By Mike Coleman
Bermuda, the secluded island paradise in the Atlantic Ocean, has been one of the world’s most popular cruise destinations since the 1960’s and for good reason: Ideal weather, world-class golf, tennis, shopping, colonial history, picturesque pastel-colored towns and villages, pink sand beaches and a welcomed proximity to North America.
Â Through November, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) will send a number of ships to one or more of Bermuda’s three ports – Hamilton, St. George’s and King’s Wharf. In fact, most visits are five-to seven-day Bermuda-only itineraries from Baltimore, Boston, New York (Brooklyn), New Jersey (Cape Liberty), Philadelphia and Norfolk.
“Its history, natural beauty and ideal location gives Bermuda a character unlike any other cruise destination in the Americas,” said Terry L. Dale, president and CEO of CLIA, the chief marketing organization for a host of premier cruise lines and travel agencies. “And, for millions of passengers sailing from the East Coast, it’s a destination that requires no air travel because Bermuda cruises are offered from so many homeports.”
Through October, Celebrity Journey makes seven-day cruises from Cape Liberty featuring one-night stays in St. George’s and two-night stays in Hamilton. Two transatlantic itineraries, and two Caribbean itineraries in April, October and November on Celebrity ships also include Bermuda port calls.
On November 9, Crystal Serenity departs on a 10-day repositioning cruise from Lisbon to Miami – complete with a Big Band theme, featuring the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra. The itinerary includes a port call in the Azores’ Ponta Delgada, as well as an overnight in Hamilton, Bermuda.
Offering one of the most comprehensive Bermuda cruise schedules, Norwegian Cruise Line features three ships – Norwegian Crown, Norwegian Dawn and Norwegian Majesty – that sail nine separate itineraries to Bermuda on five, six and seven-day sailings. Departures through November are available from New York, Philadelphia, Boston and Charleston, with port calls in Hamilton, King’s Wharf and St. George.
Princess Cruises’ summer season includes six Eastern Caribbean itineraries that include port calls to Bermuda’s west end. The nine-day itineraries, aboard Crown Princess between May 12 and September 6, sail roundtrip from Brooklyn and also visit San Juan, St. Thomas and Grand Turk.
Bermuda is featured on seven Royal Caribbean ships offering transatlantic and Caribbean repositioning cruises, Bermuda-only itineraries and Bermuda and Caribbean voyages, through October. Bermuda-only cruises ranging from five- to seven-nights depart from Baltimore, Cape Liberty, Norfolk and Philadelphia. Look for eight-night sailings from Philadelphia and Norfolk to also feature Caribbean port calls.
CLIA is North America’s largest cruise industry organization, representing the interests of 21 member lines and 16,500 travel agencies.