10 Toasty Cruise Destinations

  • Paradise Island, Bahamas


    Not only are the Bahamas delightfully warm during the winter months, they're also one of the most accessible cruise destinations, with quick 4-night itineraries leaving from Miami, Fort Lauderdale, New Orleans and Galveston. Many cruise lines have their own private islands in the Bahamas, giving passengers room to spread out on the beach and soak up some much needed vitamin D.

    Photo courtesy of iStock/Thinkstock

  • Australia

    Winter in the United States means summer Down Under, and what better way to celebrate the season than with an Australian cruise? Sail past the Sydney Opera House, spot dolphins off the coast of Melbourne and spend some time on the sand, relaxing or participating in Australia's favorite pastime, surfing.

    Photo courtesy of iStock/Thinkstock

  • Florida Keys

    Just because you're dreaming of a warm winter port of call, doesn't mean you need to sail to foreign shores. The Florida Keys, home of Ernest Hemingway, offer coconut palm beaches, colorful coral reefs and some of the best cruise port shopping in the world, perfect for December cruisers looking to pick up some last minute gifts.

    Photo courtesy of iStock/Thinkstock

  • Falmouth Bay, Antigua


    In the Caribbean, there's a beach for every taste. Whether you're looking for a secluded romantic escape, like St Croix, or a lively port of call, think Jamaica, you'll find it in this popular cruising region. The best part about cruising during the cold months? You'll find fewer crowds and bigger savings so long as you avoid holiday weekends.

    Photo courtesy of iStock/Thinkstock

  • Lover's Beach, Cabo San Lucas


    South of the border is a great place to look for a cure for the winter blues. From Los Angeles or San Francisco, enjoy the surf, sand and sun of the Mexican Riviera, with ports of call like Cabo San Lucas, Puerto Vallarta and Acapulco. On the Caribbean side, you have Cozumel and the Yucatan Coast waiting.

    Photo courtesy of iStock/Thinkstock

  • South Pacific

    Calendars of tropical beaches are dominated by shots from the South Pacific, a cruising region with some of the world's most amazing beaches. Longer cruises to this area, usually from 10 days, cater primarily to passengers looking for romance, which you'll find in spades in destinations like Tahiti and Bora Bora.

    Photo courtesy of iStock/Thinkstock

  • Maya Bay of Phi-Phi island, Thailand

    Southeast Asia

    For an exotic winter escape, consider a cruise through one of the world's up-and-coming cruise destinations, Southeast Asia. The diversity in the area is staggering, and on the same cruise, you could find yourself sunning on the beaches of the Thai islands, shopping in Singapore or eating pho in Ho Chi Minh.

    Photo courtesy of iStock/Thinkstock

  • Waikiki Beach, Honolulu


    You don't need a passport to spend your winter island hopping in Hawaii. Surf the North Shore, hike the rugged coastlines of Kauai, whale watch in Maui or watch island formation in action in the Big Island's Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

    Photo courtesy of Kevin Forest/Thinkstock

  • Galapagos

    With a location straddling the equator, the Galapagos Islands enjoy warm weather year round, making it the perfect cruising option for the traveling naturalist. The water is warmer this time of year, making it ideal for snorkeling and scuba diving, and many of the animals nesting or mating, especially turtles, sea lions and land birds.

    Photo courtesy of iStock/Thinkstock

  • Otago peninsula coastal landscape, Dunedin, NZ

    New Zealand

    If you want to spend your winter vacation enjoying not only beautiful warm beaches, but also some of the world's most spectacular natural scenery, head to New Zealand. Since summer in the Southern Hemisphere is also high season for cruising, you'll find the best selection of ships and itineraries.

    Photo courtesy of iStock/Thinkstock

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