Category Archives: Caribbean

Last Minute Caribbean Sailings — Escape the Cold!

If you’re starting to feel the chill of winter (and feeling some holiday stress), escape to warmer weather and blissful relaxation in the Caribbean. Last-minute Caribbean cruise deals are yours to grab right now. Choose a Caribbean itinerary that puts a focus on island time for some beach lounging and adventures to exhilarate you, or book an itinerary with lots of at-sea days so you can enjoy the salty sea air, panoramic water views, and relaxing time on the ship.

Here are some winter itineraries in 2018 to get you started on your search for the perfect last-minute Caribbean cruise.

Island Hopper Itineraries

Family Time on a Caribbean Beach
Family Time on a Caribbean Beach

Experience a wide range of the Caribbean with these itineraries that stop in a new port each day.

7-Night Southern Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Summit – This cruise sails roundtrip out of San Juan, Puerto Rico, meaning you’re already right in the middle of the Caribbean when your cruise begins which gives you more time to visit ports. During your 7-night cruise you’ll visit five different islands in addition to Puerto Rico. These include Bridgetown, Barbados; Castries, St. Lucia; St. Johns, Antigua; Basseterre, St. Kitts and Nevis; and Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas. You’ll also have one day at sea to relax by the pool or do your favorite on board activity before disembarking and catching your flight home.

7-Night Southern Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Summit – This is another itinerary that sails out of San Juan, but differs in that it will end in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. It also has two sea days in the middle of your cruise and a variety of ports of call. You’ll visit St. Johns, Antigua; Basseterre, St. Kitts and Nevis; Charlotte Amalie; St. Thomas; and Nassau, Bahamas.

Ample Sea Days

Couple on balcony sailing onboard Celebrity Cruises

Want some extra time to spend on Celebrity Cruises’ luxurious ships? These itineraries have two or three days spent at sea so you can lounge by the pool, sip wine on your verandah, get a massage in the spa, and feast on delicacies in the onboard restaurants. Plus, there’s the Celebrity Life activities, shopping boutiques, evening shows, wine tasting events, educational lectures…and so much more!

7-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Equinox: You’ll depart from Miami, Florida on January 20 and visit San Juan, Puerto Rico; Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas; and Basseterre, St. Kitts and Nevis. You’ll also have a sea day at the beginning of the cruise and two sea days at the end of your journey, giving you more time to take advantage of all the fun on the ship. There’s even a hot glass show on board!

10-Night Ultimate Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Reflection: This Ultimate Caribbean itinerary that departs March 2 from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, lets you take advantage of traveling over two weekends and has four days at sea! In between the sea days, you’ll travel onboard the classy Celebrity Reflection to St. Johns, Antigua; Bridgetown, Barbados; Castries, St. Lucia; and Philipsburg, St. Maarten. You’ll even have an overnight in St. Maarten, giving you ample opportunity to explore both the Dutch and French (St. Martin) side of this special island.

14-Night Exotic Southern Caribbean on Celebrity Eclipse: If you’re looking for a longer cruise, check out one of the Exotic Southern Caribbean itineraries, like this one that departs February 18 from Miami, Florida, and travels all around the southern half of the Caribbean. The cruise visits Philipsburg, St. Maarten; St. Johns, Antigua; Castries, St. Lucia; Bridgetown, Barbados; Kralendijk, Bonaire; Willemstad, Curacao; and Oranjestad, Aruba. You’ll also have five days at sea.

Plus, here are a couple more last-minute Caribbean itineraries to check out:

7-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Silhouette departing February 11

7-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Summit departing February 17

Ready to book your cruise and sail away to tropical bliss? Visit www.CelebrityCruises.com or speak with your travel agent.

Cruise Port Spotlight: George Town, Grand Cayman

The Cayman Islands are known for their underwater activities, gorgeous beaches, upscale shopping, and ritzy resorts. George Town in Grand Cayman is a popular cruise port of call that has all this and more. Here’s what you need to know before visiting George Town with tips on things to do while there for the day.

Getting to George Town, Grand Cayman

Grand Cayman is the largest of the Cayman Islands and George Town is its capital. Your ship won’t dock right at the terminal; instead it will anchor a short distance from shore and you will be tendered to the port terminal via smaller boats. You will be provided information on the tendering process for George Town while on board your ship before arriving in port. There are three different terminals at George Town’s port and you’ll catch your tender boat back to the ship at the same terminal at which you’re dropped off.

From the terminal, it’s a short walk to the town center. You also may be meeting your shore excursion near the terminal so check the logistics for your excursion before disembarking.

Things to Do in Grand Cayman

A variety of activities and experiences await you in Grand Cayman. Here are some of the ways you can spend your day there.

Stingray City

If stingrays intrigue you then head to one of Grand Cayman’s most famous sites: Stingray City. Stingray City is located in a bay where hundreds of stingrays flock each day to feed. Tour boats dock in the bay and your guide will teach you the proper way to interact with the stingrays, then you’ll get to don some snorkeling equipment and hop in the water to swim and frolic with the stingrays and even feed them.

On the Stingray City and Barrier Reef Snorkel excursion you’ll also visit Coral Reef Gardens for a snorkeling adventure before heading to Stingray City. While snorkeling at the reef you’ll get the chance to see aquatic plants and an array of sea life, including a possible encounter with a moray eel.

Dive into the Depths of Grand Cayman

Scuba certified? Take your undersea adventures one step further with a scuba excursion in Grand Cayman. Participate in a two-tank dive excursion around a couple of Grand Cayman’s best dive spots where you’ll get the chance to descend into the depths up to 80 feet and enjoy visibility of up to 100 feet. You’ll have the chance to see coral, topical fish, eels, sea turtles, stingrays, and even reef sharks.

Turtles, Rum, and Stingrays

When Christopher Columbus first discovered the Cayman Islands, he called them “Las Tortugas” due to the plethora of sea turtles he found in the water around the islands. The name obviously didn’t stick around, but the turtles did! And you can see them on the Turtle, Stingray Land and Sea Adventure shore excursion. This tour visits a turtle farm where you’ll learn more about green sea turtles that call the island home. Then you’ll head to Tortuga Rum Cake Factory for a little baking lesson before finishing your day at Stingray City.

Beach Time on Grand Cayman

Just want to relax? Then head to Grand Cayman’s most famous beach: Seven Mile Beach. This gorgeous beach stretches down the island’s coast and provides a blissful sandy retreat. Rent a beach chair lounger for the day or spend some time at one of the beach bars while gazing at the aqua sea.

Explore George Town

If the cosmopolitan life is more your scene, stick close to port and explore the streets of George Town. The town is situated on the water’s edge and has colorful buildings filled with duty free shopping and restaurants.

Cruise to Grand Cayman

Ready to book your tropical cruise vacation with a port of call in George Town, Grand Cayman? Visit www.CelebrityCruises.com to find your dream Caribbean itinerary or speak with your travel agent.

When researching, don’t forget to look into the Celebrity Edge sailings that stop in George Town. Celebrity Edge is the newest cruise ship from Celebrity Cruises and is debuting at the end of 2018.

Celebrity Edge will sail two different 7-night itineraries from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, one of which includes a port of call in George Town. That itinerary is the Western Caribbean Itinerary and visits Key West, Florida; Costa Maya, Mexico; and Cozumel, Mexico, along with George Town. The other itinerary is for the Eastern Caribbean and sails to San Juan, Puerto Rico; Tortola, British Virgin Islands; and Philipsburg, St. Maarten. You can visit all ports of call and make your vacation a 14-night one by booking back-to-back sailings.

Click here to learn more about the Celebrity Edge and how its innovative, creative spaces will change the way people think about cruising.

 

Cruise to the Caribbean with West Coast Resident Rates

Special Pricing! Get Low Resident Rates for Oceanview Caribbean Cruises

Yes, you read that right. The Caribbean is open for business and you can get a great resident rate if you sail there this winter.

The recent devastation caused by Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria to the Caribbean may have travelers wondering if a cruise to the Caribbean is still possible this winter. What travelers may not be aware of is that the Caribbean is still 90% open to travelers — most islands in the Caribbean were unaffected or had only minimal damage from the hurricanes.

Celebrity Cruises is doing its part to help this region by providing aid to islands needing relief while also continuing to sail to the islands that are able to accommodate visitors since many residents of these islands depend on tourism to make a livelihood.

So where can you sail this winter to find some sunshine and sandy beaches?

Here are some choices:

7-Night Southern Caribbean Cruise: Enjoy Thanksgiving at sea on this cruise that departs San Juan, Puerto Rico on November 18, 2017. You’ll visit the U.S. Virgin Islands, Antigua, St. Lucia, Barbados, and Grenada before returning to San Juan.

7-Night Southern Caribbean Cruise: Relax after the Thanksgiving chaos on this roundtrip cruise that departs November 25, 2017, also from San Juan, Puerto Rico. You’ll stop at ports in Barbados, St. Lucia, Antigua, and St. Kitts and Nevis.

7-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise: Sail away on the Celebrity Silhouette as it journeys roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and visits ports in Puerto Rico, and St. Kitts and Nevis, plus provides two blissful days at sea.

11-Night Dutch Antilles Caribbean Cruise: Experience the Dutch Antilles and beyond on this longer cruise vacation that sails from San Juan and visits the U.S. Virgin Islands, St. Kitts and Nevis, Antigua, Curacao, Bonaire, and an overnight stay in Aruba. This tropical cruise departs December 12, 2017.

7-Night Western Caribbean Cruise: Depart from Miami, Florida on December 16, 2017, and sail around the exciting islands of the Western Caribbean on board the Celebrity Equinox. Caribbean ports of call you’ll visit include Puerto Costa Maya and Cozumel in Mexico; George Town, Grand Cayman; and a stop in Key West, Florida, before returning to Miami.

10-Night Ultimate Caribbean Cruise: On this exotic cruise, you’ll spend two days sailing at sea and enjoying ocean views before visiting ports in Barbados, St. Lucia, St. Kitts and Nevis, and the U.S. Virgin Islands before enjoying another two relaxing days at sea on board the luxurious Celebrity Reflection. This sailing departs December 8, 2017, from Fort Lauderdale.

Special Resident Rates

As for that special deal mentioned at the top of this post, stay in an oceanview stateroom or higher category and take advantage of low resident rate pricing on the above sailings and other Caribbean itineraries. These special resident rates are only available for a limited time and are applicable for all west coast states.

To see all the itineraries available for these low resident rates and the special pricing, click here.

How You Can Help Islands Affected by the Hurricane

While the above mentioned islands and other Caribbean islands are ready to greet cruise passengers, there are parts of the Caribbean that are still recovering from the devastation of Hurricane Irma and Maria. Celebrity Cruises has a hurricane relief program that will match contributions up to one million dollars. To make a contribution and help the Caribbean islands affected by the hurricanes rebuild and recover, click here.

Cruise Port Spotlight: Philipsburg, St. Maarten

Philipsburg, St. Maarten is the cruise gateway to the gorgeous island of St. Maarten / St. Martin. Why the dual spelling? Because this tropical Caribbean island is the smallest island in the world to be inhabited by two nations: French St. Martin and Dutch St. Maarten. When visiting, it’s easy to cross between the two sides and no matter which part of the island you’re exploring, you’ll find lots of friendly locals and gorgeous beaches. Each side of the island definitely has a different feel though, reflective of its home country – with a good dose of Caribbean charm thrown in. Here is a summary of what to expect and things to do when your ship has a port of call in Philipsburg, St. Maarten.

Getting to Philipsburg, St. Maarten

Your ship will dock on the Dutch side of the island in Philipsburg. To get to the central part of Philipsburg, you’ll need to depart the ship and join your shore excursion group or take the small water ferry across the bay. It’s a short ride and you’ll be deposited right by all the shops and restaurants of Philipsburg. Spend time browsing and shopping, then go for a walk on the sandy beach. If you’re feeling more adventurous, opt for a shore excursion while in port to have a more adventurous time.

Things to Do in St. Maarten / St. Martin

Besides walking around Philipsburg, here are some other things you may want to do while visiting the island of St. Maarten / St. Martin during your cruise.

Horseback Riding: A memorable way to explore the coast of St. Maarten is via a horseback riding excursion. There are scenic seaside trails you’ll go down atop your horse before riding right into the Caribbean water.

Sunset Cruise: The water surrounding St. Maarten consists of beautiful clear shades of aquamarine and turquoise. Watch the colors of both the sea and sky change from day to night on a sunset catamaran cruise, complete with Champagne.

Beach Excursion: If you’re all about beach time during your day in Philipsburg, opt for the Buccaneer Beach shore excursion, which effortlessly takes you to one of St. Maarten’s most popular beaches. You can lounge on the white sand, pop into the beach bar for a cool drink, or splash around in the warm water.

ATV Adventure: Feeling the need for some fast-paced action during your time on the island? Spend your day zooming around on an ATV. Drive your ATV up the hillside for scenic views and then back down to the coast for time on the beach.

Celebrity Cruises Active Adventure Ziplining

Ziplining: On the French side of the island up on Pic Paradis, the highest peak on the island, you’ll find Loterie Farm nature preserve, which hosts a thrilling adventure course over the treetop canopy with ziplines, bridges and rope swings.

The Newest Ship Sailing to St. Maarten

When your day is done in St. Maarten / St. Martin you’ll board your ship and enjoy the fun nightlife and luxe lounges that Celebrity Cruises is known for – which may be on Celebrity Cruises’ newest ship, Celebrity Edge, since it will be offering an itinerary that has a port of call in St. Maarten when the ship begins sailing at the end of 2018.

Magic Carpet on Celebrity Edge
Celebrity Edge

This Celebrity Edge itinerary is a 7-night Eastern Caribbean sailing that is scheduled to stop in San Juan, Puerto Rico; Tortola, British Virgin Islands; and Philipsburg, St. Maarten. You can visit even more ports of call and make your vacation a 14-night one by booking back-to-back sailings that includes Celebrity Edge’s other itinerary for the Western Caribbean and also visit Key West, Florida; Costa Maya, Mexico; Cozumel, Mexico; and George Town, Grand Cayman.

To find out more about Celebrity Edge, including its innovative Infinite Veranda staterooms and the industry-first Magic Carpet, a cantilevered terrace that “floats” between the decks serving as both a waiting lounge for tender boats while in port and a unique oceanview restaurant experience in the evenings, click here.

To book your Celebrity Edge or other Celebrity Cruises sailing to Philipsburg, St. Maarten visit www.CelebrityCruises.com or speak with your travel agent.

 

Port of Call Spotlight: Costa Maya, Mexico

Costa Maya is the name given to a tourist region of coastline in the Quintana Roo region of Mexico bordering the Caribbean Sea, located just north of Belize. Costa Maya is a unique cruise port in that the port area and pier was built entirely to cater to visitors. Unlike other cruise ports where you typically leave the port immediately upon arriving, you may find yourself wanting to spend the whole day in port in Costa Maya! Though there’s plenty to do beyond the port as well.

Costa Maya’s port was rebuilt after a hurricane in 2007 making it feel fresh and new. The port was built to reflect a small Mexican village and is full of shops, dining options, and even a large pool with a swim-up bar. There’s also a dolphin interaction experience and an adventure park nearby.

The adventure park, called the Lost Mayan Kingdom, is a great option for families or thrill seekers as it has a number of waterslides, zip lines, river tubing, and a pool and cenote to swim in.

The area around Costa Maya port was originally a fishing village and its small town, Mahahual, is still there and makes for a great way to spend your day. You can take a shore excursion to get there or take a quick taxi ride (just a few minutes) from the pier. In Mahahual you’ll find more shops and a gorgeous beach with lounge chairs you can rent.

Mahahual is also a great place to rent some snorkeling equipment and swim around in the water to view sea life as Costa Maya is adjacent to part of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, the second largest reef in the world. You can also do a snorkeling shore excursion that will take you on a boat to a prime snorkeling spot on the reef.

While a big draw of Costa Maya is the water – from the sea to pools to water slides – that’s not all there is to do for adventure seekers. Those who want to see how ancient civilizations lived will be excited to know there is a shore excursion to Chacchoben Ruins, a lesser known, but still important ancient Mayan site in Mexico.

Celebrity Edge is Celebrity Cruises' newest ship.
Celebrity Edge: the newest ship from Celebrity Cruises

The other thing that makes Costa Maya such an alluring cruise destination is that it is one of the ports of call the Celebrity Edge (Celebrity Cruises newest cruise ship) will be making when it begins sailing at the end of 2018. One of the itineraries Celebrity Edge will offer is a 7-night Western Caribbean sailing that is scheduled to stop in Key West, Florida; Costa Maya, Mexico; Cozumel, Mexico; and George Town, Grand Cayman. You can visit even more ports of call and make your vacation a 14-night one by booking back-to-back sailings that includes Celebrity Edge’s other itinerary for the Eastern Caribbean and also visit San Juan, Puerto Rico; Tortola, British Virgin Islands; and Philipsburg, St. Maarten.

To find out more about Celebrity Edge, including its innovative Infinite Veranda staterooms and the industry-first Magic Carpet, a cantilevered terrace that “floats” between the decks serving as both a waiting lounge for tender boats while in port and a unique oceanview restaurant experience in the evenings, click here.

To book your Celebrity Edge or other Celebrity Cruises sailing to Costa Maya, visit www.CelebrityCruises.com or speak with your travel agent.

Port of Call Spotlight: San Juan, Puerto Rico

The Caribbean is mostly known for aquamarine water, sandy beaches, and a laidback beach vibe. But many islands in the Caribbean have much more than just surf and sand, and Puerto Rico is one of those islands. A cruise stop in San Juan, Puerto Rico lets you see one of the Caribbean’s most vibrant cities, while still being in close proximity to that gorgeous water and beautiful beaches. Read on for a guide of what to do while spending the day in San Juan.

The Old Town Area of San Juan

Colorful Building in Old San Juan

A jaunt around the neighborhood of Old San Juan is always a great way to spend some time while in San Juan. This lovely area of the city features cobblestoned streets framed by colorful buildings in nearly every shade of the rainbow. Thickly branched trees stretch up toward rooftops along sidewalks, and white framed windows and doors add to the lovely appeal of Old San Juan’s aesthetics.

While in Old San Juan, make a stop at one of its top attractions, which include:

La Cassa Blanca: A one-time fortress that also served as the home of Ponce de Leon.

Paseo la Princesa and Raíces Fountain: If you have time, take a lovely stroll along the boulevard of Paseo la Princesa. If short on time, at least check out Raíces Fountain, the famous fountain structure at the end of Paseo la Princesa.

Cathedral of San Juan Bautista: The Cathedral of San Juan Bautista is a good stop in Old San Juan for history or architect buffs as it is the second oldest cathedral in the Americas.

The Fortresses of San Juan

Celebrity Cruises sailing past a fort in San Juan, Puerto Rico

Bordering each end of Old San Juan are towering forts built on impressive bluffs overlooking the sea. Visiting these former military forts are one of the most popular things to do in San Juan. Here are the two forts to visit, and during a day in San Juan, you easily have time to visit both if you wish, or just choose one to visit and make time for the beach, too!

Castillo San Felipe del Morro

This is the original fortress built in San Juan in the 16th century. It stands formidably at the northwest end of the city and was constructed to defend inhabitants against intruders. Today it is a UNESCO World Heritage site and has a striking appearance high above the city, enhanced by the massive and bright green grassy area in front of it.  You can walk around the grounds both in and out of the fortress walls and take in views of the ocean and surrounding landscape from each of the fort’s six levels.

Castillo San Cristóbal Fort

Built in the 1700s, Castillo San Cristóbal faces the northeast and provided a high vantage point right on the ocean for watching for intruding ships. Like Castillo San Felipe del Morro, it was used as an actual military fort as recently as World War II, and today it is open to visitors who can explore its scenic lookout points and dark underground tunnels.

The Beaches Near San Juan

You have to head a little bit out of Old San Juan to find the beaches Puerto Rico is famous for. Luckily, Celebrity Cruises makes it easy for you by offering excursions that take you straight from the ship port to a beach in comfortable transportation. Some of the excursions even stop at other historical sites, too, making for a fun, hassle-free day exploring San Juan.

San Juan City and Beaches by BikeExplore the island of Puerto Rico on a 12-mile bike ride tour that takes you through Old San Juan and past historic sites and then to a beach park for some lovely views of the sea.

Deluxe Beach Break at VIVO Beach Club: Have a blissfully relaxing day on this shore excursion which gets you access to a luxurious beach club, where you can switch between a large pool area or a sandy beach next to the sea with lounge chairs and easy access to drinks and delicious cuisine.

Other Excursions to Do in Puerto Rico

A cruise stop in San Juan, Puerto Rico, gives you the opportunity to partake in many other fun and engaging shore excursions. Here are some other top options:

Marine Park Snorkeling: Explore the underwater world off the shores of San Juan at Escambron Marine Park.

Wild & Scenic Rainforest Nature Walk to River Adventure: Take an exciting hike through Puerto Rico’s famous El Yunque National Rainforest and learn about its flora and fauna plus see the Mameyes River, where you can go for a swim.

Carabali Horseback Ride: Travel through the El Yunque National Rainforest by horseback.

Chef’s Market Discoveries – Casa Bacardi, Flavors of San Juan, and Private Dinner: Tour the famous Bacardi rum factory and sample delectable Puerto Rican and Cuban cuisine.

To browse all of Celebrity Cruises’ San Juan shore excursions, click here.

If You Love this West Coast Region, Cruise to This Caribbean Island

Thinking of journeying from the Pacific coast to the Atlantic for a Caribbean cruise, but not sure what islands to visit? We’re here to help. Here are some Caribbean islands you may love traveling to based off of your favorite west coast regions.

Southern California Lover? Explore Jamaica

Love the fun vibe in southern California where you may find yourself lounging on the beach one day, hiking the next day, and then partying it up in a cosmopolitan city like San Diego or LA that weekend? Then you’ll like visiting Jamaica where you can spend the day visiting Jamaica’s fun and scenic beaches or getting out into nature, such as a hike to Dunn’s River Falls or tubing through the White River Valley. Then there’s Jamaica’s vibrant cities. Depending where your cruise ship docks, you can explore the culture of Ocho Rios, Falmouth, or Montego Bay. San Diego is also known for its craft beer culture and you can take a break from walking city streets to sip on a Red Stripe, Jamaica’s local brewery, while on the island.

Have Fun in Portland? Cruise to Barbados

Speaking of beer, Portland is the often-touted beer capital of the world. If you love beer tasting in Portland, you may love the island of Barbados, which is home to several local breweries including the popular Banks Barbados Breweries. You can also partake in the Beer Tasting & Scenic Drive shore excursion for a carefree day of beer and great Caribbean views. If you also like the fact that Portland’s slogan is “Keep Portland Weird” you’ll enjoy some of Barbados’ quirkier activities like an Atlantis submarine excursion, a pirate cruise, and a cave tour.

Love Jetting Off to Kauai? Check out St. Lucia

If you love jetting off to Hawaii every chance you get and are especially enthralled with the lushly green, mountainous landscape of the Hawaiian island of Kauai, then don’t discount the Caribbean islands, particularly St. Lucia. As soon as your ship pulls up to St. Lucia, you’ll see why it’s so special from a natural wonder perspective. Two tall green peaks jut up from the center of the island. These volcanic peaks are St. Lucia’s famous Pitons and they are incredible to behold. While in port, you can even hike part of those peaks. If you prefer seeing nature from the comfort of a beach lounge chair, head to Reduit Beach and take turns looking behind you to the jungle landscape and in front of you to the aquamarine ripples of the sea.

Love Exploring Seattle and the Eastside? Spend Time in St. Maarten / St. Martin

Visiting Seattle often doesn’t mean just visiting Seattle (though there is plenty to do in the Emerald City). You can also head east across Lake Washington to visit another downtown area: picturesque Bellevue. And while you’re on the Eastside, head into the Cascade Mountains and see roaring waterfalls and snow-tipped peaks. If you love the two atmospheres of the Seattle and Eastside areas, you’ll like the dichotomy of St. Maarten / St. Martin, the smallest island to be inhabited by two nations: French St. Martin and Dutch St. Maarten. It’s easy to cross between the two sides and no matter which part of the island you’re on, you’ll find lots of friendly locals and gorgeous beaches. Each side of the island definitely has a different feel though, reflective of its home country – with a good dose of Caribbean charm thrown in. Head inland and you’ll find nature walks and ziplines over treetop canopies.

Celebrity Cruises Active Adventure Ziplining

Dream of Central Coast California? Try Aruba

Arid climate, rugged coastline, and wineries characterize much of Central California. If you love visiting this region, consider a cruise that visits Aruba. Of all the islands in the Caribbean, Aruba averages one of the lowest rainfall amounts. This makes the island a bit different from other Caribbean islands – you’ll find less of the lush green scenery and instead see striking views of mahogany-rimmed rock and sand dunes — plus plenty of sandy beaches. The north end of the island is home to more secluded beaches which are mesmerizing with cliffy shoreline and big waves, while Palm Beach a bit farther south provides a more traditional beach for a day lying in the sun. Oranjestad (where your ship will pull into port) is a fun town to explore and though you won’t find wineries, you will find rum shops in town and the Palmera Rum Factory just outside of town, which you can tour.

Enjoy the Ease of Catalina Island? Visit the Bahamas

If you like Catalina Island because it’s easy to get to for a quick weekend away from southern California, then your Caribbean cruise island of choice may be the Bahamas. Yes, you’ll still have to fly to Florida, but once you’re there it’s a quick trip to get down to the Bahamas. Celebrity Cruises is launching new 3-night cruises to the Bahamas in 2018, which leave from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and stop in Nassau, Bahamas. While there, you can wander the streets framed by candy-colored buildings and do some shopping, or partake in a number of fun and exciting water sports.

To book your Caribbean cruise with port stops at your dream islands, visit www.CelebrityCruises.com or speak with your travel agent.

2 Waterfalls You Don’t Want to Miss

Do It Here, Then Do It There…Snoqualmie Falls in the Pacific Northwest and Dunn’s River Falls in Jamaica

When hiking, there’s not much more of a thrill to the end of a hike – or along it – than a rushing, sparkling waterfall. From a raging waterfall among pine trees in the Pacific Northwest to a series of tropical waterfalls in the balmy Caribbean, here are two top picks for waterfall hikes whether you’re staying close to home or traveling farther away.

Snoqualmie Falls: Large and Powerful

Snoqualmie Falls on an especially misty day.
Snoqualmie Falls on an especially misty day.

For those on the west coast of the United States, Seattle is an easy flight or drive away – or you may even call it home. While the city of Seattle is full of gorgeous sights and fun things to do, those who are willing to venture a bit out of the city and into the wilderness are in for a visually amazing experience. This is particularly the case if you travel 45 minutes east of the city to Snoqualmie, a small city nestled into the base of the Cascade Mountains.

Snoqualmie’s main claim to fame is Snoqualmie Falls, a massive 269-foot waterfall that plunges down into the Snoqualmie River at a powerful speed. Depending on the time of year you visit, the spray can be so prevalent that you’ll feel it on the viewing platform located high-up in front of the waterfall (it’s generally a thicker mist in the winter due to the plethora of rain the Seattle area gets). Miles upon miles of thick trees spread out from the waterfall and river, and to the left of the falls is rustic Salish Lodge, adding some quaintness into the majestic feel of Snoqualmie Falls and its surroundings.

Those who want a closer look at the base of Snoqualmie Falls can do the one-mile roundtrip hike down the mountainside to another viewing area. The hike goes along a pretty wooded trail and also by the water plant where you get a good look at the tubes and buildings that carry the energy made by the waterfall out to the surrounding area. Snoqualmie Falls isn’t just beautiful, it’s also useful to the Pacific Northwest.

After your hike, read more about the waterfall and how it harnesses energy on the information boards by the main viewing platform or head to the onsite gift shop where you can get a coffee from the café before taking in more of the panoramic nature views.

Dunn’s River Falls: Tropical Waterfall Delight in Jamaica

Dunn's River Falls in Jamaica. Photo courtesy of Yannick Lyn Fatt via Flickr.
Dunn’s River Falls in Jamaica. Photo courtesy of
Yannick Lyn Fatt via Flickr.

If you want to head somewhere more exotic to see waterfalls, the Caribbean is a good place to start. One of the most popular waterfalls in the Caribbean is Dunn’s River Falls, located near Ocho Rios, Jamaica. Compared to Snoqualmie Falls, Dunn’s River Falls is a bit tamer and slower, but still has its own charm.

Dunn’s River Falls cascades down a series of natural platforms for over 600 feet, so it looks like multiple smaller waterfalls all mixed in together. What’s especially fun about visiting Dunn’s River Falls is that you can walk around the falls and splash about in the little pools that form at the base of each waterfall.

An exciting way to visit Ocho Rios is via a Caribbean cruise and once there it’s easy to get to Dunn’s River Falls on a shore excursion. Celebrity Cruises has a variety of fun ways to do that depending on your interests.

There’s the Aerial Explorer and Dunn’s River Falls shore excursion that involves trekking to the falls followed by a chairlift ride that takes you 700 feet up for a bird’s eye view of the tropical forest beneath you.

Those who like some relaxation after hiking will enjoy the Bamboo Beach Club VIP and Dunns River Falls shore excursion which takes you on a guided walk to Dunn’s River Falls then transports you to the blissful Bamboo Beach Club where you can relax on a comfortable lounge chair and drink a cocktail on an exclusive area of the beach, or rent water sports equipment to take out on the water.

For travelers who want to a glimpse into history while visiting a destination, the Brimmer Hall Plantation and Dunn’s River Falls excursion is a good option since it pairs a visit to an 18th century plantation with Dunn’s River Falls plus a buffet lunch at a local hotel.

Instead of taking a bus to the start of the trail, cruise via a luxurious catamaran to Dunn’s River Falls on the Champagne Catamaran Magical Escape and Dunn’s River Falls shore excursion where you’ll hike to the waterfall and then return to the catamaran for more sailing around the sea. While on the catamaran, you’ll have mimosas, coffee, fresh fruit juice, and delicious snacks.

Which waterfall would you most like to see and hike around: Snoqualmie Falls or Dunn’s River Falls?

Why You’ll Want to Sail Away on a Celebrity Equinox Caribbean Cruise

New Cruise Itineraries, Summer Camp, Special Cuisine, and More Activities are Coming to the Caribbean in 2017

The summer is already halfway over. If you’re already bemoaning the fact that you didn’t spend enough time at the beach or in the sunshine, don’t let that happen next year. How will you ensure that? With a cruise to the Caribbean! Celebrity Cruises is bringing its beloved ship, the Celebrity Equinox, back to the Caribbean for 24 blissful summer sailings in 2017, plus some exciting new sailings shortly before and after the summer months. Here’s what you can expect from these special cruise itineraries, including what makes them an especially good fit for families, foodies, and jazz fanatics.

The Itineraries and Ship of These Summer 2017 Sailings

Enjoy a glass of wine on the Celebrity Lawn Club.
Celebrity Lawn Club Onboard the Celebrity Equinox

Wondering where these sailings go in the Caribbean? The fast answer is all over, which means you can pick the itinerary with islands and city ports of call most perfect for your interests. From 7-night Western Caribbean sailings, to 10- and 11-night Southern Caribbean sailings, to itineraries with two overnights in New Orleans, you have a variety of cruises to choose from, each departing from Miami, Florida.

If you’re not familiar with Celebrity Equinox, you also may be curious what makes it so special. For starters, it’s part of Celebrity Cruises’ innovative Solstice Class of cruise ships. These celebrated ships have innovative, high-end features, the most visually appealing of which is the celebrated Lawn Club, a real-grass area covering a large portion of the top deck with room for bocce ball, a picnic, or a leisurely amble.

Celebrity Equinox also has a Hot Glass Show onboard, gourmet specialty restaurants, an award-winning spa, luxurious staterooms, and added bonuses for suite guests who get access to butlers and an exclusive restaurant. Plus, the popular CelebrityLife program is onboard, which offers a range of interactive classes, from wine tasting to photo editing to dancing.

Give Your Kids a Summer Camp at Sea

Summer camp is often about enrichment and education in an entertaining manner that creates lasting memories for kids. The 7-night Celebrity Equinox Caribbean sailings are going to take traditional summer camp and give it a modern luxury twist with the Summer Camp at Sea. It’s Celebrity’s first ever summer camp and families will delight in its activities – kids because they’re having fun, and parents because they’ll get some alone time while knowing their children are learning about new things and being active.

During the Summer Camp at Sea, kids ages three to 17 will get to partake in a variety of activities at no extra charge. Here are a few of the camp highlights:

Explorer Academy: This immersive academy teaches children “Adventure Through Science” by incorporating useful skills like coding and engineering with a fun dose of robotics and good old-fashioned tinkering thrown in.

iTake: This unique program lets kids be their own documentarian by providing them with a GoPro camera to shoot videos and then teaches them how to edit those video into a cool movie in the high-tech Celebrity iLounge.

Lonely Planet for Kids: This hands-on activity will get kids thinking about other cultures and countries as they focus on creating their own country complete with a flag, topography, currency, income sources, and more.

Other activities include mindfulness practice, cooking classes, arts and crafts, XBOX games, kickball, and family scavenger hunts. The Summer Camp at Sea operates on select sailings between June 4, 2017 to August 27, 2017, and as mentioned previously, it’s offered to children and teenagers onboard at no extra charge. Think how much summer camp on land has cost you in the past to keep your kids entertained when school is out; now you can put that money toward a relaxing family summer vacation and still give your children a fun and educational camp experience.

Caribbean-Inspired Culinary Experiences

Is trying new cuisine a big part of the thrill of traveling for you? Then you’ll love the Caribbean Culinary Enhancements onboard the 2017 Summer Equinox sailings. There will be complimentary and excursion types of food-focused activities offered, depending on how involved you want to get in the foodie world.

Complimentary Caribbean culinary activities will be offered onboard and include a modern luxury-inspired Taste of the Caribbean program. Special activities and events you can partake in free of charge as part of this program include Rum & Reggae parties on the Lawn Club, guest chefs and cooking demonstrations, the biggest wine tasting at sea with Celebrity’s expert sommeliers, mixology demonstration, and brunch paired with sparkling wine.

Chef's Market Discoveries Shore Excursions

To add a bit more flair into your culinary repertoire, opt for some of the Caribbean culinary extras. These include shore excursions with the chef while in port during which you’ll visit local markets and restaurants, and then enjoy an exclusive dinner experience with authentic local cuisine when you’re back onboard. These Chef’s Market Discoveries shore excursions take place in Bridgetown, Barbados; Ocho Rios, Jamaica; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Philipsburg, St. Maarten; and several more food-centric ports.

If you want to do something different during your time in port, you can still have a special local food experience onboard thanks to the Taste of Caribbean’s 5-course tasting dinner, special pasta and mozzarella making classes, “Around the World” wine tasting during which you get to sample wines from a variety of different regions, and a mixology class where you get to do some hands-on creation yourself.

There will also be a Taste of Caribbean Premium Drink Package offered on the summer Caribbean Equinox sailings that includes many of the Taste of the Caribbean events plus other special drink and dining experiences.

Enjoy a drink on the Celebrity Cruises Lawn Club.

Jazz Fest During Spring in New Orleans

A prelude to summer special sailing on the Equinox is the itinerary with two overnights in New Orleans mentioned earlier. It departs April 24, 2017 and will give you an early taste of summer fun as it has an exhilarating jazz component to it. This Signature Event sailing pulls into port in New Orleans during the Jazz Fest, which you can attend while there. The 11-night sailing also visits Freeport, Bahamas; Key West, Florida; Cozumel, Mexico; Costa Maya, Mexico; and begins and ends in Miami.

No matter what part of the Caribbean you sail to, Celebrity Equinox does a great job of incorporating the surrounding scenery and culture into the ship experience and has the space to provide special programming that elevates your cruise into a spectacular and cultural Caribbean vacation.

If you’re interested in booking, don’t put it off – for a limited time, you can get four free perks on a Summer 2017 Sailing on Celebrity Equinox. These perks include a premium beverage package (which includes alcoholic drinks), high-speed Internet package, prepaid gratuities, and $300 to spend onboard. Plus, book an oceanview stateroom and get a complimentary upgrade to a veranda stateroom. If traveling with family and friends, the third and fourth guest in a stateroom get a Classic Non-Alcoholic Beverage Package and a 40-minute high-speed Internet package.

To find out more about this special offer or any other information about the Celebrity Equinox Summer Caribbean sailings and events onboard, speak with your travel agent, visit www.CelebrityCruises.com, or call 1-800-Celebrity.

Deal Alert! Bonus Perk Time for Popular Itineraries

Get 2 Perks Instead of 1 for a Limited Time!

You can currently get two free perks when you book an oceanview stateroom or above on 2015 holiday sailings and 2016 sailings to Europe and Alaska. This means an automatic upgrade to the perks they’d typically get for “Go Better” pricing. (Learn more about Go Big, Go Better, Go Best pricing here.)

2 Free Perks for the Holidays

Gift BoxCelebrity Solstice

Already overwhelmed by the holidays? Plan that last minute trip now! You must book by November 1, 2015, for a Caribbean cruise occurring between December 18 through December 31, 2015. You’ll be sipping tropical drinks while enjoying festivities and holiday  decor onboard. In port, see how the Caribbean celebrate the holidays and partake in some exciting and memorable shore excursions. View Caribbean Holiday itineraries here.

2016 Europe and Alaska Sailings

Hubbard Glacier Cruise

It’s not too soon to start booking your 2016 adventure. Not only will you get a better pick of stateroom location (the best spots book up fast), you’ll also get two free perks instead of just one when selecting the standard Go Big pricing. However, you may want to check out this article to see why you should Go Best when at sea with Celebrity Cruises (hint: you’ll get four perks).

Enjoy a day in port in gorgeous Santorini, Greece.

The Europe promotion for two free perks was just extended so make sure you don’t miss out on it again. Two free perks for both Alaska and Europe are only available for a limited time so don’t delay if you’re interested in traveling to either of these destinations — or both!

Need some inspiration? Here are some top itineraries to peruse through and dream about:

Alaska Tracy Arm Fjord Cruise from Seattle: Visit Victoria, Canada, before heading up to Alaska ports of call Ketchikan, Junea, and Skagway. You’ll also sail along Tracy Arm Fjord and the Inside Passage along the way.

Alaska Southern Glacier Cruise: Start in Seward, Alaska, and make your way down to Vancouver, Canada with stops in Hubbard Glacier, Juneau, and Ketchikan along the way plus a sail along Icy Strait Point.

Italy, Turkey and Greece Cruise: Beat the summer rush and experience the Mediterranean springtime or fall with stops in numerous ports of call on this 12-night itinerary onboard the gorgeous Celebrity Reflection.

Mediterranean Cruise on Celebrity Equinox: Pamper yourself this summer on a Mediterranean cruise that stops in Italy, France, Spain, and Greece while sailing on one of Celebrity’s award-winning Solstice-class ship.

To book your cruise or find out more about these promotions, visit www.CelebrityCruises.com/SoCal or talk with your local travel agent.