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Best cruises to Florida

Sail from chilly northern climates to balmy bliss in the Sunshine State.

Craving a sunny escape? Sail to Florida from northeastern states like New Jersey and Massachusetts to find solace in swaying palms and warm sand beaches.

Go with a budget-friendly line like Carnival or Royal Caribbean if you’re cruising on the cheap, or splurge for Celebrity Cruises if you’re looking for a lux experience. We love American Cruise Line’s itineraries along the southeastern coast, because it’s the only cruise line that docks in smaller Floridian cities like St. Augustine, Green Cove Springs and Palatka.

Ports with cruises to Florida

Most US cruise ports along the East Coast and Gulf Coast offer cruises to Florida. Of course, you can also find cruises to cities in Florida that also start in Florida — the state has six cruise ports. So if you’re looking for a cruise that docks in Florida, here’s where you can start:

  • Baltimore, MD
  • Bayonne, NJ (Cape Liberty)
  • Boston, MA
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL
  • Galveston, TX
  • Jacksonville, FL
  • Miami, FL
  • Mobile, AL
  • Montreal, Canada
  • New Orleans, LA
  • New York City, NY
  • Norfolk, VA
  • Orlando, FL
  • Tampa, FL

Traveling during COVID-19
The CDC continues to advise caution when traveling within or outside the US, though it no longer requires self-quarantine or a COVID-19 test for fully vaccinated travelers as of April 2021. It recommends that you delay travel if you are not fully vaccinated to protect yourself and your family from getting or spreading the virus.

When traveling, follow safety measures that include wearing a mask in public, social distancing and washing your hands. If you are diagnosed with, have symptoms of or are waiting for COVID-19 test results — or are otherwise at risk of illness — do not attend gatherings or travel for 14 days.

Our favorite cruises to Florida

Cruise lineCruiseItineraryPriceBook
Norwegian Cruise LineBahamas & Florida from Miami — 5 days
  • Miami, Florida
  • Key West, Florida
  • Nassau, Bahamas
  • Grand Bahama Island, Bahamas
  • Great Stirrup Cay, Bahamas
  • Miami, Florida
From $853 per personBook now
Royal CaribbeanSoutheast Coast & Bahamas Cruise — 8 nights
  • Baltimore, Maryland
  • Charleston, South Carolina
  • Orlando, Florida
  • Grand Bahama Island, Bahamas
  • Nassau, Bahamas
  • Baltimore, Maryland
From $449 per personBook now
Royal CaribbeanBahamas & Perfect Day Cruise — 7 nights
  • Cape Liberty, New Jersey
  • Orlando, Florida
  • Nassau, Bahamas
  • Perfect Day at CocoCay, Bahamas
  • Cape Liberty, New Jersey
From $578 per personBook now
American Cruise LineGreat Rivers of Florida Cruise — 8 days
  • Jacksonville, Florida
  • Palatka, Florida
  • Ocala National Forest
  • Green Cove Springs, Florida
  • St. Augustine, Florida
  • Amelia Island, Florida
  • Jacksonville, Florida
From $3,795 per person
Holland America LineTropical Caribbean — 7 days
  • Fort Lauderdale, Florida
  • Half Moon Cay, Bahamas
  • Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos
  • Amber Cove, Dominican Republic
  • Key West, Florida
  • Fort Lauderdale, Florida
From $900 per personBook now
Celebrity CruisesBoston to Miami — 12 nights
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Royal Naval Dockyard, Bermuda
  • Castries, St. Lucia
  • St. George’s, Grenada
  • Kralendijk, Bonaire
  • Orenjestad, Aruba
  • Willemstad, Curaco
  • Miami, Florida
From $2,224 per personBook now

Best cruise lines sailing to Florida

Best for solo cruisers: Norwegian

Voted the “Best Cruise Line for Solo Travelers” by Porthole Cruise Magazine thanks to its well-designed studio staterooms and exclusive solo traveler benefits. Taking a bit of “me” time has never been better. Grab a happy hour drink in the solo-travelers lounge and mingle with like-minded cruisers before getting a good night’s sleep in your spacious studio.
  • Room service included
  • No free alcohol
  • Food included
  • No price matching
  • Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Diners, Discover Card
Price ($-$$$):
Book now

Best for cruises to Key West: Celebrity

After exploring the clear waters and sandy bays of the Bahamas and the Caribbean, your Celebrity Cruise ship drops you in Key West where the sunbathing, snorkeling and picture-perfect sunsets take your breath away. Or choose one of the cruises that arrive from South America for even more unforgettable memories.
  • Room service included
  • No free alcohol
  • Food included
  • No price matching
  • Visa, Mastercard, American Express
Price ($-$$$):
Book now

Best for world voyages: Holland America

Holland America caters to a wide range of world-cruises to explore Africa, South America or Europe — with a stop-over in Florida. Cruises last upwards of two months, so make sure your sea legs are up for the challenge.
  • Room service included
  • No free alcohol
  • Food included
  • No price matching
  • Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover Card
Price ($-$$$):
Book now

Best for families: Carnival

If you’re making a beeline for Walt Disney World when you hit the Floridian coastline, Carnival Cruises helps you to start the family fun early. Onboard these huge cruise liners you’ll find Imax cinemas, top deck waterparks, video arcade games and a mini-golf course.
  • No free room service
  • No free alcohol
  • Food included
  • No price matching
  • Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Diners, Paypal, Carnival EasyPay, Gift Card, Discover Card, Debit, Western Union, Cheque
Price ($-$$$):
Book now

Best for Florida and Bahamas cruises: Royal Caribbean

Royal Caribbean will take you to Key West and the Bahamas before docking at its private island in CocoCay. It's usually possible to book a cruise to Florida for less than $100 a night with Royal Caribbean.
  • Room service included
  • No free alcohol
  • Food included
  • Price matches
  • Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Diners, Discover Card
Price ($-$$$):
Book now
  • We don’t receive compensation if you book with American Cruise Line. However, we’re including it because its cruises to Florida are some of the best.

Best for niche ports: American Cruise Line

American Cruise Line offers small ship cruising with a focus on the history and culture of every destination. You can book cruises along the southeastern coast that end in Florida, or its Great Rivers of Florida cruise, which gives you an inside look at the ecosystems and wildlife within the state.

Read American Cruise Line review

How we picked the best cruises

Everyone’s traveling style and cruise preferences are different, so we’ve focused our list on useful niches for cruises sailing to Florida. To make it onto this shortlist, we made sure each of these cruise lines offered varied itineraries, dining options catering to all dietary needs and enough entertainment for everybody onboard.

We’ve experienced some of these cruises first hand, but we also took into account the opinions of bloggers, travel websites and unbiased reviews to give you a well-rounded perspective. That way you can decide which company is best for you.

When is the best time to go to Florida?

It may be a surprise, but every inch of The Sunshine State isn’t soaked in sun all year, and when is best to cruise depends on where you want to visit.

  • North Florida. The northern regions of Florida tend to get much colder than the rest of the peninsula, which makes summer the best time to visit, especially if you’re planning on hitting up some of the lesser-known beaches.
  • South Florida. If you’re heading to the Florida Keys or Miami, aim to visit between December and April. The guaranteed blue skies and low humidity levels bring hordes of visitors, so be prepared for higher prices and crowded waterways. If you don’t mind the heat and an unexpected rainstorm or two, June to September offer lower prices and considerably fewer people.
  • Central Florida. Home to Walt Disney World, Universal Studios and the bustling city of Orlando, Central Florida sees its fair share of visitors all year round. Weather-wise, January to April offers up the most comfortable conditions and also fewer crowds.

What’s the cheapest month to cruise to Florida?

Generally, the cheapest time to cruise to Florida is at the end of summer and during fall when the chances of hurricanes are higher. The first few weeks in December also tend to see a number of cruise sales and deals.

What are the must-do cruise excursions in Florida?

Whether you’re in the mood for exploring the wild Everglades, relaxing on an island in the Florida Keys or being part of the hustle and bustle in Miami, we’re sure there’s a shore excursion to suit you on this sunny peninsula.

  • The Florida Keys. If sunbathing isn’t your thing, rent a bike and explore Florida’s southern peninsula on two wheels. Designated bike trails through the Keys are flat and suitable for any fitness level.
  • Miami. Delve into the history, culture and cuisine of this coastal town with a guided tour around its hidden streets.
  • Walt Disney World. Immerse yourself in the magical land of Disney where your favorite film characters come to life and over fifty child-friendly rides await you.
  • Everglades National Park. Kayak through mangrove forests and freshwater marshes and get close to one of Florida’s friendly manatees on a trail through the Everglades.

Bottom line

With so many ports to choose from and so many cruise lines sailing to Florida, the possibilities really are endless when you choose to set sail to The Alligator State. Once you’ve found the cruise for you, consult our cruise deals to see if you can reap any savings on your fare.

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