Top 10 Cruise Destinations

Composing a list of the Top 10 Destinations is not an easy task. First you have to ask yourself how do you figure out what should be on the Top 10? Do you look at what destinations appear most often on bucket lists, or maybe the most traveled to places, or maybe even the most inquired about destinations? Or do I just use my personal Top 10 list?

There are many lists out there that cover the Top 10 Cruise Destinations and they all answer just one of the questions above. What would the list look like if we addressed ALL the questions above? That is what I decided to do. I took all those questions and answered each one of them…but I made each question a list of the Top 20 Cruise Destinations. Then I set about combining the lists into one using a point system I came up with and the results are here for you to see. I would love your feedback on what you think of the list. Did I miss any destinations that you think should be on the list?

#1 Destination: ALASKA

Raidance of the Seas

This came as no surprise to me. Just about everyone I talk with wants to go to or loved Alaska. I myself have sailed the Inside passage round trip out of Seattle up to Juneau, Ketchikan, Skagway, and Tracy’s Arm. It was an amazing trip and I would love to go back and do a Cruisetour. What is a Crusietour? It combines a land and cruise package into one trip to give you an amazing experience. The one I would like to do starts in Fairbanks and heads south down through Denali National Park and onto Anchorage where you then head to Seaward to catch the ship to Vancouver. On the way you may visit places like College Fjord, Glacier Bay, Hubbard Glacier, Skagway, Ketchikan, and Juneau. You can also do this trip in reverse. Start with the cruise and end on land in Fairbanks.

#2 Destination: CARIBBEAN

So many options in the Caribbean. The Caribbean is divided into three main areas; Eastern, Western and Southern. Eastern Caribbean may include ports of call in: St Thomas, St Maarten, Tortola, San Juan, and St Kitts. Western Caribbean may include ports of call in: Grand Caymans, Jamaica, Costa Maya, Cozumel, Roatan, and Belize. Southern Caribbean may include ports of call in: St Croix, St Kitts, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Tobago, St Lucia, Antigua, Barbados, Curacao, St Vincent, and Aruba


Sydney Opera House, Sydney, Australia

Down Under has become so popular to cruise to in the past few years. Being from New Zealand I’m a little biased about this area, but it is amazing! When people find out I’m from New Zealand they always tell me how beautiful it is. Yet most of them have never been there! Australia and New Zealand are two amazing countries where you will see a very diverse yet similar

Mitre Peak, Milford Sounds, New Zealand

culture. Most cruises in this area start and end in Sydney, Australia. Some will combine ports of call in both countries while others will sail just one country. Some of the ports of call in New Zealand may include: Bay of Islands, Auckland, Tauranga, Napier, Wellington, Akaroa, Dunedin, Dusky Sounds, Doubtful Sounds, and Milford Sounds. The last three listed are just sailing ports of call, you don’t disembark on these but you will see some of the most amazing scenery as you sail these sounds. For Australia some of your ports of call may include: Brisbane, Airlie Beach, Cairns, Port Douglas, Darwin, Broome, Geraldton, Perth, Bunbury, Albany, Adelaide, Melbourne, Burnie, and Hobart.


The Hermitage, St Petersberg, Russia

When you mention the Baltic just about everyone thinks St Petersburg. Most cruise lines will spend 1 or 2 nights in port in St Petersburg so you have time to explore the many wonders that are in St Petersburg. Some cruise lines even offer shore excursions to Moscow from here. Other ports of call in this region may include Stockholm, Helsinki, Tallinn, Riga, Copenhagen, Oslo, Visby, and Gdansk.


Santorini, Greece

Mediterranean brings up images of amazing blue waters, islands with stark white buildings on hillsides, splashes of bright bold colors on roofs and doors, amazing seafood dishes, and gorgeous beaches all steeped in ancient history. When you think the Holy Lands you think of the thousands of years of religious history. You bring up images of floating in the Dead Sea covered in mineral rich mud, visiting religious sites that have deep meaning for Christians, Jews, and Muslims. If you think Turkey it brings up images of colorful bazaars rich in color and culture. Other images that may come up could be the romantic glides down the canals in Venice on the Gondolas, visiting the Colosseum in Rome, orĀ  maybe the French Riviera, the Leaning Tower of Pisa. There is so much history and culture in the Mediterranean that each day could be spent immersed in a new culture or historical site. Some of the ports of call in this area may include: Istanbul, Ephesus, Haifa, Ashdod, Alexandria, Athens, Mykonos, Santorini, Chania, Katakolon, Split, Venice, Naples, Dubrovnik, Koper, Sicily, Rome, Cannes, Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Ajaccio, Gibraltar, and Nice.

#6 Destination: GALAPAGOS

Blue-Footed Boobies

This is an adventure of a lifetime! If you love to explore nature then you cannot miss a trip to one of the most precious archipelagos on earth. Very few cruise lines venture to the Galapagos and those that do make sure it is an experience you will never forget. Naturist guides will be your windows of discovery for you as you explore these amazing islands and their eco-system. The Galapagos are home to many strange and interesting creatures like; Sea Lions, Giant Tortoises, Dolphins, White-Tipped Sharks, Red Throats, Blue-footed Boobies, Iguanas, Galapagos Hawks and many, many others.

#7 Destination: ASIA

Grand Palace, Bangkok, Thailand

This is such a HUGE area that has a very rich culture and history. You may visit countries like Japan, China, Taiwan, South Korea, Vietnam, Singapore, Hong Kong, Thailand, Indonesia, and India. See the Great Wall of China, the Terra Cotta Warriors, the Forbidden City, Lake Hoam Kiem Temple, Thien Cung Caves, Ho Chi Minh City’s Temple of Heavenly Empress, Taj Mahal, or Bangkok’s Grand Palace.

#8 Destination: ANTARCTICA

Paradise Harbour, Antarctica

The planet’s last untouched wilderness. There are cruise lines that will do scenic cruising past peninsulas of Antarctica while others will actually make stops in Antarctica so you can get off and explore. You will discover a wealth of wildlife that includes penguins, seals, and whales. Antarctica also boasts towering icebergs and mountains and a vast emptiness that will leave you breathless. If you are on a cruise that stops and allows you to get off then you will have some amazing once in a lifetime experiences.

#9 Destination: EUROPE

Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo

A place of great diversity. On a cruise of Europe you may include ports of call that have been listed for the Mediterranean and Baltic Seas and Scandinavia and then to some of those you may be able to add ports of call like Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Brugges, Le Havre, Cherbourg, Southampton, London, Cobh, Dublin, Lisbon, Vigo, Gibraltar, Seville, Dover, Hamburg, Belfast, Holyhead, Glasgow (Greenock), Orkney Islands (Kirkwall), Edinbugh (South Queensferry), Inverness (Invergordon), and Guernsey. Not only can you explore the coasts of Europe by cruise ship but you can explore the interior by river Cruises on such great rivers as Seine, Mosel, Rhine, and Danube. These river cruises allow you to get into the hearts of some of the many countries that make up Europe and allows you to experience a wide and diverse culture and history as you float down the rivers.

#10 Destination: SOUTH AMERICA

Iguazu Falls

From the vibrant colors and music to the incredible beauty of the Chilean Fjords, to the impressive Iguazu Falls, to the ancient lost city of the Inca’s Machu Picchu, to the brave Gauchos, to the Straits of Magellan South America, to the engineering marvel of the Panama Canal, to the incredible Amazon, to the world’s largest rain forest, and to the jungles full many animals and plants south America has something for everyone.

Whew! It doesn’t leave very many areas of the world off the list. The world is a wonderful place to explore and has many unique discoveries to be made by those willing to leave home and go and find them. A cruise is a great way to touch on some of the highlights around the world. You can add cruisetours to many cruises in places like Europe, South America, Baltic, Asia, Australia/New Zealand and Alaska. These can enhance your experiences on your cruise and give you a deeper understanding and appreciation for the places you visit.

So now the questions are: Do any of these results surprise you? Why or Why Not? And finally, Where would you like to go next?


About Helen Brahms

World globetrotter, Helen Brahms, is your Luxury Travel Concierge. She specializes in creating unique once-in-a-lifetime travel memories and charity fundraising trips. Whether your travel dreams include exotic locations or time with your family, you can have it all. Helen loves to help people cross destinations off their travel bucket list before they take a dirt nap! Helen is the host of the Have2Travel Radio Show ( and is the author of the book "Congratulations, You're Going On a Cruise! Now What?" and the co-author of the book "Passionistas Talk!: The Best of the Passion Point Interviews (Vol. 1)"
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