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It's the world's most popular cruise destination, and it's pretty obvious why. Not only is the Caribbean very handy to the vast cruise market of North America, it is home to more than 7,000 islands and boasts a tropical climate which allows year-round holidays. With a huge number of ports and everything from deserted beaches to sophisticated cities, cruise passengers are spoilt for choice when deciding on their Caribbean cruise destination. Read more
Take your pick: Caribbean cruise lines and departures
There are also myriad options when it comes to cruises in the Caribbean. Almost all of the major lines operate there: Royal Caribbean, Princess, Carnival, P&O UK, Holland America, NCL, the P&O cruise line and many smaller and luxury lines such as Celebrity and Seabourn.
Ships headed to the Caribbean primarily depart from any one of Florida's ports - cruises from Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa or Port Canaveral are common. It's also possible to find a Caribbean cruise departing Galveston, New York or Baltimore, as well as the occasional trip through the Panama Canal from Los Angeles.
Explore the east
Caribbean itineraries are often divided into eastern, western or southern categories. The Eastern Caribbean cruises are very popular as quick getaways, allowing passengers to sail away into the amazing tropical islands of the Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos for as little as three nights when time is of the essence. Longer itineraries in the east reach as far as Puerto Rico, the British Virgin Islands and Anguilla with its unrivalled white beaches.
A Western Caribbean cruise takes in one or all of Jamaica, the Cayman Islands and Mexico. Here you will find not only the tropical and idyllic destinations so typical of the region but some exciting eco-oriented attractions and adventures and a lot of history. Well-known Mexican beach resorts Cozumel and Cancun feature on a lot of itineraries, and from there it is easy to go ziplining or explore Mayan ruins. The Caymans are the birthplace of recreational diving in the Caribbean, and a great spot to get in the water with tanks or snorkel to see what's down there.
A cruise to the Southern Caribbean is quite the journey from Florida or Texas, and some southern itineraries depart from San Juan to cut right to the chase. The string of beautiful tropical isles between Anguilla and Grenada feature heavily on Southern Caribbean itineraries, and they are a little more remote and untouched than their northerly counterparts. The Netherland Antilles are also popular southern destinations; Oranjestad and Willemstad are charming towns and act as the gateway for cruise visitors to visit the miles of beach and experience the rugged landscapes inland.
Find out what the fuss is about with one of our Caribbean cruise deals. You could be sunning yourself in the Bahamas in no time!