PORTS

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San Juan, Puerto Rico

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St. John's, Antigua

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Castries, St. Lucia

Old San Juan is rich in Spanish tradition, with iconic blue cobblestone streets and colonial architecture. This historic section of the Puerto Rican city is easily seen on foot, and cruise passengers can shop for handcrafted works, relax in a shaded park, or tour El Morro, a 16th-century Spanish fortress overlooking the sea. New San Juan is distinctly elegant with lavish resorts, great restaurants, and grand casinos. Visitors can enjoy an outing to El Yunque, the only tropical rain forest in the U.S. national forest system or join in on shore excursions that include the likes of deep-sea fishing, snorkeling, diving and even kayaking on a bioluminescent bay.

Language: English/Spanish

Currency: US Dollar (US$)

Part of the eastern Caribbean's Leeward Islands, Antigua was discovered and named by Christopher Columbus in 1493. The sun-soaked isle is small at just 108 square miles, but it boasts 365 beaches and crystal-clear water. History buffs will want to tour Nelson's Dockyard National Park, where one of the great admirals of the 18th century kept his fleet. The UNESCO World Heritage Site has been continuously in operation since 1745 and displays a telescope once used by Nelson himself. Other visitors might opt to lounge on one of the white-sand beaches, partake in water sports or go for a horseback ride along the shore. Hike up to Shirley Heights, a restored military outlook and gun battery, for a bird's-eye view of the harbors, or take a culinary tour to sample Caribbean classics like rum punch, jerk chicken, and West Indian curry. The island draws a huge yachting crowd and is perfect for windsurfing, water skiing, sailing, snorkeling, and diving.

Language: English

Currency: East Caribbean

Dollar (XCD), US Dollar (US$)

St. Lucia is home to the majestic Piton Mountains, the twin volcanic peaks rising thousands of feet above the island. Sightseeing tours offer a look of the island's rugged beauty, including the tropical rain forests. Most also visit Le Soufriere, the world's only drive-in volcano. Water lovers will find a variety of water sports at Marigot Bay.

Language: English

Currency: Eastern Caribbean Dollar (XCD), US Dollar (US$)

Tortola, British Virgin Islands

Tortola is small, but huge in natural beauty. The island is capped with bold mountains and fringed with breathtaking beaches. The prime sites here are Cane Garden Bay and Sage Mountain National Park. Other options include snorkeling, diving, and glass-bottom boat rides.

Language: English

Currency: US Dollar (US$)

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St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands

St. Thomas is a Caribbean paradise where white-sand beaches are gently lapped by azure waters and mountains are topped with verdant crowns of vegetation. Boasting a cosmopolitan flair, the island offers an abundance of duty-free shopping, top-notch eateries, and cultural experiences. In the harbor city of Charlotte Amalie, find the famed 99 Steps, a scenic staircase constructed by the Danes in the 1700s that starts the journey to a 1679 castle. For a dose of heritage, visit the 17th-century Fort Christian, a

National Historic Landmark that houses a museum, Virgin Islands exhibits, an art gallery and a furniture collection from the Danish period. Popular excursions include island tours, scuba diving and snorkeling expeditions and a trip to Magens Bay Park, with its mile-long shoreline and 6-acre arboretum.

Language: English

Currency: US Dollar (US$)

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Philipsburg, St. Maarten

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Christopher Columbus' sighting first brought European attention to this island in 1493. Today, St. Maarten flies two flags, making the island part-French and part-Dutch. Cruise ships more commonly call on the Dutch side of St. Maarten, known for its year-round sunshine, slew of shopping centers and buzzing nightlife. Visitors can voyage the Caribbean aboard a catamaran, kayak, or Jet Ski. Island outings include all-terrain vehicle adventures, culinary tours and snorkeling or scuba diving trips. Walking and biking tours explore the historic capital, Philipsburg, and luxury yachts and sailboats offer private charters for enhanced relaxation.

Language: Dutch

Currency: Euro (EUR),

US Dollar (US$)

Bridgetown, Barbados

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With white-sand beaches, natural caverns and floral forests, Barbados draws visitors to its slice of the eastern Caribbean. City tours of bustling capital Bridgetown are popular, as are island tours that show off the estates and plantation homes of the countryside. Foodies can feast on Bajan favorites or take a cooking class to recreate the cuisine at home. During a beach day, visitors lounge with rum-based drinks to the tune of calypso or head to the water to swim with turtles or snorkel above a shipwreck. Other excursion options include a rum party cruise, horseback rides on the beach or a fishing excursion for blue marlin, barracuda and more.

Language: English

Currency: Barbados Dollar,

US Dollar (US$)