5 Shore Excursions to Remember

shore_excursionCruise lines offer many interesting shore excursions conducted by reputable licensed and insured operators. Passengers are encouraged to check the available tours in each port and decide in advance which tours appeal to them.

There are many options and the ship usually spends only a day or two in each port. Seeing ancient ruins is part of the travel experience. Shopping is also a popular port activity along with activities such as ziplining or golf.

Here are a few of the top shore excursions preferred by cruisers:

  1. Snorkeling anywhere in the Caribbean, especially Grand Cayman, the Virgin Islands or Cozumel.

  2. Helicopter or float plane sightseeing excursions over Alaska's glaciers along with the White Pass and Yukon Railroad in Skagway.

  3. Day tours to the Mayan ruins of Tulum on the Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula.

  4. Whale and dolphin watching excursions in different ports.

  5. Tours of ancient ruins on Greek Island and other Mediterranean cruise ports.

Snorkeling in the Caribbean

There is so much to see and do in the Caribbean and snorkeling is a popular, easy adventure. The water is warm and clear. Cruise ships will always recommend reliable, insured snorkeling tours in Caribbean ports.

Snorkeling in Grand Cayman includes swimming with harmless stingrays inside a reef. Certified Scuba divers can also participate in  dives along Grand Cayman's reef with licensed diving tours.

Cruise ship passengers in St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands can take a snorkeling tour at the Virgin Islands National Park on St. John.

Visitors to Cozumel have an opportunity to swim with dolphins on a special tour offered by the cruise ships.

Tulum is an ancient fortress on a bluff overlooking the Caribbean built during the late Mayan period. The ruins are part of the Parque Nacional Tulum. The tours that include lunch and a swim, are led by knowledgeable guides familiar with the Mayan culture and history.

Whale Watching in the Pacific

This type of excursion is on a small boat operated by a professional licensed captain and crew. The vessels must meet United States Coast Guard standards even if they are in a foreign country. Whale watching excursions are offered with cruises in the Seattle and Vancouver areas, Alaska, the New England area and the Maritime Provinces in Canada.

Birds Eye View of Alaska

Helicopters or seaplanes are used for flight seeing tours over the Mendenhall and other glaciers while the ship is in Alaska.

The White Pass and Yukon Railroad tour from Skagway follows the Chillkoot Trail used by miners eager to find Klondike gold. The restored train cars on the narrow gauge railway carry passengers through several climatic zones. A historical narrative is part of the tour.

Ancient Ruins in the Mediterranean

Tours of historic sites and ruins on Mediterranean cruises top the list of shore excursions. This includes the Greek island of Delos that is a museum, Knosos in Crete, ancient temples on Rhodes and other islands.

The cruise ship must guarantee that all excursion operators are the best in the port with safe boats, buses and other transportation. Find the excursion tour that you know you will never forget.