Central America is made up of seven countries - Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama. Cruises to Central America often include ports of call in Mexico and South America as well.
You'll find a wealth of experiences to enjoy with a cruise to Central America, and a variety of different cruise lines offering exciting itineraries showcasing the best of this diverse region. Here at Cruise118, we have a team of expert Cruise Concierge who can help you with every aspect of planning and booking your exotic cruise holiday. Please don't hesitate to give us a call with your cruise questions.
One of the northernmost countries in Central America, Guatemala is served by the port of Puerto Quetzal. It’s always a hive of activity and for cruising visitors, a gateway to everything from World Heritage Site towns to spectacular highland lakes. A visit to the historic and picturesque mountain city of Antigua is always a popular choice, while there are no fewer than 37 volcanoes in Guatemala – so if taking in soaring natural wonders is typically on your cruise agenda, you won’t have to travel too far to find it. An excursion to a coffee plantation, meanwhile, can give you a refreshing insight into the country’s biggest export. When it comes to exploring Central America’s Mayan history, Belize is a great country to start your adventure. Indeed, a visit to its largest city and port, Belize City, will give you plenty of opportunity to do just that with a trip to the Altun Ha Ruins. It’s even possible to combine this experience with a river boat trip, which makes a great way to experience some of the country’s bountiful flora.
One of Honduras’ largest islands, Roatan is also the country’s key cruise ship stop-off and once you catch sight of its stunning beaches, you’ll soon understand why. Simply relaxing on one of the island’s many sandy expanses is always a popular activity with visiting cruisers, and the picturesque coral reefs which lie close to them are equally a favourite with snorkel-happy visitors. One of the island’s most famous attractions is its family-run iguana farm, where hundreds of the fantastic creatures roam freely – while the popular and picturesque Gumbalimba Park offers a little of everything, from gardens and wildlife to caves and zip-lines.
Panama will forever be associated with the famous canal which cuts across it and indeed, a number of voyages will present you with the opportunity to experience the Panama Canal for yourself. At the Pacific Ocean end of this 48-mile man-made wonder lies the country’s capital, Panama City. From here you’ll have the opportunity for a closer look at some of the canal’s awesome locks, and join a ferry for a canal transit or take a trip to the world’s largest man-made watery expanse, Gatun Lake. For those in search of a little Spanish colonial heritage, Panama City itself has plenty to offer, most notably the beautiful San Jose Church. Colon meanwhile is over on the Atlantic side of the country but offers a number of similar canal experiences, including the chance to witness the awesome Gatun Locks. There’s also the opportunity to explore the historic Fort San Lorenzo, built in 1595.
The largest country in Central America has certainly come a long way since its times of civil war, and today Nicaragua offers some fantastic tourist opportunities. One of the most popular of those is a trip to the historic city of Granada, which boasts some beautiful Spanish colonial architecture; with the Iglesia de La Merced church being a particular highlight and offering some fantastic views. When it comes to natural attractions, you’ll certainly have plenty of choice. After all, Nicaragua’s also known as the country of lakes and volcanos. The beautiful Apoyo Lagoon lies in one of the island’s most expansive volcanic craters, while Lake Nicaragua is a stunning freshwater expanse and the go-to place for lovers of plants and wildlife.
Translated as ‘rich coast’, Costa Rica indeed lives up to its name and as well as being one of Central America’s most prosperous countries, it’s also well-off when it comes to natural wonders too. The name actually refers to the region’s age-old reputation for being a hotspot for gold and indeed, the port of Puntarenas is your gateway to the country’s capital San Jose and its fascinating gold museum. A river cruise is a great way to acquaint yourself with some of the country’s natural wonders, while an excursion to one of its bountiful rainforests is another popular choice. The port of Limon, which serves the country’s province of the same name, offers more opportunities for rainforest explorations, with a zip-line tour being a particularly exhilarating way to experience it all.
Acajutla is the country’s main sea port and the one which serves visiting cruise ships. Once a Mayan Village, it’s obviously changed a great deal over the years but the ruins of the original settlement are located close to the port, making a visit to them a popular tourist activity. There are some beautiful beaches to relax on too, whether you’re looking to soak up some Central American rays or explore the depths on a diving excursion. For those looking to explore further inland, the awesome Izalco Volcano is always a popular choice.
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