With the promise of year-round sunshine and tropical heat, Florida is a popular starting point for Caribbean cruises. Served by the world’s best cruise operators, visitors can bank on top-notch amenities and facilities, exhilarating itineraries and sparking service. There are plenty of affordable options too.
Florida is home to five cruise ports: Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, Jacksonville and Port Canaveral. While Miami is undoubtedly the largest, the others are all well served by notable operators too, so don’t write them off immediately. A cruise is often the cheapest way to see several islands in one trip and with hundreds of world-class liners cruising out of Florida every year, budget-minded travellers looking for a last-minute getaway won’t be stuck for choice. If you’re considering a tropical getaway, here are some of the best cruises from Florida.
3 night Bahamas Cruise from Miami
Operated by MSC Cruises, this 4-day cruise makes two stops in the Bahamas. The first stop is Nassau, famed for its colourful colonial architecture, fascinating pirate history and world-class water adventures. You’ll spend a day here, before moving on to Ocean Cay in the Bahamas, an MSC-owned marine reserve. Feast your eyes on palm tree cabanas, white sand beaches and rich marine life beneath crystal clear waters. Hitting a destination every day, this is the perfect option for those who prefer to get out and explore. Onboard, there’s a fitness and spa, dozens of dining options and a dedicated running track on deck too. From $129 per person.
3 night Bahamas Disney Magic from Miami
Of all the Caribbean cruises on our list, this Disney cruise promises to be the most magical. Departing from Miami, the 4-day cruise sails to Nassau and back again. With miles of white sandy shoreline, it’s the perfect tonic for those craving escape. Back on board the Disney Magic, there are Broadway-standard live shows, nighttime fireworks and themed pool areas to keep the whole family entertained. For sea-loving adults, a tranquil pool and whirlwind spa with sweeping views offer a much-deserved dose of relaxation. From $900 per person. From $900 per person.
4 Night Caribbean Cruise from Tampa
Calling only at Cozumel in Mexico, this laid-back cruise is perfect for those looking to make the most of Royal Caribbean’s renowned facilities and amenities. Onboard, expect world-class dining, award-winning entertainment and stunning service. From whirlpools and rock climbing to chef’s table dining and outdoor movie nights, this liner is crammed with luxury touches to ensure a sumptuous stay. And, you’ll get to explore the lively tropical reefs, crystal-clear waters and ancient ruins at Chankanaab National Park in Cozumel too. From $310 per person.
5 Night Carribean Cruise from Cape Canaveral
Departing from Orlando, this five-night cruise packs in three full days in three iconic Caribbean destinations. After exploring Nassau, the capital city, guests head to the private island Half Moon Cay, where nine miles of white sand beach and a 1700-acre turquoise lagoon await. The final stop is Grand Turks in Turks & Caicos Islands, where travellers can play with dolphins and go whale watching. Carnival Freedom, operated by Carnival Cruises, offers an adult-only retreat deck too, making it a great option for couples and solo travellers. From $354 per person
6 Night Mexico cruise from Miami
This six-night cruise with MSC Cruises is an excellent option for those looking to make the most of the Seascape’s amenities. It’s a popular option for families, with plenty of facilities and amenities to keep the whole family entertained, from teens to toddlers. The ship features a thrilling new amusement ride – the Robotron – as well as a multi-storey water park and colourful play areas created in partnership with Chicco®. The cruise calls at Cozumel, Costa Maya and Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve in the Bahamas along the way. From $359 per person.
6 Night Western Caribbean Cruise from Tampa
One of the best bargain Mexican cruises we’ve seen, Carnival Cruise’s Western Caribbean offering departs from Tampa and ticks off Cozumel, Belize and Costa Maya before returning to Florida. Discover beaches, tropical rainforests, wetlands and Mayan ruins. Designed with children and families in mind, the Carnival Pride features an outdoor pool and splash park, character parades and a Lip Sync Battle Carnival. From $484 per person.
7 Night Caribbean Cruise from Miami
Operated by MSC, this sunshine cruise travels to Ochos Rios in Jamaica, George Town in the Caymen Islands, Cozumel in Mexico and Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve, a private island offering two miles of powder-white sand, beachside massages and activities day and night. There are plenty of fun diversions for all ages, onshore and at sea too. The cruise features a broadway-sized theatre, casino and an elegant Swarovski staircase leading to an infinity pool. From $389 per night.
7 Night Western Caribbean Cruise from Tampa
With stops in Mexico, Belize and Honduras, and just two days at sea, this is one of the most action-packed itineraries on our list. The Norwegian Jade is a luxurious, albeit more compact liner, at 294 metres long. There’s a variety of fine dining options to choose from, and burger joints and a Mexican cantina too. It’s equipped with a large casino, volleyball and basketball court and library, as well as the longest indoor lap pool on any cruise ship. From $849 ($96 per night)
8 Night Western Caribbean Cruise from Fort Lauderdale
If you like ticking off tropical islands, this voyage serves up some of the best, in style too. Setting off from Fort Lauderdale, the cruise travels to Willemstad in Curaçao, Kralendijk, in the Caribbean Netherlands and Oranjestad in Aruba, returning to Fort Lauderdale with a quick stopover at Half Moon Bay in the Bahamas eight days later. The Rotterdam, operated by Holland America Line, is a beautiful liner, with grand public spaces, sumptuous suites and a large spa with a treatment room. You can dance the night away at B.B. King’s Blues Club or relive your favourite rock classics at Rolling Stone Rock Room too. From $899 per person.
9 Night Southern Caribbean Cruise from Miami
This ten day trip ticks off some of the best-loved islands in the Caribbean. The first stop is Puerto Plato in the Dominican Republic, followed by a day exploring blue waters peppered with sailing boats and lined with colourful cottages in St. Thomas. Then, there’s a day exploring St. Lucia’s coastline by catamaran, a day in the charming capital of Barbados, followed by beach hopping in St. Johns. The final stop is Phillipsburg in St Maarten, before swimming back to the United States via the Bahamas. Back at sea, there are whirlpools, a solarium, nightclubs and fine dining options to be explored aboard the Radiance of the Seas too. From $683.