7 US-Based Cruise Itineraries With Unique Port Calls

Thousands of cruises depart from the United States ports every year to places like the Caribbean, Mexican Riviera, Alaska, and more.

Most of these voyages fit into what you’d consider a “typical” itinerary, with common port calls that lots of cruise lines visit on a regular basis. However, scattered among some of these sailings are port calls and regions that aren’t necessarily common.

In this article, we’ve gathered seven unique US-based cruise itineraries with special port calls currently available for booking in 2022 or 2023.

1. Bermuda & Martha’s Vineyard

In May 2023, Celebrity Cruises is set to operate three Bermuda voyages roundtrip from Cape Liberty, including a stop at Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. 

Martha’s Vineyard is not a common port for major cruise ships. It’s also unique because if a cruise line stops at the island, it’s usually during a Canada/New England cruise. This voyage provides a unique opportunity to experience one of New England’s most popular destinations on a Bermuda voyage.

The sailings also call on Charleston, South Carolina, and Newport, Rhode Island. They’re neat Atlantic itineraries with a good range of destinations you wouldn’t usually find.

If you’re curious, Norwegian Cruise Line and Oceania Cruises have a handful of visits to Martha’s Vineyard on the schedule. 

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martha's vineyard lighthouse
A lighthouse on Martha’s Vineyard (Photo courtesy of Pixabay/sueo59)

2. Alluring Caribbean

For the fall and winter 2022-2023 seasons, Oceania Cruises is running several longer Caribbean cruises.

This is a 12-night “Alluring Caribbean” voyage over Christmas and New Year’s. Aside from being a holiday voyage, what makes it incredibly unique are the port calls of Gustavia, St. Barts, and Pointe a Pitre, Guadeloupe, which are not visited by the mainstream cruise lines. 

St. Barthélemy, or St. Barts, is the Caribbean’s playground for the ultra-rich. There, you’ll find world-class dining, high-end shops, and pristine beaches.

Guadeloupe is a French overseas region full of French and Creole influences. Some of the best things to do there include visiting Guadeloupe National Park and its cascading waterfall, scuba diving at the Cousteau Reserve, or visiting one of Guadeloupe’s satellite islands.

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gustavia, saint barthelemy
Gustavia, Saint Barthélemy (Photo courtesy of Pixabay/marizmo)

3. Canada, New England, & Iceland

This August, Holland America’s Nieuw Statendam is setting sail roundtrip from Boston on a 24-day adventure to Canada, New England, Greenland, and Iceland.

Port calls in Canada and New England include Sydney, Nova Scotia; Red Bay, Labrador; St. Anthony, Newfoundland; and Bar Harbor, Maine, among others.

Of course, this itinerary is unique because the ship is sailing roundtrips from a US port to Greenland and Iceland, which you rarely see. The two Greenland stops are Quaqortoq and Nanortalik, which are in the extreme south of the country. There, guests can learn about Inuit culture and explore the beautiful terrain full of mountains and fjords.

The itinerary has six calls in Iceland, including the capital of Reykjavík. In these primarily small, colorful towns, passengers can do everything from museum visits and historical tours to sampling local delicacies, hiking through beautiful scenery, shopping, and enjoying other outdoor adventures.

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reykjavík, iceland houses
Reykjavík (Photo courtesy of Seabourn)

4. Classic California Coast

Despite being relatively common with several cruise lines running California coastal cruises, sailings in this region don’t seem to be discussed much. This seven-night Classic California Coast voyage from Holland America is differentiated from most other West Coast sailings because of one port: Monterey.

The city is almost smack-dab in the middle of the California coast and is perhaps best known for its world-class Monterey Bay Aquarium.

In addition to visiting the aquarium, cruisers can stroll around the charming and historic downtown area, go on a whale-watching tour, visit wineries, or tour locations featured in John Steinbeck’s novels.

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monterey california seaside
Monterey, California (Photo courtesy of Holland America)

MORE: 8 Tips For Preparing to Cruise in 2022

5. Baja Peninsula & Sea of Cortez

In late 2022 and early 2023, Princess Cruises will offer 10-night roundtrip Los Angeles voyages down to Mexico’s Baja Peninsula. In addition to more familiar destinations, this itinerary includes the “off-the-beaten-path” ports of La Paz and Loreto, Mexico. 

La Paz includes a scenic seaside walkway, the Malecon, where visitors can stroll and stop at various bars and restaurants. Whale-watching excursions are also available here.

At Loreto, the oldest Spanish settlement on the Baja Peninsula, you’ll witness its colonial architecture, with a beautiful mission church, museum, and charming streets to explore.

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loreto mexico baja peninsula
Loreto, Mexico (Photo courtesy of Holland America)

6. Greenland & Canada

The cruise to Greenland is a 14-night Royal Caribbean voyage roundtrip from Cape Liberty. This sailing includes a stop at Quaqortoq and Greenland’s capital Nuuk.

Nuuk’s compact downtown is perfect for exploring various shops and offers a small-town feel, complete with Danish colonial houses and the Greenland National Museum. While in port, cruisers can also go on a whale-watching tour, observe floating icebergs in the bay, stop by the Katuaq Cultural Centre, and more.

This itinerary also includes two stops in Canada: Halifax, Nova Scotia, and St. John’s, Newfoundland.

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nuuk, greenland seabourn
Nuuk, Greenland (Photo courtesy of Seabourn)

7. Historic South & Golden Isles

This seven-night American Cruise Lines voyage sails between Charleston, South Carolina, and Amelia Island in northern Florida. All but one of the voyages’ days is a port day, and that day is spent cruising the Intracoastal Waterway.

The destinations on the journey are Beaufort and Hilton Head Island, South Carolina; Savannah, Jekyll Island; and St. Simon’s Island, Georgia. This itinerary is the perfect way to get a taste of the charming coastal towns. 

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american cruise lines independence
American Cruise Lines’ ship Independence in Savannah, Georgia (Photo courtesy of American Cruise Lines)

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