and where every corner seems to hum a lullaby of the ages past.

  • Historic Downtown and Waterfront: Wander through the French Quarter, and be dazzled by Rainbow Row’s pastel-colored houses. The Waterfront Park, with its iconic Pineapple Fountain, offers cruisers a tranquil spot to relax and enjoy views of the Cooper River.
  • Culinary Delights: Southern cuisine shines brightly here. From shrimp and grits to mouth-watering barbecue, Charleston will indulge your taste buds. Don’t forget to grab a glass of sweet tea, the Southern staple!

Savannah, Georgia

With its Spanish moss-covered trees and antebellum architecture, Savannah exudes an eerie yet beautiful charm.

  • Historic Squares and Midnight Tours: Savannah’s 22 historic squares are a treat to explore. And if you’re in the mood for some spine-tingling tales, hop onto one of the city’s famous ghost tours that come alive, quite literally, after dark.
  • Savannah Riverfront: The bustling riverfront area, with its cobblestone streets and historic buildings, is filled with unique boutiques, art galleries, and cafes. The river views, paired with live street performances, make for a memorable visit.

Miami, Florida

Welcome to the Magic City! With its sunny beaches, vibrant neighborhoods, and Latin-infused culture, Miami is the East Coast’s vivacious finale.

  • Beaches and Art Deco Dreams: South Beach, with its iconic pastel-hued Art Deco buildings and lively beach scene, is the perfect spot for sunbathing and people-watching. And if you’re into vibrant street art, Wynwood Walls is an absolute must-visit.
  • Cultural Fusion: Immerse yourself in Miami’s rich cultural tapestry. Stroll through Little Havana for some Cuban vibes, complete with cigar shops and salsa rhythms. Enjoy a cafecito or a Cuban sandwich before you set sail once more.

Swaying palm trees, rich histories, and that delightful Southern twang—the Southeast has it all. As our East Coast cruising guide draws to a close, we hope your heart is full of wanderlust, ready to embark on your own journey through these captivating ports.

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Tips and Tricks for Navigating East Coast Cruise Ports

So, you’re all set to explore the plethora of wonders the East Coast ports have to offer. But wait, before you embark, let’s ensure you’re equipped with a sailor’s bag full of insights and cruise travel tips to make your voyage smooth and memorable.

Here’s the insider’s guide to making the most of your East Coast cruise experience.

Packing for Diverse Climates

  • Layers are Your Friend: The East Coast weather can be a tad unpredictable. While Boston might greet you with a chilly embrace, Miami promises sun-kissed warmth. Here’s a cruise packing tip , pack in layers—light jackets, breathable tees, and maybe a scarf or two to ensure you’re comfortable throughout.
  • Footwear Matters: Cobblestone streets in Charleston, sandy beaches in Miami—your footwear needs to be versatile. Opt for comfortable walking shoes for city explorations and a pair of flip-flops for those beachy stops.

Local Customs and Etiquette

  • Tipping: While dining out or getting services, remember that tipping is customary in the U.S. A general rule of thumb is 15-20% of your bill.
  • Ask the Locals: Want to discover hidden gems? Don’t shy away from chatting up locals. They often have the best recommendations, be it food, sights, or entertainment.

Planning Shore Excursions

  • Book in Advance: Popular spots, especially in peak seasons, can get crowded. If there’s a specific tour or activity you’ve set your heart on, consider booking it ahead of time.
  • DIY Tours: With the abundance of information available online, consider exploring some ports on your own. There’s a certain joy in wandering around without a set itinerary.

Stay Connected

  • Wi-Fi and Data: Check with your cruise line for onboard Wi-Fi packages. However, while in port, local cafes or restaurants often offer free Wi-Fi. Alternatively, consider purchasing a local SIM for more extended stays.
  • Safety First: Always inform your cruise ship of your whereabouts, especially if you’re venturing out without a guided tour. Share your plans with someone and stick to well-traveled areas.

east coast food

Culinary Delights: A Taste Tour of East Coast Ports

One of the most incredible aspects of traveling is the ability to immerse yourself in diverse culinary cultures.

As you sail down the East Coast, a medley of flavors and dishes, each deeply rooted in its region’s history and tradition, awaits. Here’s your gastronomic guide to savoring the East Coast, one bite at a time.

  • Seafood Galore: You can’t visit Boston without trying the New England clam chowder. Creamy and packed with flavor, it’s the city’s signature dish. And for the brave-hearted, a plate of fresh oysters is a must!
  • Boston Cream Pie: Indulge your sweet tooth with this delightful dessert. It’s not a pie, but a cake layered with creamy custard and topped with chocolate glaze.
  • The Classic Bagel: A chewy bagel with cream cheese and smoked salmon, perhaps with a dash of red onion and capers? It’s a breakfast staple in the Big Apple.
  • Street Food Sensations: From Halal Guys’ chicken over rice to the iconic pretzel stands, NYC’s streets are a culinary paradise.
  • Low Country Boil: A delicious mix of shrimp, corn, potatoes, and sausages, seasoned and boiled to perfection. It’s a communal dish, best enjoyed with friends and family.
  • Sweet Tea: The South’s preferred beverage. It’s chilled, sugary, and absolutely refreshing.
  • Cuban Sandwich: Pressed to perfection, this sandwich boasts ham, roasted pork, Swiss cheese, pickles, and mustard, all encased in Cuban bread.
  • Key Lime Pie: This tangy and sweet pie, with its graham cracker crust and creamy filling, is a slice of Floridian paradise.
  • Philly Cheesesteak: Thinly sliced steak, a generous helping of melted cheese, all nestled within a long roll. Choose your cheese and decide if you want onions. Pro-tip: locals often order theirs “wit” or “witout” referring to the onions!
  • Salt Water Taffy: Chewy and flavorful, these candies are a beachside treat. Grab an assortment to take back home as souvenirs.

From the hearty flavors of the North to the spicy and tangy tastes of the South, the East Coast serves a culinary journey as diverse and memorable as its ports and landmarks. So, as you dock, be sure to disembark with an appetite. After all, to truly know a place, you must taste it!

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Bonus: East Coast of Canada – A Maritime Dream

While the U.S. East Coast is an undeniable gem, venturing a little further north brings you to Canada’s Maritime provinces—a world of rugged coastlines, Celtic influences, and some of the warmest people you’ll ever meet.

Here’s a glimpse into a few must-visit cruise ports of the East Coast of Canada:

Halifax, Nova Scotia

  • The Heartbeat: The bustling waterfront of Halifax is alive with history, shops, restaurants, and even the odd street performer. Visit the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic or enjoy some fresh seafood at one of the waterfront restaurants.
  • Historic Significance: Don’t miss the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site, a testament to the city’s military past.

St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador

  • Colorful Charm: St. John’s, with its iconic jellybean-colored houses, offers a visual treat. Signal Hill offers a panoramic view of the city and the vast Atlantic.
  • Cultural Immersion: Dive deep into the local culture with a visit to George Street, famed for its pubs and lively music scene.

Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

  • Literary Legacy: Home to the fictional Anne of Green Gables, PEI is a storybook come to life. Visit the Green Gables Heritage Place and stroll through the Haunted Wood and Balsam Hollow trails mentioned in Lucy Maud Montgomery’s beloved novels.
  • Seafood Splendor: Indulge in PEI mussels or a lobster dinner—a must for any visitor.

Saint John, New Brunswick

  • Natural Wonder: The Bay of Fundy, known for having the highest tides on Earth, is a spectacle. The Reversing Falls Rapids, where the Saint John River meets the Bay of Fundy, is another natural marvel to witness.
  • Historic Market: Stroll through Saint John City Market, the oldest continuously operated farmer’s market in Canada, for local crafts and foods.

Québec City, Quebec

  • Old World Charm: The cobblestone streets of Old Québec, a UNESCO World Heritage site, transport you to Europe. With its French charm, historic architecture, and the stunning Château Frontenac, it’s a city out of a fairy tale.
  • Culinary Delight: From poutine to sugar pie, Québec City offers a taste of French-Canadian cuisine that is utterly delightful.

Canada’s East Coast, with its mélange of history, culture, and nature, promises a distinctive and enriching cruise experience.

Whether you’re watching icebergs float by in Newfoundland or dancing to Celtic tunes in Nova Scotia, the Canadian Maritimes promise memories that’ll warm your heart long after the trip.

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Conclusion: A Voyage Through America’s Diverse Seaboard

The East Coast, with its rich tapestry of history, culture, and flavors, promises a cruise experience unlike any other. As we’ve journeyed from the cobblestone streets of Boston, through the pulsating heart of New York, and down to the sun-kissed beaches of Miami, we’ve merely scratched the surface of what this magnificent coastline offers.

Cruising along the East Coast is not just about the destinations—it’s about the stories they tell, the flavors they introduce, and the memories they help create. It’s about reconnecting with history, indulging in local gastronomies, and letting the diverse landscapes take your breath away.

If you’ve been inspired by this guide, then the vast Atlantic is calling out to you. Its ports are awaiting your arrival, ready to share their tales, treats, and treasures. Whether you’re a seasoned cruiser or a first-timer, the East Coast promises an adventure that, much like the rhythm of the waves, will stay with you long after your voyage concludes.

Here’s to the open seas, to discovery, and to the countless horizons yet to be explored. Happy cruising!

FAQ: Cruise Ports East Coast

1. How do I pick the best cruise line for an East Coast voyage?

Consider your budget, desired amenities, ship size preference, and specific destinations you want to visit. Reading reviews and seeking recommendations can also help in making an informed choice.

2. What’s the best season to cruise the East Coast?

Spring (April to June) and Fall (September to November) are considered ideal. The weather is pleasant, and you’ll avoid the summer tourist rush and potential hurricane season in the late summer.

3. Are there smaller ships or yachts for a more intimate experience?

Absolutely! There are several smaller cruise lines and private yacht charters that offer a more personal cruising experience along the East Coast.

4. Can I embark and disembark from different ports?

This depends on the cruise line and specific itinerary. Some cruises offer one-way routes, while others require round-trip journeys. Always check in advance.

5. Is it cheaper to book shore excursions with the cruise line or independently?

Booking independently can sometimes be cheaper, but booking through the cruise line often offers the convenience and assurance that the ship won’t leave without you if the tour runs late.

6. What are the must-try dishes in each of the ports?

From Boston’s clam chowder to Miami’s Cuban sandwich, each port offers unique culinary delights. Refer to our Culinary Delights section for more specifics.

7. Do I need a visa to visit any of the ports?

If you’re cruising within the U.S., and you’re a U.S. citizen, you won’t need a visa. International travelers should always check visa requirements before travel.

8. What’s the best way to stay connected while cruising?

Many cruise lines offer onboard Wi-Fi packages. Alternatively, you can opt for local SIM cards or seek out cafes with free Wi-Fi while in port.

9. How accessible are these ports for travelers with disabilities?

Most major ports on the East Coast are equipped to accommodate travelers with disabilities. However, it’s always advisable to check in advance and notify your cruise line of any specific needs.

10. Is it safe to explore the ports on my own?

Generally, the major cruise ports on the East Coast are safe for tourists. However, always follow general safety precautions—stick to well-traveled areas, avoid venturing out late at night alone, and inform someone of your plans.

Remember, every cruise and traveler is unique. What remains constant is the allure of the East Coast—a region steeped in history, culture, and natural beauty. We hope this FAQ helps as you chart your course for an unforgettable voyage!

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Orlando (Port Canaveral) Cruise Port Guide

While Orlando is best known for the thrills of its spectacular theme parks, there’s much more to this arty, energetic city, which encompasses long, tree-lined avenues, serene lakes, world-class museums, and an inventive culinary scene. Cruises from Port Canaveral offer an easy and convenient chance to spend time here and to explore Florida’s 72-mile-long Space Coast, where you’ll find uncrowded beaches, fragrant citrus groves, golf courses, and extraordinary wildlife. Another highlight is the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, where you can meet astronauts, marvel at moon rockets, and immerse yourself in space exploration.

Cruises from Orlando take you south to the dreamy tropical islands of The Bahamas, the Caribbean, and beyond. Explore the colorful streets of Old San Juan in Puerto Rico, or the gorgeous beaches of the Dominican Republic. Absorb both Dutch and French culture in St. Maarten, try river rafting in mountainous Jamaica, and unwind on Grand Cayman’s blissful Seven Mile Beach. A world of adventure awaits on your exciting Caribbean cruise from Port Canaveral.


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Featured Destinations on Cruises From Port Canaveral

Key west, florida.

Bohemian, fun-loving Key West lies off the tip of South Florida and is known for its lively downtown scene and pristine coral reefs. Discover teeming marine wildlife during a snorkeling excursion, or kayak through lush mangroves, where you’ll see stingrays, crabs, and other tropical fish. Explore the shops and pubs along Duval Street, visit the villa where legendary author Ernest Hemingway lived and wrote, and make time for a slice of tangy Key lime pie.

Nassau, Bahamas

Nassau is surrounded by powdery white sand beaches and turquoise lagoons that invite swimming and snorkeling in the clear, warm water, where there’s abundant marine life. Head for Blue Lagoon Island for a day of blissful relaxation on a palm-fringed beach, or visit Atlantis for the adrenaline rush of the waterslides at Aquaventure. Browse local handicrafts at the colorful Straw Market, and sample delicious conch fritters, the local specialty.

Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic

Puerto Plata lies between long, golden beaches and forested mountains. This colorful, historic port is the gateway to adventure, whether you want to fly over the trees on a zipline, paddleboard through peaceful mangroves in search of manatees, or head for the hills on an off-road driving safari. At the 27 Charcos de Damajagua, slide down natural rock channels into freshwater pools as you follow the course of the 27 waterfalls. 

Why Sail From Port Canaveral With Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity’s cruises on the luxurious Celebrity Equinox take you to the heart of the Caribbean. Enjoy blissful days at sea as you head south, where culture, adventure, and exquisite beaches await. Swim with wild dolphins, snorkel over dazzling reefs, zipline over rainforests, taste local rum, and discover the fascinating history of each island.

On board, enjoy accommodation rivaling the world’s finest hotels and delicious meals from menus crafted by a Michelin-starred chef. Relax at The Lawn Club, inhaling the aroma of fresh, living grass, or treat yourself to a massage or facial in The Spa. Lie back in a comfortable lounge chair beside the shimmering pool, and dig into made-to-order burgers and salads at the Mast Grill in the sunshine. As the day draws to a close, head for the Sunset Bar for cocktails with sweeping views of the ocean. Elevate your experience even further with The Retreat®, staying in a beautiful suite with access to a private lounge and the exclusive Luminae at The Retreat restaurant.

Port Canaveral Cruise Port Facilities & Location

Port Canaveral is located in East Central Florida, some 45 miles from Orlando and just south of the Kennedy Space Center. There are multiple cruise ship docks here, with parking available for each terminal. The terminals themselves have some amenities, such as restrooms, but The Cove, close to the port, is the place to go for bars, waterfront restaurants, shops, and views of the ships coming and going.

Top Sights & Attractions in Port Canaveral & Orlando

Kennedy space center.

Anybody with an interest in space exploration will be wowed by the spectacular Kennedy Space Center. Talk to working astronauts and admire mind-blowing exhibits such as the Space Shuttle Atlantis, displayed in a multi-million dollar exhibition space with immersive interactive activities. See artifacts and objects from former space missions, learn how astronauts are preparing to fly to Mars, and watch beautiful IMAX films detailing the Earth from space.

Orlando’s Theme Parks

In Orlando’s famous theme parks, you can ride some of the world’s most intricate and adrenaline-boosting roller coasters, or make a splash on wild water slides and lazy river rides. Immerse yourself in the glamorous world of Hollywood and the movies, or meet some of your favorite cartoon characters. Spot gorillas, giraffes, and elephants, or spend your time learning about anything from science to world cultures.

Downtown Orlando

Orlando’s downtown area is a delight to explore, with tranquil Lake Eola at its heart. You’ll find an impressive array of classy bars, restaurants, and shops here. Stop by Wall Street Plaza for a day of retail therapy. Learn about 12,000 years of history at the Orange County Regional History Center and Heritage Square Park. Explore lush Thornton Park, home to hip cafés, and CityArts, which houses seven galleries. If you’re overnighting, catch a show or concert at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts.

Learn More About Caribbean Shore Excursions

Top things to do in port canaveral & orlando, relax on cocoa beach.

With such gorgeous beaches stretching away in every direction, a day by the seaside beckons. Head to Cocoa Beach, just 15 minutes’ drive from Port Canaveral. Here, the classic 1960s pier, which is lined with shops and restaurants, extends 800 feet out into the warm Atlantic, with street entertainers providing a backdrop of music and art. The beach itself is a hotspot for surfers, with lifeguards, umbrellas and beach chairs to rent, and volleyball courts.

Spot Manatees on a Kayak Tour

Cocoa Beach is part of the Thousand Islands Conservation Area, which extends along the Banana River to the west of the beach town and consists of shady green mangrove tunnels, saltwater marshes, and lagoons. Wild manatees as well as numerous wading birds can often be spotted in this 338-acre preserve. The best way to see them is on a guided kayak tour. Eagle-eyed naturalists will help you spot these gentle, endangered creatures as you paddle the serene waterways.

Browse Orlando’s Malls

If you love retail, you’ll be in heaven in Orlando, where there are numerous gleaming malls to explore, offering everything from bargain-packed outlet stores to high-end designer fashion. Try The Mall at Millenia for designer labels or The Florida Mall for more mainstream items. Bargain-hunters should head to Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores, the location of dozens of designer outlet shops, as well as a handy location close to the theme parks.

What should I eat in the area?

You’ll find restaurants catering to every taste in Orlando, where there’s an impressive selection of high-end places to eat. Many are managed by celebrity chefs and have an emphasis on fresh, farm-to-table cuisine. Head for the fashionable Mills 50 District for Vietnamese, Korean and other Asian specialties, and West Church Street in Winter Park, the epicenter of the city’s fine dining scene.

Near Port Canaveral, The Cove is the place to go for waterfront restaurants cooled by sea breezes, where you can dig into tasty fish tacos, fresh oysters, snow crab, and mahi-mahi sandwiches. Other local specialties to try include rum cake, salt water taffy, gator jerky (yes, made from alligator meat), and Florida craft beers.

What’s the culture & history of the region?

While it’s easy to dismiss Orlando as having barely existed before the theme parks put it on the map, the city was actually founded in 1875. During the late 19th century, Orlando thrived as the hub of Florida’s citrus industry, an era which abruptly came to a halt in the Great Freeze of 1894. During this time, many citrus farmers went bust and left the area, leaving the citrus industry in the hands of a few big producers. 

After the 1950s, Orlando and the surrounding area grew steadily as a tourist attraction, the appeal of the region boosted in 1955 when NASA opened its headquarters on Cape Canaveral. Theme parks followed, and the rest is history; Orlando now receives some 74 million visitors a year.

Where can I go shopping?

You’ll find an abundance of shopping opportunities in Orlando, specifically on International Drive, at Disney Springs, and in the outlet malls. You’ll find everything from designer labels to factory outlet bargains.

Nearer Port Canaveral, visit Cocoa Village for local art and bright, whimsical tropical clothing and homeware. Ron Jon Surf Shop in Cocoa Beach sells all you need for surfing. The gift shop at the Kennedy Space Center is a fantastic place for quirky gift ideas, from freeze-dried ice cream to model rocket kits. Around 30 minutes from the port, The Avenue Viera is an open-air retail center with some big names, while Merritt Square Mall, just 15 minutes away, is great for big department stores and specialty shopping.

How can I get around?

A rental car gives you the freedom to explore as you please and is a good idea if you’re staying in the area before or after your cruise. All the major companies operate here. In downtown Orlando, the I-Ride Trolley runs back and forth along International Drive, giving access to multiple restaurants, shops, hotels, and other attractions.

In Port Canaveral itself, there’s a shuttle service to Cocoa Beach and Merritt Island. You’ll also find rideshare service here.

What’s the local currency & tipping customs?

The currency in Florida is the U.S. Dollar. Credit cards are widely accepted. Tipping here is customary, as it is all over the United States. Leave 15-20% in restaurants for good service and tip taxi drivers and tour guides, too.

Find Cruises From Port Canaveral

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