Do you have a favorite departure port for your cruise getaways?  Most do, and they are not afraid to say exactly why.

Photo Credit: Cruise Fever

We recently asked our readers, “What’s your favorite port to take a cruise out of?”.    The departure port itself is often the starting point for cruisers when looking for deals online.   Even if searching by destination, most regular cruise travelers prefer a certain port for that day one sailaway and for a variety of reasons we will mention below.

We wanted to know which cruise ports were favored, and we received almost 500 comments on our Facebook post asking this question.

The cruise ports listed below are a result of those comments and responses.  I should note that some respondents stated they didn’t care where a cruise started, as long as they were going on a cruise it was enough for them.

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Some factors that played a role in the most commonly mentioned embarkation ports included the following:

Proximity to traveler’s residences: Sometimes it all comes down to the convenience of how easy it is to get to the port.  After all, the closer a cruise port the less you have to spend on extra travel expenses.  For many readers, just being able to have a short drive to the port played a big role in choosing their favorite port.
Nearby airports with easy transportation: If you don’t live near a cruise port the next best thing is a convenient airport
Proximity to desirable ports of call: For those who lived further away from popular cruise ports, being able to access great ports of call and itineraries played a greater factor in their decision.
Port cities with iconic landmarks and destinations: Some cruise ports are in cities that are themselves popular destinations. Sailing out of iconic areas with stunning views led many to select their favorite departure ports.

Listed from 15 to 1, here were the top picks for favorite embarkation ports.

15. Long Beach

Located right next to the iconic Queen Mary, the Long Beach cruise terminal in California is the starting point for cruises to the Mexican Riviera, California, and longer sailings across the Pacific.  With over 600,000 cruise travelers sailing from Long Beach every year, the cruise port is about 25 mils south of World Cruise Center in San Pedro, California.  Being so close to LA, makes the Long Beach cruise port a convenient starting point for local residents.

14. Barcelona

Photo Credit: Cruise Fever

The Barcelona cruise port in Catalonia, Spain is the departure point for over 800 cruises every year.  With dozens of cruise lines sailing out of the port with itineraries to the Mediterranean, there are several cruise terminals within walking distance of Las Ramblas and other iconic landmarks around Barcelona.  The port city is not only a destination itself but a great launching point for cruises all over the Mediterranean Sea.

13. Malta

The Valletta Cruise Port offers scenic cruises from the island country of Malta.  Many of the cruise ship berths are only a short walk to the city center and offer wonderful views of the historic Quay Wall.  Over half a million cruise travelers pass through this port every year.  Cruise lines like MSC Cruises, Oceania, Silversea Cruises, and Regent Seven Seas Cruises will use this port for embarkation.  Our readers loved both the historic value of this location and the surrounding ports of call.

12. Southampton

Photo 230936523 Baltimore Cruise © Chengusf

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