More ships cruise the Caribbean islands than any other region in the world, and Caribbean cruises treat vacationers to crystal-clear waters, pristine beaches, abundant water sports and duty-free shopping. Caribbean cruises are divided into three regions: Western Caribbean cruises, Southern Caribbean cruises and Eastern Caribbean cruises.
Western Caribbean cruises can take you to see Mayan ruins on Mexico’s Yucatan coast, snorkeling in the barrier reef off the coast of Belize or to Grand Cayman’s Seven Mile Beach. Southern Caribbean cruises can take you to the beautiful beaches of Aruba, the rain forest of Martinique or the beautiful beaches of Barbados. Eastern Caribbean cruises may call on ports in the Bahamas, San Juan, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and Turks and Caicos.
Because so many people cruise the Caribbean islands, you’ll find the most competitive pricing and the best per-diem rates on a Caribbean cruise. This is especially true in the fall — just before the start of the peak Caribbean cruise season — when ships return to the Caribbean from Alaska and Europe.
Hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30, but with the sophisticated radar and weather-tracking systems found on larger Caribbean cruise ships today, there is little cause for concern. Ships can easily change course to avoid storms and will substitute alternate Caribbean cruise ports as necessary.
- The Caribbean is blessed with continuously balmy, pleasant weather, making it a year-round cruising destination.
- Caribbean cruises last 4 to 14 nights.
- Many ships will alternate 7-night eastern and western itineraries, giving passengers the option of purchasing back-to-back cruises and remaining on one ship for a 14-night sailing.
- Caribbean cruises are particularly kid-friendly, making them ideal for family getaways. Most ships have children’s programs, youth counselors and children’s activity centers.