Most of the cruises that include Jacksonville, Florida include it as their initial departure port. By booking a cruise from Jacksonville, those who live in or near Jacksonville can easily go on a great vacation without the hassle of additional travel plans. For those who do not live in the Jacksonville area, Jacksonville International Airport is only around a 15-minute drive from the cruise port. Prices for many of the cruises that leave from Jacksonville are typically quite reasonable, making cruises from Jacksonville a great option, even for those that don't live nearby.
There are just a small number of cruise lines that currently offer cruises that either start in Jacksonville or that include it as a port of call in their itineraries. Among them are Carnival Cruise Lines and American Cruise Lines. Carnival's cruises are typically available all year long, making it very convenient to plan a fun vacation. American Cruise Lines offers a nice selection of river cruises from Jacksonville.
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The following cruise destinations can be visited on a cruise from Jacksonville, FL. Select a destination to view the upcoming cruises that are available:
The following cruise lines feature cruises leaving from Jacksonville, FL. Select a cruise line to view upcoming cruises that they're offering from Jacksonville, FL:
Becoming more and more popular, a river cruise is an immerse and destination-focused vacation experience, on a small and luxurious vessel.
River cruises sail through the inland waterways of some of the world's most interesting vacation destinations (i.e. Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and North America), and provide their guests with a greater opportunity to spend time visiting more unique ports of call than a traditional cruise typically would.
Because the destination is the star of a river cruise, (typically guided) shore excursions are included at no additional charge by many River cruise lines. There are usually many interesting lectures given during the cruise, by experts on the history and culture of the region being visited.
Among the famous rivers that one may take a river cruise on are the Rhine, Mississippi, Seine, Danube, Mekong, Nile, Yangtze, Amazon and Douro.
These cruise lines offer a truly unique vacation experience, with a wide range of possible amenities and itineraries. Some are expedition cruise lines, others have sailing yachts or are coastal ships.
On these types of cruise lines, there's usually a focus on a specific destination or theme. Itineraries are usually very destination intensive, aided by the fact that they're able to reach many ports of call that larger ships can't.
Expedition cruise lines are a great fit for adventure-seeking travelers, featuring exciting destinations like the Galapagos Islands, Antarctica, and the Norwegian coast. During the cruise, there will usually be plenty of interesting lectures given by experts on the destination being visited. Often, shore excursions are included in the cost of the cruise. In fact, some of these cruise lines have all-inclusive pricing. There's a definite focus on the ship's surrounding scenery, as well as opportunities to view wildlife in their natural habitat. Small, but comfortable, ships are commonplace here, with anywhere from basic to very luxurious public spaces, cuisine, and accommodations (depending on the cruise line and ship).
Sailing Yachts, sail-assisted motor ships, offer a really unique vacation experience. Accommodations and cuisine on these intimate vessels can be anywhere from good to fantastic, depending on the cruise line. Destinations offered by these cruise lines may include the Caribbean, Europe, Panama Canal, Tahiti, and Costa Rica.
Value is a key feature of these popular cruise lines, as they offer lots of activities, entertainment and dining options, along with a variety of stateroom types. Some of the cruise lines in this category have ships with unique innovations like water slides, rock-climbing walls, ice-skating rinks, surfing simulators, bowling alleys, and boardwalks.
Their ships are usually anywhere from mid-sized to very large "mega" ships, accommodating thousands of guests. These ships give the feel of being in a large resort.
Mainstream cruise lines are a great option for just about everyone (including multi-generation families, and first-time cruisers), and typically have great youth programs.
During the cruise, entertainment may include Broadway productions, Vegas-style shows, comedians, and music. Some of these lines have select formal nights during the cruise. Specialty restaurants are becoming more and more common (some which have a cover charge for this type enhanced dining experience). Buffets are usually available throughout the day, besides room service, and the main dining room(s).
These are just a few of the more popular tourist attractions in Jacksonville, along with a brief description:
♦ Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens
Art lovers rejoice! Before and/or after a cruise from Jacksonville, you may decide to visit the Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens. This wonderful venue is the largest fine arts museum in Northeast Florida. You can view over 5,500 items at this museum (including historic works made by European masters and American impressionists), as well as explore over 2 1/2 acres of beautiful gardens.
♦ Huguenot Memorial Park
There are many things to do at this popular 450-acre oceanfront park! For example, you can visit the avian observatory tower (where you can typically do some excellent bird-watching), go canoeing, take a walk, or rent a bicycle to enjoy riding through the nature trails. You can also visit its beach area and partake in a variety of watersports (windsurfing and jet-skiing, anyone?). Huguenot Memorial Park is definitely a great place to visit before and/or after your cruise from Jacksonville.
♦ Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens
Home to the only walking safari in Northeast Florida, the Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens is an excellent choice if you're looking for something to do before and/or after a cruise from Jacksonville, FL. There are over 1,500 rare exotic animals and 1,000 varieties of plants to see at this venue, as well as a variety of interactive and educational opportunities to take part in. It is a wonderful activity for families, couples, and groups of friends.
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