Board in NYC to destinations like Bermuda, Iceland, and Disney.

By Alison Fox
August 05, 2019
Courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Line

Picture it: trading in the hot, crowded subway for fresh, open air. Losing the skyscrapers for the rippling expanse of the ocean.

The Big Apple may be a favorite travel destination, but it’s also a great jumping off point for vacations both big and small. And while New York City has many transit options, from airports to busses and train stations, there’s also a thriving cruise industry with major ports in the Hell’s Kitchen area of Manhattan and in Brooklyn’s Red Hook.

Cruise companies like Norwegian, Crystal, Cunard and Holland America all call either the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal or Manhattan Cruise Terminal home. And with 1,000-foot-long berths in Manhattan and 182,000 square feet of space in Brooklyn, these spots make a trip to the Caribbean or even Europe only a subway ride away (plus some time being pampered on the luxurious cruise ships themselves).

So go ahead, spend some time surveying the all-you-can-eat buffet as you head off for a busy week of lounging on a beach chair in the Bahamas (or exploring the rich historical past of Nassau); taste your way through the simple seafood dishes on the fishhook-shaped island of Bermuda; or watch the sea spray blow from a plush armchair as you speed north toward the charming New England cape.

These are 15 of the coolest cruises from New York City to feed your seafaring wanderlust.

New York to Southampton, England, 7 nights

Courtesy of Cunard Line

Ship: Queen Mary 2

Price: Starting from $909/person for the sailing leaving Jan. 3, 2020

Ship size: 2,691 guests

What you’ll love about it: This transatlantic crossing features elaborate dinners of salmon with poached quail egg and bitter chocolate soufflé and daily afternoon tea with finger sandwiches and scones. Relax with performances of Shakespeare and settle in with a good book in the ship’s library as you head for England.

Roundtrip New York to Bermuda

Courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Line

Ship: Norwegian Escape

Price: Starting from $599/person

Ship size: 4,266 guests

What you’ll love about it: Leave the concrete jungle for the quiet tranquility of Bermuda’s pink sanded beaches. When you’re not exploring the coves of the island, get some thrills on the ship’s Aqua Racer, a tandem waterslide, compete at nine holes of mini golf, or cool off in the Snow Room, which is meant to stimulate blood circulation.

New York to Quebec, Canada, 7 nights

Courtesy of Cunard Line

Ship: Queen Mary 2

Price: Starting from $649/person for the sailing leaving Sept. 1, 2019

Ship size: 2,691 guests

What you’ll love about it: Discover the remote calm of Canada’s coastal towns before sailing into the French-speaking province of Quebec. You’ll feel like you’ve gone to Europe without the jet lag when you disembark onto the cobblestone streets of Quebec City, the only fortified city north of Mexico.

The Panama Canal from New York to Tampa, 15 days

Courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Line

Ship: Norwegian Dawn

Price: Starting from $1,069/person

Ship size: 2,340 guests

What you’ll love about it: Explore the colonial past and multi-colored buildings in Cartagena, Colombia, sail by the Panama Canal, and stroll along the white sanded beaches and crystal-clear waters of Roatán in Honduras on this multi-country cruise. Norwegian’s “Free at Sea” program lets guests pick options like free unlimited open bar, free shore excursions, or free WiFi, so you can indulge how you like best during your time on board.

New York to Bermuda and the West Indies, 15 days

Courtesy of Viking

Ship: Viking Sea, Viking Sun, or Viking Star

Price: Starting from $3,499/person

Ship size: 930 guests

What you’ll love about it: Visit seven countries in only 15 days on this tropical cruise. Photograph the pastel-colored buildings in Bermuda’s capital, swim in the deep blue waters off the coast of Tortola in the British Virgin Islands, and sample some tostones (twice-fried plantains) in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Relax back on board with a glass of wine (included during lunch and dinner), and upload all those photos to Instagram with the complimentary WiFi.

New York to Rome (Civitavecchia), 15 days

Courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Line

Ship: Norwegian Getaway

Price: Starting from $1,099/person

Ship size: 3,963 guests

What you’ll love about it: Relax at sea (and take advantage of the ship’s five water slides and open-air promenade) for five days as you journey to the Portuguese Azores islands on this 10-stop cruise. Feast on fresh fish there before heading to Lisbon (and the sweet, buttery Pastel de nata on offer in the city), sample the croquetas in Spain, and then finally disembark in Italy, where heaping plates of pasta await.

New York to Los Angeles, 87 days

Courtesy of Viking

Ship: Viking Sun

Price: Starting from $25,999/person for the sailing leaving Oct. 10, 2019

Ship size: 930 guests

What you’ll love about it: You’ll be bird-watching along the Amazon River in Brazil, making friends with penguins in the Falkland Islands, and sipping pisco sours in Peru during this 18-country, months-long tour. When you’re not exploring the cities and vistas of the Americas (there are 38 included guided tours), you’ll be sipping on an espresso and reflecting on your travels from the private veranda in your stateroom on this luxurious and intimate ship.

Roundtrip New York to New England, 7 nights

Courtesy of Crystal Cruises

Ship: Crystal Serenity

Price: Starting from $2,499/person

Ship size: 980 guests

What you’ll love about it: Start your day with complimentary yoga and finish it with high-end dining on this luxurious and small cruise ship. Revel in the slow pace and charm of New England towns like Newport, Rhode Island, and Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and sample some lobster rolls in the quaint town of Bar Harbor, Maine, as you sail up and down the coast.

New York to Quebec City, Canada, 10 days

Courtesy of Holland America Line

Ship: Zuiderdam — Holland America

Price: Starting from $1,599/person

Ship size: 1,964 guests

What you’ll love about it: Holland America offers fall sailings up the East coast toward Canada, which are perfect for watching the leaves change colors and feeling the crisp air start to take hold. Sit by the window and watch the waves ripple with a hot chocolate in hand, or take a hands-on cooking workshop with America’s Test Kitchen before arriving in the historic and quaint Quebec City.

Roundtrip New York to Disney Castaway Cay and Port Canaveral, Florida, 7 nights

Courtesy of Disney Cruise Line

Ship: Disney Magic

Price: Starting from $3,678/person

Ship size: 2,713 guests

What you’ll love about it: Calling all mini-ghosts and ghouls (and their parents, too, for that matter): This themed “Halloween on the High Seas” cruise is fun for the whole family. Sail into Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay, where you can go snorkeling, greet beloved Disney characters, or just sit back on the beach, before heading to Port Canaveral — only about an hour away from Disney World itself.

The Amazon from New York to Miami, 24 nights

Courtesy of Crystal Cruises

Ship: Crystal Serenity

Price: Starting from $6,649/person

Ship size: 980 guests

What you’ll love about it: Learn about the Boi Bumbá festival in Brazil and spot the wildlife of the Amazon River as you sail through exploring of the region. When you finally disembark in Miami, you’ll feel pampered (there's one staff member for every 1.5 guests) and ready to hit the bars along Miami Beach with a cocktail in hand.

New York to Reykjavik, 15 nights

Courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Ship: Seven Seas Navigator

Price: Starting from $9,399/per person

Ship size: 490

What you’ll love about it: This luxurious cruise offers the chance to explore little-visited Greenland. Breathe the fresh air and spot whales in the fjords of Nuuk, the capital, which boasts only about 16,800 residents. While on board, sip a gin and tonic to take advantage of the ship’s open bar, join a cooking class, or simply enjoy a whole Maine lobster or filet mignon from the ship’s steakhouse. You'll also get a business return flight from Reykjavik included in your room fare.

Roundtrip New York to Bermuda, 4 days

Courtesy of Carnival Cruise Line

Ship: Carnival Sunrise

Price: Starting from $419/person

Ship size: 2,984 guests

What you’ll love about it: This cruise is a short but sweet getaway to the pristine beaches of Bermuda, giving you two full days at sea to kick back and relax. Adults can hang out at the Serenity Adult-Only Retreat while the kids meet up with Thing 1 and Thing 2 at Seuss at Sea (we’re partial to “Oh the Places You’ll Go”).

Roundtrip New York to Greenland, 16 days

Courtesy of Princess Cruises

Ship: Caribbean Princess

Price: Starting from $1,563/person

Ship size: 3,140 guests

What you’ll love about it: Shop for Inuit handicrafts and learn about traditional skills like hunting, kayaking, and fishing, or look out for polar bears on ice during the summer in the remote and breathtaking island of Greenland. Back onboard, indulge in a chocolate and wine tasting or a chocolate body treatment at the spa before gambling the night away at the ship's casino.

Roundtrip New York to Bermuda, 7 days

Courtesy of Oceania Cruises

Ship: Insignia on Oceania Cruises

Price: Starting from $1,199

Ship size: 684 guests

What you’ll love about it: Spend five days hanging out in Bermuda, splitting your time between the relaxing beaches and soaking up the history of the small island: The capital, Hamilton, was first founded in 1788, according to the Bermuda Tourism Authority. Later, spend some time playing golf on the putting green, competing in a game of shuffleboard, or taking a dip in the pool on the ship before relaxing with a spot of afternoon tea.

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