Cruises from Galveston to Belize
Galveston's harbor offers a starting point of a variety of Caribbean cruises. (Photo: Images )
Known as one of the premiere beach destinations along the western coast of the Gulf of Mexico, Galveston, Texas, sees its share of tourists each year. Now, more people are flocking to this island to board one of the cruise lines departing from Galveston. Four major cruise liners will have established year-round cruises departing from this Texas town by 2012, according to the eCruises Galveston travel website.
Carnival: Western Caribbean
Carnival Cruise Lines (carnival.com) operates a number of cruises departing from Galveston. Traveling to destinations in the Western or Eastern Caribbean, many of Carnival's cruises range between five and seven days. On a Western Caribbean cruise, explore popular Mexican destinations including Progreso, Yucatan, Grand Cayman, and Cozumel. In Progreso, heavily influenced by Mayan culture, features pristine beaches known for white sand and green waters. Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands features more beautiful beaches and recreation opportunities including snorkeling, scuba diving, sport fishing and catamaran sailing. Upon arriving in Cozumel, go scuba diving at the world-renowned Palancar Reef, suggests Carnival.
Carnival: Eastern Caribbean
Carnival's Eastern Caribbean cruises visit destinations such as Key West, Florida, and Freeport and Nassau in the Bahamas. In Key West, explore the southernmost destination in the United States. Known for its nightlife, Key West is an island with a colorful history, colorful residents and even colorful architecture. Popular with cruises, the Bahamas feature something for everyone, including pristine beaches, a beautiful harbor and an active nightlife. In Freeport, go shopping for duty-free items including porcelain or fine jewelry. Nassau features beautiful, ice cream-colored architecture throughout the capital city.
Princess Cruises (princess.com) will begin sailing from Galveston in the winter of 2012 with a seven-day tour of the Western Caribbean. Along the way, vacationers will have opportunities to disembark in Costa Maya, Mexico; Roatan, Honduras; Belize City, Belize; and Cozumel, Mexico. Costa Maya offers guests the opportunity to explore ancient Mayan ruins. Roatan, the largest of Honduras' Bay Islands, features excellent scuba diving opportunities with offshore reefs as well as hiking through the jungle peaks covering the island. Continue the eco-adventure in Belize City, with a hike through the rain forest or go snorkeling along the world's second-largest coral reef. Cozumel was known as the land of the Gods, according to Mayan legend.
For a family-friendly adventure departing from Galveston, book a Caribbean cruise aboard Disney Cruises (disneycruise.disney.go.com). The Disney Magic ship sails from Galveston to the Western Caribbean, offering seven-day cruises. Guests have the opportunity to explore Grand Cayman, Costa Maya and Cozumel. Learn about Mayan culture, snorkel or scuba dive along coral reefs or explore the region's beautiful beaches. The Disney Magic ship offers plenty of on-board recreation, including a kids-only pool, a family pool and an adults-only pool. On-board kids clubs offer activities for the youngest cruisers, while the adults have plenty of after hours fun in the on-board nightclubs.
Royal Caribbean (royalcaribbean.com) offers six- or seven-night cruises to the Western Caribbean from Galveston. A six-night cruise takes guests to destinations including Costa Maya, Belize City and Cozumel. Seven-night cruises head to George Town, Grand Cayman and Falmouth, Jamaica. In addition to the beautiful beaches of Grand Cayman Island, guests have the opportunity to explore the 19th century architecture of Falmouth. While in Jamaica, Royal Caribbean suggests taking a ride down the river aboard a traditional, bamboo raft. Royal Caribbean also offers guests the opportunity to ring in the New Year aboard a Western Caribbean holiday cruise. Stopping in destinations including Roatan, Belize City and Cozumel, guests have the opportunity to find out how the New Year is celebrated in the Caribbean.