Fort Myers Tourism



Cruising the

High Seas

If you’re tired of the theme parks and not into the natural, wildlife and fishing scene; any one of the numerous cruise lines that set sail from Florida’s ports can provide you with a vacation like no other. Regardless of where you plan to be in Florida, you will be close to a city that has a major port and is perfectly situated to provide you with an unforgettable cruise vacation. On the Southeastern tip of Florida, you will find Port Everglades located in the beautiful city of Fort Lauderdale. Here you can book cruises aboard Celebrity Cruises as well as Holland, Princess, Radisson Seven Seas and Royal Caribbean. Slightly south of Fort Lauderdale lies the Port of Miami-Dade, where Carnival, Celebrity and Norwegian Cruise lines depart. Tampa Port Authority is located in West Central Florida and is home to Holland America as well as Royal Caribbean International. Disney Cruise line departs from Port Canaveral at Cape Canaveral, Florida.

Florida cruises are a particularly good choice if you want to insure that you don’t go over your vacation budget. Theme parks and other types of vacation attractions can be particularly dangerous to your budget because it is so easy to overspend. With a cruise, however; almost everything is all-inclusive; meaning that you pay one fee up front and don’t have to worry about your budget for the rest of the trip. Meals, entertainment and accommodations are all covered in the cruise price. Just about the only other fees you would incur would be any alcoholic drinks, purchases you make during any of the exciting ports of call and gratuities.

While almost everything you would need or want is covered in the all-inclusive cruise price, if you do want to take advantage of an opportunity to get a massage, have a drink or do a little shopping or gambling; you really don’t even need to bring any cash on board with you. The larger and more popular cruise lines feature a program that is referred to as a ‘cashless society.’ This system allows you to charge whatever purchases you make while on board and then pay for them at the end of the cruise. Some lines present you with a card that can be used at any of the vendors and shops on board while other cruise lines allow you to simply charge purchases as you would at any standard hotel and then the charges are billed to your credit card. As for gratuities and tipping, that can be handled at the end of your cruise as well. Generally, gratuities are placed in small envelopes that are left inside your cabin exactly for that purpose.

Regardless of what you are interested in, you will be sure to find it aboard one of Florida’s luxury cruise ships. Everything from live entertainment to the finest of day spas and salons can be found on board. All the modern conveniences are available, including telephone service, laundry facilities and even a full staffed and trained medical team, should you need it.

Florida based cruise lines sail to a number of exotic and interesting destinations including Jamaica, Cayman Islands, Mexico, Bahamas, Panama, Costa Rica and Belize. Cruise ships make regularly scheduled shore excursions where you can take several hours to indulge yourself in snorkeling, taking a tour, shopping, deep sea fishing, dolphin encounters, biking, hiking, swimming and sunbathing.

Booking ahead of time can sometimes help you to save a portion off the cost of your cruise. This is because like most travel related industries cruise prices respond to supply and demand. In addition, traveling at times other than peak cruise season can also help to defray the cost of your cruise vacation.

One of the more important things to know about cruising that many people are not aware of is that your luggage will not come with you immediately to your cabin. In this regard, taking a cruise vacation is similar to flying to any other destination. Your bags will be delivered to your cabin by a porter, and with literally thousands of passengers on board the ship, this can take awhile. Keep a carry-on size bag with you that is packed with anything essential that you might need for the next few hours. This would include any medications, a change of clothing, swimsuit, etc. If you are traveling with small children, also make sure that you keep the diaper bag with you and anything else that your child might need or want while you wait for your other luggage to be delivered.

If you like to dress up for dinner, taking a Florida cruise will provide you with many opportunities to indulge yourself in this luxurious habit. Most cruise lines usually feature two dinner seatings, so you will know when you are supposed to ‘report’ at all times. While there are numerous opportunities to dress up, if you prefer a more casual dining atmosphere or would even rather eat in your room, there are plenty of prospects for that as well. Just about every kind of delicious and exotic food you can imagine are served on board most cruise ships; from elegant dressy dinners to casual pizza buffets.

One of the best features about a cruise is that you get to design how you want to spend your vacation. Cruises offer extremely flexible entertainment and activity schedules and there really is something for everyone; regardless of sex or age. Whether you want to spend the day lounging by the pool, take in the number of entertaining shows offered on board, shop or disembark for ports of call; it’s up to you. Keep in mind that if you do plan to take part in one of the ‘formal’ dinners you will need to pack, at a minimum, a suit/tie for men and a cocktail dress for women. While most cruise lines offer a number of casual dining experiences, there is a limit. Shorts, flip-flops and bathing suits are pretty much restricted from the dining rooms of all major cruise lines.


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