America’s cruise ports provide a colourful and eclectic mix of shopping, sight-seeing and sporting activities, as Kathryn Liston discovers.
New York City
The iconic Statue of Liberty provides a warm welcome to the Big Apple for passengers cruising into the Manhattan (a 15-minute walk from Midtown) or Brooklyn Red Hook terminals. From the neon glitz of Times Square and Broadway to the high-end stores of Fifth Avenue, this city really does never sleep. Plus there’s the fascinating 9/11 Memorial & Museum, Greenwich Village, Central Park, Top of the Rock, Empire State Building and MoMA (Museum of Modern Art) to keep everyone amused.
Sell it: Cunard’s 14-night Grand Eastbound crossing out of New York on Queen Mary 2 calls at Boston and Newport Rhode Island. Prices from £2,347pp departing 30 June 2019.
With 22 cruise lines berthing 55 ships every year, it’s no wonder Port Miami is known as the ‘cruise capital of the world’. Across the causeway, the gateway to the Caribbean and Mexico offers dramatic views of downtown Miami, where passengers will find world-class dining, Art Deco architecture, exhilarating water sports, designer shopping and sandy beaches offering trendy bars and flamboyant cocktails.
Sell it: A seven-day Western Caribbean cruise from Miami with Norwegian Cruise Line visits Honduras, Belize and Mexico. Prices start from £669 based on a 31 March 2019 departure.
There’s no better time to visit New England than in the Fall when the leaves are in full technicolour. There are also plenty of highlights in walkable Boston whatever the time of year – historic buildings, the Bunker Hill monument, Freedom Trail, hop-on-hop-off trolley tours, whale-watching and scrumptious seafood chowder.
The Flynn Cruiseport is close to the Boston Fish Pier and shops and it’s about a 20-minute walk to the Institute of Contemporary Art and 40 minutes to the tourist areas and aquarium.
Sell it: P&O’s 30-night North America & Canada round-trip cruise from Southampton visits 11 ports. Prices from £4,035pp based on a 6 September 2019 departure.
The main US port for cruises to Alaska provides a host of laid-back attractions within a short walk of the Bell Street Pier cruise terminal. These include the famous Pike Place Market – where passengers will find fabulous seafood restaurants on the waterfront – Seattle Aquarium and Great Wheel. The Smith Cove cruise terminal, at the north end of the waterfront, is 10 minutes from the city’s shops and its iconic Space Needle tower with revolving glass floor.
Sell it: A seven-night Alaska cruise out of Seattle on Celebrity Cruises’ Solstice visits seven destinations and ends in Vancouver. Prices from £899pp based on a 6 September 2019 departure.
Passengers wanting to enjoy the glitz and glamour of this west-coast city can check out the scene at Long Beach, spot a celebrity or two on Rodeo Drive, stroll down the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and take a fun tour of Hollywood and the Universal and Warner Brothers studios. Disneyland and Knott’s Berry Farm provide exhilarating rides aplenty. The San Pedro World Cruise Center is 25 miles south of downtown LA.
Sell it: A 15-night Hawaiian Islands cruise from Los Angeles with Princess Cruises visits four South Sea islands. Prices from £1,079pp based on a 24 March 2019 departure.
The iconic Golden Gate Bridge makes a fantastic backdrop for a sail-away. The James R Herman and Pier 35 cruise terminals – a favourite for cruises to Hawaii, South America, and Mexico – are within walking distance along the waterfront of Fisherman’s Wharf, Lombard Street, with its tight hairpin turns and steep hills, and the Cable Car Museum.
Sell it: An eight-day cruise to Vancouver on Crystal Cruises’ Symphony visits Monterey, Astoria and Seattle. Prices from £3,933pp based on a 17 June 2019 departure.