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Caribbean Cruise Destinations: Which Ports Are Where?

Everyone should visit the Caribbean at least once in a lifetime. Just hearing the word “Caribbean” evokes the sights and sounds of the islands – white sandy beaches, blue waters, cheerful music, and glasses clinking. But, with more than 700 islands, inlets and cays, the Caribbean offers far more than just beautiful beaches. Our Caribbean cruise destinations are filled with excursions, adventures, and cultural experiences that celebrate this sunny part of the world.

Caribbean cruise routes cover three major regions: Western, Eastern, and Southern. Carnival cruises sail year-round to the entire region. If you’re not sure what islands are in the Western, Eastern or Southern Caribbean, our “Caribbean cruise maps” will tell you about all the fun to be had in every destination. Here we go!

carnival horizon sailing to the caribbean cruise destination of san juan, puerto rico

Western Caribbean

Overall Atmosphere

Adventure seekers – head to the Western Caribbean right away! This little slice of heaven is ready to thrill you with water sports, hiking, and underwater adventures. Don’t worry, there’s always a place to enjoy that relaxing cocktail with a view, too.

Ports in the Western Caribbean

You have plenty of choices when you set out for the postcard paradise that is the Western Caribbean. Carnival cruise ports of call include Grand Cayman, Mahogany Bay, Nassau, Costa Maya, Belize, Key West, Yucatán (Progreso), Cozumel, Montego Bay, Falmouth, Limón, and Colón (Panama Canal).

side view of the tulum ruins near the caribbean cruise destination of cozumel, mexico


Swim with sharks and rays or visit majestic Mayan ruins in Belize. Swim in hidden freshwater cenotes, or snorkel and tool around in adventure jeeps in Cozumel. See the world from above as you parasail in Key West. All these adventures and many more await you in the Western Caribbean. This region is brimming with wildlife, water sports, and ancient cultural gems. It’s simply up to you what you want to enjoy!

Departure Points

Sail away to the Western Caribbean starting from Galveston, TX, Mobile, AL, New Orleans, LA, and Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Tampa, and Miami, FL.

Eastern Caribbean

Overall Atmosphere

Laid-back cruisers looking to truly “get away from it all” head to the Eastern Caribbean for some serious R&R. This region is known for world-class shopping, food, and nightlife. It’s also great for low-stress sightseeing, scuba diving and of course, just chilling out.

Ports in the Eastern Caribbean

There is lots of local flavor in the Eastern Caribbean. Enjoy the culture of the region while gazing at the perfectly scattered islands and sparkling tropical waters. Your Eastern Caribbean ports of call include some of the area’s greatest gems. Stops available in Grand Turk, Princess Cays, Ocho Rios, Antigua, Tortola, Freeport, Half Moon Cay, Martinique, La Romana, Dominica, and San Juan, plus saints aplenty: St. Thomas, St. Croix, St. Lucia, and St. Maarten.

lifeguard on a wooden platform watching over the blue waters of a bahamas beach


Some of the highlights of this region include hanging out with marine life, enjoying the sand and surf, touring rum distilleries, and exploring the charm of historic old towns. So, what will it be – Horseback riding in Ocho Rios? Exploring Old San Juan and El Yunque Rainforest in Puerto Rico? Or maybe discovering hidden caves and sea pools in Tortola? With a huge variety of excursions for every age and sense of adventure, it’s easy to plan your perfect vacation.

Departure Points

There are lots of jumping off points for cruises to this paradise. Cruises starting from: Norfolk, VA, Baltimore, MD, Charleston, SC, New Orleans, LA, Mobile, AL, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Jacksonville, and Orlando, FL, plus the great city of New York.

Southern Caribbean

Overall Atmosphere

The Southern Caribbean is a bit more off the beaten path, and those who go are treated to some of the most diverse and exotic scenery in the entire region. Marvel at mighty volcanoes, explore lush tropical rainforests and caves, or test your bravery while rappelling down a cliff.

If you’re looking to escape the busy beaches and tourist attractions, come to the Southern Caribbean! You will be so glad you did. We’ve yet to meet a cruiser who isn’t charmed by the region’s caves, deserts, and beautiful landscapes. Not to mention great food and plenty of fun in the sun!

Ports in the Southern Caribbean

For a remote island getaway within reach of home, look no further than one of Carnival’s cruises to the Southern Caribbean. The ports of this region include Aruba, Curaçao Bonaire, St. Kitts, St. Thomas, St. Maarten, Grand Turk, Princess Cays, La Romana, Grenada, Dominica, Scarborough, Martinique, Cartagena, and Santo Domingo.

aerial view of the colorful houses in the caribbean cruise destination of curacao


To start getting excited now for your cruise to the Southern Caribbean, check out some of our top shore excursions in this region. Sail and snorkel in luxury on our Grand Turk catamaran excursion. Relax and take in the sights of Cartagena from aboard a party bus. Cruise the river in La Romana. Or, choose your own adventure in one of our many Southern Caribbean ports!

Departure Points

The fun starts in the departure cities of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Barbados, Charleston, SC, Baltimore, MD or from Orlando, Fort Lauderdale and Miami, in Florida.

With a lineup like this, it’s hard to imagine a better way to spend your precious vacation days than on one of our cruises. One look at the picturesque cities, beaches, and marine life that are home to the region and we know you’ll be ready to get on board.

Note: Onboard activities, shore excursions, and dining options may vary by ship and destination.