Imagine stepping onto the Carnival Freedom in Galveston, and then 10 days later gazing over the historic Panama Canal from the ship’s deck or from the comfort of your stateroom. This can be done by booking a cruise through GalvestonCruises.com. But if you’re interested, you must act quickly. There’s only one such cruise departing Galveston each year and cabins sell out quickly.
“We get quite a few inquiries each month about Panama Canal cruises from Galveston,” says Dru Walters, Cruise Agent at GalvestonCruises.com. “When Carnival announced new itineraries with the canal, we held a small block of cabins because we knew they would go fast.”
This year’s Carnival’s Panama Canal cruise from Galveston’s cruise ship port departs October 28, taking 14 days with stops also in Montego Bay, Jamaica; Aruba; Curacao; Cartagena, Colombia; Limon, Costa Rica; and Cozumel, Mexico before returning back to Galveston. Departure dates for the following years include Oct 27, 2018 and Jan 19, 2019.
After making a few stops in the Caribbean, day 10 is the big day! It takes the ship several hours in the morning to rise through the three locks on the Caribbean side. Guests will be able to observe the gates in operation and the mules that keep the ship centered in the locks. Once through the locks, the ship will turn around in Gatun Lake, and repeat the process, passing through the locks back into the Caribbean. There are no excursions this day and guests stay onboard.
The Carnival Freedom’s sibling, the Carnival Paradise passed through the Panama Canal in March.
The Carnival Freedom was updated in 2014 to add the latest Carnival FunShip 2.0 upgrades which include Guy’s Burger Joint, the Punchliner Comedy Club, Serenity Adult-Only Retreat, Cherry on Top, RedFrog Pub, Alchemy Bar and BlueIguana Cantina, just to name a few. She became Galveston’s third permanent cruise ship in February 2015 and has a normal schedule of 7-day cruises departing Saturdays.
“Cruising is an excellent way to sample exotic destinations that may otherwise be difficult or expensive to visit directly,” says Claire Johnson, owner of GalvestonCruises.com. “Today’s cruise ships are floating 5-star hotels complete with Broadway-style performances, delectable food and non-stop activities. If you’re a first-time cruiser or a pro, Galveston has an itinerary that will be a perfect fit.”
The Panama Canal was built from 1903–1914, started by President Theodore Roosevelt to fulfill the long-term goal of creating a way for ships to avoid sailing around South America to get between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. The canal, shoreline to shoreline, is about 40 miles long. A new canal expansion project has been completed and opened last summer.
The cruise’s Caribbean stops include great shopping, access to beaches and shore excursions focusing on history, natural wonders and other locations rounding out the 14-day cruise.
For almost 20 years, GalvestonCruises.com has specialized in Galveston cruises, offering expert advice and great rates on cruises from Galveston. It’s a small local company located in Galveston just a few blocks from the cruise terminal. Call today to start your vacation at (409)763-8678.