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5 Most Popular Cruise Destinations
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January 4, 2020
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Travel Trivia Editorial
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The type of cruise you go on can be a very personal decision. Everyone chooses their destination of choice based on several factors, from cost to the departure port location. One of the most iconic cruise destinations is the Caribbean, with its vast island nations that each offer their own character, but what about other popular cruise destinations? Cruise on while we explore the top 5 most popular cruise destinations.

Mediterranean

Cruise ship off Salerno coast
Credit: nata_rass/ iStock

The Mediterranean has a ton to offer and is becoming more popular with cruisers, especially those that save up for the cruise of a lifetime. These cruises are comprehensive in terms of what they offer up, and the vast, secluded sea that provided civilization's birthplace so long ago is home to many connected cultures. Visit the likes of the Greek Islands, Ancient Rome, Barcelona, Monaco, Venice, and even the home of Game of Thrones, Dubrovnik. These are only a few of the options that abound in the Mediterranean Sea.

European River Cruises

River boat on the Danube
Credit: benstevens/ iStock

While most Americans don't think of rivers as being a place to cruise, they're quite popular in Europe. And they are home to the #1 overall best cruise destination on many 2019 lists: Avignon. This river cruise jumped in popularity when the Obamas made it one of their vacation destinations. A stop along the Rhone River, Avignon is a quaint little city located in southeastern France. This is the perfect launching pad to tour the famous Ch√Ęteauneuf-du-Pape wine region. It's also home to the Palace of Popes, where the pope lived in the 14th century. So if the picturesque views weren't enough, the history might entice you.

You can also river cruise to Vienna, situated along the Danube River. With its grand palaces and architecture, you will experience a city full of history, shopping, and vibrant nightlife. Some cruise lines do overnight stays at this port so you can fully experience the city.

Norwegian Coast

Cruise off the coast of Flam Village, Norway
Credit: MariusLtu/ iStock

The Norwegian coast is a lovely cruise destination any time of the year. In the winter, you can catch a glimpse of the majestic northern lights. Then gaze at the snow-capped mountains, waterfalls, and impressive, green meadows that flank one of the most popular ports in this area, Flam. Famous for fishing villages and fjords, it's been called the most beautiful place on earth by several cruisers.

You can also enjoy a visit to Geiranger, Norway, where a walk through town allows for a quiet afternoon. Or maybe you're more inclined to enjoy the lively shops and restaurants in Oslo. Eidfjord, Norway, is even famous for goats that graze on the rooftops.

Alaska

Cruise ship in Alaska with iceberg in background
Credit: Kent Weakley/ Shutterstock

An Alaskan cruise comes in at the 2nd spot on our list due to its scenic wonders. Starting in easy-to-access cities like Seattle and Vancouver, you'll visit breathtaking locations like Glacier Bay, Alaska. Experience the majestic views of Glacier Bay Monument Park's glaciers, abundant fjords, and wildlife. Enjoy watching eagles, bears, orcas, sea otters, and more in their natural habitats. If you're lucky, a tour guide from the park will join you to give you some additional insight into what you see.

Other breathtaking locations you might enjoy on your Alaskan cruise include Tracy Arm Fjord, the Inside Passage, Juneau, Skagway, Sitka, and Ketichan. When you arrive at the port of Sitka, head off to explore the city, drive up the mountain, or spot one of the many bald eagles that live here. Skagway will take you back in time as you walk the streets. Don't forget Juneau, where you can easily do a self-guided walking tour and enjoy the history of the state capitol.

South Pacific

Beach in Bora Bora
Credit: oversnap/ iStock

The South Pacific offers many beautiful destinations and Bora Bora is especially popular. This small island sits northwest of Tahiti and makes the perfect honeymoon destination or place to visit for snorkelers. Relaxing on a beach all day while at port is how many cruisers spend their time at this locale. With warm almost-see-through water, you'll think you're in paradise.

Other hot spots in the South Pacific include Isle of Pines, Moorea, Mystery Island, and Port Vila. Isle of Pines locals are known to be very courteous, and the beaches are ideal for swimming and snorkeling. Moorea has pristine beaches that are only a short drive from the pier.