Choosing where to sail is one of the first decisions made when planning a cruise vacation. Most cruise travelers select a 7-day Caribbean cruise for their first experience at sea. When you search the Internet or read cruise brochures, the most common itineraries offered are Eastern Caribbean and Western Caribbean. Royal Caribbean International adds new Caribbean shore excursions in the numerous Caribbean ports, bringing the total number of offerings to more than 600.
Eastern Caribbean cruise is a pictorial tour of to St. Thomas, St. Croix, Saba, St. Barths, St. Martin, Virgin Gorda, and Jost Van Dyke. St. Croix is fascinating and diverse with lots to offer if you have a day in port. St. Maarten in the eastern Caribbean is a popular port of call for cruise ships for a good reason. It has two distinct separate cultures, beautiful beaches, and great shopping.
A day on Grand Cayman Island is not complete without a visit to Stingray City. This shore excursion is one of the most popular in the Caribbean and its reputation is well deserved. Barbados is both a wonderful port of call for Caribbean cruise passengers and for vacationers of all ages and interests. Barbados even has its own distinctive look, with rolling hills of sugar cane and two distinctively different coastlines.
San Juan is one of the busiest ports and most exciting cities in the Caribbean. If you enjoy hiking and are looking for a shore excursion that is a little more peaceful, consider a day trip to the tropical rain forest at El Junque National Forest.
Dominica is one of the least-developed islands in the Caribbean, and is famous for lush vegetation, mountains, rivers, and waterfalls. Shore excursions are focused on the "natural" side of the island, and some are adventurous. You can take a cruise to the Southern Caribbean visiting San Juan, St. Thomas, Guadeloupe, Grenada, and Aruba.
It's twilight on the islands. The setting sun reflects off the ocean in a blaze of orange and scarlet. The sound of steel drums echoes through cobblestone streets. Walking along a sparkling beach, palm fonds whisper in the silken breeze. You've spent your day strolling on velvety sands, wandering through an emerald rainforest and snorkeling in crystal-clear waters. You have experienced the intoxicating spell of the Caribbean.