Choose from the sun-dappled white sand beaches and turquoise waters of the Caribbean, to the ancient monuments, medieval castles, and vineyards of Europe. Or bask in the rugged, breathtakingly beautiful natural vistas of Alaska and beyond. Taking a cruise is one of the best ways to see the world, often taking in multiple destinations in a single voyage.
Here are our top picks for cruise destinations. To learn more, or discover a world of other great cruise venues and destinations, speak to your Laking & Rhoades Travel Service Barrie specialist.
Nassau has a rich history that includes swashbuckling pirates, as well as being burned to the ground on three different occasions by the Spanish. Today, visitors from all over the world seeking both relaxation and adventure have put Nassau at the top of their list for Caribbean destinations.
Home to the luxurious Bahamian resort, Atlantis in Paradise Island, you can admire more than 50,000 fascinating species of marine life in the largest open-air aquarium in the world. Or sign up for the Aquaventure program at the Caribbean’s premier water park, and indulge your senses with a Discover Atlantis Tour.
This island paradise in the Caribbean is actually a U.S. possession with a culture uniquely its own. At the top of your must-see list is El Yunque Rain Forest, featuring more than 240 species of trees, hundreds of miniature orchids, and what was once believed to be the Fountain of Youth.
When you’re done trekking through the rainforest, explore Old San Juan, the second-oldest European settlement in the New World. Then take a ride to San Felipe El Morro, and explore the most dramatic of all the city’s old military fortifications. Don’t miss some of San Juan’s other dazzling attractions, including the Casa Blanca Museum & Gardens, the Ballaja Barracks, Quincentennial Square, San Jose Church, San Juan Cathedral, and Cristo Chapel.
The town of Ocho Rios, on Jamaica’s north coast, is flanked by spectacular white-sand beaches and lush landscapes. It gets its name from the Spanish word “chorreras,” meaning “waterfalls”, for good reason. Ocho Rios boasts a number of waterfalls, including the famous Dunn’s River Falls featured in the first James Bond movie, Dr. No. Here, the clear, cool mountain waters plunge 600 feet to smooth limestone beds below, then stream under the roadway before joining the turquoise Caribbean Sea.
Jamaica is also famous for its cool reggae music vibes, as well as its hot and spicy jerk cuisine. Be sure to take in the verdant, rolling Blue Mountain nestled high atop this beautiful island, producing some of the most distinctive coffee in the world. Whether you’re seeking adventure, or just looking to unwind and relax on its sunny beaches, Jamaica offers a travel experience with memories you’ll cherish long after you’ve returned home.
Mexican Caribbean’s largest island is less than 20 km off the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula. Largely undeveloped, it’s a haven for sun seekers and underwater explorers alike.
If snorkeling is on your travel agenda, the waters around Cozumel’s sheltered coral reefs offer some the best scuba and snorkeling in the world. Crystal clear water and reefs teeming with marine life make for an underwater playground ideally suited to beginners, as well as advanced divers.
At Arrecifes de Cozumel National Park, you can dive and explore a section of the Mesoamerican Reef and Museo Subacuático de Arte’s submerged sculptures. Or visit Chankanaab, an eco-park surrounding a lagoon, where underwater caverns are home to dolphins, manatees and sea turtles.
This island country in the southern Caribbean Sea sits about 65 km north of the Venezuelan coast, and is the largest of the six islands that comprise the Netherlands Antilles. The Dutch influence is alive and well in the capital city of Willemstad, with pastel-painted colonial architecture, the floating Queen Emma Bridge, and the 17th-century Mikvé Israel-Emanuel Synagogue with sand floors.
Getting off the beaten path, explore the surreal Hato Caves and mystical underground lake with two large caverns etched with ancient Indian petroglyphs. Curaçao is an explorer’s paradise, with beaches tucked into coves, expansive coral reefs rich with marine life and the famous Blue Bay, where divers can explore a vertical coral wall not far from shore.