You can’t go wrong with choosing to spend your vacation on a cruise ship. Whether you are traveling with a partner, your family and friends, or going solo, cruising is almost always a good value. A weeklong cruise will usually stop at ports in several different countries. If you were to visit each of these countries by air, rail, or automobile, you would likely be spending a good deal more money on transportation, lodging, and food.
The Tampa Bay Cruise Port is the largest port in the state, but it is far from the busiest. This alone offers travelers many advantages to cruises leaving from the more bustling Port Everglades, Port Canaveral, or Port of Miami.
Accessing the City and Port
Tampa is one of the largest cities in Florida. It is located on the Gulf coast of the state and is home to many businesses that bring in residents and travelers from all over the world, and part of its appeal is that it is an easy-to-access location. The international airport is located about nine miles from the port and can be driven to via a quick 20-minute drive. A developed interstate system helps travelers quickly access all corners of the city. The convenience that Tampa’s location offers is just one of the many reasons that cruises from Tampa are great options for leisure travelers.
Should you need to park a vehicle at the port during your cruise, the port has a very conveniently located parking lot that charges a rate of $15 per day. There are also several offsite locations where you can park your car for rates starting at about $6 per day. These prices are incredible bargains compared to cruise port parking costs in almost every other major port in America.
The culture of Florida is rich thanks to it being home to so many people of varying ethnic and racial backgrounds, and Tampa is no exception. Getting around the city is a breeze with the free trolley system. Foodies will love the culinary experiences that the many different types of restaurants, cafes, bakeries, and food trucks can provide tourists. Tampa is home to Busch Gardens, the Florida Aquarium, ZooTampa, and the Big Cat Rescue, which was made famous when it was featured in the Netflix series Tiger King. The city is also a great starting point when visiting any of the beautiful beaches on Florida’s west coast.
Boarding Your Ship
As mentioned earlier, Florida is home to several of the largest cruise ports in the nation, but Tampa is not one of them. This means that leaving for your vacation out of this port will provide you and your fellow travelers with embarkation and debarkation experiences that are likely to be quicker and hassle-free. Most of the time, there are no more than two ships docked at the port at any given time, meaning that the crowds that you might face in Miami may be nonexistent in Tampa. Less traffic and decreased waiting times mean that you will be onboard your ship and enjoying the amenities before you know it.
Cruising Your Itinerary
The majority of the cruises leaving the Tampa Bay Cruise Port are four-to-seven day sailing itineraries visiting the Western Caribbean. Common stops on these routes are Cozumel, Grand Cayman, Belize, Costa Maya, the Panama Canal, George Town, Mahogany Bay, and Key West. Sailings that are longer than seven days may visit other locations such as St. Thomas, St. Lucia, and San Juan. The ease of embarking from this port to visit any of these beautiful places may be the ticket to fulfilling your desire for a truly relaxing, recharging vacation.
The city and the port offer so many benefits to travelers, and these are provided without paying a huge premium for them. Several major cruise lines operate vessels out of this port with dozens of available itineraries to choose from. If you’ve never considered a cruise leaving from Tampa, there is no time like the present.