A Western Caribbean cruise will allow you to do all kinds of activities and also discover the Mayan archaeological sites, whether you visit ports in Mexico or Belize. The choice of ports departing from the United States is impressive for this destination, which explains its popularity with Americans. This destination is a very good choice for those who are on their first cruise.

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When to go on a cruise to the Western Caribbean?

It’s a great place for a getaway at any time of the year, with temperatures that vary only very little. Temperatures range between 20 and 30 degrees and humidity around 70% throughout the year.

The high season is of course the period that extends from the Christmas holidays to the school break in the spring.

Departure ports for western Caribbean cruises

Very popular, the ports of Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Port Canaveral, are the most frequent home ports for itineraries in the Western Caribbean. Megaships usually depart from these ports. On the other hand, there are also other ports that offer an interesting alternative to discover other corners of the United States before or after departure:


The city of Galveston is about an hour and a half from Huston, Texas’ largest city. Galveston is a charming Victorian seaside resort located on a barrier island just two miles off the Texas coast in the Gulf of Mexico.


Located in the interior of Tampa Bay on Florida’s west coast, its waterfront is bustling. Plus, Tampa is close to some of Florida’s best beaches.

New Orleans

New Orleans is a bustling city, especially during the MardiGras (in February or March depending on the year). In the French Quarter, Bourbon Street is the scene of street festivities, with Royal Street antique dealers and art galleries selling collectibles and souvenirs. Jazz and seafood lovers will also be delighted by the various bars and restaurants.

Ports of call

The Western Caribbean is made up of islands to the south west of the American continent, such as Grand Cayman, Cozumel, the Jamaica and destinations on the Yucatan Peninsula of the Mexican Riviera, such as Costa Maya, Playa del Carmen and Progreso. Various itineraries of four, five and seven nights are ideal for a first cruise experiences. Key West, on the southern tip of Florida, is another increasingly popular stop - especially for cruises that originate from East coast ports, Miami and Fort Lauderdale.

If you want to think outside the box and opt for more exotic destinations where ecotourism and activities like diving are in the spotlight, look for itineraries that include ports such as Belize City in Belize and the island of Roatan in Honduras.

Companies and itineraries

Virtually all North American and European cruise lines offer trips to the Western Caribbean, in season, and several year-round. Among them, Carnival and Royal Caribbean are two dominant players throughout the year.

Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL), Princess , Celebrity and Holland America offer different itineraries between October and April on which the public is mainly American. European cruise lines are also present in season (P&O, Costa, MSC Cruises and others) and attract European and international travellers.

For people interested in the Mayans and Nature lovers, Norwegian (NCL) itineraries from New Orleans are particularly interesting. Celebrity also offers a variety of always interesting routes. For small getaways of a few days, Carnival and Royal Caribbean are the champions.

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More information on the Western Caribbean

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