Norfolk, Virginia is a beautiful city, located at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. Norfolk is home to the world's largest Naval Station, as well as beautiful gardens, great restaurants, wonderful museums and historic memorials. Norfolk is the cultural, financial and entertainment center of the Virginia waterfront. When available, a cruise from Norfolk is a great option, especially for those that live within driving distance of the port.
Cruises are offered that either depart from or visit Norfolk. Several cruise lines offer cruises that include Norfolk as a destination port, but all of the current cruises departing from Norfolk are offered by Carnival Cruise Line. By far, the majority of such cruises are Caribbean cruises, but a few other destinations are available every now and then.
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The following cruise destinations can be visited on a cruise that includes Norfolk, VA. Select a destination to view the upcoming cruises that are available:
The following cruise lines offer cruises sailing to Norfolk, VA. Select a cruise line to view the upcoming cruises that visit Norfolk, VA:
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.
These cruise lines fit (quality and, usually, price-wise) somewhere in between Premium and Luxury cruise lines.
A country club casual atmosphere can be expected on these lines, as can be elegant accommodations and gourmet cuisine. These cruise lines are a great option for adults looking for a upscale, yet laid back, vacation.
Unique itineraries are often available on these cruise lines, as their small-to-mid-sized ships can visit ports of call that large ones can't get to.
The pricing on Azamara Club Cruises includes select beverages and pre-paid gratuities, while the pricing of Viking Ocean Cruises includes shore excursions and select beverages.
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).
When the finest cruise vacation is your top priority, this is the place to start.
On a luxury cruise line, guests experience highly personalized service, a more intimate (and usually formal) onboard experience, gourmet cuisine, well-appointed accommodations, and fantastic amenities. Many of these brands have smaller ships, allowing them to reach ports of call that the larger ships can't, which results in unique itineraries.
All of these brands feature a version of all-inclusive pricing, and some of them have ships with all-suite accommodations. Although these cruise lines are usually more expensive than the rest, they also provide their guests with so much more, resulting in a fantastic value when considering all that's included.
These are just a few of the more popular tourist attractions in Norfolk, along with a brief description:
♦ Norfolk Botanical Garden
These beautiful gardens (and the educational programs that take place at them) are one of the most popular tourist attractions in Norfolk (with around 250,000 visitors annually). It is a great place to check out before or after a cruise from Norfolk, and happens to be a Virginia Historic Landmark. Tours are available in a variety of fashions: walking tours, tram tours and boat tours. There is a nominal per person fee to get into this venue (although members get in for free), and the hours of operation vary by season.
♦ Chrysler Museum of Art
Home to a wonderful collection of art, general admission is free to this museum. There are over 40,000 items on display (spanning nearly 5,000 years of history), including a world-renowned glass collection and Art Nouveau furniture.
♦ U.S.S. Wisconsin
History enthusiasts may want to visit this venue before or after their cruise from Norfolk. Admission to the Battleship Wisconsin is free to all visitors, as is admission to the Hampton Roads Naval Museum (who co-operates the vessel). While touring this historic vessel you'll have the opportunity to learn all about the ship and its three tours of duty in the United States Navy, and view various artifacts from the men who once served on it. Some interior sections of the ship are closed off to visitors, due to the ship's status within the Navy's Inactive Fleet.
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