Central America Cruises 2019 - 2020
Experience the lush rainforests, sandy beaches, and tropical climate of Central America!
A world of contrasts awaits you on your next cruise to Central America. Boasting lush tropical rainforests, dazzling turquoise beaches, and year-round warm weather, it’s easy to see what makes Central America such a popular destination. Immerse yourself in the bustling cities, where cultures mix at the local markets, or visit ancient Mayan ruins and archaeological sites to learn about indigenous cultures, then and now. Whether you’re looking for an adrenaline-pumping adventure, awe-inspiring nature, or to simply relax and get pampered as you lounge in the sun, Central America has it all.
Uncover the jewels of Costa Rica, Guatemala, and more on an unforgettable Central America cruise. Most major cruise lines dock at Central American ports as they sail to the Caribbean, Mexico, and the Panama Canal, departing from Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Galveston, and more.
San Juan is the capital of Puerto Rico and sits on the Atlantic coast of the tropical Caribbean island. The city is renowned as a historical wonderland and mosaic of culture and the arts, with its colonial-era architecture, quaint old town and vivacious street art. Stroll the timeworn 15ft-thick walls guarding the harbor, relax at Isla Verde’s picturesque beach or dine at one of the superb restaurants in Santurce.Highlights of San Juan
- Wonder at the historic El Morro and La Fortaleza, two 16th century fortresses offering impressive ocean vistas
- Watch as the locals play dominos in the Plaza de Armas, in San Juan’s old town
- Visit the bars, nightclubs and casinos in Isla Verde, the epicenter of San Juan’s vibrant nightlife
Cozumel, a tropical island located off the eastern coast of Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula, is one of the world’s top cruise destinations. With its glittering turquoise waters, bright white beaches and exotic marine life, the idyllic island is popular for snorkeling, diving and swimming with dolphins.
Cozumel has a well-established tourist industry. Cruise passengers will have plenty of opportunities for water sports, nature exploration and nightlife. Year-round temperatures in the upper 70s make it the perfect place for a sunny beach vacation.Highlights of Conzumel
- Visit Stingray Beach to experience a close encounter with stingrays and exotic sea creatures
- Spot tropical birds, crocodiles and sea turtles at the Faro Celerain Eco Park
- Discover the island’s fascinating Mayan history at the San Gervasio Ruins
The Costa Maya is a beautiful, 100-mile-long coastline on the Yucutan Peninsula characterized by white sand beaches and beautiful blue water. Right on the port you can find shopping areas, restaurants and bars, and jet skis for rent, and the nearby city of Mahahual holds a popular, easy to access beach. For those looking for a more private piece of paradise, the more secluded beaches are just a short taxi ride away.
One must-see for any visitor of Costa Maya is the Chacchoben Ruins, the remainders of an ancient Mayan city more than a thousand years old. For the best experience, take a guided tour to learn about what life was like for the Mayans – back then and now.
- Enjoy an easy day being pampered at the beach at Mahahual
- Dive or snorkel among the offshore coral reefs
- Tour the step pyramids of the Chacchoben Mayan Ruins
Puntarenas is home to Costa Rica’s most important port, and the city has a rich history of shipping, fishing and international trade. Puntarenas has a lot to offer: delicious fresh seafood, inexpensive waterfront cafes, and a beautiful beachside promenade are just some of the things visitors can look forward to. It also lies in close proximity to some of Costa Rica's most beautiful nature. Take a shore excursion to a beautiful waterfall, or bathe in a hot spring on an active volcano. Or hike through a cloud forest for a surreal journey surrounded by mist and dripping vegetation.Highlights of Puntarenas
- Enjoy year-round tropical temperatures in the upper 80s
- Savor a sweet treat while relaxing on the beach at one of the many ice cream and smoothie shacks
- Get up close and personal with the local wildlife at Reserva Biologica Carara
Located at the southernmost point of Baja California, Cabo San Lucas is one of Mexico’s most popular cruise destinations. Its beautiful beaches make it a hot spot for surfing, sunbathing and fishing, and at night it turns into a popular party town. The beautiful weather and luxury lifestyle are particularly attractive for the rich and famous, with many celebrities owning holiday homes here. If you’re lucky, you might even spot a movie star.
Cabo’s most famous landmark is El Arco, a natural rock foundation shaped like an arch in the middle of a vast, sandy beach. Be sure to time your visit right – El Arco is only accessible during low tide.Highlights of Cabo San Lucas
- Find tasty Mexican food to match any budget – from cheap taquerias to luxury fine dining
- Spot celebrities in the city’s famous beaches
- Explore the city’s music and party scene at one of its many clubs
The island of Roatan sits above the second-largest coral reef in the world, making it an attractive destination for snorkelers, scuba divers and other ocean enthusiasts eager to get a glimpse of one of nature’s most colorful wonders. Book an excursion to visit the beautiful reef by boat, or simply swim from shore – some of the coral is located just 300 feet from the beach. The white sand beaches and crystal clear water make Roatan perfect for swimming and tanning alike.Highlights of Roatan
- Swim, snorkel or scuba dive at one of the largest and most beautiful coral reefs in the world
- Get friendly with some (tame) monkeys at the Gumbalimba Park
- Ride one of the longest zip lines in Central America and get an unmatched view of the rainforest below
Puerto Quetzal is an industrial harbor city and home to Guatemala’s largest and most important shipping port. Directly on the harbor, you will find a small tourist area with restaurants, bars and shops. For those looking for a relaxing day, you don’t have to travel far to find a hammock on the beach. More adventurous travelers may want to travel to the nearby city of Antigua, a charming, Spanish city, and nature lovers won’t want to miss the sparkling waters of Lake Atitlan.Highlights of Puerto Quetzal
- Browse affordable souvenirs at the local market
- Explore a saltwater forest at the Monterrico Mangrove Natural Reserve
- Stroll through downtown Antigua and take in its colonial architecture and magnificent Spanish churches
Puerto Vallarta is one of Mexico’s hottest cruise destinations, and for good reason: located near some of the most beautiful beaches in Mexico, Puerto Vallarta features resorts, dining and leisure to suit every budget and taste. It is one of the most diverse cities in Mexico, and each neighborhood has a distinctive personality that makes it worth exploring. Old Vallarta offers a rustic, romantic atmosphere, perfect for recovering and relaxing after a long day of travel. Marina Vallarta is a shopping paradise and caters to a more luxurious taste, while the downtown area is home to the hottest clubs and bars that first come to life after sundown.Highlights of Puerto Vallarta:
- Browse the quirky shops and take in the quaint, cobblestone streets of Old Vallarta
- Explore the beachside promenade by foot, by bicycle, or by Segway
- Take a break from the city and visit the wildlife at Los Arcos National Marine Park
What better way to see the Panama Canal than by cruising through it? Sail in the wake of history as your ship navigates the locks which have been in service more than 100 years and are still functioning flawlessly today. Plagued by difficulties during construction, the final lock system was so effective, it has remained virtually unchanged throughout the years.
The entire Panama Canal crossing takes 8 to 10 hours.Highlights of the Panama Canal
- Get up early to secure your spot on the bow of the ship, where you'll have the best view of the locks as you pass through
- Capture a scenic photo of the Bridge of the Americas, the world's first non-swinging bridge to span the canal
- Learn about the exciting history of the canal, from ill-fated construction attempts in the 19th century to its most recent expansion in 2016
The capital of Dominica, Roseau is a bustling city known for its lively downtown and its industrial port. The city is a hodgepodge of influences: traditional and modern, French and British, colonial and indigenous. Roseau has an attractive, walkable city center and several cathedrals that are worth visiting.
Dominica’s biggest tourist attraction are its natural landscapes. Watch for sea life from the comfort of a boat on a dolphin or whale watching tour, or get within arm’s reach while snorkeling or scuba diving. Rainforest tours offer the possibility to discover hidden waterfalls or experience breathtaking views from the mountainous inland.Highlights of Roseau
- Go for a scenic gondola ride to see the city from above
- Swim or snorkel at Champagne Beach and enjoy the gentle bubbling water
- Take an excursion into the rainforest to see Dominica's exotic wildlife
Puerto Limon is a bustling, industrial port city that serves as a gateway for many cruise ship passengers to Costa Rica’s natural wonders. The Veragua Rainforest is an easy day trip outside of the city, and visitors can explore it by foot on its hiking trails, by boat on a jungle canoe tour, or from above on a zipline canopy tour.
Passengers preferring to stay close to port may prefer the waterfront park Parque Vargas, or learn about local history in the Museo Etnohistoric de Limon.Highlights of Puerto Limon
- Swim, surf or sunbathe at the nearby beach of Playa Bonita
- Take a scenic driving tour of a fruit plantation and learn about the country’s biggest export
- Make an excursion into the rainforest and spot sloth, monkeys and snakes
Located on the Pacific side of the Panama Canal, Colon is home to a gleaming, modern, tourist-friendly port. Passengers will find plenty of opportunities to shop and eat near the cruise terminals, or to take a shore excursion to see some more scenic parts of Panama.
Before the completion of the Panama Canal, the overland rail route played an important role in transporting goods between the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. Passengers today can still take a historic train ride on the Isthmian Railway from Colon to Panama City.Highlights of Colon
- Take a scenic train ride from Colon to Panama City
- Take an excursion into the rainforest to see sloths, harpy eagles, and other exotic wildlife
- Visit the nearby town of Portobelo and explore the Spanish forts colonial houses
Ensenada is a beautiful seaside city and popular resort town located just 80 miles south of San Diego. Its lively nightlife, outdoor activities and watersports, and diverse marine life draw tourists from north of the border year-round, and Ensenada today is home to a sizeable expat community.
Let the stunning scenery sweep you off your feet. Sit in the sand and take in the vast sandy beaches, or dive into the sparkling blue waters on a scuba dive or snorkeling tour and explore the area's coral reefs. You may even spot a sea turtle.Highlights of Ensenada
- Try not to get sprayed as you visit the world's second-largest marine geyser, La Bufadora, which shoots water up to 90 feet in the air
- Take a boat ride to Guadalupe Island, a wildlife sanctuary that attracts seals, sharks, and other marine life, to have a close encounter with nature
- Tour the downtown food stalls and get a taste of the artisanal cheese, wine, and beer produced in the region
Belize City is the largest city in Belize, located on the eastern coast of Central America. First occupied by the Mayans around 1500 BC, the city boasts a rich history with more than 900 ancient sites to explore. The city also has one of the richest ecosystems in the world and contains an incredible 10 per cent of the world’s known species, making it a popular cruise destination.Highlights of Belize
- Discover spectacular marine life while snorkeling at the pristine Ambergris Caye
- Explore the cave of Actun Tunichil Muknal, an ancient Mayan sacred site
- Visit Xunantunich, the second largest Mayan structure in Belize, which is home to six plazas and 26 temples
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